Title: 1716

Monday, Aug 28, 2006

August 2006


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Title: 1716

August 28, 2006
12:01 AM

So, as the comic has explained, I am on break from school and work this week. As well as getting a little me-time, I’ve decided this is the opportunity for me to get started on book #2.

It’s been a long time since book 1 came out, and I learned quite a few lessons in that time. I’m going to be applying these to book 2 as well as future books.

For one, Book 1 was too big. Not too thick, necessarily, but it was taller and wider than it really needed to be. I was intending to go with a regular graphic novel size, and it wound up being a little bigger. I wanted a book that would fit on the shelf next to all the other graphic novels, and especially for shelves that are specifically the size of those same GN’s. So, starting with book 2, we’re moving down to a tokyopop-size book. It’s only a minor size decrease, but it makes all the difference.

Some of the other changes are less drastic – I’m going to be doing much more dynamic page layouts – as nice as it was to have the first year in print, the pages are just boring as hell. And considering we’re going to be working with full-color anyway… we can totally do better than that. I’m also going to be going with a matte cover as opposed to glossy. I just like the feel of it better.

But the biggest change of all is that I’ve decided that, just for the books, I’m going to be remastering every single comic that goes into it. Now, this does NOT mean I’m going to go all Lucas and start adding in characters and rewriting stuff. But it does mean that I’m going to be bringing the overall look of each strip to match what I’ve been doing lately. I’ll be adding shading, changing those colored gradients into full-fledged backgrounds, and reformatting the word bubbles to look more like what I’ve been doing lately. Below is an example of the difference between an original comic and one that has been remastered:

As you can see – the artwork itself is essentially unchanged (this is actually a comic from year one that I recolored for a print that someone ordered – all of the comics from 2001 were already in color, so I would not be even coloring them – just shading), but I’ve added in a background (which, by the way, is actually the table area of the house I used to live in at the time) and shaded it and whatnot.

Why am I doing this? Well, I realized that as nice as it is to preserve the look of the comic exactly as it was online, this is NOT the online comic. This is a book that needs to stand on its own, and if I feel I can enhance the artwork slightly to make it more appealing, it has a better chance of catching the eye of someone who maybe didn’t read those comics all those years ago. And not only that, it makes it special – it gives it a little something extra. To be honest, I’m really excited about it. I just thought I’d share it with you as I start working on it.

Commentary will remain in the book, by the way. It’s one of the better aspects of book 1, and I intend to see that it makes its way into each subsequent volume.

Now, back to work. I’ve got a lot to do. :)