Issue Three, Page Fourteen

November 2, 2020 in Issue Three
Issue Three, Page Fourteen
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Save my Place Load my Place

Author Notes:

MattSchofield 2nd Nov 2020, 9:00 AM
There are two dueling philosophies of visual storytelling when it comes to comics.

One is the principle of The 180 Rule, which comes from film making. In a nutshell, it means that if two characters are talking, facing each other, the one facing screen left should always stay facing screen left, in every shot, and likewise, the one facing screen right always faces screen right. Having the characters suddenly appear on the opposite sides would mean the camera has flipped 180 degrees, and will leave the viewer thinking "wait, I thought that guy was over there?" Following the 180 rule makes for a more comfortable, less confusing viewing experience. Of course, if the desired effect is to unsettle or confuse the viewer, the 180 rule can be deliberately flouted.

The other philosophy, which comes directly from comics, is Leading The Eye. In the western hemisphere, the reading direction goes left to right. Applying this to comics, I've seen artists try to have characters on the left side of the page facing inwards, towards the next panel in the reading order. The thinking behind this is that the character's gaze acts as a pointer, leading the reader's eye to the next panel. Furthermore, having a character on the right side of the page also facing in towards the middle is thought to act in the opposite manner - stopping the reader's gaze from straying over onto the facing page. There is a lot more to unpack regarding how artists effectively lead your eye from element to element, and it's actually one of my favorite things about the craft of making comics.

As much as possible I like to follow the 180 rule - I think it makes for clearer storytelling. This page, however, is an even-numbered page, which means when this comic is printed (yes, one day) it will be on the left side. It felt weird to me to have Paige in the first panel, top left corner, looking off to the left. So in this case, I favored Leading The Eye, and decided to angle this panel over Paige's shoulder so that she could look to the right - in to the page - at Steamroller Man. This also has the benefit that her eyes in panel one are actually looking directly at Steamroller Man in panel two. Leading your Eye.

One final thing about the storytelling on this page - Panel Five is the last panel on this page and also the end of their conversation. My idea here was to start the conversation on the previous page with an angle looking down into the dark crater, which would visually match Paige's despair. Then after Steamroller Man cheers her up, the conversation ends with an angle looking up and out, at the sky - hopefully an image of hope, to signify Paige's lightened mood.

I was quite happy with how this one turned out and I hope you all like it. The drawing seemed to go a little easier for me here. Thanks for reading!

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See you in two weeks!


MK_Wizard 2nd Nov 2020, 10:06 AM
And everyone thinks he's a fool.
Marcel 2nd Nov 2020, 12:54 PM
Thanks for the lesson! I'm trying to learn this stuff.
Miaubol 3rd Nov 2020, 3:12 AM
Yes, let's get this rolling! :P

(I completely agree, it would have looked weird if she had looked to the left in the first panel

I once watched a movie where the viewer angle kept on changing all the time, just for the sake of adding more feel of action. As in, "changing perspective = more motion = action". That was terrible! All what happened that I had no idea what I was actually looking at, just gave up and went by "well, she's fighting somehow".. the 180degree rule, as in keep the characters' relative position is so important. There are exceptions to this rule of course, sometimes there's a reason to break it in order to get a desired effect, but then one must really know what they're doing and why. Like, when one character is throwing the other character through the room, when their relative positions actually change)