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Old 09-02-2012, 10:13 PM   #1
Wanted: G-Pen Skills
Munin's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Shropshire, UK
Posts: 120
Question Re-Introduction, Questions About Pace

Hello, again, Sweatdrop

I doubtl anyone would remember me, but I originally visited here a few years ago (?) to surround myself with people who love to draw manga - in the hope that some of your enthusiasm and know how would rub off on me. Truth be told, it did, but my over obsessive imagination dived into world/environment creation when it should have just stuck to trying to get to grips with a new skill set, and starting with the very basic aim of telling and illustrating a simple and short story. My bad.

I've been very busy with other (non manga) projects, but I recently pulled out my book full of notes and scribbles, and decided to give it another go. I've found myself still obsessing over environment informing cues, and the notion of making the environment itself possibly the main overall "character" within any stories I might create. I realised my initial shortfall could possibly be turned around to an advantage, and that I might actually be able to pull off and finish at least a single short. I've culled a few small jottings from my sketchbook and formed them (in my head) into a small, hopefully manageable, 5-8 page narration that plays more like a short montage.

I'm confident with what is in my head (easy to say, hehe). I think it plays fairly well and I am pleased with most of the shots/panels. They seem to work okay so far (4 pages of pencil thumbnails that are basically just composition, B/W contrast balance tests). There is little dialogue, and most of the character interaction is visual and environment based. Also not very overt, and definitely poses questions rather than dealing with exposition. I need to make the mood and flow to be the driving element.

So here's the general problem and question I would like a little input with: I'm wondering how the average reader tackles a series of panels or pages that have either no characters or dialogue, or have character informing movements, expressions, gestures etc... that carry the momentum and story forward?

I understand it would be different in each case and depend on the context and what the intention is, but I'm trying to understand the average reader perspective, and what influences might dictate the pace at which they might visually move from one panel to another? What are good ways to go about subjectively influencing the readers pace in instances where there is no dialogue and no fast paced action (speed lines and effects)?

I have the opening flow of shots that go from initial establishing, to general flavour, and then to specific. I then have the beginnings of a small character sequence that involves movement. I'm just stuck at the next sequence that involves one character essentially viewing and taking in another character without any movement... a slo-mo' effect...

I want the reader to move slowly from one panel to the next during the above short sequence. I thought about filler panels with the same shot repeated, but closer up; but that doesn't work for me (gut feeling) because it seems to imply camera movement and a suggested focal point. Same shot repeated doesn't seem a good choice either because it's boring. Surely both these instances would speed up the reader? I was flipping through a few fav' manga and noticed that a room, or setting viewed from different angles in succession seemed to slow my eye pace down. That might be just me though.

So, any experiences, opinions and/or suggestions would be very welcome - both from a reader point of view and a creator.


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