July 13, 2002

I just had an extremely interesting experience. I drew the first three panels of an experimental comic.

I’ve had it on my mind for some time to try my hand at drawing a comic, something in book form that would explore the comic medium. I wanted something I could draw reasonably well considering my current skills, that could be ended quickly, and that could be compiled into book form. I figured a project like this would be a good motivator for practicing drawing, too.

After coming up with some basic drawings a couple of days ago, tonight I decided that there was no time like the present to begin. So, I sat down at the drafting board in my room with a piece of drawing paper, and began to draft out the first few panels.

I want to describe the experience as “extraordinary,” but that word is both accurate and inaccurate. It was a wonderful experience, but it didn’t feel strange. It felt oddly ordinary, like I could see myself doing this for the rest of my life. The whole process seemed to fit me like a well-worn glove.

I have no idea how long I took; it was certainly less than an hour, and this was just the incomplete first draft of these three panels. But I’m content with my progress, and I’m looking forward to working on this some more. It’s very, very interesting.

Lots of cool announcements from Anime Expo, particularly:

  • Comic Party, which looks like the Otaku no Video concept applied to fanfic and doujinshi (fan comics). Sounds very cute, and it has beautiful character designs.
  • Rahxephon, yet another Eva rip-off, but one that tries to do it right this time. The series apparently tries to be very realistic with its characters and how they react to a massive alien invasion.
  • Pretear, which is sort of a magical girl show but where the protagonist is a tomboyish, level-headed girl. What I’ve seen is very well done.
  • Steam Detectives, which looks like kind of an upbeat noir series, if that makes any sense. The world looks like the 1930’s, with lots of trenchoats, combined with a kind of steampunk robot technology, animated in a very stylish style.
  • Alien 9, one of those shows with a weird pedigree that spawns an even weirder premise: alien attacks become so common that every school elects a small team of alien defenders. This series follows one of these defenders, a sixth-grade girl. It looks very sweet and cute, but the storyline is by Sadayuki Murai, of the freaky Perfect Blue and Boogiepop Phantom fame. Here’s a review.
  • 7 of Seven, a screwball comedy about a girl who is accidentally cloned six times, so she has to live with all these slightly different versions of herself.

I also have had the chance to read more Astro Boy, which grows more and more brilliant, Kazan, which simply rocks, and a bit of the Kodomo no Omache manga, which I honestly don’t like very much. The art style is too flat, and the humor just isn’t as fast-paced as I’m used to in the anime.

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