Project Three

Web Comic

  • Thursday, 11/14 at beginning of class: Web Comic Proposal
  • Thursday, 12/5 at beginning of class: Web Comic Project
  • Friday, 12/13 at 12:10pm: Blog 10: Final Web Comic

Required Readings & Tutorials


What do you think the future of comics might be, based on our current publishing abilities using digital media in 2019? (Scott McCloud, “Understanding Comics,” Harper Collins, 1994, pg. 21)

Scott McCloud’s book, “Understanding Comics,” was written in the early 1990s. He references the future of comics as it relates to electronic and digital media several times, acknowledging it is hard to predict how technology will advance and change. In McCloud’s web comics from the early to mid-2000’s, he discusses some of the limitations and possibilities offered by the web at that time. For our final project for the course you will take into the consideration the current possibilities and limitations of web presentation and screen reading.

Create a comic intended for browser reading (Chrome, Safari, and Firefox are all common web browsers). Your work should:

  1. Consider the variety of ways in which your comic may appear differently, depending on the reader’s specific technology choice (phone, tablet, laptop, desktop, browser) and settings.
  2. Take into account how the reader will interact with your work. For print-based media, the reader is usually turning pages and holding a physical book that sends certain signals: Is the book thin or thick? Expensively or cheaply produced? Etc. What are equivalents for screen reading? Clicking, scrolling, swiping may stand in for the turning of pages. Are any other actions crucial, from your perspective?
  3. As always, your work should fit into Scott McCloud’s definition of comics: “Juxtaposed pictorial and other images in deliberate sequence, intended to convey information and/or to produce an aesthetic response in the viewer” (McCloud pg 9).
  4. Continue to advance your Photoshop and/or Illustrator skills in some way.

Technical Specifications

Photoshop and Illustrator: Make the components of the comic (the frames and the words and iconography they contain) in Photoshop and/or Illustrator. With this project, you should seek to learn a bit more about one or both of these programs. Your proposal for the project should explain what new things you will learn. Your instructor can help you find tutorials as needed. PSD and/or AI files will need to be saved/exported as JPG, PNG, or GIF to be used effectively on a website.

How will you present your work on a website / in a browser window? Depending on your proposal, your work may be presented in a few different ways, and we will discuss these in class. The most likely options are listed below. Talk to your instructor if you would like to propose a different idea.

  1. If you are planning for a basic 1-page scrolling presentation (horizontal or vertical), your instructor may set you up with a basic HTML webpage on which to present your work. This will involve you learning some basic HTML and CSS. (Here is another very useful tutorial for beginners: Miriam Posner’s HTML & CSS)
  2. If you are planning for a basic 1-page vertical scrolling presentation and are unable to use basic HTML and CSS, you may use the class blog site to present your work, but you must work within the limitations of that site. Alternatively, you may use a different website which you already maintain, such as your personal wordpress site, to show the work.
  3. If you are envisioning something more interactive, such as Scott McCloud’s The Right Number, that involves clicking through multiple images and/or movement/animation, you may either: a) Strike out on your own to learn the software and/or web skills you may need or b) Make a mock-up of what you envision and give a brief presentation to the class on Thursday, 12/5 to explain how your comic should work interactively. (For the mock-up, the individual components, such as frames containing iconography and words, should be completely finished in Illustrator and Photoshop before the presentation.)

Web Comic Proposal

due Thursday. 11/14 (50 points)

Instead of having a quiz and additional blog posts for this project, you should submit a two-page 750-1000 word proposal (printed on paper) outlining your plan for this project. It is important that you complete this thoroughly since you have more freedom in choosing the tools you plan to use to complete this project. Download the Web Comic Proposal PDF and print to hand in.

What You Will Turn In

Before class on Thursday, 12/5:

1) Put in a folder named “yourlastname-yourfirstname-project-03”:

  • AI or PSD: File(s)s used to make your comic, saved as PSD and/or AI, named in a logical and organized way
  • JPG: A copy of your file(s) exported as high resolution JPGs. [File > Export > Export As: Choose “Format: JPG,” and have “Use Artboards” checked. Hit “Export.” In the next dialog box choose “Maximum Image Quality” and “Resolution: High (300 ppi)”. Hit “OK.”]
  • PDF: A copy of your file(s) saved as print quality PDF. [File > Save As: Choose “Format: Adobe PDF.” Hit “Save.” In the next dialog box choose “Adobe PDF Preset: High Quality Print” and  Uncheck “Preserve Illustrator Editing Capabilities”. Hit “Save PDF.”]

2) Zip the folder (on a Mac: right-click and choose “Compress” or on a PC: right-click > send to > compress zip folder) and submit via the assignment page on Blackboard (under the Content link in the left menu in Blackboard). Bring all these files to class and on Thursday 12/5 as well.

3) Link to where your work appears on the web: Copy and paste this link into Blackboard submission page, and link from Blog 10 as well (Or you must present your mock-up in class on Thursday, 12/5, see #3 under Technical Specifications above.)

No later than Friday, December 13 at 12:10pm:

4) Post Blog 10: Final Web Comic: In this final post, which is due no later than Friday, December 13 at 12:10pm, you will discuss your own work and review the work of one of your classmates.