Comic Talk, Tips and Tricks

Motion Effects
Darwin at 2:56PM, Sept. 18, 2007
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Okay one of the things I have yet to grasp is the ability to make a character look like they're moving quickly.

I've tried to use a motion blur, on outline, and on the entire subject, but I have yet to come up with an effect I like. Blurring the background DOES seem to work, but I don't always want the background hidden.

I use a Photoshop CS program. While I have not looked through ALL of the subject lines for seventeen pages, I haven't seen a subject line that deals with this vexing facet of my comic dilemma.

As yet, no one seems to have come up with a tutorial for that. Is there any way you all could help me out on this one…it is a section of my art I desperately need to improve on (other than backgrounds, heh.).

Thanks for any help you can give…or PM me if you have some helpful suggestions.

last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
Enef at 4:38AM, Sept. 19, 2007
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Look at action comics and see how they do it, the answer is startlingly simple.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:22PM
Darwin at 6:46AM, Sept. 19, 2007
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Looking at it, and then doing it are amazingly two different things. Techique is what I need to learn…and I'm a hands on kind of person. Looking at it doesn't help, because trust me, I've tried!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
JustNoPoint at 1:42PM, Sept. 19, 2007
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What sort of speed effect are you going for?

Lines are always the key. Those straight and/or curvy ones that generally come to a point at the end.

Other methods that you may want to use with lines are showing multiple images of the person.
Stretching the image of the person moving fast.

Add the dust trails, make them affect their surroundings with their speed. Hair movement, clothers, papers flying, grass moving… all sorts of things.

Put fx sparks on the ground where the action has been hitting the ground to propel itself.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:12PM
Darwin at 1:47PM, Sept. 19, 2007
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Just No Point;

Thanks, that is more what I needed, you've got me thinking of some things now. Sweet! Thanks!

I will have to do some playing around with it.

How about blur effects (say for a swinging arm or pumping legs) what method do you use to make them look better than just smudge on the screen? Leading lines on the extremities and smudging? Straight up blurring…

Thanks for what you've given so far…I appreciate it!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
JustNoPoint at 4:38PM, Sept. 19, 2007
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http://www.drunkduck.com/The_Devon_Legacy_Prologue/index.php?p=228638
http://www.drunkduck.com/The_Devon_Legacy_Prologue/index.php?p=245589
http://www.drunkduck.com/The_Devon_Legacy_Prologue/index.php?p=220194
Here are different versions of what I said.

The top one is more of an after image color that follows the path of movement.
I make it by drawing the trail with my selection tool.

Depending on my mood I either use a transparent gradient flood fill that gets mor transparent as it heads to the disappearing point, or I just take a soft airbrush and fill in the selection area making sure to keep it lighter the further away from the action I get.

Also the scenes shown before and after can make a panel have speed/movement.
http://www.drunkduck.com/Legend_of_Terrar/index.php?p=126124
This comic isn't mine (much better :P). I love the method he used to show the main character running toward the skateboard. A bit of perspective plus some lines = speed.

You may also want to look at some of mlai's great examples given to me in this topic.
http://www.drunkduck.com/community/view_topic.php?tid=32243&cid=238
More lines and sparks indicating where people had been!

Simply blurring in my experience doesn't convey the movement well on it's on.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:12PM
mlai at 5:23PM, Sept. 19, 2007
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I agree that you shouldn't depend on CG blurring to convey motion. Blurring is the optional finishing touch, not the main ingredient. If the naked lineart doesn't seem to convey motion to you, then CG effects added on later won't help either.

Besides, naked lineart has a sort of raw, stark beauty which cannot be matched by cold CG.


FIGHT current chapter: Filling In The Gaps
FIGHT_2 current chapter: Light Years of Gold
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:05PM
Enef at 12:59PM, Sept. 20, 2007
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Like i said.

Take a look.



Now STUDY it.

HOW DOES IT CONVEY MOTION? HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT ONE GUY JUST GOT PUNCHED BY THE OTHER?

Startlingly simple.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:22PM
Glarg at 3:50PM, Sept. 21, 2007
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The character in motion isn't just enough to make it look like it's moving, You've got to add to the background aswell. Instead of adding motion lines to your character, draw your character in a running position THEN add the motion lines to the background. Doing this will make it so that the character seems it's moving AND the backround is aswell.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:37PM
kyupol at 9:17PM, Sept. 21, 2007
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Its all about playing around with motion blurs, multiple layers, and “hit” effects.

Fight clips from BK

http://www.drunkduck.com/BK_Shadow_Nemesis/index.php?p=196822

http://www.drunkduck.com/BK_Shadow_Nemesis/index.php?p=236989

http://www.drunkduck.com/BK_Shadow_Nemesis/index.php?p=144836

Fight clips from BK

http://www.drunkduck.com/BK_Shattered_Hate/index.php?p=23911

http://www.drunkduck.com/BK_Shattered_Hate/index.php?p=6797
NOW UPDATING!!!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:25PM
spacehamster at 6:31AM, Sept. 22, 2007
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Exaggerated foreshortening (i.e. making closer objects really big) is also a good way to convey dynamics. Panel 2 on this page is an example of how I use this effect. Generally, more extreme camera angles help in action sequences.

Also, I'll chime in with what mlai said - the lineart has to convey the motion, things like motion blurs are just the icing on the cake. Also, using these kinds of effects in such a way that they blend with the art and don't seem jarring is actually very difficult. I see lots of people ruining their stuff with poorly used computer effects. Tread carefully and use them in moderation.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:50PM
Darwin at 8:07PM, Sept. 23, 2007
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Thanks for all the suggestions and tips. I will certainly get to practicing on them.

Enef…Please don't yell at me…I wasn't trying to be obsitinate, I'm just saying I'm a doer - I actually need to play around with things to make them work.

I'm trying to stay away from the computer effects…as I said blurs don't work nearly as well as I would like them too…though I think it is that I am not applying them right or to the right layer.

So let me go through and take a look at all your links and I will start playing around with them.

Again thanks for all who chimed in with a suggestion.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
Darwin at 8:31PM, Sept. 23, 2007
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As an example of where I stand…here is an excerp of my most recent page (From Gemutations: Plague)



Eww…I don't know why it came out looking like that…The page will be up at Midnight DD time…
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
Enef at 3:58AM, Sept. 24, 2007
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kyupol
Its all about playing around with motion blurs, multiple layers, and “hit” effects.


WRONG.

Motion blurs may be CALLED THAT. But rarely is it a good idea to use it in a comic to convey actual motion. It looks silly.


Darwin, the excerpt you showed us is looking good, but perhaps using a colour other than brown on brown for the motion lines would be better, perhaps white or black, the brown on brown is hard to see.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:22PM
Darwin at 6:09AM, Sept. 24, 2007
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Eh it was gray, but I see what you mean. I've tried lighter in other versions of this kind of effect and was feeling assaulted by the stark contrast… I can try it again, sure.

I think I strayed away from the motion I am actually having the most problem with…running. See one of the characters in Only Half is a dhampir…he's supposed to be like super fast compared to a human running (but just slower than a vampire). I've tried several things and none of them look to be giving him the kind of speed I think he has. Heh…it's a tough one I know. Regular motion lines work, but don't seem to convey the swiftness my boy possesses.

I do like the idea of a frontal view with foreshortening and speed lines like with the running horse above, and I may have to try that the next round of action I come to. GAH that's not for another chapter! LMAO! Ah well if I start planning now…and practice, I might just be able to make it come off!

Thanks again for all the suggestions.

Enef…thank you for the kind words on the clip…

I am still trying to figure out why that came out all ganked up…it doesn't look like that on the page! Maybe compression is different in the threads…

last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
Hyptosis at 6:16AM, Sept. 24, 2007
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Enef
kyupol
Its all about playing around with motion blurs, multiple layers, and “hit” effects.


WRONG.


lol. You're just WRONG!!!!111onegravy *eyeroll* Enef, your ego suggests you just reading your own text I think. The equivalent of hearing your own voice? You're not wrong yourself, necessarily, I just don't understand the ‘tude you seem to have in so many posts. Maybe I’m reading too much into it.

Motion blurs can convey movements just fine, if they're used correctly. It usually isn't a good idea to use them with organic objects, such as people. I would suggest trying to draw all of the movement by hand. Some of the suggestions in this post are perfect, some aren't so perfect, so pick carefully, and usually try to check an author's examples to see if they look like they might know what they're talking about.

mlai
Besides, naked lineart has a sort of raw, stark beauty which cannot be matched by cold CG.
Perfect quote.

My favorite examples of movement don't come from old dc comics with bogus ‘wham’ ‘smack’ hero punches, but from other sources. Granted those punches have their place, if you character's aren't wearing spandex it can look pretty damned funny.

I'd check out Adam Warren. The dude is the master of the speed line and uses it with deft skill. Also check out Blade of the Immortal by Hiroaki Samura. I'm usually not one to pimp manga, but anyone who considers his book just ‘manga’ obviously hasn't looked at it very closely.

There's my two cents hope it helps. I'll post some examples of their work if I can find it.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:53PM
mlai at 6:31AM, Sept. 24, 2007
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If you want works which convey motion awesomely, I'd suggest looking into manga rather than comics. Comics are as valid a medium as manga, but I've rarely seen comics convey motion as kickassingly as manga. The one comics artist I can think of, is a guy who obviously researched a lot of manga (Joe Mad).

To use an analogy, manga is like John Woo.

But then again, it depends on what kind of story you're telling, and what kind of storytelling style you're employing. If you're filming The Godfather, you do not want John Woo.

FIGHT current chapter: Filling In The Gaps
FIGHT_2 current chapter: Light Years of Gold
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:05PM
Hyptosis at 6:42AM, Sept. 24, 2007
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I's back. Here we go.

Samura
http://img159.imageshack.us/img159/826/botism32af.gif <– animted, so give it time to load, but awesome, this was made up of panels from his comic
http://img523.imageshack.us/img523/7595/copiadeeigal86cf.jpg
http://www.irishblogs.ie/images/140601.jpg
http://artfiles.art.com/images/-/Hiroaki-Samura/Blade-of-the-Immortal-III-Poster-C10120934.jpeg

Those are in fact poor exampels of his motion work, but it's hard to find scans on the fly.




Warren
http://www.cannonspike.com/CamFan/Cammy/collected6/war-cam-v-chun1.jpg
http://adamwarren.deviantart.com/art/When-EMPOWERED-Attacks-p-1-64321952
http://adamwarren.deviantart.com/art/EMPOWERED-2-face-kickin-page-62858392

He's pretty much the kind koopa of the speed line world in my opinion. And wicked at showing movement.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:53PM
Hyptosis at 6:43AM, Sept. 24, 2007
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And don't put down your own work, it is pretty easy to tell what is going on in your panel from just the one panel, with others it'll even be better. You're on the right track, like everyone has said, don't use any filter of lbue effects, until you can depict the same action in ink. then you'll be able to get away with the digital effects better. Aweosme work, keep it up, and you can only learn from doing it yourself.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:53PM
Darwin at 7:55AM, Sept. 24, 2007
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Thanks Hyp…I'll take a look at the links you gave me when I get home tonight. I'm at work and especially the animated one shouldn't be brought up here. And thank you for the props on that panel. It's usually how I handle THOSE kind of action sequences, but there are times I use action lines and BLEH they just don't look right. That cell came out rather grandly…though I'm still not so sure about the AMOUNT of blood on the follow through…hee would have to be a damn sharp rock to cut him like that (Yeah that's it…hee).

Mlai - I certainly will look into some manga as I get the opportunity. Sounds like a good source of research. My other problem is…well I'm too lazy to just practice - I just don't doodle like I used to - and perhaps I should start doing that again. Most of my practice has come from generating actual comic pages, even when I know that is not the best way to get better at it. Heh…


Thanks guys for the continued suggestions and awesome examples of how things can be handled!



last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
Enef at 9:53AM, Sept. 24, 2007
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Hyptosis
Enef
kyupol
Its all about playing around with motion blurs, multiple layers, and “hit” effects.


WRONG.


lol. You're just WRONG!!!!111onegravy *eyeroll* Enef, your ego suggests you just reading your own text I think. The equivalent of hearing your own voice? You're not wrong yourself, necessarily, I just don't understand the ‘tude you seem to have in so many posts. Maybe I’m reading too much into it.



I don't see the need to write paragraphs upon paragraphs about thing people can learn easily by studying their favourite works.

It's really a simple answer.


Unsure of how to do something? Look how other people do it then study WHY other people do things that way.

There really isn't any need to say anything more than that, anything more is just a waste of time and space.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:22PM
kyupol at 3:27PM, Sept. 24, 2007
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This isnt the first time anyone disagreed with my methods in making comics.

Well… some like it, some dont. Thats the way it is… lol :)
NOW UPDATING!!!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:25PM

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