The Music Revolution

music revolution 

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Launch Date July 2001

Background This was stuck in the closet of my brain just waiting for a slow month.

Original Sketch The sketch helped me more with how to pace the text than what the comic would look like. I think I probably should have played with the layout a little more in order to make it read more smoothly. The original title was going to be "How it Works: Pop Music," but at some point, the idea of "revolution" popped into my head.

Layout The original sketch doesn't have the "turning" aspect to it, but the main idea I wanted to get across was that the process just repeats itself. Now that I've finished, I realize that I probably could have placed the circles in a more traditional panel pattern (a sort of "round square" arrangement with 2 panels on top and two on bottom). That would have made it easier to read, and it would have freed up the need to number the panels (which sorta works counter to the point of the comic, because there's no real start or end). I finally opted for more subtle arrows, although I still can't tell if that was a mistake. The larger circle is suggestive of a CD or record, but it's primary purpose is to "push" you read the panels in the right order. Plus I made the word "revolution" have a roundness to it in order to be another clue. Hopefully, it is clear how to read this thing.

Sketch I sketched out an image of the female pop star and then traced and retraced it in order to get that carbon copy feel.

  The rest of the comic I just sketched directly on the page...Clearly, I should have spent more time...

I used some scrap paper to make sure that I put everything in the right place. Unfortunately, the scrap paper was smaller than the actual drawing so it wasn't that helpful. I think that I'll start trying to use large tracing paper.

Inking The circles were a real pain. My compasses and templates aren't really large enough, and they are especially difficult to use with a pen or brush. I ran around the apartment desperately searching for useful round objects. As it turned out, it was pretty difficult to get a crisp line.

I'm still trying to find a good way to do transitional darks. As you can see in panels 2 and 3, I'm trying to make a faint glow around the male popstar and have it get gradually darker the farther away you get. In panel #2, I just used a brush to make "feathering" lines around the singer and then just blacked in the rest. In # 3, I used a rapidograph pen and parallel lines (in varying directions) that got increasingly denser the further away from the singer. Neither attempt seems terribly successful.

Lettering I think this is overly wordy. At first I thought that would make it a little more interesting, but I think it really just bogs it down. Getting the curve on "revolution" wasn't as difficult as I thought, but getting the letters to be evenly spaced was. As you can see, there's a pretty big gap between the L and the U.

Ultimately Reducing the text, cleaning up some random lines, arranging the panels differently--I think there were some simple things that would have made this read a lot better. However, as Jo pointed out, the whole thrust of the comic is a point that I tend to make often (see Conspiracy #1).

What People are Saying About The Music Revolution


Brian sez:

Good stuff. The title "revolution" makes that one for me, and I think. you're right about not using numbers.

Metyko sez:

which came first, the wash or the spin cycle? nevertheless, shows this revolution is a symetric cyclical (cynical?) thing... wait, is that evolution? devolution?? i always found it odd that "revolution" is sometimes per minute, and sometimes not (e.g., the industrial revolution). revolutions tend make one think of endless loops, ever-repeating numbers... random, and yet systematic. like rabits. 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 1 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 1 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 1 1 0 1 ...