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Still waiting for the revolution

Man. I remember finishing McCloud's Reinventing Comics, and thinking that the internet were about to explode, and that webcomics were going to be the next big thing (bigger than Brittney).

Here we are a few years later, and even Scott has sort of faded in and out (at least in terms of web presence). Where is the revolution? We've seen the introduction of Bitpass, and the introduction of webcomics subscriptions services, but things only seem marginally different.

I have definitely noiced a shift in quality - an awareness of audience that was lacking in some early webcomics - but I don't see that many people pushing the envelope. Not really.

I wonder if it has anything to do with technology? Maybe we might all be creating the comic of the future, but the most of the darn tools we use are intended to create these two dimensional page-like things on a computer screen, and so we do what we can with what we have.

The other possibility is that there was no revolution. It was all a myth, and we've just been feeling the vibrations of that first earth-shattering "kaboom". Maybe there is no infinite canvas.

Personally, I think that most people simply haven't wrapped their head around the fact that there is no canvas at all. All the pixels you see before you are really only points of light, and there is no page (web or other). There is no canvas. We still draw pictures, and we still marry them to words, but those are actions, and the actions themselves are not comics. They are acts of creation. What is created in the case of webcomics, however, is something intangible. We can see them, but we can't touch them.

One of the things that fascinates me about artists working in CG, is that there is no artifact that they can point to afterwards to say "this is a comic". They can direct you to a URL on the world wide web, and you can read what they've put there, but essentially you are reading something which does not exist in any tangible way beyond the experience of reading it.

That's the main problem with making money from webcomics. We are attached to the idea of paying for things we can hold in our hand. I think that's probably what scares music people so much... if music becomes something that you listen to, but not something you can physically hold in your hand (in the shape of a compact disc, cassette tape, or LP), what are you paying for?...

We're paying for the experience. And if the experience is what is really valuable, then all those silly pieces of paper and plastic that distributors try to pass off as music are really just separating us from the actual experience.

Don't get me wrong. I love print comics. I am a graphic novel hound, and I love the physicallity of books, but there is a shift in our culture right now away from things you can hold, or fold, or stack, towards experiences. When that bit of evolution trickles down to comics (which I think it's begun to), then maybe we will see people "paying" webcomics artists for the "experience" of sharing in someone else's unique vision.

Until that gets into high gear - and I think we may have a while to wait yet - I just hope that enough people will stay keen, and continue to poke holes in the canvas until we can see clear through to the other side.

Maybe we should get JustinPie and Eric Millikin in here, and have them duke it out. what do you think?

Re: Still waiting for the revolution

Over at drunk duck, I've noticed a revolution of content. It's not a glut of superhero strips over and over and over to death.
yeah, there are a million sprite comics done by 13 year olds, and lots of elves, and some superhero stuff. There are stories in 3 colors about a teenager dealing with death, an amazing b&w supernatural noir strip set in the 1930s, a gay space opera, sword and sorcery stories without any reference to D&D, an fun story that has people with animal ears and magic, and more . I"m amazed at the variety I can find online and the absolute blandness I can find at Marvel and DC. The Marvel and DC comics look better but the stories have been done to death.
For me, it's not so much the way we are telling stories that's changed, it's the kind of stories being told that's important. That was also covered in Scott McCloud 2nd book. There's your revolution.

That much time, really?

nobody's picture

I didn't realize digital art could demand such devotion, and the dialup connexion also really slows things up.

I've been told the speeds are lower in the States than in France, generally speaking? I've got a wi-fi ADSL connexion, which is pretty common - but I can't seem to find any sites giving numbers on how many people, nationwide, have ADSL or dialup connections in the States (or the UK for that matter).

I suppose it's due to the fact that France is so State-centered, and that the phone system has been public for so long - each phone-line was installed by what is now kindly called "the historical operator", and the government has kept records about how many connexions exist, and who has what. That might be considered, in the States, as invasion into private life. I dunno, I'm still tossing ideas around and I've got to hand my paper in by may 28th -like, in twelve days- sigh..... !

That much time, really?

Catman's picture

I put an average of 8-10 digital art illustrations per page, at 2-3 hours per illustration, so it can get tedious. Especially making scenes that have to follow a storyline. If there isn't a lot of differences from one scene to the next, the process can be sped up. I try to avoid that though.

The reason I am 19k dial up, is I live in wilderness. A mountaintop adjacent to 3.2 million square acres of National Forest. LOL

The phonelines were laid 30-35 years ago, and buried. I am about 65 miles from my provider and many a farmer has cut the phone line sinking fence posts, over the years. So, it has a ton of splices in it. Most of the USA is broadband I am sure. Some choose dialup for a lower cost, but it's the only option I have.

The Catman

The Catman

Time it takes

Catman's picture

My Tigerman Saga started off as a simple page of Daz Studio 3d, and Bryce art gallery. I made 5-6 illustrations and added captions to give a tie in, from one illustration to the next, just to start honing skills using the 3d digital art programs.

Then people at a large website I chat at, asked "what happens next?" I said "nothing, it's just a gallery". Well, they wanted to see more, as a continuation of what they saw. So, I called it Introduction, then continued on calling each page a Chapter. That made it become a sort of serial E-comic book. Nothing I had ever planned though.

I add one page (Chapter) each week (on Saturday) and have maintained it since September 2006.

Last Saturday's Chapter 24 took over 26 hours to make. The digital art is the big time consumer (i am still green at that). Trying to make scenes that follow a very abstract and unorthodox story line in digital art, is tedious.

The programs lack the tools to make the scenes turn out to match the story, so I have to use Photoshop to alter the "rough-outs" to add the missing components. Like heads no longer on bodies, or pools of blood. Yea, this is definitely not Archie or Peanuts.. LOL.. More like Heavy Metal, but without the erotica agenda.

It leans more towards promoting metaphors for wildlife conservation (but not obvious).

25+ hours of creation time is not uncommon. Then there are long waits to upload, as I am on a 19k dialup connection.

http://www.tigerman.us

The Catman

The Catman

Dunk, there is no

Dunk, there is no revolution. There's not gonna be a "bigger than Britney" thing. Comics are just not mainstream enough. Comics are a nerd thing, not something the masses like. Even further, the internet is still not mainstream enough. It's getting there, but it still isn't. And while I can see that very soon the internet will be a mainstream thing, comics, in paper or any other media, are not.

Time Ratio

All those questions really depend on skill level. For instance, I can't draw without a mouse. So, stick figures is all I could manage with pencil.

Those who are lucky enough to work as a team would really benefit if one was "the computer guy" who did the site maintenance, and the other made the comic. Because drawing the comic is only half the battle. Blogging, link checking, etc... it's a job all itself.

You can save time in some aspects of drawing with computer. I demonstrate how on in this comixpedia post. But as you mentioned, attaining a level of skill in anything, in order to do it well, takes a very long time.

Thank you for that - I'd

nobody's picture

Thank you for that - I'd thought about skill level and different tools (i.e. Photoshop, Illustrator, Wacom tablets etc.), but I'd forgotten about blogs and links, and I guess fan-mail and fan-art are also time consuming... Back to work for me, you have a nice Sunday !

How long does it take to create?

nobody's picture

Whilst on the subject of the changes between Internet and print, the Parisian student that I am ponders : how long do each of you take to create your work and have it put up online, as opposed to in print? How long does it take to draw, to correct on the computer, to reformat? How much time do you dedicate to site maintenance?

As opposed to the creation of printed comics, what's the difference in time ratio? Where do you gain time, where do you lose time? I'm guessing coloring in and distribution for example are much faster via PC, but that time spent learning how to use the tools might be more consequential with a computer... Maybe I'm wrong, I guess it also takes time to learn to paint or draw as well as possible, to learn tricks and techniques...

 

All answers are welcome !

:)

Breaking The Rules

Catman's picture

"It seems to me that the rules (if there really are any, or rather if you can choose which ones are "right" amongst the various theories you might come across) are made to be broken."

I take it you have not attempted to submit a popular webcomic to a certain big online encyclopedia site.

Wink

The Catman

Until It's Our Turn

The Catman

Respect before all else

nobody's picture

It seems to me that the rules (if there really are any, or rather if you can choose which ones are "right" amongst the various theories you might come across) are made to be broken. Some people need to explore as far as they can inside the box, and that's great, some people need to explode and go all over the place, and that's also fine.

I'll agree emphatically with Catman : in comics, as in all else, the art is all about expressing what you want, and hopefully coming across to someone, somewhere. As long as that happens, the whole process in between is secondary. (How general a statement is that? Laughing)

It's all wrong

I think the established rules are broken more often than people like to admit.

Defining the genre

Catman's picture

I joined one website (for webcomics), and introduced myself, and a link to my work. Wow!, I was told off. "It's not a webcomic.", "That's not how to do it", "You need to learn what a webcomic is, and start over".

Best ones... "Too many words" (which strikes me as ironic, as the entire net communication is based on typing and reading).

"No text balloons".. LOL I do mine in a narrative fashion. like spinning a yarn. My characters speak, but through a narrative manner (Then Tigerman told Jon...).

OK,, I didn't know much about what I was doing when I started, so I pulled it out of my rectal cavity. Sue me.... ;) I am using Daz Studio 3d and Bryce, but when I started, I had never used those programs before either. My first few chapters were rather stiff in art, as I tried to define the characters and the environment. I was able to pick up speed after that.

So, as I now enter into Chapter 24, I have boxed myself into a format that is explained to me to "be wrong" (Shades of a "big" encyclopedia site). I have found loyal and vocal fans, and stil plug along in the wrong direction, and suffer from offending the genre label. (Sue me)..

I will say, when I joined TopWebComics, I got a warm welcome and some very nice compliments, even one from a Mod in their forum. She said it was different, but that she liked it. (Maybe she was just being kind.. lol).

A previous post here, mentioned that it was the content, the meaning, and I agree. There has to be something for people to sink their net-teeth into, whether it's humorous, serious, strips, single panes, or sprawling never-ending sagas (like mine?).

It's not so much about defining a style, or genre (or establishing "notability"?) lol.. It's about defining a readership. Since there are so many different kinds of people in the world, anything works, as long as it has appeal to some people that can relate, or see interest in the work. When you strike a chord, and build a following, then the genre defines itself.

The revolution is always "on", as long as people can be open minded and explore the ideas of others.

Oh... My "wrong web comic book"

The Tigerman Saga

The Catman

The Catman

I prefer the web, honestly....

Erg's picture

It may be just having a 2 year old, but I find it more convienent to not have to worry about paper. It just annoys me.

It does take less room

nobody's picture

Maybe it's just being a student and changing flat about once a year, but I do get tired of lagging around my books and comics. Despite my friends considering me a heretic, I'd rather read a book at the library and give it back than have it on my shelves.

On the other hand reading on a screen is less than comfortable, but does anyone know what e-books are up to? I've heard about electronic paper, in Japan and in the States, with the 2006 Reader... Are webcomics looking into that format as well?

I'm sorry to say that, no

I'm sorry to say that, no matter what new technology is created that does whatever to improve upon webcomics and the webcomic creating/viewing experience, webcomics will never take the place of print comics. Ever. Webcomics will never overcome a person urge to flip pages. It's just what we do as a culture. We flip pages. The news is on tv 24 hours a day--But we wait anxiously for our morning paper. Books have been available on tape and online, but when's the last time you curled up with a good book on tape or download? It'll never happen. Why? There's something in those few seconds of anticipation in turnng a page and continuing a story that getting eyestrain while waiting for a comic page to load just can't replace. Sorry. Dee G.A.A.K: Groovy Ass Alien Kreatures It's like The Goonies meets The Invaders from Mars. Updates on Mondays.

G.A.A.K: Groovy Ass Alien Kreatures It's like The Goonies meets The Invaders from Mars. Updates on Mondays.

Why make it a gag a day?

Erg's picture

Right now its the way people use the internet. We like to take things in small bites. Strips have been so successful here because surfing the web, to use 90's vernacular, and skimming a newspaper are pretty close to one another. hopefully technology can make it so that longer form comics can make it work here too. Microsoft may be on to a way.

Newspaper-format strips

I think a lot of webcartoonists stick with the newspaper-strip format because it works. It's ideal for both paper and screen - it uses printed page-space economically, and it can be read on a typical wider-than-tall monitor without scrolling. I can't see the taste for paper dying any time soon - if readers are paying real money for paperback collections of strips that are 90% free online already, then the love of print is deep-rooted enough to survive a long time.

As Surleyben said, there's little point in using infinite canvas for a daily gag-strip. (The newspaper format's not limited to gag-strips, though - ages before the internet there were long-running adventure-story strips in the papers, and they have a lot of online descendents.)

French webcomics, and more technical play...

nobody's picture

But... Maybe I'm being an idealist here, nevertheless it seems to me that webcomics shouldn't be created with a goal of being published in a newspaper. And scrolling, and interactive reactions to clicking, and links, and so much more could be used... why make it a gag-a-day? Why not give try something experimental that would publish once a week instead? I do sort of feel disappointed that the media isn't used to its full potential - although I'll admit that comics being accessible, and sometimes artists making money off them as well,does suffice to make Internet a great step forward.

Also, just in case there are any fans of French out there : does anyone know of French webcomics?! I've found many blogs by comics artists, and also a website called Abdel-Inn, but there seems to be no community feeling on this side of the Atlantic... ?

Saying is one thing, doing is another

On talkboutcomics Joey Manley mentions some new Microsoft technology that does what you describe. But interactive won't make your comic better. That's the thing, it's nothing more than a gimmick. Additionally, it just creates more work for the creator(s) because now that a comic is finished, then it has to be imported into the fancy gizmo, and another few hours spent to make it interactive. It's totally a waste of time, and these tools aren't worth spending the time, learning how to use them properly. Especially if you're a one man shop. It just creates more work for you to update, maintain, and software to buy.

Revolution? Evolution? The Zen of Comics...

Xaviar Xerexes's picture

Sometimes I get to wandering in the archives of the forums, etc and find a thread that seems to carry an idea or an argument that is still worth reading and debating.

This post from former editor Bill Duncan is almost 3 years old but its questions are still interesting to think about.

____

Xaviar Xerexes

Mad, Bad and Dangerous to Gnaw.

I run this place! Tip the piano player on the way out.

Precisely, and seeing as I'm

nobody's picture

Precisely, and seeing as I'm doing a thesis on webcomics way over in Paris, France, I'm quite interested in any comments people may want to add :)

I am no futurist. I am

I am no futurist. I am actually a bit of a luddite (that's the slur the techies use to describe a technophobe), but I would be willing to bet that the technology that allows access to the web with a portable screen is not too far away. Wireless technologies are already becoming pretty widespread. Every cafe I know of has wireless internet now. I don't think you are going to find any explosion, though. To rip off someone else: The (real) revolution will not be televised. It's going to happen quietly for a long, long time. I suspect it will be the generations raised on massive amounts of anime that will bring animation and comics into the mainstream. Already there are anime movies playing in town, and when I was a kid, there was no such thing, and the only one you could find at your local video store was Akira (maybe).

I agree. The revolution is

Surlyben's picture

I agree. The revolution is bound to be slow. Because making comics is slow. I expect that if and when Bitpass gets outta beta and if it becomes widely used, there will be more than two web comics artists making a living at it. But not many more. Better display technologies, better methods of scrolling, a method for zooming that isn't kludgey and obnoxious, high bandwidth wireless will all come along eventually, but I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for them. As it stands now, infinite canvas comics that scroll in more than one direction are kind of a gimmick. Single direction scrolls are cool, and IMO, far less annoying than click throughs, but, of course, they are infinite in theory only. In actuality there are real world limitations, such as bandwidth, and the likelihood that there will be an error loading an image on a page. If I put a thousand images on a page of HTML, my guess is that at least some of those images would just fail to load correctly some of the time. I'm guessing that many web comics don't have revolutionary layout because they are daily comedy strips, and it's hard to put a daily punchline strip into an infinite canvas. Why would you want to anyway? Ben

-
Ben Bittner

You are right on about the

You are right on about the newspaper strip form being the choke on revolutionary design. Longer work will do it, eventually. Its going to take a bigger base of comics literate people too. As much as Dave Sim hates the internet, his design principles in Cerebus are very fitting for design on an 'infinite' canvas. Man, that term is so cheeky- I suspect McCloud knows it for the marketing gimmick it is. A catchy political phrase;) Onward, ye infinite canvasers!

I've been on the internet

I've been on the internet since it was still an inter-network comprising arpa-net and bitnet. Let's just say I found McCloud's enthusiasm for the Internet . . . amusing. (Well, no I didn't, it was the same empty-headed effervescence that gave us the dot-com bust, and I sort of stopped reading Reinventing Comics when I got to that part). One of the reasons that the form of comics hasn't changed much with them appearing on the internet, I think, is that the basic form of a comic strip is accessible. They have always been a 3-dimensional medium (Height, Width, and Time). The biggest change I see from the internet is not to either of the physical dimensions, but to the temporal dimesion. A newspaper strip is ephemeral. Unless you buy a collection, there is now way to go through the history of a strip. It makes serial storytelling difficult and less appealing to the new reader. The Internet however, typically makes all the strips available. That means that if I have no idea why Sharon and Trish are standing out on a window ledge in GPF, I can a) go back to the beginning of the storyline and get an idea of what's going on now, b) read everything for the past year or c) read the whole archive as if it is a giant graphic novel. The ability of an artist to create a body of work in a place where the consumer can access it in its entirety is the single greatest contribution of the internet to the form. But yes, we monkeys love our tangibles, and for that there is Plan 9 publishing and Cafe Press. As for CG, forgive me while I yawn. Inherently, all it is is another method of making a mark. And if you want to make that mark appear on something you can touch, all you need's a good color printer.

The great revolution of the

The great revolution of the internet and the web has nothing to do with reworking the art form, or making comics turn into something they weren't -- there are people who will do this, and who will continue to stretch the boundaries of any art, but that's not the revolution. The revolution is that self-publishing -- something that used to be very, very expensive -- is now a lot more affordable. This is incredibly revolutionary, though it will also make people shudder because now anyone who wants to can slap a cartoon on the web and call himself a web comic artist. I am living proof of this. Whether or not there's actually a viable commercial model for this is sort of irrelevant to the revolution, which is about access and not process. So many more people have access when they didn't used to. That's going to shake up a lot of things. Christopher B. Wright (wrightc@ubersoft.net) Help Desk (http://ubersoft.net)

With apologies to

With apologies to Shakespeare, the fault lies not in our technology, but in ourselves. There is no infinite canvas. At least, not for homo sapiens. Guest # 1 is correct. Every medium of communication devised by humans has been limited not by technology but by the physical and mental limits of humanity. We have only five senses, and only one way in which we percieve events - this limits our species in what we can do to tell stories or communicate ideas and emotions. Eventually, such as with the digital medium, our imagination starts writing checks that our nature cannot cash. I believe this is what happened with Scott McCloud and his concepts. Just as physicists can talk about dark matter and zero-point energy, but cannot percieve such items directly, the concept of the infinite canvas will remain somewhat unobtainable for modern, unaltered humans. That will change, eventually, but it will be a different species that will be able to do things with the digital medium that we cannot even dream of. Whether it will be a variant of humanity or something else entirely (Homo Cyberneticus?) is something that only time will tell. Andrew

What I can't get my head

Steve Ince's picture

What I can't get my head around is why there has to be a revolution at all. If all you want to do is create a character-led gag strip, then why not stick to a tried and tested method of presentation? Even when we assume that a serious creator wants to do something revolutionary, why does that revolution have to be with the layout? I'd much rather see boundaries being pushed with content. And that can happen in both print and the internet.

I am guest 1 cited above. I

I am guest 1 cited above. I hadn't set my cookie and wasn't logged in. After writing that, it occurred to me that McClouds response to the internet is rather like that of a certain other Comic character who approaches anything shiny and new with unbridled enthusiasm. I thus felt inspired to pen this one panel response to "Reinventing Comics:" It's just a sketch, and not my best work, but I think it makes my point.

I see style (layout) as

I see style (layout) as content. I have been reading so long that I tend to see a finite number of plots that end up being told an infinite number of ways because of stylistic choices. That's what kabuki theater is all about. That's why I see revolution in terms of layout- that's where the infinite canvas idea comes in, and where the greatest differences between print and net as mediums will come in.

For me, content is what's

Steve Ince's picture

For me, content is what's happening in the story, what's happening to the characters and whether it's done well in order to keep my interest. Vertical scrolling, horizontal scrolling or a panel a page are unimportant if the content gives me something I want to keep coming back to. Layout isn't content because I can't believe anyone returns to a comic regularly because of the layout, particularly if the stories/jokes/art/characters/etc. are uninteresting.

A few points: Most of you

A few points: Most of you folks here are simply thinking of "comics" in a/the most traditional of senses, associating it with gags and humour and story. Don't forget that "comics", stripped of all attachments and left to lie naked in its simplest of forms... are sequential images (or whatever preferred definition you like, McCloudian or not). With that said, look at what we HAVE been doing with the web. LOOK at these people's works and TELL me that they are not working on breaking the traditional bonds and bounds: Merlin's work: http://www.e-merl.com/ Farley's work: http://www.e-sheep.com/ Garza's work: http://www.magicinkwell.com/ master's work: http://www.castlezzt.net/ Barber's work: http://www.moderntales.com/series2.php?name=vs&view=current Cahill's work: http://www.moderntales.com/series2.php?name=box&view=current Johnson's work: http://www.endsbadly.net/ And that's just off the top of my head. Also, don't forget -- while the infinite canvas idea and all its derivatives are NOT dependent on content (they are form-based), the best artists let content SHAPE the format. In other words, they don't just make infinite canvas form leaps just for the sake of making infinite canvas form leaps (i.e, they don't just do it as a gimmick). Still, that doesn't mean that people HAVE to do infinite canvas stuff, or NOT do infinite canvas stuff. There are those who will experiment because they love to play with new ideas and explore new possibilities. Then there are others who will choose to ENHANCE their content by making the form reflect a certain aspect or feeling. There's nothing wrong with either. Right now, MOST webcomic artists still prefer to stick closely to the traditional print margins, and just produce stuff that would work equally well on paper. But we CAN'T say that NO ONE is playing with new ideas, or that there is NO revolution going on. Revolutions, for the most part, are NOT instantaneous processes. They take years, DECADES (CENTURIES!!!) to run their course. The actual "action" part -- the "bloody battle" part, so to speak -- is but a FRACTION of the entire cycle of revolution. To say that the "infinite canvas revolution" has petered out or was but a myth or exaggeration is to be grossly short-sighted. Everyone be patient, and stop letting yourselves be dictated by today's "instant gratification or bust" societal habits. Look back in history and show me ANY spot in the ART world where a revolution or "changing of the guard" was effected in seconds flat. Keep encouraging those who seem inclined to work with the posibilities of inifinite canvasses if you wish, or try your hand at it yourself, if you feel not enough impact is being made. But don't go thinking that the revolution is over when it's hardly been given a chance to begin.

And I can't believe that I

And I can't believe that I forgot to include Demian's work in there, duh. http://www.demian5.com/

I think you'll see more

I think you'll see more experimentation as webcomics mature and improve. Right now it's still a new medium that's trying to find it's way.

[url=http://www.acidkeg.com/][img]http://www.acidkeg.com/akbanner.gif[/img][/url]

Some of this I posted

Some of this I posted already in the Debate #1 discussion, so forgive me if you're seeing it twice. Just because we aren't seeing an overt techie feel to the majority of webcomics doesn't mean there's no innovation going on. I think that a comic has the potential to be revolutionary without utilizing anything more innovative than the ease and cost-effectiveness of broadcasting over the web (see Eversummer Eve or Exploitation Now for examples of this at work). Doesn't the fact that we're all here from around the world talking in realtime-at-our-convenience about the progress of comics argue the progressive aspects of online comickry? Even some dead-tree comics have abondoned letter columns in favor of online discussion forums like this one. I mean, Penny Arcade is a revolution in itself, balancing a mammoth readership with the informal, backroom atmosphere of two guys shooting the bull about video games. Their comic itself is three standard-issue panels with a punchline, but it's arguably the ever-changing blogs and the authors' constant accessibility keep people coming. Where else could this work besides the Web? Gabe and Tycho are not animating comics or using panels within panels, but they have innovated via the Web, and used it to their advantage. Additionally, while the Web opens many opportunities for innovation, it also brings about constraints. Keep in mind that Eric's and my infinite canvas arguments were constrained by the limitations of the finite canvases we had to work with in our submission guidelines, among other factors. If we submitted uncompressed JPGS at 10MB, it wouldn't fly - so we had to compromise to meet the constraints of bandwidth. Many would argue that The Last Supper would require an infinite canvas to fit into our 17" computer screens at its actual size, but is that really an argument FOR the technique, or AGAINST the medium? It's only realistic to point out that not everything will work better online. The Internet may not be the Wild West anymore, but it's still a work-in-progress, with more untapped potential than just aesthetics. -Justin

"Justin-Pie" wrote: Just

Steve Ince's picture

Justin-Pie wrote:
Just because we aren't seeing an overt techie feel to the majority of webcomics doesn't mean there's no innovation going on. I think that a comic has the potential to be revolutionary without utilizing anything more innovative than the ease and cost-effectiveness of broadcasting over the web
Quite so. Even if the only innovation a strip serves up is that it's fresher than the tired strips being published in newspapers. In my own strip, Juniper Crescent, there are so many characters I use and switch between on a regular basis that it's unlikely a syndication agency would take it on for this reason alone. They usually like to start with a small cast and build up over time. While I certainly wouldn't say that the strip is revolutionary in any way I hope it's retaining a freshness to it.

One thing that should be

One thing that should be considered is that a revolution cannot be announced or forced to begin. Revolutions just happen. To say that a revolution is about to begin means nothing. Inspired minds will do things that will purely be for the personal need to do it, not because they think a revolution needs starting and that their idea will be the catalyst. People may experience these new ideas and either embrace, reject or modify that idea. Then the process begins anew. Over time, and only on reflection, after viewing the change from Point A to Point B can a revolution be named. Most often, a revolution is seen as 'radical ideas' in the here and now, and as 'a revolution' in retrospect.