Creating A Manga Isn’t Easy


I forgot how hard it is starting a new comic book series. I’m going to have to put Dragons Amulet on hold again, the ideas are just not panning out smoothly. I love creating manga, but it’s extremely difficult and time consuming to create. Here’s what I do to create a manga:

1) I do research by choosing an era and study the clothing, customs, weapons, military and mythology…

2) Then I buy several books in order to get inspiration, to learn and depict the series to be culturally accurate.

3) I use my “elemental character chart” which is a special system I use to create base characters, which I tweak them around into more unique characters later on by basing them on real people.

4) Once I have the main cast, I design the character concepts designs.

5) Next I choose the “flavor” of my story, such as; adventure, fantasy, comedy, action, drama…etc. and the targeted audience (niche and age group).

6) I start writing the backdrop of the story by creating an entire world for the series: the environment, culture, government, folklore and I also draw a map to give an idea of what the world looks like in the story.

7) Then I work on a script for the pilot chapter by writing the dialogue, scenes and panel cuts (which have to be exact). At this stage, the script is edited and reviewed by Zoraida & Aaron.

8) After the script is completed, I start sketching the manga with pencils according to the script.

9) If I’m happy with the result, I redraw the entire chapter again using special manga pens, Japanese sumi-e brush, stencils, rulers and a light box.

10) Each page is scanned into Adobe Photoshop, edited, add screentones if it’s going to be in B&W. If it’s going to be in color, I use my mouse and color the characters, insert my nature photos and use them as part of the textures in the background and foreground. I edit my photos using various effects.

11) After the illustrations are completed, I insert dialogue bubbles and text, which is edited again.

12) Once I’m happy with the result, I downsize my manga and insert my copyright watermarks ready for web. Then the most difficult part of all, is promoting it… I post my manga everywhere – Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, WordPress, Weebly, YouTube, Instagram, Google+, Artfire and putting my business cards on cork boards in stores (hoping someone may check it out).

Time it takes for me to complete an entire 16-20 page chapter is about 4-6 months. It’s fun and challenging, but can be stressful, trying to gain a “fan base”, doing all the work and to get exposure. Creating manga is time consuming and a huge amount of work, but I still enjoy it! I’d enjoy it even more if it had more interaction and fans of my series though… All I can do is keep at it and maybe someday the right person will help market it for me and will someday become an anime! *_*

20140305-135127.jpgMap of the world of Ronin Yoshino, my original manga (comic) book series.

Check out my video on the different steps of a Ronin Yoshino illustration here:

Categories: Manga, Ronin Yoshino | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Creating A Manga Isn’t Easy

  1. WOW!!! Thank you for giving a peek into your world as you create a manga. Had no idea it was so slow going and detailed. Since I love maps of all kinds, I’m taken with your map of Fujiwara above. To have all that in your creative mind! Promo is the worst for all of us, I think. Wishing you the best that you will be discovered big time. Peace and joy . . . Catherine

    • Thank you so much for your compliments Catherine! I like maps too and I enjoyed creating this one 🙂

  2. I really admire the all the well researched detail you put into your work. Many would simply gloss over such things. It adds great depth to your manga not to mention the beautiful artwork and fascinating story line. Your characters feel like real people. Good work!!!!!

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