Strip News 1-1-10’s the start of a new year and most folks are off on vacation until (at least) Monday. Hopefully this will help tide you over until they come back…

Tangents posted part two of a three part review of Footloose. This is a lonely time of year for webcomic reviews.

The Daily Crosshatch reviewed Smile and Newsarama covered The Colors of Earth, Water and Heaven. Optical Sloth looked at In The Name of Love and Fictions reviewed Logicomix while Madinkbeard looked at Driven By Lemons and Elements By Grom.

Paperless Comics mentioned most of the interviews out there this week so stop in over there for those plus a few other goodies. One other interview you may want to look in on was The Daily Crosshatch asking Heidi MacDonald about her thoughts on the comics world of 2009. I especially liked the phrase “too small to fail.”

♦ Inkstuds recommended Aron Steinke’s comics, Drawn! was impressed by What Things Do and The Beat mentioned Tune. Robot 6 had a good comic 2009 recap and ComixTalk remnded us that Freaks and Squeaks hit the 1500 comic milestone. And Fleen bellied up to the bar with a look over 2009’s comics scene.

Topless Robot pointed out 16 Impractical Superhero Costumes. And they’re right even if I recall liking the safari jacket at the time. Inkstuds gave us the personal best picks of 2009. Comics Alliance gave us five trends that need to go away (in supers comics) which I can only agree with.

♦ And here is something that needs addressing about comics like Runners Universe with long story arcs. Conventional webcomic advice is to be updating at least twice a week but that’s not always attainable so long form artists have tough decisions to face. Do they update whole chapters at a time (my personal preference) and will that lose audience? Do they switch to smaller arcs so the delays between postings are smaller but you end up with a less involved story? Decisions, decisions. The comments in the post have some good and practical solutions – if you can manage them while you’re working on the comic. For Runner’s Universe, I think one page a week plus extras is a best case strategy but it’s not a one size fits all solution.’m sorry to say and sad to report that (according to Comics Alliance,) Thundercats and Magneto seem to be out of the movie lineup but one of them may be slid into another movie. But that’s alright in any case – there’s a Missile Mouse contest going on right now.

♦ And then there is some good discussion about drawing women’s faces at Ink Destroyed My Brush (and through the link from there.) It all goes hand in hand with what I read somewhere that a properly drawn woman doesn’t walk because she is to appear almost weightless. Let’s see if I can talk about this without offending… I think it has something to do with (generally) smaller feet/heels that give the floating impression – so that’s what we are ‘trained to expect’ and therefore supposed to draw. Back up a couple of hundred years and women were definitely drawn/painted more solid, wouldn’t you agree?

♦ This ain’t comics but rather the distant cousin that comics mooches off : newspapers. According to this, the telegraph changed the way newspapers operated by squeezing out written opinions and focusing more on facts and the inverted pyramid style. So the internet with its newsbyte and commentary approach is really something that people always used to do with news. It’s just been suppressed for awhile due to technology and here’s where I tie comics to this anchor. Read the comments in the link from the last paragraph. Line styles in comics are a byproduct of what was most easily reproducible for the technology. Now, that tech allows for seemingly infinite varieties of sequential art; be they motion comics, claymation, infinite canvas or sand in a lightbox. So does that mean that newspaper style strips and supers comic books will give ground to newer sequential forms?

♦ And Ink Destroyed My Brush also mused on why Adults Read Comics. It’s a nice, thoughtful read.

♦ And speaking of technology, you’ve seen Fontifier before, right? I tried one of these services before (I don’t recall if it was Fontifier or not) but my baselines were off. After my first results, I took the scans in a graphics editor and made sure the baselines and verticals were on par for three different fonts. The fonts produced still had jarringly off baselines. Anyone else have that issue or should I just chalk it up to inexperience on my part?

♦ And if you fancy yourself able to draw horses, make sure you draw happy horses when they are are supposed to be. (Caveat: I’m not sure that the Google images for ‘happy horses‘ really show happy horses. I know a few horse owners that I’d ask before I seriously tried to show a horse depicting an emotion.) You probably will also want to see the awesome Mr. Bigg‘s Screeprinting Extravaganza and Adventure. (See the images for the extravaganze and read the comments for the adventure part.)

Comics Oughta Be Fun finished up 365 Days With Ben Grimm and has barely started 365 Days With Sue Storm.

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