Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Doing a comic book the brazilian way

PART FOUR: The late meeting.

I've been doing comics for some time now. all theses years, I've worked with my twin brother, so we pretty much understand each other without having to say much about what we want. We just exchange looks and already know what needs to be changed, what's great and that little panel he just did that will blow everybody's mind off. Working with my brother is the best work relation I could have, but now, for the first time, we're facing this different scenario to our stories: the guest artist.

Yesterday, after eight at night, when he could leave his art director job and come to join us, our artist friend came to our studio to show how his pages were going. The script we gave him was pretty visual, being a practical explanation from one artist to the other, and it left no doubt on what was happening on the story and what we wanted to show. However, when he showed his rough thumbnails - and his were giant thumbnails, almost the actual size of the magazine - we were amazed on how different and fresh his take was on what we gave him. It was the first time I wrote something, imagining how it would look like, and it looked completely different.

And it looked great.

When you write the script, have in mind that the artist is no idiot. He wants to make the story looks good. Your script must tell the artist everything that you need for the story to work, but must not impose on him how you want the pages to be drawn. I haven't realized the difference on that before, but now I'm getting closer.

My brother and I work by ourselves mainly to guarantee the quality of our comics, something that we feared would not be as safe with a guest artist. But all that's too safe has no surprises, and the surprises we face along the way are the ones that make life worth living.

Life is good when you're doing comics.

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