Comic Style

To further my proposals of my communication brief/project I have purchased and collected a few books in order to help me research a style to communicate a story, based around the Jack The Ripper stories. I already know I want to communicate the story as a comic book style publication. I have begun researching into comic books that I like the artwork of but also in which the imagery is strong enough by itself to help control the narrative or dialogue. I want my illustrations/panels to be able to tell the story well enough to possibly stand alone without the use of text. For this I will need to create specific character body language and facial expressions, with good cinematic perspectives. Also, I want to achieve a great atmospheric attitude throughout the publication but possibly only using three or four colour tones, with lots of shadows depending on the scenes. Letting the artwork speak for itself is something I believe that makes a good story, regardless of the plots and narratives (sometimes).

At first I began looking back into my favourite book. ‘How to pencil comics’ By DC Comics. This book holds the knowledge of amazing artist Klaus Janson. This book shares the inner most secrets of creating great comic style drawings from characters to body structure, and from panels to page layouts. This book shows great examples of how to achieve great sequential illustrations, with some basic techniques.

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A comic book is like a storyboard, in more depth and detail. Storyboards are made to show such things as camera direction, scene shots and character placements normally with a few rough drawings and arrow. Comic panels are to illustrate all these things storyboards do, but not for a camera. These drawings are created for the purpose of showing the actual visual appearance of what is happening in a particular scene within a still image.

I have purchased myself a couple of comic books. Looking at the type of style I want to achieve. One is an original Sin City graphic novel, illustrated by Frank Millar, famous for his comic noir style and very abstract style page layout.

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The second is by artist Robert Bloch, who illustrated the graphic novel ‘Yours Truly; Jack the Ripper’. This book is a short story about the investigations into some murders of jack the ripper. The book is illustrated in black and white, with a turquoise shade of colour, using a screen dot effect to suggested grades in grey colour. The lines are very simple, and the illustrations flow from one to the other without any strain for the viewer, however it is grid layout format. Nonetheless, is it good inspiration to see how a graphic novel of jack the ripper looks, and with the splashes of red for the blood scenes it is a very beautifully visual book.

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