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The Adventures of Chedwick and Sven Comic Blog part 2

Posted April 21st, 2008 at 05:23 PM by gamjuven
Hi there again! Another week has gone by and that means another comic has gone up. Hope you all enjoyed it. It was another poem one, and for those of you who hate the poetry ones, or don't get them, this will be the last one for a while.
Here is the link to the thread where you can see the most recent comic: http://www.heroscapers.com/community...ad.php?t=17250

You may have noticed that the newest comic has a different format. The panels are vertical instead of horizontal. This has occured at the request of Truth. He noted correctly that the comics were a little difficult to view when they are horizontal. People on websites don't like to scroll right. It's all about the up and down on the internet. So he asked me to change them. Currently I am in the process of reformatting all the comics, old and new, to the vertical style. This hopefully will make everything easier to view. Please be patient for the change as it is annoyingly difficult to change all the comics as there is no easy way of doing it. I have to go back and put each element of the comic into the new format. This is also done on a slow computer which also takes time. Have no fear they will all be redone. You can check out all the comics in my gallery here: http://www.heroscapers.com/community...&imageuser=615

I would love to hear more comments on the comics so pelase feel free to post in the gallery, the comic thread, or PM me. I am looking for feedback so I can get to know more about what people like. Criticisms of course are welcome as well. Many of you have asked me questions about the comics in general so I will answer some of them here in public in case anyone else is interested. I'll do them over the course of the next few blogs.

How do you make those comics? It is actually a pretty simple process. I'll lay it out for you

The Script
It all starts out in script form. I think of a funny idea, then write out the dialog and who says what in a notebook. I need to keep it short, funny (hopefully), and spaced to allow for pictures.

The Storyboard
I then storyboard the idea into four panels. Since all the comics I submit are in four panels I need to make sure all the dialog fits in those panels. I need to make sure the dialog is spaced out enough so there is room for an actual picture as well. I draw very very rough scetches of what I want the comic to look like. These storyboards have two stick figures in them poorly representing Chedwick and Sven and even more poorly representing their positions in a given pose in a picture. Sometime I'll have to take a picture of my storyboards as they are ridiculous to look at and may even be funny in and of themselves. Although they are confusing to look at I use these storyboards as a guide to how to position the figures.

Enter Mike
After I have figure out what goes into the comic and roughly how I want the comic to look I contact my partner-with-arms Mike. He is the technical expert of the two of us and without him the comics would look akin to my storyboards. He brings over the hardware: The computer and the camera. The computer is a little Mac laptop that runs too slow for our taste but gets the job done. The camera is a wonderful looking thing with gizmos and buttons that I have no idea how to work. the computer has a comic program in it called "Comic Life". We have the Mac version although I believe there is some patch that allows Windows users access as well. It is a fun and easy program that allows us to create speech bubbles, frames, and other comic necessities. Mike also uses the program "Flash" for some other animated work that can go into the comics such as the pretty clouds in comic 6 as well as the "jumping" lines.

The Set-Building
Next comes the set-building. Obviously the backgrounds of the comics are in the Heroscape world in board form. This will not always be the case as Chedwick and Sven will eventually figure out a way to escape their board-erly bonds. But for now that is how we see them. The maps are pretty self-explanatory: All I have to figure out is what is needed to be in the frame, and take into acount lighting, positioning of figures, and backgrounds. We have explored nearly every setting that Heroscape terrain has to offer. I believe we still have swamp to explore. But it is fun to just play with the scenery and give the characters different backgrounds to play in.

The Picture Taking
The next phase is to take the pictures. In the most recent comics we've been able to film outside which has given us terrific light. When we cannot do that we have to film in my basement which has a nice low ceiling with a great light. You can hardly know the difference. The backgrounds of the comics have been the most troublesome so far. First we used happyjosiah's box that he uses to store heroscape items in. It was a big purple thing that was difficult to manage because it was easily recognizable as a box in the background. Next we used happyjosiah's "gaming room/dining table" wall as it had a nice color to it. When we got over to my house to do the filming we found some other creative ways to deal with the background. The big blue background that is showcased in most of the new comics is actually an air-hockey table. It came from one of those fisher-price 3 in 1 pool/table tennis/air hockey tables that I got when I was like 6. it seems to work real well. The hockey lines have not been visible yet! The red background we used in #7 was a panel from one of those tube sets you could use to build goals/forts/anything really. If I knew what they were called I'd tell you, but that is another part of my childhood that I have forgotten all details about. The pictures take some time to get right in terms of positioning and such, but it is pretty easy.

Uploading into the Comic Program
Next we upload the pictures into Mike's computer and put them into the program. We then add in the dialog to each panel and make sure everything is correct. It takes about 15 minutes to finish a single comic in the program adding in the dialog, positioning of the image, etc.

The Email
Then in the next day or so Mike emails the finished product to me and I put it onto the website. It takes us 1 hour to finish a single comic from when Mike comes over to my house and we start working. That includes the set-building, picture taking, and uplaoding into the computer. The whole storyboarding and creating ideas is pretty random and will either just come to me, or comes to me after thinking and imagining for an hour or so. Mike and I typically create 3 comics a day, and we meet once a week. This has allowed us to have a string of comics all ready to go for you Heroscapers to enjoy!

A new comic will be hitting this week to Heroscapers as well. Stay tuned and look for it this Wednesday or Thursday!

Thanks again for reading and please let me know what you think. Thanks!
Total Comments 4


hextr1p's Avatar
Very cool. Thanks for sharing this. Being able to see the thought and process of a creative work such as your comics is always interesting. I'd actually never heard of the program 'Comic Life' before. Seems to work out pretty well for you and your team.
Posted April 21st, 2008 at 08:25 PM by hextr1p hextr1p is offline
LongHeroscaper's Avatar
It's awesome! Keep them coming!
Posted April 24th, 2008 at 03:41 PM by LongHeroscaper LongHeroscaper is offline
whitestuff's Avatar
I am almost tempted to try it out for myself...
Posted April 25th, 2008 at 09:38 AM by whitestuff whitestuff is offline
WorldBuilder's Avatar
I love chedwick and Sven! and Steve, cant forget him.
Posted October 10th, 2008 at 05:05 PM by WorldBuilder WorldBuilder is offline

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