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Author Topic: The effort in xkcd comics  (Read 2554 times)

TaoPhoenix

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The effort in xkcd comics
« on: August 26, 2013, 10:09:15 AM »

Xkcd is a slippery thing. It "looks simple" ... because it is drawn to be simple.

But Randall M sometimes saves time on a few "quick" strips, so that it looks like he can spend *hours* on other ones!

Can we get a vote on how long this one took? Holy Wall of Text!!

"Questions"
http://xkcd.com/1256/


Renegade

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2013, 10:16:31 AM »
Well, if you look at the spiders bit, he's saving some time there with variations. But either way, that still likely took the better part of a day.
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app103

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2013, 10:49:10 AM »
Perhaps he has a font of his own handwriting and used a script to take the list of questions and fit them into the background? If not, there are enough samples of his handwriting in that comic to make a font for next time.

TaoPhoenix

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2013, 10:57:16 AM »
Well, if you look at the spiders bit, he's saving some time there with variations. But either way, that still likely took the better part of a day.

I think y'all are right with that and the script, but it would have taken me a couple of hours just to find all those questions and have them be funny.

And a few of his map ones are just epic!


40hz

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2013, 11:17:45 AM »
Concept, research, and design = only he could tell you.

I do the occasional comic panel for friends and special occasions. Sometimes these things almost draw themselves. Other times it can take months from the first rough idea till there's a finished piece. Some ideas percolate for years and take several iterations before the panel is what I'd consider "finished."

Actually drawing the strip = my guesstimate is two passes (to block out, blue pencil in, and get the text fitting just right). Figure around 3 or so hours in total. Final 'inking-in' probably took another 1 to 2 hours if he does it by hand and then scans it in. (I don't do enough digital drawing to have any good idea how long it would take doing it on a PC.)

 8)


« Last Edit: August 26, 2013, 11:26:25 AM by 40hz »

superboyac

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2013, 11:21:43 AM »
Concept, research, and design = only he could tell you.

I do the occasional comic panel for friends and special occasions. Sometimes these things almost draw themselves. Other times it can take months from the first rough idea till there's a finished piece. Some ideas percolate for years and take several iterations before the panel is what I'd consider "finished."

Actually drawing the strip = my guesstimate is two passes (to block out, blue pencil in, and get the text fitting just right). Figure around 3 or so hours in total. Final art probably took another 1 to 2 hours if he does it by hand and then scans it in. (I don't do enough digital drawing to have any good idea how long it would take doing it on a PC.)

 8)
The digital workflow is not necessarily faster, weirdly enough.  It just offers more options.  For example, I thought not having to deal with erasing and redrawing, etc. would save me a lot of time.  But it doesn't.  You just spend less time erasing, and more time fine tuning.  i guess it depends on the situation.

Renegade

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2013, 11:25:26 AM »
The thing is that the biggest obstacle isn't the technical part, it's the creative part. That can take anywhere from zero time to forever. My guess is that he's done enough of this to have that creative part simply "flow" and also have that technical part also "flow".
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superboyac

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2013, 11:26:04 AM »
The thing is that the biggest obstacle isn't the technical part, it's the creative part. That can take anywhere from zero time to forever. My guess is that he's done enough of this to have that creative part simply "flow" and also have that technical part also "flow".
perhaps that explains why digital isn't necessarily faster for me.

40hz

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2013, 11:28:10 AM »
@SB - Digital would definitely not be faster for me with something like this.  ;D

40hz

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2013, 11:28:42 AM »
The thing is that the biggest obstacle isn't the technical part, it's the creative part. That can take anywhere from zero time to forever. My guess is that he's done enough of this to have that creative part simply "flow" and also have that technical part also "flow".

This! :Thmbsup:

My experience has been once you create your cast of characters, they soon take on a life of their own and sometimes give you a hand with things. That's when you end up shaking your head (or laughing) while wondering: "Now where did THAT come from?"
« Last Edit: August 26, 2013, 11:33:53 AM by 40hz »

rsatrioadi

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #10 on: August 26, 2013, 08:14:11 PM »
How long that one took? How about Time ("play" it here) or Click and Drag? :D

TaoPhoenix

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #11 on: August 26, 2013, 10:59:17 PM »
How long that one took? How about Time ("play" it here) or Click and Drag? :D

Well I phrased it wrong, but that's what I meant - those were the epic ones, but it was just today's as a "midline" that happened to inspire me to make the thread.

Edvard

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Re: The effort in xkcd comics
« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2013, 01:07:26 AM »
Holy crap... Why do I know the answers to a little under half of these without searching Wikipedia?  :'(