Last week, I wrote about my attempts to put more effort into drawing backgrounds. A few people in the comments brought up the settings that they draw repeatedly for their comics.
My main character is a wanderer, so there aren’t a ton of repeat locations in my comic. But while I was in the process of designing characters for my comic, and before I started drawing any actual pages, I did take some time to plan out the only location that readers will see regularly for the duration of the comic: Dee’s spaceship. I tend to work on projects sporadically, so having some reference material to go back to will help keep me from inadvertently moving things around as the comic progresses.
Keep It Simple, Stupid
This is something a lot of people brought up in the comments of last week’s newspost – there’s no need to make backgrounds super complicated. (Although you can, of course, if that’s your thing!) In fact, backgrounds that are too full can sometimes be a distraction from the action in the foreground. I think this is probably doubly important for settings that will be seen over and over again, not least of all because drawing all those tchotchkes on that character’s bookshelf will probably be a lot less fun the tenth time than it was the first.
Stellar made a good point about how a character’s residence has to suit their personality, and how well-designed settings can almost become characters themselves. The Enterprise on Star Trek is definitely a prominent example of that for me, and certainly one that inspires my own comic, but I can think of many others: the moving castle in Howl's Moving Castle, the two apartments and the coffee shop on Friends, Marlinspike Hall in Tintin, and so on. The best settings not only match a story's characters, but also its tone. In fact, sitting down and thinking about settings is probably a great exercise in pinning down exactly who your characters are and what kind of world they live in.
Did you spend a lot of time thinking about regular settings in your comic? Do you keep reference material for these locations, or is it all in your head?
DD RADIO PLAY 2016
Scripts are due September 8th, about two weeks from now! More about the radio play in this thread: http://www.theduckwebcomics.com/forum/topic/177542/
Have a comic milestone, a community project or some comic-related news that you'd like to see here? Do you have original art for our newspost image database? Send it to me via PQ or at hippievannews(at)gmail.com, or leave a comment below!
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HippieVan at 12:00AM, Aug. 26, 2016
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