Since the colors are never what they look like, It’s useful to understand the color in two ways : the RELATIVE color and the ABSOLUTE color.
The Relative color is the color as it is seen, according to the perception of the eye and the translation from the brain to the mind.
The Absolute color is the color as it is, in reality.
This is part of the colors relationship, and the contrast of the colors.
To be able to get the right relative color (meaning without any false notes), it’s crucial to know what its absolute color really is.
For example, the absolute color of grey is very often the relative complementary color of its surrounding color.
Depending of the kind of picture and depending of your color’s intentions (that is off special effect or narrative effect),
using an absolute complementary (that is, for the previous e.g, a true blue) in direct contact to its surrounding colors may easily create
a so much strong contrast that the mind will perceive it as a false note, then causing a global unbalance on all other colors in the image.
E.g, here is the page 05 from “Detectives” vol.02 (Hanna/Sure/Lou, ©Delcourt editions)
The “grey” panels 05 and 09 have a cold vibration, almost blue, because they are in a direct relationship within a yellow hot tan.
This two panels, in minority, are also secondary in the narration of the page.
Using a true absolute blue would reverse this narrative order because the color contrast would became so much strong that they would became the primary focal point of the page.
Let us look a little closer at the 3rd strip.
The mind read the left panel as cold, in a subtle blue. The shirts are read as white, and the bottles of champagne as greenish…
…but by isolating the absolute colors, in comparison with a Titanium white, none of this previously mentioned relatives colors exist in this picture.
…And if they were, the balance of the colors would be broken, and the falses notes would be made.
Notice how the eye now read differently the picture, it can’t stop looking at those white shirts and then those bottles.
It almost forget to look at the balloons and the characters. ( i’ll talk about the narration through the contrast of colors later, in another post)
It is the same for the values.
A relative value defines itself compared with its surrounding values.
Let’s look back at our 3rd strip.
Watch the contrast between the shirts, and the light jacket in the front, how they seem to be so much lighter in comparison with the other clothes.
When in reality, if we compare them to each other, the difference became a lot more subtle than it seemed to be.
This is a side effect of the relative color.
The mind analyzes et translates a color based on its database stocked in its memory, trying to identify the color in the most simple and efficient way possible.
The shirt itself is light indeed, and white. But it’s simply its “name”. Its “classification”, its “identity” (see the flat step of my quick step by step).
What we’ll ask in a store.
In reality, this shirt is not white, and not much lighter than the light face of the grey jacket or the blue shirt.
But for our mind, white means light. Lighter than everything.
However, a white shirt in shadow is often darker than a back shirt in the light, whatever the mind is saying.
So, compare, isolate, compare, isolate, compare, always.
You can change your “mind database” with some practice.
By using a paper sheet with holes to isolate outside colors. ( grey paper is best)
Or by opening some pictures in a software and use the color-picker to learn what is going on with the color relationship.
Testing yourself to find out the absolute color of your surrounding whenever you can.
Then, colorisation will become much easier, and like a musician able to reproduce a song he heard a the first try,
you’ll develop the Golden eye.
Aug 30 2014
These are the enemy. These are the people who like the comics culture just the way it is; stunted, marginalised, dying in the dark. These are the people who don’t want art from their comics. These are people who can barely stand intelligent entertainment from their comics… and there’s a hundred thousand of the bastards. They are the dominating population.
This is why my sermons occasionally become hate rants. Because I’ve seen this kind of person up close. And there are more of them than you think. And make no mistake, they are the enemy. They are the people who like things just the way they are. They want comics to remain defined by sick little family-surrogates with spandex fetishes. To them, this is all the medium needs to be, and anyone who says otherwise is evil and to be shunned. Comics must remain the small world that they hide within.
And if you don’t act, they win.
I wrote The Old Bastard’s Manifesto for a reason. I’ve written columns on activism here for a reason. Damnit, I wrote the Counter-X books as contemporary no-baggage jumping-on-point comics for a reason. Because of people like this. Because if they win, everyone loses. If they get to continue to dominate the comics culture, then we’re fucked. Tolerance is no longer an option.”
Aug 29 2014
Cartoonists of Color Database
What is a Cartoonist of Color?
Cartoonists of Color (COC) is a play off of the acronym “POC.” POC stands for “person of color.” A POC is anyone who identifies as non-Caucasian (non-white). In these forthcoming pages, you’ll find comics creators of various ethnicities: African American, Korean Canadian, Indian Singaporian, Turkish American, Iranian British, Japanese American and so many more.
Why a Cartoonists of Color Database?
For visibility. For academia. For inspiration. For community building.
How can I submit my info to this database?
To submit a creator (yourself or anyone), please fill out this form.
When will you share this list with the public?
I’m hoping for the site to go live by Winter 2014 (but no promises!).
Who are you and what are you getting out of this?
My name is MariNaomi and I’m a half-Japanese indie comics creator. I’ve been makingautobiographical comics since the nineties. I started this list for my own purposes, intending to reach out to other POC creators for an article I’m writing. As the list grew, I was amazed at how many of us there are. I knew of about thirty offhand, and was shocked as the numbers climbed into the hundreds (700+ at the moment!). I found this both inspiring and disparaging, having heard the sentence “What POC cartoonists?” so many times over the years.
What can I do to help?
If you’re a POC comic book creator, please fill out this form to submit your information to add to the database. If you’ve got experience doing data entry (and have access to Dreamweaver) and you want to volunteer your time to help update the database, please send me an email.
This is a labor of necessity (I’m reluctant to call it a labor of love, since that’s what my comics are—this is important, but data entry is less fun than drawing), so forgive me if I’m unable to respond to your requests right away. My main prerogative is to create my comics, and help my publisher promote my new book. Even so, I’ve spent hours researching and compiling this list, and will continue to do so.
Thanks for reading, and I hope you’re as excited as I am about this list!
Spread like wildfire.
Aug 25 2014
Aug 23 2014
Aug 18 2014
Speaking of comics expertise, dude, congrats on being an Ignatz juror this year! What were some positives from the process? Any good takeaways from the experience?
The wildest takeaway is that I could do it all day. I read comics on the subway, carried them in my shoulder bag all day, read webcomics at my desk while eating meals, read anthology short stories in the bathroom. I could just read comics in an amphibious manner all day long, switching from format to format as the rest of the day goes by.
-webcomics can feel overwhelming but I just waded in and read them in a “grazing” fashion.
-read webcomics on the iPad, they feel way more comfortable than hunched over a desk computer.
-but also read webcomics on a desk computer while eating lunch/dinner.
-minicomics are easy: it’s always an ok time to read minicomics. Beware reading unknown minicomics on the subway. The person next to you might get a surprise!
-don’t read comic anthologies all at once. Treat them like coffee table books. Read one story and do something else. Use bookmarks in all comics anthologies. Read the stories on order but over a period of time. You do the individual stories no favors by trying to blaze through the entire book in one hungry sitting.
-graphic novels often have chapters but I preferred to read them in one sitting each. Just too many books to stop and start.
-become good at “weighing” books. Not literal “weight,” but learn to estimate a book’s comics density. You can tear through a 200-page graphic novel on a 30-minute train ride. Another 200-page graphic novel might take you 2 hours.
-There’s a lot of work out there. It’s astonishing.
-A lot of people are working on the same things that you are personally interested in. Multiple people are working on similar projects at the same time. Learn not to see it as a competition or a threat and learn to embrace the fact that people are interested in similar subjects.
-Learn to appreciate the difference between what you, the cartoonist, would do and what this cartoonist who you are reading did do.
-There is value in the stuff that you don’t like.
Aug 17 2014
Hi! I'm gonna be doing my first artist alley in october and I was wondering how many copies of each print you would suggest making? Its a 3-day con and the prints I'm drawing are from animes that are pretty popular so I wasn't sure how much is a good amount
Kiri: Personally, I wouldn’t make more than 5 of each thing, maybe 10 if you’re really confident in the piece. When in doubt, always lowball. It’s better to sell out and have to print more than to be stuck with 50 prints no one wants because you overestimated things. Once you’ve been to a few shows, you’ll have a better idea of what works for you and will be able to adjust initial print run numbers accordingly.
Nattosoup: I’m the odd one out of the three in that I really don’t do prints, haha. I think that if you’re going to sell prints, you should probably have a variety, so that when people come to you, that’s what they’re coming to buy. I agree with Heidi and Kiri that lowballing for a first con is probably a wise idea, and I’d definitely keep track of not only what sells for you, but what seems to sell for others. Take note what demographic is doing the actual buying, not just the wanting, and what the demographic with the money wants. Your first convention selling (heck, your first YEAR as an artist in the artist alley) is going to be a learning process, so don’t feel too discouraged if sales are low.
I also recommend that you have a few smaller items that you can mass produce and sell at a lower pricepoint to attract customers who might not buy prints (I’m one of those people, so I know they exist), or for people to cheap/broke to buy prints.
Goodluck at your first con! I hope you do well, and I hope you learn a lot.
HeidiBlack: This is also going to depend on how many different print options you have. if you have 10, 15, different images, then I would say 5 ish of each. If you’ve got 20, 30 different images, maybe 3 or 4. if you have just a few different images, then maybe 10. So really, I guess I would limit the overall number to less than 100 prints total? Its always easier to have too few I feel like, and just go home or even make reprints if you really want than to have leftover stock. But it also depends on the price you’re getting them at and how far you have to travel. Sorry if this isn’t helping at all.