Update 09-10-2015: Hi guys, I’m terribly sorry for the lack of updates. I’ve been buried in freelance projects (which is a wonderful thing). Once the dust settles a bit, I’ll be returning to Small World. Thanks for your patience 🙂
The first page of Small World is finally out! Because we love sharing behind-the-scenes stuff, Jordan agreed to include the original script below to document the process of adapting words into panels. I’m not only thankful for Jordan’s original ideas but also for providing such a well-organized and detailed script which allowed me to fully focus on the art. Also, he left plenty of room in his writing for a generous amount of creative freedom and I had a blast running with his ideas.
Written by Jordan Kirian
Illustrated by Angela Zhang
Page 1-4 panels
A wide shot of the model town. At this distance, we don’t know it’s a model. Herman has spent quite some time building this thing, so there’s detail, and it’s big. We’ll only see a fraction of it. We only see landscaping, buildings no people or cars.
Agoraphobia – An abnormal fear of being in crowds, public places, or open areas.
A close up on a row of typical houses, side by side. However, there’s a gap between two of them, indicating there is a missing house. In this shot we’ll focus mostly on landscape and these little houses.
The focus is now on Herman’s hands. In one he holds the little missing house, and in the other a paintbrush. He’s doing some touching up, to make the model look its best. This one can be a smaller frame, unless you want to give a little more of his actual background. But if you get closer, you can really detail those ol’ hands of his.
Ah, completed. Finally.
Let’s zoom out now, Herman is sitting at his work desk surrounded by his tools and other miscellaneous parts of the model. Things are scattered about, as he has everything he might need. You know how messy it can get to make stuff. He’s smiling.
Ah yes, I know how messy it can get and I’m sure most creatives would agree. Here are a few notes on the creative process behind page one:
- The first page actually takes up two pages in a standard comic book format (6.625 in x 10.25 in). The idea of making the model town the backdrop allowed me to indulge in the details for the purpose of blurring the line of reality and imagination which is central to the story.
- Since I knew we were dealing with a town that will reappear throughout the story, I created a 3D model in SketchUp which can be used over again to capture different shots. It was a time consuming process, not only in building the town in 3D but also painting over the shots digitally to integrate them with the 2D illustrations. Overall I’m happy with the results and learning a program like SketchUp is definitely helpful for future projects.
I hope you enjoyed reading page one of Small World. We would love to hear any thoughts you have so far!