Manga Panels: How Much Do We Know?

Manga Panels

Manga Panels: Introduction?

In the manga, panels are employed to bring structure and rhythm to the tale. When you make one, you’re essentially making a frame that will hold the action. While the actual product is very simple, determining the best technique to contain the action may be more difficult.

Manga Panels: Read The Script

Read the script for the manga you’re drawing because it will serve as a roadmap for your panelling ideas. If you’re making a classic manga, consider making the page with panels that go from right to left. Get a sense of what you’re aiming to represent, as the genre and writing style may influence how you make your panels. Is the manga a comedy, a mystery, or a combination of the two? Will there be a lot of tension, or will it be more direct? Is it aimed at a general audience or may it be avant-garde?

Manga Panels: Six basic panel transitions used in comics

  • Moment-to-moment depicts an event that occurs in an instant (Panel 1: Man looking forward. Panel 2: A man looks behind him).
  • Action-to-Action is similar, but it indicates that something more physical has occurred (Panel 1: A man delivers a punch to a punching bag. Panel 2: A man lands a right hook on a punching bag.
  • Subject-to-subject indicates that a small amount of time has elapsed between panels (Panel 1: Man fastens the guitar strings to his guitar. Panel 2: A man is playing the guitar).
  • From scene to scene, there is either a change in location or a considerable passage of time (Panel 1: Woman travels through the building’s corridor. Panel 2: A automobile is parked in front of the building.
  • Aspect-to-aspect depicts something from the perspective of a character (Panel 1: Woman glances up. Panel 2: A broken ceiling fan hovers over her [from her point of view]).
  • A non-sequitur is a transition that appears to have no logical significance (Panel 1: Woman sits on a chair. Panel 2 depicts a lioness chasing a gazelle.

Manga Panels: Determine the design of the panel

Choose a design for the panel. If six people are standing in one room in a scenario, you’ll typically want to position them in one long, horizontal panel to give the area a panoramic aspect. If you want to make the same scene feel more claustrophobic, put all six characters in a vertical panel. Create a single panel that takes up the majority (if not all) of the page for establishing shots and large character entrances.

Manga Panels: Assess the types of shots you can use

Examine the many types of photos you have at your disposal. If a scene necessitates an extreme close-up, that panel will not take up much space on the page. If a scene requires a group shot (a group of characters standing together in unison), you could definitely fit them in a mid-sized panel. Furthermore, the “camera” does not have to be oriented directly at the gathering. They could be in a three-quarter position or even with their backs to the “camera.”

Manga Panels: Use fewer, larger panels to depict dynamic scenes

Use fewer, larger panels to depict dynamic scenes. If you’re drawing a long action sequence that will span several pages, stick to two to four panels per page.

Manga Panels
Manga Panels: Magic

The action will be fast-paced this way, yet the reader will be able to feel the intensity. Use at least three to six panels (perhaps more) per page to act as a “countdown” to the excitement if you’re building up to an action sequence.

Use fewer, larger panels to depict dynamic scenes

Use fewer, larger panels to depict dynamic scenes. If you’re drawing a long action sequence that will span several pages, stick to two to four panels per page. The action will be fast-paced this way, yet the reader will be able to feel the intensity. Use at least three to six panels (perhaps more) per page to act as a “countdown” to the excitement if you’re building up to an action sequence.

Manga Panels: depict discussions, use medium-sized panels

To depict discussions, use medium-sized panels (four to six per page). Manga is all about capturing the moment, whether it’s two people conversing or one character pondering to himself. In Western comics, a dialogue might take two pages with six panels each, whereas a manga conversation could take eight pages with four panels each.

Determine what is unnecessary in the panel

Just because the screenplay specifies a close-up doesn’t mean you have to create a mid-sized panel with a character’s face glaring out of it. You could sketch a small panel that just exposes the left side of a character’s face, allowing the reader to complete the panel in their minds.

More Info

Draw your panels with a straight-edge ruler to ensure they are sharp and clean. A simple square is the most basic panel: two parallel horizontal lines connected by two parallel vertical lines.

Some artists divide a panel into thirds horizontally and vertically before drawing anything. The crossing points are then used as recommendations to locate the scene’s key focal points.

To avoid smearing, sketch with a little sheet of notebook paper under your drawing hand.

H-pencils (hard-leaded) are ideal for initial sketching, while B-pencils (soft-leaded) are ideal for filling in the lines.

Don’t use the same panel size/position for every scene; it will become tedious very rapidly. Experiment with various geometric forms such as pentagons and circles. Also, don’t confine all of the action to the panel. There are numerous occasions where a hand can stretch into the gutter of the page or a character can pose in the foreground of the page with four panels behind him in the background.

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