I`ve been waiting for 10 years for this to happen.
I started this series in 2008-2009, then trashed all the pages I had by 2010.
Then I started again in 2013. And paused for many reasons.
My story doesn’t wish to vanish. It wants to live. So, let it be!
It is Time. Time to Live. ^___^
As much as it “time to live” for my OCs inside the story, it is time to live for the story itself.
I`m uploading it on Tapas. The first episode was up this week, and I’m planning to upload once a week, We’ll see.
It’s paranormal/urban fantasy/romance with demons, witches and bunch of other supernatural creatures.
And I love this story, I can’t even express how much! I am so excited about this project of mine like I`ve never been before.
Read on Tapas|or Webtoon
When I first started, I had no idea, what I was doing, but now, since I`ve finished my manga “Videira” earlier this year (Yay!) I have a little bit of experience ^.^
My graphic novel “Videira” has come to its conclusion. I can not believe I’ve finished it. Yesterday on 31, March 2019. Holly crap! It’s been 8 years. 10 chapters. 266 manga pages.
Well, I didn`t draw only this comics exclusively (or graphic novel or manga, whatever you call it). But it still was so much more time than I had initially expected. I remember how I started to write dialogues for the first chapter in my Totoro notebook while I was sitting in the University’s library when I came late for class and the teacher didn`t let me in. LOL. That notebook is very precious to me as I had bought it in Ghibli shop in Kyoto, which the whole another story for another time.
It’s been so long since I’d started to draw the first chapter in 2011. There were a few times when I wanted to drop it or give up on this story entirely but I am so glad that I didn’t.
Firstly, I wanted to have it traditionally published and when I pitched it to only one publisher which existed on the Russian market back in the day. I got a rejection, which drove me into half a year of depression. I shelved this project and began working on other projects. But I was lucky enough to have my manga-drawing buddies and dedicated readers who supported me and genuinely liked this manga. I will be forever grateful to them for being such great support for me and my characters, with kind encouraging words and beautiful fan arts of my characters from Videira. Could you actually imagine that? Such wonderful artists draw portraits of my manga-babies and they were amazing.
I am happy that I have found the strength to continue drawing for myself, even if I knew it would lead to nowhere in terms of desirable career, but it meant so much to me. Regardless of everything going on in my life and the daily job, I was able to finish this story because of only love to my characters and their journey, because of my few but so precious readers out there, waiting for every chapter and cheering me up along the way. I made it for myself, just to know that I can, that I am capable of finishing something bigger than one-shot story. By the way, all one-shots I drew during my university years when I had half a day free time it was easier than with 8 hours a day job + 3 hours to get there and back. +)
“Videira” was the easiest, loveliest and the lightest of all my stories. I don’t know if it transfers to the page or not but it certainly feels like it. Maria, the main character, is such a positive and cheerful girl, even when she cries. I had a lot of fun with this story as well as a lot of troubles, for example, I had no clue how to draw the freacking crocodiles, but I did it anyway. This manga came from a pure place of joy. I am still sitting here and rereading my readers’ comments and smiling from ear to ear because they liked it and crying at the same time because of how much it meant to me.
I’ve learned a lot. If I were doing it now I would have done many things differently. Especially in regards to the representation of other cultures and people with perspectives different from mine. When I came up with the story idea and started drawing it, I was barely more than a child, I didn’t even consider the possibility of such things. Now, as I am a grown-up person, I see all my mistakes, but it is kinda late to go back and fix everything. I’ll try to avoid the same mistakes in my future works. Hopefully, this experience would help me to become a better author and a better artist.
Even though it’s a little bit sad to say good-bye to these characters whom I had spent that much time with, I am glad to have it finished. And more than anything, I am grateful to the people, my wonderful drawing-buddies, whom I met thanks to this manga. ^_^
Let`s take my manga Videira as an example – I am experimenting with the tools I use for drawing it until now.
I have used a variety of papers and pens. Let`s move straight to it:
1) A3 paper, gel pen, black markers, roting isographs
first chapter was drawn on A3 paper – it was the largest size I`ve ever used for drawing manga.
I have drawn my manga with pencil and inked using simple black gel pen + Roting isograph 0.1 for thinnest lines + Roting isograph 1.0 and random black markers from the nearest shops.
I couldn`t find neither isograps or ink for them in my town, so I had to buy them online and wait for a couple of weeks until they arrive.
I liked using isograps but it was a little bit of inconvenient to fill them with ink and I usually ended up covered with ink from top to toe as well as my bathroom where I was doing it XD
After having a kernel of 0.1 isograph broken I had to buy it online again, and wait for two weeks until it arrives… agrh! No matter how much I enjoyed using it, this was way too inconvenient considering the fact I had to constantly fill it with ink and I didn`t have any of the accessories in my town.
After receiving and replacing the kernel of 0.1 isograph, I had broken 1.0`s (thick line-making) isograph corps. And I was done here.
By the way, about the paper size – It was great to have an ability to depict the smallest details, besides, after scanning the page looked very neat and pretty, but here I had another issue – the scanning XD I had A4 scanner which is 1/2 size of A3 pages I was drawing at. I had to scan every frame separately and after that, combine them in Photoshop. Oh my! It was a disaster! But the result was very good. I actually can proud of the quality of pages of the first Videira chapter. But it still was not very practical and took a very long time, so I was looking for other materials
2) B4 paper, Ink, dip pen holder, g-pen, maru-pen
During the second chapter I have switched to B4 – this is standard Japanese format for manga pages, a little bit bigger than A4 and a little bit smaller than A3. Love this format! I have bought (online as well as I can not even dream of such paper to appear in my town…) wood dip pen holder G-pen, Maru-pen, and some others, along with B4 paper, Black Pilot and black Deleter ink and a couple of Chinese cheap ink bottles – black and white.
I had so much fun using these materials, imagining me like the true manga artist XD As I had never experienced ink and g-pen I was so new and exciting but it took soooo long to make a single page. The line was much better it was alive and curvy. However, I still had scan-making issues as B4 pages were still bigger than my scanner and I still had to combine separate frames into one-page after scanning.
I did draw 2nd and 1/2 of the 4th chapter ( as I had drawn 4th chapter before the 3rd) using ink and B4 paper.
3) A4 paper, sakura pigma micron multiliners
But I have continued experimenting and the 3rd chapter was done in A4 format (paper size keeps going down and down lol). Meanwhile, I have discovered a new material – multiliners! And they were great they are such a life-savers. Love them. I personally prefer Sakura Pigma Micron Multiliners (I have tried some other brands as well as copic multiliner which btw did very good as well but Sakura pigma micron have stolen my heart) I am still using them and a random simple black marker to cover large black spaces.
Nowadays I am still experimenting with Videira looking the best possible materials which would provide both joy from the process and the result with good
balanced speed and quality. I`m trying to draw some pages digitally in the 7th chapter, it is easier in some way – because I don`t have to clean the scan from dots and scratches but I am not quite satisfied with the line itself – digital lining is hard for me but I am working on it.
Hope it was useful information, every material has its own advantages and disadvantages: just try them all, and decide what is better for you, but never use the lack of some material as an excuse for not drawing – I have tried a lot, and one conclusion I could make:
it is your story and your art – what really matters, no matter if you use super expensive Japanese ink, B-4 paper designed especially for manga or cheapest A4 paper for office technique and simple gel pen+ black marker from the newspaper kiosk.
The story of “Videira” started back in 2008 when I firstly came up with the idea of the plot and characters. The inspiration for this story was the book which I was in love with since childhood – “La Jangada” by Jules Verne. “La Jangada” is about a group of people`s adventures in the selva (jungle) of Amazon river in Brazil as they are swimming down the river on a big raft (Jangada). One of my characters – Benito uses the name of one of the main characters of “La Jangada” – Benito – who was my favorite character there (but Benito in my manga is not my favorite char as you could have guessed).
So, inspired by the story about the jungle in the 19th century Brazil – I got the idea of my own story I wanted to add a little bit of fan into it with the gender-bender trick: this is how my story came up to life.
I wish I could visit jungle one day and see all the tropical beauty with my own eyes but as far as I haven`t any chance to experience it, for now, I spent a lot of time watching documentary movies about selva nature, flora and fauna and looking for the pictures depicting jungle. I find the idea of traveling down the river on a huge raft fascinating, Maria (my main Character) and Benito (her childhood friend and fiance) had this dream since they were kids but here Hulio (Julio lol XD) shows up and screws everything up for everybody including himself. His name, as I used to joke, was my main motivation to draw this story because in my native language his name sounds inappropriate: almost like “the bad word” giving high rating to movies if it is used there =D and I had a lot of fan receiving feedback about his name and how it matches his personality =D
*** The title.
Firstly I wanted to entitle my manga “Maria” or “Just Maria” which are both were not suitable.
And then I stopped with the title”Grapes vine” which was personating with me and my story as my main characters families have a joint business of growing grape and making wine in the south of Brazil. Wanting to add a little bit more of colorist into the title I used the translator to translate it into Portuguese this is how I got my final version of the title “Videira”, which is basically grapes vine in Portuguese and I completely have fallen in love with this word. I made it not only my working title but a surname of the main heroine as well. My working title has stuck to my story and now I can not imagine my story without this title.
In 2008 I got a raw idea of the plot and first sketches of main characters. I have drawn 4 pages with the graphic pencil (by the way, one frame from those pages was included into a new version – the happy Maria`s face, when she greets Benito in the first chapter – which I still like :3 )
Then I put it into a drawer for a while and I was drawing other stuff.
In 2011 I was lightened up with the idea of drawing a single tankobon (standalone book) and I thought Videira would be the best choice to serve this purpose. I thought I could finish it in a year or two… lol. I was young and naive. =D
I have finished chapter 1 in 2011 and drawn chapter 2 but the second chapter was completed with final editing in 2012.
After that I took a break… sort of. Very slowly chapter by chapter I moving forward but I have no intention to give up.
I am still working on it. Currently, I am in the seventh chapter, my story faced with the huge plot changes and character’s personality change, as I was brainstorming my ideas a lot. It has finally turned out to be something which I like better than the original version. Maybe, because when I made this story up in my mind I was a kid and didn`t understand some special aspects of the story itself.
2. Write down the dialogs in balloons or elsewhere
3. Storyboarding issue
5. don`t start several projects at the same time
1) Page size and resolution
When I was going to draw my first one-shot manga I have seen somewhere page size of 500×800 px required to upload … so, I have made pages exactly of that size! Originally. oh my! They are so small. It goes without saying that I couldn`t print them. Of course, they are even too small to see them clearly on some devices.
and I am not sure about resolution it was either 96 or 200 px. my other comics were a little bit bigger in size but also with low resolution.
2) Write down dialogues in the balloons of storyboard or somewhere else
I should have written them down for the god`s sake. Firstly, when I started to make comics, I didn`t write down the text, which was supposed to be told by characters – I just had the balloons left empty for some unknown reason relying on my memory. Why did I do that? No idea. Later on, when it came up to filling the balloons I was sitting and guessing what were they supposed to say, staring at empty text bubbles. I mean of course I couldn`t forget general meaning but the key point is the first phrases coming up to my mind are usually more natural and funnier (as I am trying to add a little bit of humor into my manga) after that I started to write down the dialogues as soon as possible after they appear in my head – sometimes I do it in storyboards, sometimes in notebooks not to forget.
3. Storyboarding issues
When I just have started I wish I knew what storyboard is. It would make everything much easier but I didn`t make them. Then I started to draw them with graphic pencil, but slowly, I have realized that pencil which I use with the light pressure may disappear from the paper as time flows by or become almost invisible. So, I started to use a pen for drawing storyboards before actual pages. It helps a lot – to decide how the figures and text would be better placed on the page before the actual drawing not to remake it when it’s too late.
I have never made outline or write down or even think over the whole plot before starting to draw. – I still don`t do. I usually happen to have the bright spark of the idea when I know how exactly should my story begin and end. What the hell is going on in the middle? who cares! I want to draw because I am so excited about the characters and the idea itself. and I did draw the beginning and the end and only after that, I figured out what should be in the middle that could lead from beginning to a particular end. It is so wrong =D but I couldn`t help it. No, I think that making the proper outline having climax and chain of Interconnected events logically leading to it is better than “I love the start and the end so much but what to draw in the middle? Whatever! I must have something in there after all”. I have to work on this issue.
5. Several projects at the same time
And the last, the most obvious, not to start several projects at the same time, not for me back then =D I got so easily distracted by my ideas. And I want to draw them all at the same time. But it makes my slow drawing process even slower. Now I have to limit myself. On the sake of finishing at least one, it is better to have one finished story them bunch of them started and no result at all.
4 basic steps of creating manga-comic page, manga drawing process. speeddraw video
Hi everybody! ^_^
I am self-taught manga-artist and in this post:
I’m going to tell about my step by step process of creating manga page
I will show the process of inking a page from my manga in video-format as well.
I am Heiseihi and I love to draw comics in old-school shoujo-manga style!
If you want to know more about me, check my About page.
In case if you don`t know what the hell manga is – 漫画 it is japanese word used for comics. In modern pop-culture we have the wrong feeling that manga is only something big-eyed and black-white, no, it actually can be colored, realistic and anything possible to imagine. Basically it is a story told in pictures (text is optional here). And “shoujo” – is type of manga for girls =D So, shall we start?
The current manga-project I`m working on is Videira, which can be read on Tapas (former Tapastic) for free ^_^linkit is funny shoujo-romance gender-bender adventure taking place in the jungle of 19th century Brazil =DIt is my experimental comics, drawing which I have tried many different media and drawing tools.
As I am not a full-time artist (drawing is my passional hobby) I draw slow as Snail, but no matter how few free-time I have for doing this, I’ve never given up on my art-passion and creating my comics.
Warning!I`m not trying to teach anyone here how to draw correctly (I am still in the process of learning myself). I just want to share the way I do it. Hopefully it will be useful or at least entertaining.
Every manga page I make have 4 essential steps:
ink (lineart) – I prefer to do these three 3 first steps on paper (I love traditional art)
scanning and digital editing including toning with screentones.
1) Draft (storyboard)
I usually do it for the whole chapter or for a complete scene at once in a notebook – not to mess up with the page order later:
I actually had and accidents when this happened before – so, a little advice： if making comics takes you as long as me – you’d better make storyboards in a sketchbook and not separate pages (unless you manage to keep them in right order from the beginning XD ), for me it can take up to several years before I turn my storyboards into a finished chapter. And one more tip – now I have learnt that it works for me better when I draw storyboards with pen – not graphic pencil for the same reason. I always use 3H hard pencil giving thin pale lines to easily remove them later works for sketches, but not for storyboards. My storyboards usually look messy and crappy – but it`s ok – I make them to capture the general idea sparkling in my head I can fix anatomy and other stuff later when I’ll draw an actual page.
draft VS finished lineart
For example – 7th chapter of Videira: I have drawn it`s storyboard long ago even before chapter 3 and 4 and so many time has passed since: my light pale pencil lines have completely disappeared from the paper I could barely see them now and I could only guess what are they talking about. And this is why I use a pen for storyboards since then =D
2) Pencil sketch
Looking for my storyboard-draft I redraw frames clearly on separate paper sheets. Sometimes I happen to love some frames of my storyboard and realize that I could not repeat the same face expression if I try to redraw it – in this case my lovely light-table is always here for help – I trace my draft and Voila! I absolutely adore my light table which, I have bought in China for the extremely cheap price, while I was studying in Chinese university for a term ^_^ If you prefer traditional old-fashioned way of drawing over digital it is absolutely must-have thing! Recommend! You can ask anyone to make it for you – it doesen`t seem very hard to make.
Light-table tracing sketch
is my favourite part after storyboarding. It feels like meditation to sit on my couch and ink pages listening for music or audiobook.
Here I won’t speak about inking tools – I have tried a lot of them! It may get a little too wordy (it already did XD) – I’d better dedicate a whole different post to them.
Here is a video of me inking page from the 6th chapter of videira – speaddraw couple of hours in 3 minutes. It usually takes me longer when the page have more frames and more complicated background, poses, more black ect. I have chosen this page for video because t is simple and I could finish inking in one sitting =D
4) Digital editing
So, I have finally finished drawing lineart and scanned my page! Yay! Time to open champaign – right? WRONG! D: Here comes the most painful and time-consuming page-making part for me at least – digital editing X_x Firstly I open my drawing in image-editing program – it can be anyone – personally I prefer to use Photoshop – adjust brightness/contrast and clean the scan from every single little dot and scratch which may left after scanning (I am not sure is there such word as “scanning” – it is the process of using scan-maker to transform your drawing from paper to digital format). Than I make tones and shadows using screentones. And the final stage is adding text to bubbles.
Many people don`t have such time time-waste as page-cleaning because they draw lines digitally and they just put screentones and finish quickly. I have tried this way – but I enjoy drawing on paper and it doesn’t mae my eyes hurt, besides I love result more when I draw traditionally.
If you prefer the real paper or just don’t have graphic tablet yet:
Make sure your scanner’s size matches the size of paper-format you have chosen for drawing or bigger then paper. Otherwise it i going to turn into a huuuge pain in the ass. lol. Trust me, I’ve been there. The First and the Seconf chapters of “Videira” made on A3 and B4 formats… while my scan-maker is A4… X_x and I had to combine every single page frame by frame after scanning.
Ta-dam! The page is finished! As a result I end up having something like this:
Hope that was useful and not deathly-boring.
Next time I`m going to talk about:
5 things I wish I knew BEFORE I had started to draw my manga-comics.
Drawing tools I have ever tried and used for making manga.
Cheap copic-markers alternative: Review of Chinese markers I use for coloring.