Friday, October 2, 2015

Entry 274: Infinity Gauntlet Process

Here's a little peek at my process with creating Infinity Gauntlet.

I started by writing an outline for all 5 issues.
In a sketchbook I drew storyboards while writing a temporary first draft of the dialogue. Often the drawings would be on the right facing page and the dialogue was on the left in blue.

The storyboards were drawn without much regard for where page breaks would fall. And the scenes were sometimes drawn out of order. 

With complex action scenes, like the chase in issue 1 or the fight in issue 4, I'd draw one thread all the way through, like Anwen getting chased by the bugs or Gamora's fight with Warstar. My goal was to give each thread a story with an arc. Then, after they were drawn, I would edit these scenes together, deciding where to cut.

Each issue was drawn with a rough target for the amount of panels. I purposely wanted a high panel count and I created a story to accommodate that. 

Once I had all of the shot's drawn and their order determined I would scan all of the storyboards into photoshop, cut them up, and find what page they fell on, adjusting to make sure that scenes with a faster pace would have a tighter page layout and scenes that needed room to breath would be on a lighter panel count page.
When I knew what panels fell on each of the pages, I would resize them to create the layouts. In this way, I let the shot determine it's shape and size, instead of the other way around. It's surprising how well this actually works out.
With the layouts done I would then put in all the words and word balloons. Essentially I was just rewriting the rough draft I wrote while drawing the storyboards. After that, I'd have a rough version of the whole issue. I would send to my editor for approval and to Gerry Duggan, who would then write the final draft of the script while I drew the comic.

At some point I'll share with you some pages from my rough draft version.

Back in Entry 152 of this blog I described a similar creative process for S.H.I.E.L.D. Vol. 2 #5. I think it's a good process for complex and densely paced action comics. That SHIELD issue is the most complicated comic I've ever made. Infinity Gauntlet 4 is the second.

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  1. Wow! Your a process is very interesting!
    I have a few questions though.
    1)How does an editor approve your rough draft; do you just send them pages like that?
    2)Are you a genius?
    3)Will you become my sensei.
    4)Do you use photoshop to darken your pencils, or do you Ink them the old-fashioned way?

    1. 1- I send my editor the whole issue at once. I take these storyboard like images, cut them up, make proper comic book layouts of then, and add my first draft of the script. So he gets to basically read the whole comic at once. Sometimes he'll ask for minor changes, or for some clarification on the something that is happening just for the sake of the script, but sometimes he just says it looks great and I get started on the final draft.
      2- I could be. I'll never have my IQ tested to know for sure. (I'm pretty sure I'm not)
      3- I hate telling people how to do things. When someone is doing something in a way I think isn't "good," I tend to want to watch to see if they find a new way out of it... Then I steal whatever they come up with.
      4- On Infinity Gauntlet I'm darkening my pencils. I used to ink, but I never really loved doing it. I'm sure there could be projects in the future where I find it necessary to ink again, but for now, the energy I was spending on inking I'm dedicating to coloring, which I find really fun.