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  1. #1

    Where Do I Begin?

    Hi, everybody.

    Recently I've been kind of frustrated because I've been really getting into manga and anime (I have been for a while, but recently I'm lovin' it :P ) and I decided I wanted to make my own manga. I don't plan on making this my profession or anything like that, but maybe just a webcomic or something where I could just make a nice, cool manga

    The reason I've been frustrated is because I have many good (or at least I think they're good) ideas for a manga, but I can't draw. It's not that I'm a completely hopeless artist- I'm okay with some things. But sometimes I draw a character and although it doesn't look too bad, it's just not...good enough? Maybe my expectations are too high, but whenever I draw it just doesn't come out the way I want it. I have an entire plot planned out and I really want to make this manga, but I don't know how I'm going to do it.

    Besides that, I don't know where to begin. So my question to you is: How should I go about starting the process of making a manga? I have no idea when or where I should start. I know I need to practice drawing, but how should I begin? Although I don't want to do this on a professional level, who knows where it could go. I want my manga to look nice, and be unique. So please give me any tips or advice on how I should begin.

    Thank you very much for all responses <3

  2. #2
    Super Senior Member Demonfyre's Avatar
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    Check out post 6 (Toast's Post) of this thread for all the images in the quote below;

    Quote Originally Posted by Toast View Post
    hey
    before you even think about getting into anatomy, you must understand the basics in art so that your ventures into other aspects in art are much easier and more effective. Here is a list of things you need to learn, as well as some images. For some, I'll put an exercise in parentheses. It's preferable that you do this in order, therefore it will be easier. Feel free to PM me with any questions:

    -Drawing what you see, not what you know (blind contours and drawing an image upsidedown are the 2 best exercises for this)
    -Seeing space and negative shapes (negative space drawing)
    -Being able to see/create forms beyond their 2d shape (cross contours)
    -Measuring size, angles, and shape relationships using a tool and without using a tool. (ex: being able to see how far the tip of the nose is from the corner of the mouth, using a ruler if you're unsure)
    For all 4 of these, you MUST check out the book The New Drawing With The Right Side of your Brain. Don't fret, you don't have to pay for shit because you have the internet! Here's a download for the pdf:
    http://www.mediafire.com/?qw77ll80oxyo8c2
    -Values and depth. Understanding how light affects a form, understanding contrast in values. Images. Please look through each image carefully!! To get the most out of everything, draw along side and make notes
    SPOILER! :

    -Techniques with your tools. In this case, pencil techniques. Rendering techniques (shading and adding values), working principles. Images:
    SPOILER! :


    Then once you understand all of these and you are successful with it, you can get into this stuff:

    -Basic Portraiture (this way you are able to put all your new found knowledge to the test).
    -basic Anatomy and Figure Drawing. This is what will require the most resources, so here is a quick little image collection. At this point, you should start building up a decent collection of references and resources, including photo references and whatever other useful information you find.
    I will add a few images that will help you, but what you should REALLY be doing is look at more books now. Anyone else reading will know what I'm about to mention
    The 2 teachers you need to check out are Andrew Loomis and Glenn Vilppu. With Loomis, you should look at his books in order, starting with Fun with a Pencil.
    http://www.alexhays.com/loomis/
    With Vilppu, here is his Drawing manual. He also has many various instructional videos that are VERY helpful. You can look for a torrent if you want.
    http://www.mediafire.com/?paqy6vsbdq3tv8o
    Although some of the art can look outdated (especially in Fun with a Pencil), the information is extremely valuable and I guarantee will help you as long as you utilize it correctly.
    As you continue with anatomy, you most likely will find that having a decent understanding of the muscular/skeletal system is beneficial. These two guides (especially atlas of human anatomy) are my favorite, as they go into detail on the muscles and bones of each body part
    http://www.mediafire.com/view/?6dtmu58har6cvsl
    http://www.mediafire.com/view/?bu6xhvg22vg37wv
    -Basic Composition (do daily compositional sketches. Landscapes, scenes, etc). Image:
    SPOILER! :

    -Efficient workflow, from working out idea to finishing your work
    -Drawing from memory
    -Perspective (one point perspective, 2 point, so on. You can easily find a guide online bruv)
    -Constructing objects with shapes with planes. Being able to draw forms in perspective and in different angles
    -Color. Images:
    SPOILER! :


    TIPS
    *Draw and sketch with as few lines as possible. Avoid chicken-scratch lines, sketch with your whole arm as opposed to flicking your wrist around. Be flow-y with your work and don't strain yourself. This will promote confidence and force you to plan out where you'll put your lines beforehand
    *Speaking of confidence, BE CONFIDENT! No one is an amazing artist in the beginning. We all have times where we despise our own work and think we'll never improve, but we will. Just stay determined and keep practicing, and you will one day come to a point where you are truly happy with your work.
    *It's completely fine to work with manga outside of your studies, but please try to avoid mixing manga with it. Proportions and shading in stylized work is a lot different and will mess what you're trying to learn.

    good luck and GODSPEED! even if you don't make use of this post at all, hopefully others can.
    Personally I found this rather insightful to improving your art, however always remember to draw stuff you enjoy or else the process will be boring and you won't get any enjoyment out of it, and in the end that is why you are drawing

    Good luck with your manga ambitions
    Last edited by Demonfyre; 02-09-2013 at 06:40 PM.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by ClockHand View Post
    Right there is your first problem and probably the one that its going to make you never have a manga or comic. Comics are really hard to make, they demand time, skill and patience, if you are not willing to sacrifice yourself to make one, if you are thinking in making something that look professional but without doing it professionally, I can tell you that you have all the chances against you.



    If you have it written you can pay an artist to do the art. But I must tell you that many of the artist who want to do comics already have an idea of what its something "good" or "bad" written, and if you don't feel their expectation they are going to have quite little respect for you (even so if the pay is good they are going to be happy).

    If you can write, at least in a bearable level, then why not making it a book? what does a comic bring on your story that it must be done in that format and not in a book? The biggest thing you need to differentiate here is that you don't go to become a "comic artist", you first go to become a storyteller, that what first drive us and becoming a "comic artist", movie director or writer is just the medium in which people feel comfortable to tell their stories.



    First you start with an idea, a concept you want to elaborate, probably a thesis or a emotional conflict you want to represent in the story, after that you start in pre-production, you think and write down every thing that you need (or need to discard) to elaborate the story, also the people you might need, your budget and your time/work schedule. After that you start with production which is basically doing it, then its edition and finally publishing (probably in the internet as no one wants to publish the story of a no body).

    Also, read, not just mangas, but comics, books, watch movies and soo on. You are going to find that "unique" is impossible, but you can reach people in other different ways.


    Yes, I definitely have taken into consideration that maybe I DON'T have what it takes. One of my greatest weaknesses is that I can be so eager to do something but not want to work hard on it, and that's something that is a real disadvantage. But what I meant when I said "professional level" is that I would be selling the manga, or sending it to be published officially. There are several reasons I will not be doing that, but I won't get into that now. Maybe I phrased it wrong by saying "professional", all I meant was I want to make it look nice. I definitely do have to manage my expectations, though. I can't expect it to look like an officially published manga- it's my first time.

    Just to specify here:
    I definitely don't have the money to hire an artist, especially since I'm not selling the manga officially. If I make it, like I said, it would be a web manga, and the only money I would expect is maybe from donations.

    Now the reason I would not just make this a book is because there are some things for books- and then there are things that are NOT for books. Imagine Dragonball Z (or some other sort of action manga, Naruto or whatever) as a book. It just... wouldn't work. Manga/comics and novels are much different. If they weren't, what would be the point of a manga? Why not just write a book? I like manga a lot, and often I find myself more able to read manga than to read regular novels. The characters, the depictions, the exaggerated emotions: all of which could not be well depicted in a novel. No, I'm not saying manga is better than regular books, I'm just saying that there are things you can do in manga that doesn't work well in novels, and vice-versa.

    Thank you very much for the response I really appreciate all your help and advice
    I will try to improve my weak spots and try to put as much effort as possible into it, I know it will be no easy job- Rome wasn't built in a day, after all :P

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Rubisko View Post
    When it comes to the idea that you have to learn to draw a bit better in order to make your manga or comic I would just like to say that it's not necessary. Good drawing is good visual presentation, and good visual presentation is just a selling point of to your story. Good visuals is what's going to make people to read your story but it's not what makes it a good (or bad) comic. Take the transformers movies for example; they don't really have a story or a message or something like that but they have great visuals and that's why they still made a huge profit.
    But since you state that you want to make a manga just for fun then the visuals are probably your.least concern. Just draw the comic. Just draw the comic to the best of your abilities as they are right now, only by doing that can you get experience inmaking comics and experience is what you will need to get better. Learning to draw will not make you a comic book artist, but drawing a comic will. Being a comic artist will not make you a mangaka, but creating a manga will.
    Thank you, that's very encouraging ^^
    I suppose it's not all about the visuals, after all :P

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thanks for all the strategies Gonna work on these ASAP

  4. #4
    Palindrome Member ClockHand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Socky the Swift View Post
    Now the reason I would not just make this a book is because there are some things for books- and then there are things that are NOT for books. Imagine Dragonball Z (or some other sort of action manga, Naruto or whatever) as a book. It just... wouldn't work. Manga/comics and novels are much different. If they weren't, what would be the point of a manga? Why not just write a book? I like manga a lot, and often I find myself more able to read manga than to read regular novels. The characters, the depictions, the exaggerated emotions: all of which could not be well depicted in a novel. No, I'm not saying manga is better than regular books, I'm just saying that there are things you can do in manga that doesn't work well in novels, and vice-versa.
    I agree that a comic does thing that a novel can't, but I disagree in what you believe a comic can while the novel can't. By example emotional exaggerations or combat, plenty of novels have done these thing in a good way, they had made combat to look "badass" and expressions to be a roller coaster of irony, satire and dread. There is a wrong misconception that books can't depict action as well as movies or comics but the reality is that it all depends of the writer and how he/she represent those things. So again, what does your comic bring to the table what a novel can't?

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by ClockHand View Post
    I agree that a comic does thing that a novel can't, but I disagree in what you believe a comic can while the novel can't. By example emotional exaggerations or combat, plenty of novels have done these thing in a good way, they had made combat to look "badass" and expressions to be a roller coaster of irony, satire and dread. There is a wrong misconception that books can't depict action as well as movies or comics but the reality is that it all depends of the writer and how he/she represent those things. So again, what does your comic bring to the table what a novel can't?
    It's mostly things like this:

    This is the gold of manga xD I love these expressions, they're part of what makes manga unique. The physical expressions of manga are hard to show in books. However, you do have a point, I could try to turn this into a book instead. Now that I think of it, it could work just as well for a book as for a manga. It's a rather dark plot, and I guess it wouldn't have so many silly emotions like the ones above, anyway. I'll definitely think about it, it would be a lot easier if it were a book than a manga.

    But then there's one other thing:
    I want to make a manga
    Last edited by Socky the Swift; 02-10-2013 at 03:33 PM.

  6. #6
    Palindrome Member ClockHand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Socky the Swift View Post
    I don't plan on making this my profession or anything like that, but maybe just a webcomic or something where I could just make a nice, cool manga
    Right there is your first problem and probably the one that its going to make you never have a manga or comic. Comics are really hard to make, they demand time, skill and patience, if you are not willing to sacrifice yourself to make one, if you are thinking in making something that look professional but without doing it professionally, I can tell you that you have all the chances against you.

    Quote Originally Posted by Socky the Swift View Post
    The reason I've been frustrated is because I have many good (or at least I think they're good) ideas for a manga, but I can't draw. It's not that I'm a completely hopeless artist- I'm okay with some things. But sometimes I draw a character and although it doesn't look too bad, it's just not...good enough? Maybe my expectations are too high, but whenever I draw it just doesn't come out the way I want it. I have an entire plot planned out and I really want to make this manga, but I don't know how I'm going to do it.
    If you have it written you can pay an artist to do the art. But I must tell you that many of the artist who want to do comics already have an idea of what its something "good" or "bad" written, and if you don't feel their expectation they are going to have quite little respect for you (even so if the pay is good they are going to be happy).

    If you can write, at least in a bearable level, then why not making it a book? what does a comic bring on your story that it must be done in that format and not in a book? The biggest thing you need to differentiate here is that you don't go to become a "comic artist", you first go to become a storyteller, that what first drive us and becoming a "comic artist", movie director or writer is just the medium in which people feel comfortable to tell their stories.

    Quote Originally Posted by Socky the Swift View Post
    Besides that, I don't know where to begin. So my question to you is: How should I go about starting the process of making a manga? I have no idea when or where I should start. I know I need to practice drawing, but how should I begin? Although I don't want to do this on a professional level, who knows where it could go. I want my manga to look nice, and be unique. So please give me any tips or advice on how I should begin.
    First you start with an idea, a concept you want to elaborate, probably a thesis or a emotional conflict you want to represent in the story, after that you start in pre-production, you think and write down every thing that you need (or need to discard) to elaborate the story, also the people you might need, your budget and your time/work schedule. After that you start with production which is basically doing it, then its edition and finally publishing (probably in the internet as no one wants to publish the story of a no body).

    Also, read, not just mangas, but comics, books, watch movies and soo on. You are going to find that "unique" is impossible, but you can reach people in other different ways.

  7. #7
    Three Trio Tres Member Rubisko's Avatar
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    When it comes to the idea that you have to learn to draw a bit better in order to make your manga or comic I would just like to say that it's not necessary. Good drawing is good visual presentation, and good visual presentation is just a selling point of to your story. Good visuals is what's going to make people to read your story but it's not what makes it a good (or bad) comic. Take the transformers movies for example; they don't really have a story or a message or something like that but they have great visuals and that's why they still made a huge profit.
    But since you state that you want to make a manga just for fun then the visuals are probably your.least concern. Just draw the comic. Just draw the comic to the best of your abilities as they are right now, only by doing that can you get experience inmaking comics and experience is what you will need to get better. Learning to draw will not make you a comic book artist, but drawing a comic will. Being a comic artist will not make you a mangaka, but creating a manga will.

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