Webcomics.com went subscriber-only earlier in the week, and if you follow webcomics news at all, you probably don’t need me to tell you, since it’s already been reported and commented on by every major source all over the internet.
I have no strong opinions on the subject in either direction, the idea of a paysite for tutorials isn’t totally alien to me, lynda.com, nettuts, and 3dbuzz all charge a premium for access to their content and they seem to do okay for themselves, so what Guigar’s doing isn’t an unproven strategy. If you’re broke, though, there’s still a lot of useful information on the subject of telling stories with words and pictures if you know where to look.
Here’s some of my favorites:
Comic Tools is an excellent, if sadly neglected blog on the craft of making comics, but if you dig through the archives, there’s a lot of information there that is still very relevant. I especially like the articles on drawing and using dialogue balloons, a subject that tends to be an afterthought.
One of the things I’ve always found to be very instructive is to look at other peoples’ process, and there are a number of people who’ve documented theirs to share it. Kazu Kibuishi was kind enough to post a three-part series of how he makes Copper, and it’s just wonderful.
And there are of course the old standbys that seem to make the rounds about once every year or so: 22 panels that always work and Disney’s comic strip artist kit. If you haven’t seen them, there’s also a neat set of instructional drawings by osamu tezuka on how to draw manga. All the instructional text is in Japanese, but you’ll get the idea.
Many of the articles on Animation Meat can readily be applied to comics. there are a series of lecture notes and internal memos circulated to animators available on the site. Of interest especially are the notes on work habits, thumbnailing, drawing, and storyboarding.
Finally, it seems like everybody and my mom are running their comics on the wordpress/comicpress value meal combo, and if you’re one of them, it behooves you to take at least a little bit of time to optimize your wordpress setup. Lifehacker ran an article earlier in the year on doing exactly that, and the article itself is an excellent springboard into other useful WordPress-related learning tools.
If you have your own favorite resources for making comics, be sure to leave a comment and link me up, I’d love to hear about it.