While it may seem like a challenging task, creating a comic book can be done regardless of age or skill level. All you need is a love of storytelling, your imagination and an interesting protagonist to boot!
If you’re up to making a comic book of your own, here are simple steps to get you through illustrating the perfect characters to match your storyline:
Step 1: Do your homework
Your best work comes from a medley of the things that inspire you. As such, feel free to take a little bit of everything from comic books you like. As comic books can vary widely – ranging from futuristic space operas, to detective dramas, even to medieval adventures – you need to know exactly what you’re gunning for! Strive to emulate the best parts of the comic books you love, all while creating a unique world for your own!
Step 2: Start sketching
Once you have a good idea of how you’d like your comic book to appear, it’s time for you to create the characters for your comic book. Draw a blueprint for each major character so you can use this as a reference while you’re drafting the entire storyline. Create these characters using a basic frame. For starters, draw an oval for the head, rectangle for the chest and an upside down triangle for the pelvis. Create the legs and arms with simple lines. Layer on muscles with oblong football shapes. Major muscles like the pectorals and quads can be drawn with large oval shapes. Smaller muscles like biceps and triceps can be done with smaller, more-round oval shapes.
Step 3: Add a trademark look
Once you’re done sketching your hero, dress his up! Take into account what kind of hero or heroine you are creating. For instance, if your character is stealthy, you might want to don him with a dark mask and a machismo outfit. If your character is a bold and strong hero, perhaps consider bright colors and a flashy cape. Ultimately, it really depends on the look you’re gunning for.
Step 4: Time to start laying it out
Start laying out your illustrations on a comic book page. These should be on pages that are 11 inches wide and 17 inches long. This will allow you to draw larger than needed and reduce the image, which will improve the quality. Lay out your comic book panels using a "Z" format that allows a reader to follow the action from left to right, diagonally left and then right. The best way to lay it out is to start with a large picture showing a lot of action and then continue diagonally left and to the right for smaller frames that help support the main action.
Step 5: Use a blank ink pen
Time to ink your pages using a black ink pen. This will help the illustrations remain crisp and highly detailed. Make sure to place thicker lines of black wherever there is a shadow. Let each page dry completely, and then carefully erase your pencil strokes with an eraser.
Step 6: Time to color
Make sure to photocopy our inked work before coloring the comic book to preserve an untainted copy of your illustrations. Proceed to coloring your designs and make sure to find color combinations that truly represent the essence of your characters. At the end of the day, just make sure you enjoy the process!
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