What Did I Learn?
weekly webcomic reviews by Delos
(this is a repost)
Coffee Time Comics by John Kratky & Tobias Kaschinski is a tall, black and white comic with gray shading. You can see the influence of Manga is the artist’s work. It adds a certain feeling of movement and action even when characters are just talking.
There’s more to this manga influence than implied movement. Some things are just treated differently. I liked the panels of split faces, where one character is talking and the other character reacting and speaking back on the other side. There are unusual angles of view. Some panels are designed around the action instead of just containing it. Others serve to accentuate the progress of the story by adding another visual abstraction of events.
Coffee Time Comics is about yound kids who work in the Coffee Time coffee shop. It has a wildly diverse cast of characters which include the Nightmare Car. Many of these characters are inspired by the kinds of people you find in its urban setting but none of them are stereotypical.
And a little Kung Fu. That never hurts.
What did I learn?
Borrow a little from other styles of art. Make the cliches and steroetypes work for you by building on them. Add in some visual spice to give your comic some zip. Interestingly, Coffee Time Comics also has a spin off comic called Across the Way which I have yet to check out. (As of Jun 2008, both comics have officially ended.)