Volume 4 Page 145
Posted July 6, 2018 at 12:01 am

Panel 5: I kinda backed myself into a narrative corner with the staging for this scene. See, ideally, you always want your action to read left-to-right across the panel and/or page, in the same direction in which you read a Western-language comic. (Reverse this reading order for an untranslated manga page, of course.) Ah, but because of how I placed the overturned pickup truck on the highway overpass, I had to show that g-d 18-wheeler moving right-to-left, in the space between the pickup and guardrail; otherwise, the big truck would obscure the little truck as it passed.

Alternative ways to get around this issue do exist, but I found none of them particularly appetizing. I could’ve swung the camera around and shown the overturned pickup at far left, then the 18-wheeler hitting “Cap’n Boots” at right, but placed a fair distance down the highway. Problem is, that g-d guardrail would’ve had to be visible in the foreground. Or I could’ve raised the camera above the guardrail for a down-angled shot, but that would’ve lost the existing shot’s “in-your-face” drama and impact of Cap’n Boots getting hit. (Downshots in general absolutely kill drama, as they all too often tend to have the distancing effect of security-camera footage.)

In any event, a li’l right-to-left action staging isn’t the end of the world. I thoroughly enjoy like this panel as is, even its reading order isn’t quite perfect.

-Adam Warren

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