Seeking to disprove stereotypes that comics are merely simplistic or juvenile entertainment for the uncultured; to enlighten the open-minded and encourage the broadening of one's horizons; to examine comics as a text; to deepen appreciation for comics, comic books, and graphic novels as a formidable form of art in all cultures.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Review: How to Make Webcomics

How to Make Webcomics is a collaborative effort by webcomic creators Scott Kurtz of PvP, Kris Straub of Starslip Crisis (and, my personal favorite, Chainsawsuit), Dave Kellet of Sheldon, and Brad Guigar of Evil Inc., and is essentially what the title implies: a "how to" book that gives in-depth insights as to how to create and manage a successful webcomic, both as a form of storytelling and as a business.

As webcomics are an increasingly important part of the comics medium, I've included this book as a link on the sidebar. Webcomics, as noted by the above authors, are a unique subcategory of comics in general. Not only are they generally more accessible than comics in other media, but they also lack the collaborative properties of comic books and graphic novels. Webcomics are generally a solo act, so the artist's persona comes out stronger than in other cases.

Also of interesting note is the fact that a webcomic's overall themes and feel -- the mise-en-scene, if you will -- extend beyond the borders of each daily strip. HTMW discusses the importance of web design and blogging in an effort to support an artist's strip and give something "extra" to the readers, while keeping the tone of the characters and plots he or she has developed.

I found the artistic portions of the book to be very insightful. The business parts were also useful, but I found them to be less convincing as I knew that, at the time of the book's writing, at least one of the authors didn't follow what he was preaching. However, given that any one of them knows countless times more about finding success in this field than I, it's certainly not useless information. Aside from this (and an insane abundance of typos), the book was a great read and I welcome it whole-heartedly into my library. And, yes, I will be citing it as a reference in future posts.

No comments: