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Making Comics: Storytelling Secrets of Comics, Manga, and Graphic Novels Library Binding – 18 Apr 2008

27 customer reviews

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--This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Product details

  • Library Binding: 264 pages
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1435261941
  • ISBN-13: 978-1435261945
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 17.1 x 26.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,408,558 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Scott McCloud has been writing, drawing, and examining comics since 1984. Winner of the Eisner and Harvey awards, his works have been translated into more than sixteen languages. Frank Miller (Sin City, 300) called him "just about the smartest guy in comics." He lives with his family in southern California. His online comics and inventions can be found at scottmccloud.com.

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Scott McCloud scores again with another incredibly intelligent non-fiction comic! In Understanding Comics he wrote a groundbreaking literature analysis that unveiled the mysterious inner workings of comics - in can't-put-it-down attractive comic format! Making Comics is another important book for comics in general, its chapter topics are of immediate relevance, with lots of solid practicals.

There are stacks of "how to draw" books out there, but McCloud's applies his rare talent in the witty presentation of diligent research. Making Comics conveys years of reading, pattern-deducing and theorising, digging into fine art composition techniques, the psychology of involving the reader of comics, the life cycles of genres and loads more. I may risk giving the impression that this is an academic, highbrow or out-of-touch book. Again, it's very practical.

The reader can learn so much, yet it's impossible to liken it to a textbook because it's so fun! However, for those truly getting serious, at the end of each chapter is an invaluable new "Notes" section, which includes optional exercises to do. These are often group activities, benefiting circles of enthusiasts or art teachers and media courses.

McCloud uses the artwork in the format to demonstrate each point. Frequently he uses examples from other comics, but the artwork is predominantly his own which (despite his self-humbling comments) is skillful and clear. As the book explains how, words and pictures together act as more than the sum of their parts to get across deeper messages about emotions, sensations, craftsmanship and more. This book clearly charts the way towards barely explored territories among the endless possibilities of comics making.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 15 Dec. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This.

Is.

Great.

Now let me explain why:

I remember picking up this book ages ago, taking one look at the cartoony interior and putting it back on the shelf. I was very much unimpressed with the drawing style inside and it was far beneath my discerning tastes.

Of course...I was an idiot back then.

Now being a little bit older and a lot wiser, I've finally cottoned on to what exactly this book is about.

It's not there to teach you how to draw, there are a gazillion other ways to learn how to do THAT, this is here to teach you how to 'draw words and write pictures' and it delivers on that promise and then some.

You can take this book in two ways. You can either; a) dip in here and there and extract the bits of information that you need (though i would recommend reading it all once through at least once) or b) take it as it was intended and work through it as you would any other course. Each chapter is similarly laid out to a tutor's lecture and it followed up with a set of 'homework' assignments.

Sounds boring and a lot of hard work but -hey- if you're doing comics, hard work is the way to go. The effort is worth it. Nearly everything in this book is just the sense your mother raised you with but you will find yourself reading it and saying "oh, RIIIIIGHT...". It makes sense of things that can otherwise be undefinable and helps you learn things that you might otherwise have dismissed as being purely instinctive and impossible to learn.

I could go on like this for quite some time, but i do beleive there is a word limit, so i shall finish with this:

If you're serious about getting into comics and learning the art for what it is -seemlessly combining good writing with good art- then you need this book.

BUY IT!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By W. Bailey on 13 May 2008
Format: Paperback
Back in the 90s Scott McCloud's Understanding Comics became a seminal text in the field of comics theory, and he has repeated his achievement for comics practice in the noughties with this excellent book.

It is in a different league from all the other 'how to make comics' texts out there, which are usually really just 'how to draw in a manga/superhero/my style'.

Instead he merges theory with practice in a very accessible and engaging way, covering panels, text/image, facial expression, body language, environment, process, technique, genre and style, with a very useful bibliography.

If this book had existed when I was at art college I would have saved myself literally months of time figuring all of this out for myself, but even now I found it incredibly informative and useful.

An absolute must for all aspiring comics artists.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 7 Aug. 2008
Format: Paperback
I've always found it fascinating to imagine how a comic book author/illustrator creates the stories and images that appeal so much. Having been a non-fiction book author for many years, I have a firm understanding of the writing process. I sometimes pick out a few illustrations to put into a book.

But building a story around the illustrations, that seems like a trip to the planet Neptune to me. I was very pleased to find that Scott McCloud is very good at explaining (and illustrating) the creative and production processes he uses. I was delighted when I realized that he had also described how an individual could make a few comics to share with friends.

With computer art getting to be easier to do, I can see that there's even hope for those of us who couldn't draw out way out of a paper bag.

Mr. McCloud has the kind of mind that sees everything in perspective, in this case as facets of an overall story-telling task. He always has the goal of engaging the reader in mind and relates his points well to that purpose.

The work is impressive at another level . . . it's a masterpiece of providing instruction. The book shows more than tells, as a book about comics should do.

If Mr. McCloud ever tires of making comic books and graphic novels, he should go into explaining non-fiction subjects. He would make a fortune!
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