Friends With Boys - Page 77

Yeah, I’m sure Jack Kerouac started his hitchhiking journey across America in front of his parents’ house … also, this was not deliberate at all, but Zander really looks like Wolverine with that jacket on.

I wanted to link to/mention a couple of little things in addition to last week’s “work really hard on your webcomic, the right people will notice eventually” post. First of all, Colleen Doran, who has been around comics much longer than I have, and has actually made some money from converting her long running print comic to the web, posted a long and thoughtful post on doing webcomics. She has good things to say, and I like her comments on how what works for one kind of webcomic doesn’t always work for another.

Second, on the “work hard” front, here is a lovely video of Kaoru Mori, a very talented, VERY hardworking manga artist drawing an illustration. The amount of detail and care she puts into her work is stunning and inspiring, and makes me want to work even harder on my own drawing. I want sometime in the future to do a list of recommended/influential comics, both North American and otherwise, and her book A Bride’s Story would be on that list (the drawing she’s working on in the video is of the main character in A Bride’s Story). She is very, very good at what she does, and if you enjoy historical, slice of life comics, I recommend it highly.

Thirdly, I drew these remakes a while ago, but I think they’re still fun, and it shows how much you can improve over … oh, ten years or so. The original panels are from my old webcomic Demonology 101 and were drawn in the early 2000s. The redrawn panels were drawn in 2009, when I was visiting my parents and very bored. XD

TA DAAAAA! There are two more here and here, if you want to see. XD Redrawing old artwork is such self-indulgent fun.


18 Responses

  1. eightyfour says:

    Y’know, as much as you have improved as an artist, I really do like your older style a lot! It’s what hooked me to D101 initially and played a big part in converting me into a faithful (ha, pun absolutely intended!) reader of yours. I find it difficult to describe, but I feel the wonkyness/blotchyness kinda adds to the atmosphere. :)

  2. tecrogue says:

    I feel really dumb now… I used to read D101 all the time, and while I no longer remember how I found out about Friends With Boys, I have been reading it since at least the first 5 strips, but I never made the connection!

    And now I’m realizing that my first comment here, (I think) was about me being dumb…

    …I’m just going to go sit in the corner and lurk some more now :P

  3. Janna says:

    But the old ones are good! Obviously they’re in different manner, much more sketchy and all, but I like how they’re lively and freehanded.
    Also: thank you so very much for the link to Kaoru Mori! I’m completely delighted.

    Also2: please, please post a list of recommendations! There must be so many comics/graphic novels out there I have no idea of, that it itches!

  4. snapdragon76 says:

    I’ve seen that video of Mori-sensei’s work and was very impressed with the amount of detail she puts into everything. I’ve been a fan of hers since ‘Emma’, so I can definitely appreciate the quality.

  5. Ed Sizemore says:

    Totally agree with you on Mori. I can spend hours just leisurely flipping through A Bride’s Story, it’s utterly gorgeous. Waiting a year between volumes is going to be murder.

  6. Heather says:

    I find it kind of interesting that not long after you start publishing Friends with Boys online that a show on YTV premieres called Life with Boys, about a teen girl living with her three brothers and father.

    Just an interesting coincidence… :)

  7. Vanessa says:

    Kaoru Mori is an example of an artist that constantly improves, too! I think that there was a huge leap in talent between Emma and A Bride’s Story (which I adore).

    I also love getting to see your own work. I like your staging much better now – lots more perspective! :)

  8. Nojh says:

    I actually have to agree with the first few commenters about your D101 sketches. Both the new and old sketches have serious merit to them. I mostly like the shading of the older style. Your blocking and perspective is way better these days than it used to be.

    So don’t get me wrong, I am loving Friends with Boys and I want to see it finished but I wouldn’t mind you being bored enough to completely remake D101 and maybe combine it into a graphic novel or something so I could finally get my friends to read it.

  9. sollette says:

    I just wanted to say that you are an AMAZING artist. I found D101 around the time you were doing Episode 3 and was immediately hooked! I’ve always thought you were fantastic, both with the art and story-telling, but it’s been a pleasure to watch your art grow and change over the years.

    I will say, though, that I do miss a lot of your older pictures, which you don’t have up any more. I was trying to explain to my husband this really beautiful picture you did for “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” (the one with Clem and Joel on the ice, and she’s naked and whatnot) and I just had to give up because I couldn’t describe it with as much beauty and feeling as you could draw it.

    So, yeah, keep up the awesome!

  10. Nathan Milos says:

    It’s really great to see your old work versus your new (as in the post on October 14th), but it’s even better to see these re-drawings of old work. The clean confident lines just show how much someone can improve by working. Like all the other posters, I find the original artwork compelling. But as a teacher (currently of struggling writing students), I think it’s refreshing to see how much confidence you gained in your own craft by working at it. Seeing this has given me an idea for my class. I may ask the students to compare the work their doing at the end of the quarter with their first essay, just to see how far they’ve come. Our final exam is a common prompt, graded anonymously by other instructors and worth 25% of their grade. Showing them improvement might spark some confidence. Thanks for the inspiration and for sharing your comic on the web. I’m really enjoying it. I can’t wait to buy a hard copy.

  11. Ara says:

    Yeah~great page as usual. Now I’m curious about Zander’s past hitchhiking experiments. Maggie and Daniel’s remind me of the times I would “run away” from home but get distracted and end up playing in the yard next to my suitcase.
    I’ve never seen that video of Kaoru Mori (so thanks for posting it :D) but I love her work, hers are some of the few books I don’t bat an eyelash at buying. A Bride’s Story is particularly to die for.

    • Faith Erin Hicks says:

      Hahah, yeah, I was very committed to running away and living in the woods as a kid, mostly because the Swiss Family Robinson had such a bitchin’ treehouse. And monkey butlers would help me build the thing! …. I think there was a Simpsons episode about that. It didn’t end well.

  12. Anii says:

    AH this is waaay cool! Thanks for being so awesome and brining up really great things!

  13. […] I loved that Faith Erin Hicks posted her “Then and Now” picks in her Friends With Boys blog. Um, are you not reading that comic? Click the link, […]

  14. […] is a followup post on this subject from Faith which also links to Colleen Doran’s thoughts on what work some […]

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Friends With Boys, webcomic edition!

Hello readers, new ones just discovering the comic and those who’ve been with it since the beginning. Friends With Boys is now complete online. You may read it in its entirety, all 200+ pages, for free, for the next eight days. Then the image files of the comic (except for a short preview) will be taken down. While the comic was being serialized online, I blogged a lot about my comic making process. I did write ups about how I make comics, what my opinions on what makes a good comic are, and pointed out various Easter eggs throughout Friends With Boys. That stuff will all remain up, so if you buy a hard copy of Friends With Boys, you can still read along with my thought process.

And now (today!), Friends With Boys is a published book! Yay! I hope that if you’ve read the web version and liked it, and want to support me as a creator, you’ll consider buying the book.

I’ve really enjoyed serializing Friends With Boys online. If you’re new to my work, I started out making comics online before moving into print. I posted the very first page of my very first online comic on my very first website back in August, 1999, and wow, was that page ugly. Here it is! Notice a weird similarity to the first page of Friends With Boys? Yeah, that was not deliberate, I promise. But look how much your drawing skills can improve if you draw thousands of pages of comics over a ten year period! Anyway, I’m really thrilled my wonderful publisher First Second Books has allowed me to return to my roots and put Friends With Boys online as a lead up to its publication. As a reader and purchaser of comics, I have bought quite a few hard copy versions of online comics, because I enjoy the reading experience of having the whole thing collected, and I want to support the author. I hope you will too. :)

Otherwise, there are a few upcoming events I hope to see some readers at:
Book signing! At my local comics shop Strange Adventures, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, March 3rd (Saturday), 2-4pm (EDITING TO ADD: The book launch has been moved to the following Saturday due to the books not shipping to Strange Adventures on time. The launch will now be March 10th from 2-4pm. Go here for info).
Comic convention! I’ll have a table at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival, May 6th-7th. There are a few other conventions I am trying to attend, but everything else is up in the air at the moment. For updates, please follow my twitter or join my Facebook fan page.  I’m pretty good about updating those two spots.

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