Tips for Making Comics

Tips for Making Comics

by Ted Bergeron

  • @TedBergeron1



Why do cows wear bells?


Their horns don’t work.


TLAPD 2015 colors

What the future needs?

You know what the future needs?

It needs new stories and it needs you to make them.

Pigeon Net



With all the reality shows I think TV is scraping the bottom of the barrel.

Write a comicbook that is a sitcom. Think of each 22 page comic book like a 22 minute episode of a sitcom.


Look at all the movies made from comic books right now!

Great heros like Superman and Tarzan…​

  • How many more remakes of Tarzan is Hollywood going to make?

  • Hollywood is scraping the bottom of the barrel too.

  • They seem to be out of ideas.

Original Characters

Create your own original characters. The world needs new characters.

Teeny Tiny Toads

TeenyTinyToads two characte

Teeny Tiny Toads

2016 10 14 19.39.15crop

Teeny Tiny Toads

elf 1toad colors3


You need a pencil (or maybe just your phone)

  • Writer? Composition notebook

  • Artist? Sketchbook

Make marks in them everyday!

Quote: Jake Parker

Fill up a sketchbook every month.


Get in a habit of writing or sketching everyday.

2016 11 02 20.22.45

Using a Sketchbook

Draw on one side so ink doesn’t ruin art on back.

No Standard Script Format

Here’s my easy format for writing a full script

pg #1

  • panel 1 - we see two people going up a hill.

    • Jack: Did you hear that?

    • Jill: What was it?

  • panel 2

  • panel 3

Quote: Brian Michael Bendis

95% of the artists he works with want a 'full script'.

TIP: One action per panel


Quote: Frank Miller

Describe what we are looking at.

e.g. panel 1 - We see a tiny toad leaping off a mushroom into a bed of soft moss.

"Show don’t tell". Like writing a movie script.

Quote: Kurt Busiek

Ask the artist for a wish list of what they want to draw. It’s a collaboration.

Snoopy fired from MetLife

SnoopyFired 2016 10 21 18.3

After 31 years at MetLife.

Quote: Brian Michael Bendis

Write for one person: your artist.

If you don’t have an artist already, pick one you like and really study their work.

Look how much room Will Eisner leaves for dialog. Look how he does expressions.

Maybe the artist will do such a great job with an expression that you can remove the dialog. The picture says it all.

Writing Class at PCC Portland

Brian Michael Bendis and David F. Walker are teaching a class on writing comics at PCC in Portland.

Quote: Terry Moore

It’s a people business.

Learn to collaborate

Making money

If you are creating comics at least once a month

Self Publishing

Use social media: Twitter, FB, Tumbler…​

Once you have a least a few hundred followers, you’ll be ready to launch a KickStarter campaign.

What do creators earn?

JobMainstreamIndie22 page book

Line Art

$200 - $380

$100 - $250

$2200 - $8360


$80 - $100

$25 - $100

$550 - $2200


$600 - $700

$200 - $500

$200 - $700

What do creators earn? (con’t)

JobMainstreamIndie22 page book


$20 - $25

$10 - $20

$220 - $500


$80 - $135

$20 - $80

$440 - $2970

Colors (after flats)

$65 - $120

$10 - $70

$220 - $2640

Oregon Minimum Wage

$9.75 / hr = $20,280 / yr

Starting Indie making minimum

  • Writing: $550 / book …​ need 37 per year (3 / mon)

  • Pencils/Inks: $2200 / book …​ need 10 per year ( 1 / mon)

  • Lettering: $220 / book …​ need 92 per year (8 / mon)

Word Balloons

Make better word balloons

Adventure Yak

AdventureYak color

Quote: Jake Parker

Finished not perfect!

Baleen, it works!


Ted Bergeron

  • @TedBergeron1