You see that up there…I have been struggling to turn that into a two page story. That is dozens of pages of possible panels, camera shots, angles, backgrounds, figure and postures.
I don’t even want to think about the man hours that are sitting there.
Conventional wisdom is ” get away from it for a while and come back”. I have found this doesn’t work well for me. When I am trying to solve a problem, leaving and coming back is like having a puzzle that is 75% done putting all the pieces back into the box and starting over. My brain has to start over with where everything needs to be and why and what didn’t work and why. What I am dealing with here is a problem. Not unlike a math problem..actually it is NOT like a math problem because then there would be one solution. What I have on my hands is a story that needs to be interpreted a specific way, and could easily be misinterpreted if the expressions and postures are not communicating to the reader in the way I want them too.
This is my job…and I remember that I used to be good at it. More and more though I find myself lost in the tall weeds somewhere. There are a couple of possible realities here.
1- i suck at my job now.
2-I have gotten better and am using more sophisticated techniques and am head long into another learning curve. After all, getting a 90mph curve-ball over the plate is a lot harder than getting a 60mph curve-ball over the plate.
3- I have a brain tumor…I have noticed that I can’t seem to type more than a few words without hitting the wrong keys, but I might have always been a crappy typist and am just noticing now because when you are struggling everything seems like a struggle.
4- I forget who said this…It might have been Peter David, but I am not sure. ” when you are struggling with a scene it is usually because you brain is trying to tell you the whole thing is flawed”
5-I am being overly critical and just need to draw the damn thing.
I will rule out number 4, because this is a great story. I will cautiously rule out number 5, even though I have a tendency for that to be my problem, the panels that are giving me trouble are key to the whole thing. This isn’t me redrawing a building because it has too many windows, or redrawing a car because the front grill isn’t right. The things I am struggling with are important elements. The worst part is that this could be a really really good couple of pages. On my scale of 1 to 10 ( I have never given anything I’ve done more than a high 9) This could easily be an 8 or 9…those are hard to come by and you want to make sure you execute those solidly.
I’ve gotten a second opinion or two, the problem with that is you have to explain the joke in order for the person to know what the problem is..and once someone knows the joke they now have no better perspective than you do since the elements in question are the set up. If they know the end then they can’t for sure say if the set up lead them to that conclusion or if they got to that conclusion because you told them what the conclusion was already. Also I usually ask someone who knows a thing or two about illustration themselves, which makes their perspective even more questionable because it is not coming from an average reader. Their credibility may make them not credible.
That last rambling sentence brings us to possibility no.6- I am cracking up.
anyhow, before I get sent to a loony bin, I will be at the comic book convention in Milwaukee WI this weekend
This is my hometown, and some of you attendees may know me personally. I cannot stress enough, that while I am at the convention I am at work…don’t just come by and hang out. We can hang out later.
“but you never hang out, you just sit in your office and swear at sketches that aren’t working.” Hmm, that may be possible problem no.7