What Did I Learn?
weekly webcomic reviews by Delos
(this is a repost.)
For What It’s Worth by Steve and Dawn is (sort of) an informal slice of life comic. Some of the strips are about the wild outdoors and some are not, but it strikes me as a relatively informal comic. I find it nice that it’s not tied to a particular setting or characters. It allows Steve and Dawn to be drawing wisecracking birds one minute and a guy shopvacing a baby diaper in the next.
It’s got the vibe of being a simple comic. But as you know, simple looking does not always mean simple to implement. I know that a great deal of mental work goes into even the simplest of layouts. And never mind the actual work of sketching it out, planning where the word balloons should go and what colors to use. A good comic LOOKS like it must have been simple to put together but probably wasn’t simple in reality.
I like the humor. It’s sensible and requires nothing more than an appreciation of the outdoors to enjoy it. It’s relaxing and enjoyable. Even the blurb from the FWIW ComicSpace page is straightforwardly about just enjoying something simple:
“Hi folks my name is Steve, I am the creator of the For What It’s Worth comic strip. I’m not the best of artist, but I have fun and that’s what counts. Currently I’m coloring and posting strips I did twenty years ago as well as adding some new ones. Some of the old strips, I have updated the gag line. Soon I’ll be moving to all new comics, for what it’s worth.”
What did I learn?
Stay true to your tone. Whether you’re doing a comic based on dreamy lands of wonder or something like a gritty western, you have to stay true. FWIW stays true to its’ straightforward observations on life. And just as importantly, your comic should have a feel. It should offer an experience. If it doesn’t, then all the greatest technical illustrating skills won’t save the comic. And that’s what I think, For What It’s Worth. (Sadly, it seems that this comic has gone on hiatus since September 2007, but they still update their Steve and Dawn site. The comic above is the only one I could find.)