Tweetdrawing

Earlier today, my friend John Reppion posted a little musing on twitter about a local Church being knocked down.

John is a great writer, and the tweet had a lyrical quality that I really responded to. So I thought, as I’m winding down to relax for a holiday (hahah) I’d do a quick drawing of it as I saw it.

Here’s the tweet:

Presented as an image to maintain the historical record!

And I quickly scribbled out a layout and chopped the words up as lettering (drawn in Clip Studio at the digest art size, so I couldn’t get too precious and fiddly)

Tweet as Comic

Took a minute or two. Sent it to John for his approval (I mean he was surprised to see it I’m sure, given it was just me faffing around).

Then I went off and did some paid work and came back to it.

Speed drawing is funny, the trick is to cheat as often and as much as you can.

Cheat one: don’t pencil. Just go straight from the roughs to inks.

Cheat two: photo reference. Just google the hell out of everything and trace it. Google a church. Google a wrecking ball. Google a digger. Using maps to get an overhead shot of some buildings so you can quickly use that to build out a panel. Copy a panel and draw over it. And finally google some birds.

Cheat three: TRACE EVERYTHING. Don’t grab photoreference so you can internalise what a digger looks like, grab photoreference so you can trace the digger. If you’ve any sort of eye at all you’ll introduce enough variety in what you’re doing that it won’t be a problem to describe it as a reinterpretation

Not gonna lie. There’s a lot of tracing in this.

Here’s the black and white:

Now for colour, I skipped the flatting/rendering stage and just stuck with simple colours – but I grabbed a page I liked by an colourist I liked which covered similar colours to what I knew I needed and sampled it for all the colours. That to is big fat cheat.

Channel Hex: Digest Size

I’ve been keen to thing of Channel Hex as digest sized, it makes sense, drawing roughly A4 art that’s half my regular art sized, should be much faster.

But then you start looking at what digest sized MEANS – and it turns out … there’s a few different digest sizes.

Here’s a small selection…

From left to right: Early british cowboy comics (though to be fair, this is probably an enlarged digest sized), Zombie World Champion of the Worms – great comic, but smaller than normal comics. Nathan Never – dark horse reprints, an italian digest size and commando comics, what I think of when I think about digest sized.

And that’s not the end of it, there’s lots more options. But looking at these books, it feels like the most flexible in terms of what storytelling I can do vs small size, it’s the Italian digest size that works best. So I had to do some numbers.

Now, ordinarily, I want to draw at least 40% larger than final art (and I may still do that) but measuring the italian fumetti sized comic, and multipling it by 40% puts it slightly larger than A4 – which will not do, I’m afraid.

So I enlarged the page size to 30% instead, which JUST keeps it in to A4 (strictly speaking I added a 5mm bleed around the printed art, that’s probably too large, so it’s fine) and I get this:


Width Height 30% W 30% H A4 W In A4 H In
Safe13018016923420.531.5
Page Size1502101952737.512
Bleed16022020828615.5

Width = printed width, Height = Printed Height
30% W = Width * 130%, 30% H = Height * 130%
A4 W In = A4 Width In, A4 H In = A4 Height In.

Sizes here are MM, the A4 W(idth) IN and A4 H(eight) IN are my way of not needing printed blue lines, If I measure 20.5mm in from the left and then 20.5mm in from the right side of an A4 paper block then the distance between those two measurements is 130mm (ie the safe width)

It all looks a bit like this:

Anyway, that’s how I’ve been spending this evening. There’s a surprising amount of maths in comics. (Though, to be fair, only because I’m too stingy to blueline paper)

Course, now I’ve worked out all the sums involved, I can just create my own blueline in Clip Studio and use that from now on.

And, as a bonus, here’s the sizes for 2000AD Art Size Paper:

Page Size: 30.2cm x 39.43cm (this is bigger than A3 so you’ll either need to use bigger paper trimmed, or, do as I do, draw to the edge, scan it in and then draw a little extra on the page in photoshop)

Panel Size (or the Safe Area, in other words – that area of the page that lettering will go into) 26.44cm x 35.79 cm

TRIM Size – if you want to full bleed the art the art needs to be drawn to the page size, but, between the page size and the trim size the art may get chopped for trim. 29.37cm x 38.59cm (Just ignore this, if you want to have art bleed off the page then draw ALL the way to the Page Size)