telophase: (Default)
Manga analysis - Matt Thorn explains why a page drawn by Paul Pope didn't work as manga here.

ETA: Check the comments for the rest of the commentary by Thorn.
telophase: (Naruto - chibi dattebayo!)
Hello! If you've come here looking for essays on manga layout and art and links to other sites that talk about it, you're in the right place. I've written some articles for Tokyopop, and these are the essays that started me out in this strange business of being a Web pundit.

Feel free to add me to your friendslist without asking - I don't get offended by that. :D Please excuse me if I don't add you back - it's not because of you, it's because I've got too many journals on my friendslist to keep up with right now and adding more would completely overwhelm me (I do try to at least go and look at your LJ occasionally). You're perfectly welcome to come in, hang out, read, and comment as you choose.

One request: if you comment and you're not a Livejournal member and don't have an OpenID to identify yourself with, please leave a name. I get lots of anonymice making comments on these, and some sort of name or nickname separates your anonymous comment from all the other anonymous comments and makes all of us take you a bit more seriously. ETA: Anonymous commenting is now off, thanks to anonymous commenters who never leave any way for someone to reply to them. It's easy enough to create an LJ for commenting purposes, and if you don't want to, my email address is posted on my LJ profile page.

I, and the other people who comment here, do tend to reply to comments because we're interested in talking about manga with other people, and presumably you are also. Leaving a way for us to discuss with you is common courtesy.

Click here for the manga analyses and other links )

I'm willing to listen to suggestions for future essay topics, but you'll have a better chance if you ask a question about the process or techniques involved instead of asking for a particular series, since I tend to pick a series that serves as a good example for the subject and not the other way around.

telophase: (Near - que?)
A quick-and-dirty experiment on a couple of covers from the previous post. You'll want to read that post first for this to make sense.

On to the pics )
telophase: (Near - dork)
Stemming from this afternoon's discussion of cover colors, I got the desire to see if I could see any difference in the top-selling manga and less well selling manga. I couldn't find any numbers for a full year anywhere, but the admin of Love Manga loves to crunch numbers and posts a Top 50 list every month. So these ratings swiped from his Top 50 Manga for November 2005.

I swiped the images from, and since Amazon was running slow for me, instead of comparing the top 10 versus the bottom 10 in this list, I'm just doing the top 5.

Caveats: we all know the cover isn't the only thing that causes book sales (word of mouth is actually the #1 selling point), so you don't need to tell me that the cover is only part of that and there's all these other aspects that go into it. (Anyone posting to tell me that gets directed up to this sentence. :D) Also, looking at one month's sales don't really tell us much - I'd need to look at the sales month-by-month for an entire year or more, and frankly you'd probably need to pay me to do that. XD So we can't draw any real conclusions from this, but it might provide something to think about. Or it might not. Let's see, shall we?

On to the cover images )


Part 3

Dec. 6th, 2005 11:15 pm
telophase: (Mello - emo!gothboy)
OK, I have NOT uploaded any examples of what I was originally talking about - amateur artists - because of that whole "not wanting to look like I'm ripping someone apart when they didn't expect it" thing.

So this is a slightly different question - what similarities and differences do we see between Japanese shoujo and OEL shoujo?* The pool of candidates I have here is a slightly biased one, being books that I have on my shelves currently, because I recently took all the manga whose art I didn't like and put it in a box to go to Half-Price Books. :D

* We're ignoring that purists will claim it's not true shoujo if it's not Japanese. Maybe not, but it's borrowing heavily from Japanese shoujo, and thus I'm using the term. So, bleeah.

Aaaaaaaaaand away we go! )

Going to bed now. Eagerly await morning and the flood of OMG U DUN NO WUT UR TALKIN ABOUT LJ notifications. XD no, really, I loved all of the comments on yesterday's posts - they were *all* thoughtful and informative

telophase: (Mark - ossu! // art:  telophase)
This post is mostly a reply to some discussion going on in the comments in [ profile] kate_nepveu's post here, where at one point we get into differences between American and Japanese comics and how manga is often designed so that the visual flow of the page drags you across important parts of the art, like characters' faces, while that's not such a strong concern in American comics.


I don't have time at the moment to write a long essay about the differences, but I took the time to scan in an assortment of pages from various American comics I own. Fairly bad quality, making some unreadable, but that's beside the point. :) If anyone wants to use any of these scans for their own purposes, essays, whatever, be my guest. :)

The only one of that group that really pushes you through the art is the first Transmetropolitan page. I didn't notice it at first, but the cigarette smoke and business with the cigarette makes you look at the art more. The other Transmet page is less obvious, but there's some areas where you're forced to look at the art as you read the text - most especially panels 2, 4, and 5. Panel 3 sort of loses it because they were trying to cram too much in, and the long tail on the balloon in 1 pulls you through it to Spider Jerusalem, but panel 4 relaly pushes you down to panel 5 by the kids face and it leading right into his changed expression in 5.

(The XXXenophile page is worksafe; all the art in all of them is worksafe, although the text in some - Transmetropolitan especially - is discussing unsavory things and there may be the occasional bit of language.)
telophase: (goku - sulk)
No real spoilers for Saiyuki book 7 (or 8), but cut Just In case.

Momentary thought... )
telophase: (Mello - megalomania)
Prompted by a thought from [ profile] coffee_and_ink in the post on manga stories and cliches, I've just registered the community [ profile] manga_talk for discussion and analysis of manga. It may or may not go anywhere - I did this on impulse and will think for a while on exactly what it should cover. [ profile] homemade_manga is more geared towards the act of making manga, mostly with art posted and getting crit for it, so I'm thinking straight art crit posts should be directed over there, although I can see where they could become springboards for discussion. But, heck, I'm open to anything.

I've started throwing a few interests into the profile. Anyone wanna be a mod? You get issued with a shiny new modstick and banhammer, more because I like saying "modstick" and "banhammer" than because I think they'll be necessary. (I figure anything gets too heated, I'm pointing it out to fandom_wank or i_wank and letting the mockery do its thing.)

Thoughts? Ideas? Bueller? Bueller?

And oh yeah - I started [ profile] fic_sans_pareil quite some time ago for recs of outstanding fic, and it promptly leapt into obscurity. I wandered over there for the first time in ages and saw that a number of you had joined the comm - does anyone feel like rescuing it from oblivion? :) My original idea was for it to feature recs more like reviews, where the poster spent a little bit of time talking aobut why they found the fic so good (or at least pointed to links elsewhere where they did that), but if anyone wants to take over or be a mod or whatever, they're welcome to change it to whatever they want.

Heading to the grocery store and home now - will wait and see if anyone makes any comments by the time I get home. :)


Jul. 12th, 2005 09:20 pm
telophase: (Naruto - chibi dattebayo!)
One of my DeviantArt watchers asked me about plot cliches and storylines to avoid. That's a bit harder to do an essay on for me, since I'm more focised on the visuals and how they carry a story along than on the story itself Plus, we all know the real answer is something like "Nothing, if you've got a fresh take on it."

But I figured that it might be a decent springboard for discussion, what with all the writers and manga readers (and sometimes manga-reading writers) who occacionally hang out here, so I figured I'd throw it open for discussion, with maybe a few general questions: so what do you think should be avoided? What constitutes a new take on things? What are examples of manga that you think avoid cliched storylines and why, and what are manga that you think take these same types of cliches and storylines and handle them well? Or how about - when is a well-known cliche or trope someting you want - perhaps to give readers something familiar to hang on to?

And I'm crashing now, but I shall be interested in seeing what, if anything, has been posted by tomorrow morning. :) Digressions quite welcome.

Index to manga analysis essays.
telophase: (Default)
[ profile] matildarose was kind enough to scan some images out of her copy of Drawing the Human Head by Burne Hogarth, showing the (male, white, as per usual) human head at various ages.

Pictures below here )

Index to the Series

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