Mark Waid designs 'truly digital comics'

Mark Waid made his career in print comics, but over the past few years he has become increasingly involved in digital work, and this short video demonstrates where his thinking is going. Waid believes that the day of the print-first comic is coming to an end, and that creators should be designing their comics with the digital reading experience in mind.

Most “digital comics” offered by large publishers are little more than clunky adaptations of previously existing material first designed for standard portrait-format print comics, not for landscape-format monitors and tablets. When reading a print comic, you can see the entire page at once, and artists use that as a design tool. But print comics captured on the screen are almost always too large to “take in” without scrolling about or enlarging or isolating individual panels—the comics equivalent of the old “pan-and-scan” evil of presenting widescreen movies on square televisions by inelegant cropping and editing. Hence, my new passion.

In the video above, Waid demonstrates his new type of comic on his iPad, although it must be said that this wheel has already been invented, at least in part, by the webcomics crowd. Dan Goldman's Red Light Properties, for instance, has the same sort of "page turn" that Waid uses — story elements appear or the panel shifts as the reader taps (on Waid's iPad) or clicks (on Goldman's webcomic). Scott McCloud was talking about the "infinite canvas" years ago, and a lot of webcomics creators already work in a horizontal format that is appropriate for computer screens. That doesn't mean Waid's work isn't important, though; as a prominent creator and thinker, he is likely to have both the audience and the creativity to push this medium to the next level.

(via Comics Alliance)

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