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Critique this comic strip for me...


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46 replies to this topic

#1 of 47 Dave Poehlman

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Posted January 06 2004 - 08:58 AM

I was just playing around and doodled up this comic...
I don't really know where I'm going with it.. just fiddling around. However, I would like to know what you think about it.

I'm looking for honest opinions on the concept, artwork, delivery.. etc... don't hold back... anything you want to tell me.

The Seemingly Endless Adventures of Mike the Skeleton

#2 of 47 Craig S

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Posted January 06 2004 - 09:13 AM

First - clicking on your link takes you to the TopCities main site - I had to copy the URL and paste it into IE's Address Bar to get to your strip.

As for the strip... not bad at all. It got an audible chuckle from me. A reference I immediately thought of was An American Werewolf in London - kind of obvious, being one of the few other sources of decomposed corpse humor. Posted Image But that was a funny movie, so that's a good thing.

The artwork is fine (I can name several syndicated strips with MUCH worse artwork). Good job of giving the skull an recognizeable expression in the third panel. I had to look twice to figure out where the head went. Did you think about showing part of the neck in the third panel as the head falls out of frame? I dunno, that's just a nitpick. I'm not an artist, so you probably should ignore my suggestions in this area.

If I had seen this in my morning paper as the first day of a new strip they added to their lineup, I would definitely be looking forward to reading future strips. Posted Image Hope to see more.

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#3 of 47 Ted Lee

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Posted January 06 2004 - 11:31 AM

yeah, i liked it too. it's nothing i haven't seen before and i pretty much knew where it was going ... but for some reason i gave it a chuckle.

the "yessir!" bubble was a good touch.

i liked the artwork just fine. kinda stylized.
 

#4 of 47 BrettB

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Posted January 06 2004 - 11:33 AM

I like how you do the bubbles (or whatever they're called), taking them all the way to the borders and rounding the corners. I haven't paid too much attention to comics lately but that seems kind of unique.

The text matches well with the artwork, and not too sloppy (is that your normal hand?).

Agree with Craig, good job giving Mike some life. I like the smirk in the last panel.

Not too sure about Tim's dialogue.

Good start. Posted Image

#5 of 47 Eric_L

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Posted January 06 2004 - 11:39 AM

and then Tim the partially decomposed corpse says "Wha Happen?"...

-jk Liked it. Can't wait to find out what Tim's head is up to.

#6 of 47 Paul_Sjordal

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Posted January 06 2004 - 12:04 PM

Nice.

Artwork looks like… well like artwork does for most strips if you go back and look at the first few. If you do it regularly, I'm sure you'll develop more of your own style/look for the strip.

One strip isn't enough to tell me much about the writing, but I agree the "yessir" was a nice touch.

The title needs to be a little more brief in my opinion.
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#7 of 47 Dave Poehlman

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Posted January 06 2004 - 01:28 PM

Fixed the link... ugh.. Topcities wont even let you hyperlink to a .jpeg. Sheesh.

Thanks for the reviews, guys. I realize the art is a little sloppy... I drew it on a 8 1/2" X 11" sheet of plain paper, which doesn't leave much room to work. Thus, the artwork is a little cramped (the head falling off is a little vague). Perhaps I'll break out the old drafting table and get some real room.

Mike the Skeleton came out of a doodle I had done on a desktop blotter calendar where each day was a panel in the story. For some reason, I doodle skulls... a little creepy, I know. But, I just start with the eye sockets and away it goes. Then, I thought, it might be interesting to make a character out of him and put him in normal everyday situations.

Quote:
A reference I immediately thought of was An American Werewolf in London


Hahah... I didn't even think of that... but, now that you mention it.. I did like that movie. Perhaps it's in my subconscious.

Thanks again for the input. Keep it coming. Now I gotta think of some more ideas.

#8 of 47 TylerN

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Posted January 07 2004 - 02:51 AM

Loved it!

#9 of 47 MickeS

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Posted January 07 2004 - 03:01 AM

Pretty good, I actually laughed out loud at the last "Yessir!" thing. Posted Image

It reminded me of the strip "Red Meat", which I hope you take as a compliment. Posted Image

I liked the artwork a lot, and the structure of the frames was good, easy to understand the flow of the dialogue (which in some "beginner works" isn't always the case). I did not like the lettering too much, it looks a little too childish/amateurish, but that's a minor complaint.

I want to see more. Posted Image
/Mike

#10 of 47 MattBu

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Posted January 07 2004 - 05:32 AM

OK I admit it.

This forum has a tendency to ass kiss and I was expecting this comic to be horrible.

But it was actually funny, and I thought the artwork was really good.

Every time I look at Tim's face I laugh.I love that he's wearing a Tuxedo. Hilarious.

#11 of 47 Tony-B

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Posted January 07 2004 - 01:03 PM

Seriuosly, I think that it is funny. Good job, man! Posted Image
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#12 of 47 MartinTeller

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Posted January 07 2004 - 01:55 PM

This forum has a tendency to ass kiss and I was expecting this comic to be horrible.

But it was actually funny, and I thought the artwork was really good.


That was pretty much my reaction, too. I was expecting something really lame, but it's not bad at all. Work on your lettering, though.

Every time I look at Tim's face I laugh.I love that he's wearing a Tuxedo. Hilarious.


I thought it was a leather jacket.

#13 of 47 Dave Poehlman

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Posted January 07 2004 - 02:19 PM

Yeah, the lettering needs work. I need to get some better tools.

Thanks for the opinions, guys.

I'll see if I can come up with a second one.

#14 of 47 Edwin-S

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Posted January 07 2004 - 04:47 PM

Guess I'm going to be the odd man out. I didn't find it very funny. The artwork is not bad, but definitely looks more like rough sketching for a concept rather than finished work. Your lettering work was the weakest part of the strip from a technical standpoint.

I couldn't see the concept having mainstream appeal, but it could show some promise for a niche market such as a FANGORIA type magazine.
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#15 of 47 Dave Poehlman

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Posted January 08 2004 - 03:18 AM

Thanks Edwin.. that's the kind of stuff I need to hear.

I'll be the first to admit it does look a little rough. I'm hoping it'll settle into something more consistant if I do it more.

I didn't realize how hard it is to express something in four small panels and then to have it be funny on top of it. I have a new respect for people who do this for a living.

Anyway here's episode 2.

I'm trying to get the file sizes down to a minimum... yet keep all the detail. What's the best format for something like this? .gif? .jpg?

#16 of 47 matt bee

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Posted January 08 2004 - 06:06 AM

I like the stories. I agree the artwork is a little rough.
Maybe try using a finer pen (Or better yet a fine brush!) and varying line weights some.

One thing you might try if you plan to do more of these is change the point of view up. Right now all four of your panels are talking heads from the same "camera angle". Zoom in, zoom out, peek down from above, just to keep up interest. Another thing that breaks up the monotony of bunches of square boxes is to open some panels up. You don't need to box in every panel with a square. Use other shapes, or none at all. It keeps the eye moving around more and keeps it from getting repetetive. A lot of times I will have something in one panel beak out of the box and overlap into the next. I haven't played around with a comic strip in a long time, but they are fun to do. It's definitely impressive that people can come up with great ideas day in and day out for so many years!
Here is a Calvin and Hobbes strip that pretty much uses all the things I talked about above.

Keep em coming!

~Matt

#17 of 47 MattBu

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Posted January 08 2004 - 08:01 AM

Hmmm.

Part 2? I didn't laugh.

Well, I did before I read it, just because Tim having flies near his head is just funny every single time.

The art could use some background to it. It's very spartan.

#18 of 47 Bob Kavanaugh

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Posted January 08 2004 - 09:04 AM

I liked the second one better, but I dig the artwork in both. As previously stated, the handwriting is the weakest link, especially with it changing sizes in the second one.

Posted Image Posted Image

#19 of 47 Dave Poehlman

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Posted January 08 2004 - 09:41 AM

Okay.. I've enlarged my original templates to give me more room for detail and I've finagled a fine point pen from the office supply drawer. Posted Image

I see what you mean Matt, about making the art more "dynamic".

Handwriting has always been my weak point. Take a look at modified episode 2 and tell me if it's better or a cop-out.

#20 of 47 Bob Graz

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Posted January 08 2004 - 11:23 AM

I like the concept, I like the art. I'm not getting the concept of the title of the strip, Seemingly Endless Adventures... with what you are actually drawing. The strips don't seem like adventures but just dialog. Something seems to be missing, not enough punch or social commentary or something. What are you trying to do with it? Fun though, keep drawing.