How to draw comics page layout

How to draw comics page layout. This is how I usually draw comics page thumbnails and page layout before I finalize the drawing.
Step 1 thumbnails page layout story telling. How to draw Manga step by step. I personally like to layout story along with thumbnails pages, kind of like story board or box that show sequential art along with rough script.

This is a sample of final comics page layout.

final comics page layout

final comics page layout

At this stage, I just lay them out just for myself to know what’s going on in each panel. There is not yet appropriate action poses, environment, and composition within each box. My only concern at the moment is spontaneous story and continuous action or drama. I usually lay out about 3-4 of this little thumbnail pages at the time (in one session) so that it congruent with the continuous train of thought sequences. They are more like quick mark up scripts to me.

**Looking at the vote, I can already see unanimous decision and “Shanghai Express” (to be renamed) is pretty much the winner. 24 Votes out of 29!
Meaning, Dogs of War will have to take a loooooong break, and perhaps some day will re-emerge someday with new style?
So I will continue the Manga/Graphic Novel from here on. Of course along with other tutorials. I will take the voting widget down today.
Thank you all for your feedback!!! :)
If it’s ever get to become something, just know that you guys are part of the making.*** 😉

Here are thumbnails layout for page 3 and page 4 for “Shanghai Express” *temporary name.
They are really small in the sketchbook. The whole thumbnail pages is probably around 3 x 5.

Here is the first thumbnail page to get the idea out.

how to draw comics thumbnail layout

how to draw comics thumbnail layout

Step 2
Then, I will spend some time to figure out the pose of the characters, background, and compositions to get a bit more detail. These are also really quick sketch, sort of drawing quick gesture sketch within each panel. Also keep the dialogs in the bubbles in mind as you go. After I finish these rough layout, then I will go into each panel and start drawing over the sketch. Things still could be changed a bit here and there if I have better idea for poses or expression. Though at this stage, the composition will be extremely difficult to change because of the restraint of the page and panels layout nature.

how to draw comics page layout

how to draw comics page layout

More drawing comics tutorials
-How to draw Shadowcat Kitty
-How to draw Psylocke
-How to draw Harley Quinn

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About Xia Taptara

Xia Taptara (黃曉聲 Huang XiaoShēng), currently a freelance concept artist for games and films, formerly a character concept artist for ArenaNet/NCsoft (GuildWars & Guildwars 2). I also work on various projects for Game of Thrones, Square-Enix, Paizo Publishing, Fantasy Fight Games, Disney Interactive, and many publishers & clients. I use Wacom Tablet Intuos and Photoshop CS2,3,4,5 to do most of my professional art work. I use pencil, pen, and traditional medium in my free time. I founded ( in 2007 to motivate myself to create more and better art. Also I get to draw and paint whatever the hell I want to. Hopefully I can inspired some young soul and old soul alike. *QUESTIONS & COMMENT: PLEASE POST THEM ON THE BLOG. Or CONTACT ME via idrawgirls Facebook page. DO NOT E-MAIL ME. Thank you. ;-)
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6 Responses to How to draw comics page layout

  1. Xia Taptara says:

    Glad they are helpful. You are most welcome. Cheers!

  2. Ayame Chise says:

    Hi! This is Ayame Chise.

    I am currently doing a doujinshi for someone, and I have ABSOLUTE NO IDEA HOW TO MAKE A LAYOUT
    But I read through this, and I just wanted to let you know that you helped me with formatting and all sorts of things. Thank you so much, and I will credit you for your assistance! :) (P.S, I think you are an AMAZING artist!)

    Have a cookie~~!! 😀

  3. britannie says:

    thx so much.

  4. kamile says:

    this was very helpful :)

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