Sorry it took so long to get this post online. This has been one of those weeks. I’m so excited at all the participation we had this week, and I’m glad to see that the conversation continued for days afterward. It was really fun to hear from everyone. One of the reasons I wanted to start #webcomicschat is because I think there are a lot of awesome web cartoonists on Twitter and it’s a great way to share ideas. For now I’ll continue to moderate a discussion on Wednesday nights 6PM PST / 9PM EST beyond that have at it!
On this week’s #webcomicschat I started off with the question “Which do you prefer Black and White or Color?” I thought this might be a simple question to start, but it turned out to carry most of the discussion. I never expected to have so many responses but it’s obvious that the decision to use black and white or color is an important one that no cartoonist takes lightly. You might assume that just because color is possible with web comics everyone would use it, such is not the case.
For myself, I originally planned my comics for print so naturally I went with a pen and ink style that would be cheaper to print. I have kept it that way online out of convenience. As my comic has progressed I’ve been tempted to add color but I haven’t yet. Lately I’ve been thinking that I’d like to reserve color for special occasions or purchased materials. For example if I use color on digital books or collections my readers might like getting something extra for their money.
In our discussion some thought color was essential for reader interest and retention while others disagreed. There’s no denying how important color is but it’s hard to say that it’s always superior because there are so many good examples of black and white art. Take Jeff Smith’s Bone for example. Others said that color can sometimes compensate for bad line art, but bad color will definitely kill it. It was also said that color is a way to unify a piece and pull it all together to make it look finished. To all the cartoonists out there I say “Yes” and “Yes”. In this case I agree with everyone. I would never say black and white is superior to color or the other way around. The fact is they are different and meant to be so. To me it’s kind of like asking whether I prefer movies or comics. I really can’t say, I love them both. Which ever style you prefer I say – go with it. Look for artists you admire that do the same successfully and work to make your comic the best you can.
Thanks again everyone! Feel free to comment here if you have something to add. I’ll be back for another #webcomicschat Wednesday, October 21st 6PM PST / 9PM EST.