Many comic enthusiasts are driven to create their own comic books. There’s something so welcoming and inclusive about comic books that makes you think you too can express yourself half as well as your favorite artists.
Of course it doesn’t work like that. Comics are hard work. But I don’t mean to be discouraging.
I have several of my own that I’m working on, in different stages of progress. When I manage to haul myself over the wall of procrastination, I try to get a couple of pages done and then seek expert advice. Since I do my drawing, writing and lettering on my own, it’s a lot of work (no excuse for the procrastination, I know.)
I try to get expert advice as often as I can.
There are three kinds of experts you can turn to for feedback. First, there are industry experts. Then there are other comic book writers who have published a thing or two but aren’t big enough yet to have packed schedules and no time for feedback. Lastly, there are the readers.
Among your readers you’ll probably want to count your most objective friends, acquaintances and family.
Feedback from Industry Experts
The best way to get feedback from industry experts is probably to visit a comic con and network with them. When you meet someone from a small press (or DC or Marvel) and decide that their publication fits your style, have a pleasant chat. Then go back home and email them a part of your comic, requesting feedback. It’s a good idea to put up a part of your comic online and share the link via email. Make sure you share the password with your contact.
Other websites for Feedback
There are some websites where I personally turn to, for feedback from experts. Lots of professionals hang out at these sites. But don’t expect feedback all the time from the person you ask. These guys are pretty busy.
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Concept Art is a fantastic art forum for sharing, viewing, creating and critiquing art. It’s also a place where artists can pick up work. You don’t have to pay to be a part of the forum. Simply register with your usual social media account and check out the Art Critique Center. The feedback there is pretty constructive and the members are friendly and helpful. The website also organizes workshops which you could check out to improve your drawings. There’s no separate Comics section, but you can go ahead and post your panels and, at the very least, people will tell you how you could improve your drawing.
DeviantArt is an online artwork, videography and photography community. The website was launched on August 7, 2000, by Angelo Sotira, Scott Jarkoff, Matthew Stephens, and others
DeviantArt is a place where many pros hang out as well as amateurs, but generally the crowd is friendly and helpful. Go ahead and contact a few of them, and I’m sure many would be happy to offer their opinion. I do sometimes post a panel or two out there to see what the feedback is from other artists and cartoonists hanging out. Don’t forget to sign all your pages before you post them online though.
Tapas, formerly known as Tapastic, is a webcomic syndicate set up by South Korean entrepreneur Chang Kim in October 2012.
Get feedback from readers while you create your comic by posting an episode or a few panels on Tapastic. Or visit the forum for tips and feedback from the artists who hang out there. You’ll find that most of the people on Tapastic are pros who have been creating comics for a while, though they may be new to Tapastic.
Reddit is an American social news aggregation, web content rating, and discussion website. Reddit’s registered community members can submit content such as text posts or direct links
Reddit members of the Comic forums are not 100 percent professional. But there will be lots of creators and lots of comic geeks among them. Don’t ignore the feedback of the geeks, as they can tell you a thing or two about what a good comic can be!
Don’t forget that one page is usually not enough for a critique. One page may be enough to get a critique on your inking, for example, or how easy your comic is on the eyes. But if you could upload a couple of pages or even an episode of a comic, you’d find more useful feedback about things like the story, pacing etc.
Here are a couple of other useful websites where I have found resources for completing my print comics and a handful of web comics.