Lufty's Dumb Comic Method

Version 0.1


Okay, so you are interested in art. You want to do art. You want to draw stuff, but you find the blank page to be too daunting. Or you find the few, scattered sketches floating around the page to be unsatisfying, and kinda discouraging.

That's okay.

I felt the same way about art as well.

But what if I told you that there was a way to draw stuff and have fun doing it?

What if I told you that you'll be motivated to draw at least one page of cohesive art, at least a few times a week?

What if I told you that using this method, I went from drawing something like once every three weeks to drawing something nearly every day, and creating at least something every day?

Your time has come.

It's time to make a dumb comic.


Take a look at any long running webcomic where the creator started with poor art skills

Then take a look at what they were drawing two years later.

If they didn't have a ossified, childish style, then they probably got better.

You can get better as well!

But why a comic, why not just a drawing everyday?

Well, the thing is, is that comics can have bad art and still be good comics. Story can carry bad art, which you'll probably only be able to produce right now.

Can't write? Don't worry, you don't need to write all that much, and you don't need to write all that good either because you're not going to create good comics for a audience.

You're gonna create dumb comics for yourself!

What You Need

Required items

a Sketchbook
Preferably at least a 5.5 by 8 inch or a A5 blank sketchbook with at least 60lbs or 90 gsm paper weight. If you want, you can go with a bigger size, but I wouldn't recommend going any smaller. Bigger gives you more room to do stuff per page, but sticking with a A5ish size also helps make sure that each page doesn't get out of hand, since you'll probably just do 3 to 4 panels per page. As to whether or not the sketchbook is Hard cover or soft cover is to your preference. Soft cover is easier to pack, hardcover provides a hard drawing surface on the go. Finally, there is the choice between spiral bound and perfect bound. I'd recommend perfect bound since you'll probably be referring to past pages pretty often, and the sketchbook should hold together better.
a Cheap Ballpoint pen (in black)
Not a gel pen, or a roller pen, or a sharpie, or a fountain pen. you want a cheap ballpoint pen in black because it won't bleed into the paper on the back, and if you give it a moment to dry, it also won't affect the page opposite of it as well. You'll be using the pen to write the script.
a HB pencil
Either a normal pencil or a mechanical pencil. Staedtler Norica is a good HB pencil you can buy in bulk. Mechanical pencils might travel better though. Recommend using a .5mm mechanical pencil. If you go with a normal pencil, remember to get a sharpener as well. You'll be using the pencil to draw the comic.
a Eraser
Just so long as it isn't a pink eraser, you should be fine. I like stick erasers, like the sumo grip, and the very fine tombow eraser pens. You'll be using this to correct massive mistakes.
a Ruler or Straight edge
Preferably one that can reach all the way across the sketchbook length-wise. This is used for panel lines and where ever you need a straight edge.

Optional equipment

Non-photo Repro Blue pencil or pencil lead that is erasable
I just discovered these recently, and I really enjoy using them. What they are, are pencils that have lead that do not have any red pigment at all, thus producing a pale blue line. These were originally used for marking up Black and white images because the blue pencil would not get captured by the photocopier, but I find them useful just for doing rough layouts and initial sketches because they tend to disappear under regular pencil, let alone after inking. the pilot eno soft blue for 0.7mm mechanical pencils works great and is very erasable.
Set of fineliners
These tend to be a bit pricey, but they are far cheaper than getting technical pens, and are disposable as well. I recommend getting a really thin one, a average sized one and a thick one. If portability is an issue, get a average sized one, but get it one size smaller than you'd think you'd need.
Set of drawing pencils
If you want to experiment with shading, You might want to get a set of drawing pencils, although this starts to really impact portability.
Brush pen
Use this to cover the page in black ink, but be careful not to over-saturate the page, which will cause bleedthrough.
White gel pen
Use this to correct small mistakes, or to draw over areas that you used the brush pen on.


What do I mean by Dumb?

I mean that this comic is only for your amusement, and probably shouldn't be shown to anyone, because you really don't want any criticism for this. This is purely for the joy of the act of creation. This is play, only instead of toys, you are playing with sequential images.

Because the whole point of this is that you are making something you want to come back to each day, and it needs to be dumb enough that you won't really want to show it to anyone.

So make it super dumb! Pick out The things you like to draw! Lush fantasy forests? Giant mecha? Cozy coffee shops? Futuristic cityscapes? Horrible dimensions made entirely of flesh? Whatever you want! Pick out characters you'd like to draw! Sonic OCs? Copyrighted characters? Self inserts? Sure! Situations, no matter how silly! Like maybe you always wanted to draw a story about giant robots falling in love over light years of distance while they fight giant space fleas? Or maybe magical girl barristas serving coffee to various personifications of fads throughout the ages in order to calm their wraithful spirits? Maybe even a comic where sonic and mario finally kiss in a steampunk pastorial, giant robot spiders scything and harvesting grain as the falling sun's rays bathe the two lovers in golden light?

The comic can be anything you want, just so long as it's something you are having fun doing, and it's too dumb to ever take seriously.

Because as a beginning artist, you are probably gonna not be all that good at drawing, and because of the capitalist hellscape we live in, we are engrained with the idea that everything we do needs to perfect, commerical quality, or we are wasting our time. Nope. This comic is for you. Just for you. And as you work on it, your skills will improve, just by virtue of working on it. You just need permission to be kinda dumb while you do it.

So be Dumb~


Here's how to Organize and use your new Dumb Comic Sketchbook

Initial Setup

Okay, you've got the sketchbook. If it's a sketchbook on the smaller side, You'll probably just want to add a few guidelines to the text block in order to aid in drawing panel lines, if it's bigger you'll probably wanna draw more.

For my small sketchbook, I added a guideline on the top and foot edges of the text block. If your sketchbook is perfect bound, you'll probably want to note that the sketchbook doesn't go all the way open, and move the guideline over to the fore edge a little bit to account for that.

As for the fore edge, I added a guideline in the middle, and then another two guidelines to allow me to break the page into thirds. With these guidelines, you can easily break the page into six panels, but I usually just use three to four panels, due to the need to have to fit text balloons in there as well.

Finally, you are going to use the first page of the sketchbook to label the sketchbook, (your name here)'s dumb comic, and what your goals for this comic are going to be. I'll post what was on my first page below, but don't take it as gospel, just as inspiration for what you want the sketchbook to do, and what you're going to do with the sketchbook.

(insert first page here)

The sketchbook in use

Okay, so it's actually pretty simple. You write the the script to the comic on the left page, along with a thumbnail of what the best layout is going to be, and if you want to do a few quick thumbnail sketches, use whatever space is remaining. (I find the Non-photo repro pencil works very good here, because it's erasable and doesn't really smudge, compared to graphite pencil.)

Then on the right side, you draw the comic. Very lightly in pencil at first, so if you need to make any corrections, you can easily erase them, and then refining the sketch, or inking it over.

If you want, you can do a cover page for the comic, which is nice because it gives you a ton of space for notes on what follows, and you can have as many cover pages as you want, from one to none to however many you feel you need.

And that's basically how the sketchbook works.

A Useful Comic Script Format to Use (WIP)


Tips and Tricks(WIP)

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