Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Classes Nearly Full -- February Comic Book Writing, Art, Coloring, & Lettering Courses

Our February comic book courses are nearly full. If you've been thinking about jumping on board, now is the time.

In particular, Soto's Introduction to Comic Book Coloring course and Robert Atkins' Introduction to Comic Book Art each only have a couple slots left, and both begin next week! (Monday, February 4th for Coloring, and Thursday, February 7th for Art.)

Read about all four courses -- on comic book writing, art, coloring and lettering -- below. All are open for enrollment right now.

PLEASE NOTE: The Intro classes are required prerequisites for our once-a-year Advanced Classes in writing, art, and coloring. This will be your last chance to take the Intro courses before the Advanced Classes are offered this Summer, and we have BIG plans for the Advanced Courses this year. Don't get caught waiting another whole year!

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INTRODUCTION TO COMIC BOOK COLORING


Intro to Comic Book Coloring will be taught by Chris Sotomayor (aka Soto), professional colorist on countless Marvel titles (Spider-Man, X-Men, The Avengers, etc.).

In this six-week intensive class for colorists, you'll learn all the necessary tools and tricks for not only coloring with Photoshop, but also how to tell great stories through color. You’ll get access to all the tools of the trade, tips on how to break in, and you’ll be working with Chris on the pages you color for the class.


You can read Soto's own thoughts on the class right here...OR read why the class is even better than marriage right here!

Intro to Comic Book Coloring with Soto
Begins February 4, 2013!

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INTRODUCTION TO COMIC BOOK ART

Introduction to Comic Book Art will be taught by Robert Atkins, a professional comic book artist who has worked on G.I. Joe, Snake Eyes, Amazing Spider-Man, Heroes for Hire, Ultimatum Fantastic Four: Requiem and many others.

In this online course, you’ll learn how to improve your storytelling, what the professional standards are, how to avoid common pitfalls, how to build a great cover, and strategies to break into the business.

You’ll be asked to complete five pages of sequential comics pages under the guidance of your instructor and you’ll get all the behind the scenes tips Robert can pack into six weeks.

You can read what one of Robert's former students had to say about his teaching skills right here. Or check out Robert's art and get a sense of his teaching philosophy in this Guest Blog about the Intro class from August of last year.

Introduction to Comic Book Art with Robert Atkins
Begins February 7, 2013!

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INTRODUCTION TO COMIC BOOK WRITING

Intro to Comic Book Writing will be taught by former Marvel and IDW Editor and writer, Andy Schmidt.

During his time at Marvel, Andy worked on nearly every major character in the Marvel canon, and edited hit titles such as X-Factor, the Annihilation saga, Alias, and more.

At IDW, he managed major franchises like GI Joe and Transformers. He is also the author of the Eagle Award-winning book, The Insider's Guide to Creating Comics and Graphic Novels, published by Impact Books.

In this six-week course, not only will you learn comic book writing from a pro, but the course will be packed with practical, real-world advice on the industry and "breaking in" to help you pursue your career in comics!

That's why Comics Experience alum, Nick Spencer, tweeted:
"For all aspiring comic pros asking for advice on craft/breaking in, I once again highly recommend Andy Schmidt's @ComicExperience courses."
A few years ago, Nick had to move to New York City to take Comics Experience classes (check out his guest blog here to read that tale). But you don't have to move, now that the courses are online. This one will sell out fast!

Introduction to Comic Book Writing with Andy Schmidt
Begins February 13, 2013!
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COMIC BOOK LETTERING AND PRODUCTION

Comic Book Lettering and Production will be taught by professional letterer Dave Sharpe, who has been in the business for twenty years.

In this seven-week course, Dave will take you through the programs, the thought-process, and the decision-making skills to create comics with slick, professional lettering. As if that wasn’t enough, you’ll also learn the production work associated with publishing comics! Setting up covers with logos, cover elements, integrating the digital lettering files with the digital color files properly, and page set-up along with a healthy dose of trouble-shooting the most common problems.

Dave started out hand lettering in the Marvel Bullpen before moving to digital lettering, taught lettering at the Joe Kubert School in the mid-90s, and developed and led the Marvel in-house lettering department for two years.

Since then, Dave is now lettering regularly for DC, in addition to working with many small publishers as well. He is, without a doubt, one of the most well respected, talented, and professional letterers in the comics business.

To quote Comics Experience founder (and ex-Marvel and IDW Editor) Andy Schmidt, "Dave can teach. I've seen him do it and he taught me much while I worked at Marvel. In the first ten minutes, he taught me enough about lettering that I could talk reasonably intelligently about it with the seasoned Marvel staff. Thank you for that, Dave."

Learning how to letter can save you money on your projects and improve your storytelling. Plus, bad lettering can kill the impression your book makes! Read more about all of that right here.

Comic Book Lettering and Production with Dave Sharpe
Begins February 12, 2013!
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Our courses are offered LIVE, online, and you can attend from wherever you live. You'll be able to see your instructor and his desktop, interact with your classmates, and discuss your classwork in real time. And you'll be able to communicate with your classmates all week long in a special, dedicated online forum for just you and your class.

We hope to see you in our courses or as part of our Creators Workshop community. Sign up now!



If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Soto coloring live & talking process tomorrow night! (1/30/13)

Just a reminder that tomorrow night, Wednesday, January 30, 2013 at 9pm Eastern Time, we'll be holding a live, online session, in which members can watch amazing Colorist, Chris "Soto" Sotomayor, at work coloring a piece...

...and because the man is a multi-tasking genius, he'll be taking member questions on coloring, explaining the process, and chatting about the comics biz while he works!

Soto "tells it like it is," as they say, so it should be a very interesting chat, and a great learning experience.

All Creators Workshop members are welcome, even if you have no plans to ever be a colorist.

If you're not a member, you can join us right here!

And, if you want even more coloring wisdom, Soto's Introduction to Comic Book Coloring class begins 2/4/13!



If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook

Monday, January 28, 2013

DeConnick, Amanat, Brisson -- All February Guests on the Creators Workshop!

In February, we'll have two great live, online sessions at the Creators Workshop: a Book Club discussion of Captain Marvel with writer Kelly Sue Deconnick, and Marvel editor Sana Amanat...

AND a Workshop session with Ed Brisson discussing the crafts of writing and lettering, as well as his experiences working with Image and on his new mini-series, Comeback!
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On Tuesday February 12, 2013 at 9pm Eastern Time, we'll be discussing Captain Marvel with writer Kelly Sue Deconnick and Marvel editor Sana Amanat.

In Captain Marvel, the "mightiest" of Earth's Mightiest Heroes is back! Ace pilot. Legendary Avenger. One hundred percent pure bad-^&*. Carol Danvers has a new name, a new mission - and all the power she needs to make her own life a living hell. Witness Captain Marvel in blazing battlefield action that just may change the course of history!

Kelly Sue has worked in the comic book industry for the last decade, writing comics for Marvel such as Osborn: Evil Incarcerated, Rescue, and Sif, as well as Richard Castle's Deadly Storm, with co-writer Brian M. Bendis, for Marvel & ABC.

She also has adapted many manga titles into English, including the English scripts for Kare First Love, Black Cat, Sexy Voice and Robo, and Blue Spring. She lives in Portland with her husband, writer Matt Fraction, and their kids.

Sana was an editor at Virgin Comics, before joining Marvel Comics to edit their "Ultimates" line in 2009.

Recently, she has edited Marvel titles such as Hawkeye, Castle, Dark Tower, Ultimate Comics Spider-Man, Ultimate Comics Iron Man, and Ultimate Comics Ultimates as well as Captain Marvel. She was educated at Columbia University and resides in New York City.

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Then, on Tuesday, February 26, 2013 at 9pm Eastern Time, we'll be joined by writer/letterer Ed Brisson!

By day, Ed is a professional comic book letterer. He has lettered numerous comic books, including recent titles from Image such as Debris, Hell Yeah, Peter Panzerfaust, Prophet and The Secret History of D.B. Cooper.

By night, he hones his craft as a writer, on projects like his online crime comic series, Murder Book, which was nominated for a 2011 Joe Shuster Award, and his new miniseries from Image/Shadowline, Comeback.

Comeback is a 5 issue mini-series which debuted in November 2012. It tells a tale about a company called Reconnect that can bring back a lost loved by going back into the past. But since time travel is illegal, it comes with a high cost. And when one team member finds himself on the run, he could end up trapped in the past or potentially, dead.

Ed has been creating comics in one form or another since the early 90's and currently lives just outside of Vancouver, BC with his wife and daughter.

We'll be discussing the crafts of writing and lettering with Ed, as well as his experiences working with Image and on his new mini-series!

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We're looking forward to two great discussions with our guests!

There's still time to join us at the Creators Workshop before these live sessions. We hope to see you there.


If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Watch Soto Coloring Live! Discuss X-Men with Andy Schmidt!

One of the great aspects of the Creators Workshop is the opportunities it provides for members to interact with, and learn from, professional comic book creators.

And we have TWO such events coming up the last week of January!

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On Wednesday, January 30, 2013 at 9pm Eastern Time, we'll be holding a live, online session, in which members can watch amazing Colorist, Chris "Soto" Sotomayor, at work coloring a piece...

...and because the man is a multi-tasking genius, he'll be taking member questions on coloring, explaining the process, and chatting about the comics biz while he works! Soto "tells it like it is," as they say, so it should be a very interesting chat, and a great learning experience.

All Workshop members are welcome, even if you have no plans to ever be a colorist.

And if you decide you've been bitten by the coloring bug after the session, Soto's Introduction to Comic Book Coloring class begins 2/4/13!

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And, on Monday, January 28, 2013 at 8pm Eastern Time, we'll be holding a live, online small-group roundtable with Andy Schmidt on the X-men! Workshop members who committed to reading three specific X-men trade paperbacks will join Andy for an in-depth discussion of what worked, what didn't, and why.

For comic book creators, it will be a chance to study the craft, and hear the thoughts of a former Marvel and IDW Editor -- an Editor who at one time worked on X-Men titles for Marvel. Plus, it will also just be plain fun!

This particular session is already full, but we'll be having additional opportunities like this in the future for Workshop members.

And in the meantime, those with an interest in comic book writing might want to sign up for Andy's upcoming Introduction to Comic Book Writing course, which begins 2/13/13!

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For more information on joining, check out the Creators Workshop page on the Comics Experience website!


If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Ghastly Award nomination for anthology featuring SIX CE alums!

Indie Comics Horror #1, the anthology series from Aazurn Publishing which features work from SIX Comics Experience alums and Creators Workshop members, has been nominated for a 2012 Ghastly Award for Best Horror Anthology 2012!

The Ghastly Awards recognize outstanding achievements in horror comics over a range of 15 different categories. The nominees are chosen by other horror comic book professionals and winners are chosen by a panel of judges, along with votes by creators and fans.

Voting is open from January 1, 2013 - January 31, 2013. You may only vote once and you can do so right here:

http://ghastlys.blogspot.com/p/2012-voting.html

Indie Comics Horror is a 48-page black and white comic book featuring six complete stories in the nominated issue.

This issue features stories by the following CE alums and members:

* Minister to the Undead written by C.M. Beckett
* The Standard written by Glenn M√łane
* Immortal Resistance written by Rob Anderson
* The Belt written by Joe Sergi.
* and BOTH Rob and Joe's stories featured art by DaFu Yu and lettering by E.T. Dollman!

Indie Comics Horror #1 was also recently nominated in the Horror News Network 2012 Best Anthology category!

You can view a trailer of the issue right here:

Congrats to all our alums and members appearing in this issue of Indie Comics Horror!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Sable & Azaceta join the Creators Workshop on 1/22/13

On Tuesday, January 22, 2013, at 9pm Eastern Time, we'll be joined on the Creators Workshop by writer Mark Sable and artist Paul Azaceta!

Mark and Paul will be discussing their many collaborations together, including Graveyard of Empires from Image. In that book, set in Afghanistan, Marines face a never-ending onslaught of Taliban. But even hell can get worse. The dead come back to life, and only together can both sides of today’s conflict survive tomorrow’s undead assault.

In addition to Graveyard, Mark and Paul have also collaborated on What If? Spider-Man from Marvel and Grounded from Image. Join us for a discussion on collaboration and more!

Mark Sable is also the writer of Batman: Two-Face: Year One, Supergirl and Teen Titans Spotlight: Cyborg for DC, and the creator-owned Unthinkable for BOOM! Studios. He is a writer for both stage and screen (big and small).

Paul Azaceta is an artist who has also worked on numerous other popular properties including the Amazing Spider-Man, B.P.R.D., Daredevil, and Potter's Field with writer Mark Waid.
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We're looking forward to a great discussion with our guests!

There's still time to join us at the Creators Workshop before these live sessions. We hope to see you there.


If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook


Friday, January 18, 2013

iFanboy's "Make Comics" Podcast, Episodes #41 & #42 on "Criticism" & "Making a Living"

New episodes of the iFanboy Make Comics podcast are available!

In Episode #41, Comics Experience founder Andy Schmidt and iFanboy host Josh Flanagan discuss "Criticism" -- "there’s good criticism and bad criticism, and knowing the difference of which kind to listen to, including your own, is a major tool in your development as a creator."

And in Episode #42, the topic is "Making A Living" -- "Can you make a living doing this crazy thing? The answer is yes, no, and maybe."

Check out the new episode, plus all of the previous ones on iTunes, or follow the links right here:

Listen to Episode #42, "Making A Living"

Listen to Episode #41, "Criticism"

Listen to Episode #40, "The Pitch"

Listen to Episode #39, "Production"

Listen to Episode #38, "Endings"

Listen to Episode #37, "Writing Dialogue"

Listen to Episode #36, "Character Design"

Listen to Episode #35, "Comic Book Art Training and Education"

Listen to Episode #34, "Mailbag"

Listen to Episode #33, "Collaboration"

Listen to Episode #32, "Kickstarter with Tyler James"

Listen to Episode #31, "Breaking In Through the Side Door"

Listen to Episode #30, "Story vs. Page Count"

Listen to Episode #29, "Graphic Designers in Comics"

Listen to Episode #28, "Find Your Voice"

Listen to Episode #27, "Self Review"

Listen to Episode #26, "Act Structure"

Listen to Episode #25, "Photo Comics and More"

Listen to Episode #24, "Running a Convention Table with Mike Dawson"

Listen to Episode #23, "Make Digital Comics"

Listen to Episode #22, "Be the Letterer"

Listen to Episode #21, "Question: From Editor to Writer"

Listen to Episode #20, "Page Turns"

Listen to Episode #19, "Where Should I Live?"

Listen to Episode #18, "Comic Book Coloring with Chris Sotomayor"

Listen to Episode #17, "Art Portfolio with Robert Atkins"

Listen to Episode #16, "Conventions and Critique"

Listen to Episode #15, "Pitching"

Listen to Episode #14, "Making Time for Making Comics"

Listen to Episode #13, "Story"

Listen to Episode #12, "Marketing"

Listen to Episode #11, "Artist Portfolio"

Listen to Episode #10, "Inspiration"

Listen to Episode #9, "Online Networking"

Listen to Episode #8, "Building A Page"

Listen to Episode #7, "Professionialism"

Listen to Episode #6, "The Comic Book Script"

Listen to Episode #5, "Convention Networking"

Listen to Episode #4, "Good Feedback"

Listen to Episode #3, "Long Stories or Short Stories?"

Listen to Episode #2, "Finding Collaborators"

Listen to Episode #1, "Start Writing"


If you want to make comics, write, draw, letter, and color comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook

Thursday, January 17, 2013

GUEST BLOG: Nathaniel Allen, Art Professor, on our Figure Drawing course

In this guest blog, Nathaniel Allen, an Assistant Professor of Art at Alabama State University, discusses his recent experience taking the live, online Introduction to Figure Drawing course with instructor Robert Atkins. Nathaniel is also a member of our Creators Workshop community!

An open letter regarding the awesomeness of Robert Atkins' Figure Drawing course for Comics Experience by Nathaniel Allen

Please know that my recent experience in the Introduction to Figure Drawing course was hands down one of the most enjoyable, informative, and useful experiences that I have ever had in an online course.

The reasons were numerous (but I’ll sum it up):

1. THE TOPIC
Accurately drawing the figure is something that I (like many folks) have struggled with for years. I have been enrolled in numerous college level figure drawing courses where we just drew, and re-drew, figure models with rare and very basic explanations of artistic anatomy. In my experience, it has seemed like the majority of my figure drawing instructors were either unwilling or unable to actually teach anything useful about the figure beyond encouraging more practice.

The anatomical information is all "out there," available in books, websites etc., but it is difficult sorting the technical and purely anatomical info from what is most practical and useful without specific guidance and instruction. The figure is really complicated!

2. THE INSTRUCTION
Robert Atkins, in addition to apparently being one of the nicest guys on the planet, knows his "figurative" stuff and communicates it exceptionally well. In spite of the complexity of the subject matter I was consistently pleased with the clarity of his explanations / demonstrations and his willingness to go "overtime" to make sure he answered all questions and covered as much as possible.

Really, I cannot fully express how much I enjoyed AND learned from his lectures and felt encouraged that with guidance and "informed" practice things would become clearer and easier -- which they did. I would have been happy if the class could have been extended even longer -- and I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling that way.

3. THE CLASSMATES
The activity on the class sketch blogs from those enrolled was absolutely inspirational. I think having had the prerequisite course, we (the class) knew how things worked (posting, commenting, etc.) and really hit the ground running. I know I made some very definite progress in my own drawing ability fueled in large part by observing the work of my classmates and wanting to feel like I was keeping up. Again, I know I’m not alone in that feeling either.

Overall it was an absolutely great experience, worth every cent of the tuition.

Thanks Comics Experience, Robert Atkins, and classmates for an excellent class.

Until next time,

-- Nathaniel Allen


If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Video of Andy Schmidt speaking at Massachusetts College of Art and Design on creativity!

Former Marvel and IDW Editor and Comics Experience Founder, Andy Schmidt, spoke at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design on the topic of "Turning on Creativity."

And you can now view the entire session online!

The presentation was co-sponsored by CreativeMornings Boston and the offices of Career Services and Alumni Relations at MassArt. CreativeMornings is a monthly morning gathering for creative types.

As described on the event website: "Creative development is a term tossed around a lot in businesses--as if a clock and price tag can easily be assigned to such a thing--but we all know the reality is different. Creativity is not a switch to be triggered. It's some aloof combination of inspiration, raw talent, and professional dedication. A comics editor and creator, Andy Schmidt takes you through a process he developed himself and now teaches at Comics Experience, an online Comics Education institution he founded. It's a methodology that has served him, his collaborators and his students very well for years, and he'll discuss how to approach the creative endeavor--even when 'you're not feeling it.'"

Here's the full session with Andy for those who missed it!





If you want to make comics, write, draw, letter, and color comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Bechko, Hardman, Pleban Join Creators Workshop 1/15/13!

This Tuesday January 15, 2013 at 9pm Eastern Time, we'll be holding a Book Club discussion on Betrayal of the Planet of the Apes with special guests writer Corinna Bechko, co-writer and artist Gabriel Hardman, and Editor Dafna Pleban.

Betrayal of the Planet of the Apes is set just before the original Charlton Heston film in the classic Apes continuity, and has been described as "Doctor Zaius: Year One."

The story is a sci-fi political thriller loaded with action and adventure.

Corinna Bechko is a writer of both comics and prose (Heathentown, Exile on the Planet of the Apes) who can't shake her zoology background.

Gabriel Hardman has drawn Hulk and Agents of Atlas for Marvel Comics as well as Heathentown for Image/Shadowline. He is an accomplished motion picture illustrator whose credits include Spider-Man 3, X2: X-Men United, Superman Returns, and Inception.

Dafna Pleban is an Editor at BOOM! Studios over the Planet of the Apes line, as well as other titles such as The Hypernaturals and Dracula: The Company of Monsters.

Corinna and Gabriel are currently co-writing Planet of the Apes: Cataclysm, with Dafna on edits at BOOM! Studios.

Corinna and Gabriel are also collaborating on their new creator-owned project, Station to Station, which began in Dark Horse Presents #19, and features San Francisco under assault by giant monsters!

We're looking forward to a great Book Club discussion with our guests!

There's still time to join us at the Creators Workshop before these live sessions. We hope to see you there.


If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

ComiXology "Submit" program offers comics from CE alums!

ComiXology has announced the launch of its Submit program private beta, and several Comics Experience alums and Creators Workshop members are among the first fourteen to have their work offered to the public!

This initial phase of the beta features work by CE alums Janine Frederick, Ken Frederick, and Nicolas Dedual.

ComiXology Submit aims to help comic book creators worldwide monetize their self-published works through comiXology’s digital comics platform available across iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Windows 8 and the Web. They were recently announced as iTunes’ #3 top grossing iPad app of 2012.

All submissions for comiXology Submit go through an approval process and when approved comiXology transforms the uploaded work with their Guided View technology – for free. Then the work goes on sale worldwide with the creator and comiXology splitting the profits evenly.

You can read the books right now on Comixology!

Quandary #1Janine Frederick (CE writing alum), Ken Frederick (CE art alum)
In this future, everyone lives in a "police state" and the U.S. has been at war in the Middle East for thirty years. Protesters are regarded as terrorists, hunted down and executed for challenging the system. Then, one event -- an accidental death -- inadvertently sets in motion the wheels of a revolution, and tyranny begins eroding from within.

TorchbearerNicolas Dedual (CE writing alum), Dennis Calero (artist)
Prometheus, Inc.: for hundreds of years, they've served as a shining example of how corporations can bring peace and prosperity to even the farthest reaches of the galaxy. But it's all been a front. They've been amassing power and resources, biding their time to take over. And the time is now. Torchbearer is a science fiction epic that focuses on two individuals, and the actions they take to stop Prometheus before it's too late.

Congrats to Janine, Ken, and Nicolas!!


If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Bechko, Hardman, Pleban, Sable & Azaceta - ALL Upcoming Guests on the Creators Workshop!

In January, we'll have two great live, online sessions at the Creators Workshop: a Book Club discussion of Betrayal of the Planet of the Apes with Corinna Bechko, Gabriel Hardman, and Dafna Pleban...

AND a Workshop session with writer Mark Sable and artist Paul Azeceta on their collaboration on Graveyard of Empires and on other titles from Marvel and Image!
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On Tuesday January 15, 2013 at 9pm Eastern Time, we'll be discussing Betrayal of the Planet of the Apes with writer Corinna Bechko, co-writer and artist Gabriel Hardman, and Editor Dafna Pleban.

Betrayal of the Planet of the Apes is set just before the original Charlton Heston film in the classic Apes continuity, and has been described as "Doctor Zaius: Year One."

The story is a sci-fi political thriller loaded with action and adventure.

Corinna Bechko is a writer of both comics and prose (Heathentown, Exile on the Planet of the Apes) who can't shake her zoology background.

Gabriel Hardman has drawn Hulk and Agents of Atlas for Marvel Comics as well as Heathentown for Image/Shadowline. He is an accomplished motion picture illustrator whose credits include Spider-Man 3, X2: X-Men United, Superman Returns, and Inception.

Dafna Pleban is an Editor at BOOM! Studios over the Planet of the Apes line, as well as other titles such as The Hypernaturals and Dracula: The Company of Monsters.

Corinna and Gabriel are currently co-writing Planet of the Apes: Cataclysm, with Dafna on edits at BOOM! Studios. Corinna and Gabriel are also collaborating on their new creator-owned project, Station to Station, which began in Dark Horse Presents #19, and features San Francisco under assault by giant monsters!

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Then, on Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 9pm Eastern Time, we'll be joined by writer Mark Sable and artist Paul Azaceta!

Mark and Paul will be discussing their many collaborations together, including Graveyard of Empires from Image. In that book, set in Afghanistan, Marines face a never-ending onslaught of Taliban. But even hell can get worse. The dead come back to life, and only together can both sides of today’s conflict survive tomorrow’s undead assault.

In addition to Graveyard, Mark and Paul have also collaborated on What If? Spider-Man from Marvel and Grounded from Image. Join us for a discussion on collaboration and more!

Mark Sable is also the writer of Batman: Two-Face: Year One, Supergirl and Teen Titans Spotlight: Cyborg for DC, and the creator-owned Unthinkable for BOOM! Studios. He is a writer for both stage and screen (big and small).

Paul Azaceta is an artist who has also worked on numerous other popular properties including the Amazing Spider-Man, B.P.R.D., Daredevil, and Potter's Field with writer Mark Waid.
----------------

We're looking forward to two great discussions with our guests!

There's still time to join us at the Creators Workshop before these live sessions. We hope to see you there.


If you want to make comics, write or draw comics, or improve as a comics creator, you'll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Rob Anderson
rob@ComicsExperience.com
Twitter / Facebook


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Ryan Browne on lessons learned producing a daily webcomic

Comics artist and writer Ryan Browne joined the Comics Experience Creators Workshop recently, and discussed his work on Blast Furnace, a wacky, action-filled web-comic which was recently released in print.

During the session, Browne shared some lessons from his experience working on Blast Furnace.



Make each page a good reading experience

Browne said that while writing Blast Furnace, he tried to have at least one joke on every page, and to make every page a satisfying reading experience.

If a reader is only looking at a few pages a week, then "a super-decompressed story where two people are having a conversation that lasts six pages is not really gonna fly," Browne said. "It works if you're reading it when it's all done, but if you're reading it week to week, it doesn't. So I need a beginning, middle and end to every page."

As a result, Browne said, Blast Furnace's scenes "last about two pages at the most."

Embrace the nature of your story

Going in, Browne planned to do one page of Blast Furnace a day, and work on it for only one hour, without mapping the plot out in advance. It started as the story of a recreational thief (named Blast Furnace), but quickly evolved into a complex web of stories and characters, with a byzantine story structure that featured flashbacks within flashbacks within flashbacks.

Rather than fighting against this unconventional structure, Browne said he embraced it.

"I knew it was going to be unfocused to begin with, so I decided to just celebrate how unfocused it was, and go for it," Browne said. "I kind of make a joke out of how unfocused it was, so you would read it and go, 'I don't even know where I am anymore.' No storyline is getting wrapped up, every single story is just becoming more and more unraveled and expanded."

When you're stuck, keep going

I think I have ideas, and when I realize they don't totally work, I just find a different way to use them. I didn't really veto any ideas or any bad jokes, because I knew that I had so many pages.

"Quite frequently I didn't know where I was going," Browne said. "I got stuck all the time, and my cure for getting stuck was to just start doing it."

"If I get stuck in a scene I'll just kill it," Browne said. "I'll go into a flashback, or someone will get hit from something off-screen, and we're on to the next thing."



Other topics discussed by Browne included:

* How he got his start in comics
* His creative process
* Designing Blast Furnace's characters on the page
* The Coen Brothers film The Hudsucker Proxy, and how it influenced Blast Furnace's storytelling
* Any ideas you had that were TOO outlandish for you?
* Using up ideas/throw-away jokes
* The importance of making your own comics, and making them good
* Promotion, and generating revenue from creator-owned work

Those interested in seeing more of Browne's work can check out his other web-comic, God Hates Astronauts. Browne also illustrated the IDW Publishing mini-Series Smoke and Mirrors, written by Mike Costa and Jon Armstrong. He is currently illustrating issue #10 of the Image Comics ongoing The Manhattan Projects, written by Jonathan Hickman and set for release in January.

Comics Experience Creators Workshop sessions take place every month, giving members real-world knowledge that will help them succeed in their comics career. Additionally, the monthly Creators Workshop Book Club sessions feature guest writers and artists discussing the craft and art of comics, as well as the business side of things.

There's still plenty of time to sign up before the next session. We hope to see you there.

--Posted by Paul Allor


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