Ink Outside the Box! How to Make a Comic Book

1h 32min beginner

Share your story through comics! In this interactive class, cartoonist Jon Chad shows you the ins and outs of making a comic book.

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Episode descriptions

What Is a Comic Book?
1. Episode: What Is a Comic Book?
6min

Meet Jon Chad and get started by learning what makes a comic. Then Jon goes over the tools and materials you'll need to get started.

Creating Characters
2. Episode: Creating Characters
9min

Characters are the pillar of every story. In this lesson, Jon shows you how to design a diverse cast of characters with personalities that make for fun, adventurous and exciting stories. He also discusses the common practice of spot blacking and character silhouetting.

Character Acting
3. Episode: Character Acting
10min

Just like in the movies, your comic characters need to act! Follow along as Jon shares tips and exercises to help you bring out the most of your characters with facial acting and full body acting.

Word Balloons, Lettering & Sound Effects
4. Episode: Word Balloons, Lettering & Sound Effects
12min

Lettering is not only an important component of many comics, it's also an extension of acting. Here, Jon covers best lettering practices, then shows you how to make your own lettering guide. You'll learn to use lettering and word balloons as an extension of your character's acting.

Environments
5. Episode: Environments
10min

What makes a good environment for comics? Find out as you learn to create a number of different environments for your characters to live in. Using a few simple marks and drawing tricks, Jon shows you how to make your environments more engaging.

Composing Panels & Thumbnailing
6. Episode: Composing Panels & Thumbnailing
12min

Discover the importance of panel composition as you create panel outlines (or thumbnails) that will help you determine the best layout for each page of your comic. Afterwards, get your creative juices flowing with a fast-paced thumbnailing exercise.

Composing a Page & Timing
7. Episode: Composing a Page & Timing
7min

Next, Jon breaks down the different parts of a comic page. Find out how to tell effective stories, even when a lot of time has passed between two consecutive panels. After that, apply your new skills as you learn to create a one-page story.

Penciling & Inking a Page
8. Episode: Penciling & Inking a Page
14min

Build on everything you've learned to draw a full comic page! First Jon introduces the bristol board, a higher quality paper that cartoonists use. Then he shares how to rule out a comic page, as well as tips for penciling, inking and correcting mistakes.

Making It Real!
9. Episode: Making It Real!
12min

Finally, take all of your comic pages and make a real comic book that you can share with the world! Follow along as Jon walks you step by step through the final process of creating a polished, photocopied version of your comic.

About the Teacher

Jon Chad
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Join the discussion! While your instructor may choose to chime in, this space is intended as a maker-to-maker forum.

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Ink Outside the Box! How to Make a Comic Book

Jon Chad

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Ink Outside the Box! How to Make a Comic Book