cropped-20110125_danny_cheng_c1.jpg

Graphic Novel updates and some tasty morsels…

This entry is part 4 of 4 in the seriesPlotting and Scripting
ARE YOU READY?

EASILY THE MOST IMPORTANT POST EVER ON THIS GORGEOUS WEBSITE. (yes, we do say so…)

Woo hoo!

How are things going?

funny meme for plotting comic book assignmnent

meme credits: www.quickmeme.com

As you know, we’re hard at work on our own graphic novel projects and let me tell you–everything’s GOING THE WAY it’s supposed to.

Lots of roadblocks and curve balls when you least expect it. Yikes!

At least, we can’t complain. We expected it. Continue reading

Killer Tips to Create a Superhero Expanded

KILLER TIPS TO CREATE A SUPERHERO

binderlayingopenLet’s Get Started! (this is an expanded version of our free report (extra tips there, get it….!) and will give you great ideas to create a ass kickin’ superhero. Don’t believe me? Take a read.

And oh yes, you can always write to me if you have anything you want to add or ask. I’m all yours.

A little about me: I’ve worked as a comic book artist (for a local comic book publisher) and had a short stint as a story board artist for a local studio producing television commercials.

But enough of me. Let’s talk about what I’d like to share with you- Something that I’m extremely passionate about- and that’s creating COOL superheroes. And oh yes, we won’t forget comic books. (I am also working on my very first graphic novel as you read this…and it’s going to be AWESOME. )

The goal here is to share my very own methods for creating a superhero- and if you love the superheroes I’ve created with Mike, then you’re going to have a blast reading this report.

But more importantly- You’ll get a step by step method for creating a Superhero that you can be proud of.

What this is not:

Some lame guide that is a waste of your time to read. Some drawings of superheroes that I come up with– that’s going to give you nothing that’s valuable. You can get guides like that everywhere over the internet. This guide is for the serious comic book creator. It’s about the principles of creating a kick ass superhero that will blow your friends and comic book fans away. And with that, let’s get into the meat and potatoes and have some fun shall we?

STEP ONE: THE MINDSET FOR SUCCESS

Before we get started, I just want to ask you a question. Is your goal to create a superhero and get that superhero out into the world for the rest of us to enjoy?

If the answer is YES, then reading this guide is truly the first step. (if you’re creating a superhero for fun, please continue reading anyway….)

Again- This is your first step to

SUCCESS…

And if your goal again, is to share your creation with the rest of the world, you MUST always remember what I’m about to say because this will determine if you fail or succeed.

YOU MUST NEVER GIVE UP. YOU MUST HAVE GUTS. YOU MUST HAVE THE TENACITY TO CARRY ON DESPITE EVERY SINGLE CURVE BALL THAT LIFES THROWS AT YOU.

As human beings (I don’t know about aliens..) our brains are hard wired to protect us from harm. And keep us in a zone where we’re comfortable. And IF any time that you want to do something that’s out of your comfort zone- your mind WILL RESIST. It will tell you to give up. It will tell you that it’s far too hard. It will create the butterflies in your stomach.

It will be the thing that will keep you from approaching a girl that you like or making the attempt to take your FIRST BUNGEE JUMP. It will keep you from doing anything worthwhile.It’s the thing that keeps us ALIVE by the way. (good thing to have of course….) That thing?

STEP ONE: THE MINDSET FOR SUCCESS

And that thing is called: FEAR. Like I said, it’s a good thing to have. It’s a survival mechanism that keeps us ALIVE. It’s a good thing to have or we’d be dead pretty quickly.

And I swear to you today, no matter what you say, FEAR will get in your way when you want to bring your superhero to the world. It will tell you that it’s going to be impossible, too expensive and will even tell you that the superhero you’ve created ISN’T GOOD ENOUGH.

All the tips you’ll pick up in this report and even a guide by Alan Moore or even Todd Mc Farlane will do you no good whatsoever if you fail to understand this thing called FEAR.

You know what? It’s our supervillian. It’s our ULTIMATE bad guy. It’s going to keep our “superhero” from ever seeing light.

So this is what we’re going to do: We’re going to use FEAR to drive us to achieving our goals instead of letting it stop us. Because we now understand how FEAR works.

We must promise to never let FEAR stop us from moving forward with our dreams.

Anyone can give you a great strategy to create your superhero and eventually to bring your comic book to the world successfully.

But the guts and tenacity to move forward is your job and yours alone. No one will be able to help you with that. This is the most important part of the whole process. Whenever you feel like things aren’t working out, please come back and read this chapter again.

Please note: The following steps are designed as a guide for you to create a superhero, write a story and publish your very first comic book. Keep reading.

STEP TWO: CREATE A SUPERHERO AROUND A CONCEPT or CREATE A CONCEPT AROUND A SUPERHERO

Don’t worry if this sounds confusing! It’s not: It’s simply a matter of thinking about whether you want to:

Create your superhero around a concept:

Here’s where you start out by creating a concept first, then your superhero around that concept.

Example:

In a parallel universe, another earth exists: It’s 100,000 years B.C and we’re in Egypt. But it’s not the Egypt that you’ve read about in the history books– or know. Not even close. The only thing that you would recognize was the all too familiar ancient attire that you’d expect ancient Egyptians to be garbed in.

Beautiful and modern structures pierce the skies. All around, people walked proudly on walkways and pathways made of gold. But hold on. That’s not all. These “ancient Egyptians seemed to be perfect human specimens. In every sense of the word: These folks were physically perfect, young and beautiful. Above, strange airborne metallic objects that you think could be “flying cars” whizz by- barely making a sound as they went about on their ways. And these Egyptians ruled this world. (with an iron fist and their cruel ways!)

This is an example of creating a concept first – leaving out the superhero or focal character at this moment- and inventing the concept first.

STEP TWO: CREATE A SUPERHERO AROUND A CONCEPT or CREATE A CONCEPT AROUND A SUPERHERO

When we expand on this concept, we’ll very quickly have a rough frame work for which we can create our superhero around.

Picking up where we left off: (and creating our protagonist or superhero..)

We could have an individual that just feels like he doesn’t belong like the others. That he just can’t fit in. That there’s something wrong (or sinister) about what’s happening in ancient Egypt. Maybe he has flash backs (and a strange ability to see into the past etc.. etc…) and something inside of him (literally) or a tragic event that forever changes everything for the hero- compelling him to seek out the truth about “ancient” Egypt and ultimately- a mission to save his people. (from the bad guy, etc…etc..)

Notice that the tragic event or a revelation about another side of the hero creates an “internal” conflict within the hero— an essential component to creating stories that are engaging to your audience and equally important- setting your character apart from the sea of others in the marketplace. (more on this in the next chapter…)

This is just an example, but really, it’s all up to you and where you want to take the concept right up to. (Expand the concept a little more and you can have an ancient Egyptian (with advanced technology and abilites) stranded on earth… etc.. etc.

Another example:

would be the movie Megamind. What if you had a weird looking guy who was smart but never had it good in his life- which then led him to believe that he should actually be bad. And we all know what happens next. He becomes a good guy.

Of course, we’ve got to make sure that the concept is interesting— so we can add to the concept by continuing expanding on the basic idea- and adding another spin after another to the whole concept until you’re satisfied. But don’t PUSH FOR PERFECTION. The whole idea for now is to come up with a rough but interesting concept for your superhero. Sometimes, it takes a little time coming up with ideas to work around your concept to make it solid. This step helps when you want to next create a plot and story for your comic book.

Create a concept around your superhero:

Create your superhero first, (usually, an origin story develops around this method…for example: character A is caught in the aftermath of a powerful bomb detonation : HULK…) Spidey bitten by a genetically altered spider (it used to be a radioactive one but who’s counting?)

The difference between both methods of creating a superhero is clear- this method revolves around creating your superhero first- which usually starts with an idea for your superhero’s powers.

The concept part starts when you’re ready to expand on a storyline for you superhero and comic book. This is where you’ll probably want to work on developing the concept part (origin) and tying it up with your comic book plot.

We’re not going to go into the “tying” up your superhero’s origins with your plot – there’s just no space here. If you’re not sure what all of this means– just watch Sam Raimi’s first Spider Man movie. (or any superhero movies..)

You’ll notice how Spidey’s origins are neatly tied up with Norman Osborn’s lab- and how Osborn finally becomes entangled in the storyline by becoming Spidey’s villain of that storyline.

There are clear advantages and disadvantages between both methods of creating a superhero.

An advantage when you’re creating the concept first (before your superhero) would be the fact that you can then weave your character and his origins, his arch rival into your first storyline far more easily— tying up your everything neatly in a plot or storyline.

A simple analogy would be to look at it this way:

Create a Concept first:

Every single chess piece neatly laid out on the chess board. You’re ready to pick a player that becomes your superhero.

Create a Superhero first:

You’ve got your chess pieces neatly laid out. NO chess board.

Is one way better than the other? Is there really a difference in these methods for creating a superhero?

Not at all. Any way you choose to go is great. And yes, there’s a difference, no matter no small.

Give both methods a go and see which one works best for you.

STEP THREE: THE CONFLICT

If you observe the characters of Peter Parker, (Spidey) Bruce Wayne (Batman), Bruce Banner (Hulk) you’ll probably notice one thing.

Something in their past (or origins) ESTABLISHES an inner conflict and a STRUGGLE in that superhero. Something that they fight (inside) of them everytime they put on the suit.

Parker constantly struggles to decide if he should finally reveal his secret identity to his friends, aunt and his chick. All the time. He’s tired of dissapointing his friends, or not being able to make it to a lunch date with M.J or Gwen (take your pick…) Bruce Wayne wonders when he’ll finally cross that thin, FINE LINE everytime he puts on the suit. And let’s not forget about his tragic motivations which constantly haunts him, pushing him forward.

You’ll want to brainstorm and think a little about what makes your hero tick. What personal demon “drives” him forward. What makes him do what he has to.

And the stuggle that he constantly faces everytime he puts on his suit. An INNER CONFLICT that the hero is faced with and constantly struggles within.

Although this is another subject for another time- If you’re already thinking of working a plot or storyline for your superhero– and want to create your main antagonist or main villain:

You can consider:

Creating a villain that could be a stark contrast to your superhero in every way—-

or

Creating a villian that could be a complete identitical carbon copy of your superhero in every way except that he inevitably crosses that LINE.(a line that your own superhero would, could never cross….)

STEP FOUR: SUPERHERO BASICS: Design, Powers, Personality

In the back of your mind- I’m pretty sure that you would already have an idea of what your superhero is all about.

His powers, the design of his or her costume. That’s a great start! But we’ll want to take a minute and examine what makes a character great while others…not so.

Probably the most easiest step of all- researching and examing what makes a character stick and stand out from the crowd- and therefore, making that character more popular than the other thousands (if not millions of other comic superheroes in the marketplace today. (also a great exercise especially if you don’t have any ideas at all!)

Again, this step is probably the easiest step of all- but one that is equally important in the whole process. Plus, it could also help you to expand on your character’s abilites, his personality and others.

Please consider writing anything that comes to mind in this exercise. You’ll never know when a GREAT IDEA could come to you. The last thing you want to do is try to remember that great idea that you had and kicking yourself in the butt for not writing it down.

Questions that we MUST ask about world famous superheroes:

1. Costume design
2. Alter ego? (occupation..etc..)
3. Character traits, personality
4. Concept
5. The Superhero’s abilities or powers

6. Distinguishing mark or calling card of that superhero: i.e Wolverine’s claws or Hellboy’s devilishly large fist and his “shaved horns..”

MY NOTES:

 

 

 

 

 

 

STEP FIVE: SUPERHERO BASICS: VISUALS

Here’s the next step:

Coming up with a couple of rough visuals from that idea which you have in the back of your mind. Here’s a rough visual of Thunderbolt Rider that I made earlier using this step.

But what if I don’t draw? If you’re not planning to draw your own superhero, you can consider working with an artist for your project. (please make sure that you do research about forming a partnership for a project before you do just that…) I can’t cover this subject here because it’s another subject altogether.

There are 2 ways to go about forming a partnership:

1. Engage a freelancer. You can check out these sites where you can pay for an artist to create your superhero or even comic book. Please take note: It can be very expensive to engage a freelancer to create a complete comic book for you. If it’s just a drawing of your superhero, then I suggest fiverr.com- but make sure to read the feedback of that particular provider before you engage their services. (for providers on elance, please see their feedback as well…)

http://www.elance.com/

http://www.fiverr.com/

2. Find a collaborator. The one place where you can do that will be to go to deviantart.com

Coming up with a visual for your superhero before doing anything else- is really the next step in the process. And here’s why:

You can see how your superhero looks visually and that’s exciting: It also gives you that extra motivation to take the next step: which is to refine and expand on the character visually, and the concept for your superhero.

You can get a feel for your character. When you actually have a visual for your superhero, you’ll begin to see what else you can do to improve your character visually immediately– (but don’t do this first…just write it down for now..)

You’ll begin to see other ideas forming around your superhero’s abilities etc..(write down whatever comes to mind please…keep a handy notebook around..)

Keep in mind that you really do NOT WANT to spend too much time with the visuals at this point in time— until you’ve pretty much NAILED the concept down. Once you have a solid concept in mind, you can then go ahead and work on the designs until you’re completely satisfied.

Remember, you CAN DO IT.

No matter what people say. (Listen to constructive criticisms but don’t let them stop you.)

If you don’t want to draw your own comic book, that’s fine. Work with someone. Take your time and choose your provider carefully- making sure that his style suits your superhero and storyline.

Last but not least—

You decide if you want GREATNESS.

You ultimately decide if you want the world to see your superhero.

And I for one, can’t wait.

Your Success,

Danny Cheng

 

sam childers

Another Real Life Superhero… Sam Childers

This entry is part 7 of 7 in the seriesCool Comic book stuff

machine gun preacher

I watched the movie: Machine Gun Preacher- (it’s an intriguing title, I’ll give you that..) and it touched me deeply.

So what the heck is the Machine Gun Preacher all about anyway? Well, it’s about someone that actually gives a damn, risks his life and does something to save helpless and innocent children. Continue reading

Updates about the Site and Things that are going on….(and it’s all for you…)

This entry is part 6 of 7 in the seriesCool Comic book stuff
8.31.11LeeJohnsNew52FansByLuigiNovi2

8.31.11LeeJohnsNew52FansByLuigiNovi2 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Quick Updates about the site and what’s coming up…

Guys, how’s it going with you own comic book project and superhero creation?

I hope everything’s going GOOD- and you’re happy about your own superhero design and creation. Continue reading

slade

Updates: Make your own Comics and Your Superhero (and a question…)

This entry is part 3 of 4 in the seriesPlotting and Scripting

Hey how are things?

Just a quick note:

Firstly, thanks for stopping by.

Secondly, we’re still working on our comic book projects- and I’ll be updating this site as soon as I can- Of course, with useful TIPS on how you can make your own comics and superhero as well. Continue reading

meme for module one creating superhero

How to make a Comic Book- Writing an Awesome Plot for your Comic Book

This entry is part 2 of 4 in the seriesPlotting and Scripting
HOW TO MAKE A COMIC BOOK- WRITING AN AWESOME PLOT….

Hi guys!

Okay, I’ve been reading a couple of pretty interesting articles of late- and thought I’d summarize the those articles for easy reading here. (yes, I’m nice that way :) ) Continue reading

If You Need to Make a Website for Your Superhero

This entry is part 5 of 7 in the seriesCool Comic book stuff
Quick Updates: Comic Book Plotting and Other Stuff…..
happy kid

MEME CREDITS: WWW.QUICKMEME.COM

Hey guys, once again- thanks for joining me. A special mention and a quick thank you to all of you who signed up to receive our “updates and other useful” stuff for your comic book creation mission. Continue reading

frankenstein

How to make a comic book- and the quest begins with a basic plot..

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the seriesPlotting and Scripting
How to make a comic book- Starting with a basic plot. Let the quest begin….

Hey guys, once again- thanks for joining me in what will be our first step (after we create a superhero ) towards our goal of making a comic book.

But first, a disclaimer: We do not claim to be experts in making comic books- Continue reading

supervillian 2

Updates- Comic Book Projects and other stuff….

This entry is part 4 of 7 in the seriesCool Comic book stuff
Some updates about the site and our Comic Book projects….

Hey, how’s it going?

I thought I’d post a couple of updates about the site and of course, where we’re heading in regards to the comic book projects.

I hope you’re working on your own project too (let me see…) and you’re having lots of fun doing it. Continue reading