A Word… On The Almighty 3/4

I’ve been up and down this internet persuing and perusing comics of all natures, kinds, and designs and I have found a fundamental truth among all of them. The 3/4 view of any given character is the angle supreme.

Being a cartoonist myself, I can understand that. Not only is the 3/4 position fun as hell to draw, but in terms of staging, design, and expression it is the most universal.

In most comics the characters we watch do most (if not all) of their interaction between eachother and not the reader, therefore it would be much more sensical that they would face eachother, but in such a way that we could see their faces, their body language, and their reactions to any given comic stimulus. Also each of these expressions and reactions are made the most aparent at this angle, thus making it the superior angle to draw one’s characters.

Certainly this is no seceret to anyone who spends their time reading or drawing their comic of online virtue. In fact, there are a good deal of comics on our lovely digital domain whose characters are (almost) never seen any other way. PvP is an example of one, Achewood is another, even my beloved Ugly Hill is guilty of this.

Certainly I mean no calamity towards any of these comics or their corresponding creators, but if we were to remove the dialogue bubbles froom atop the characters’ heads the comics we know, love, and enjoy would have their flat staging becomes much more aparent. Certainly thank God we aren’t removing the very bubbles delivering to us the strips’ supply of comic mirth (even the best drawn comics need dialogue), but I hope this does leave artists with something to consider. Something to consider AND a personal challenge/invitation from yours truly…

Artists: Don’t change your story, characters, or style, but try and incoporate a drastically different angle to one of your characters in the next strip that you draw. Or even draw a dynamic pose. When you put it online post a link to your strip in the comments section. It’s a great excersize for your drawing skills and I’m sure I’m not the only reader who will apreciate this brand of boat rocking.


8 thoughts on “A Word… On The Almighty 3/4

  1. I entirely agree and it\’s something I do strive for in my comic. Moving the camera, as it were, to different angles, or different lighting really makes a strip pop and adds so much depth. I don\’t try to do stuff for the sake of contrivance, but I will try to avoid doing the same old thing day in and day out. It\’s a fun challenge for myself and is appreciated by the readers.


  2. From time to time if the story calls for it I do different angles but most of the time the 3/4 perspective does just fine.

  3. Well, in my latest comic (http://www.molapro.com) I\’ve got a more dynamic pose than usual, although, still technically 3/4 angle. >_> One going up later tonight will have a front view, but that\’s really all the angles that are necessary in my comic.

  4. Despite the many flaws of Alex Kolesar\’s work, chief among them his poor choice of writer, \”No Need for Bushido\” does make use of various cinematic angles. I, however, attribute this to the artists\’ inability to draw a strait line.

  5. My background is in comic books rather than strips, so I\’ve been trying to do my webcomic stuff the same way (only quicker), and that means moving the camera about a bit (although I\’m not averse to the old repeated panel trick). My strips are there to compliment the longer series, and often end up as a couple of people just talking (with the occasional dynamic panel thrown in of course), but even when you break that up and have your characters facing front and (ostensibly) addressing the reader, it\’s still easier to slip into the 3/4 view, just because, y\’know, it looks better.

  6. I love what y\’all are posting. It\’s some nice stuff, but for those who struggle, dynamic poses don\’t necesarily have to denote great action.

    For instance you can make an interesting pose and staging of someone leaning down to pet a dog while they talk to their friend or something. In acting a character without a prop or an action is unnatural looking. when there is dialogue on stage or in life, people are always fidgeting with something or doing something with their hands or body, and they rarely stay in the same postition for long.

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