Right to left, really?

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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby xkrazydog » April 18th, 2012, 11:18 am

darkenergy wrote:
xkrazydog wrote:its because they cant draw facing left. its a huge handicap alot of artists have where they cant draw going in a certain direction. Comics are the same, it clashes when you read left to right but most of your characters/ actions read the opposite direction.


Do you mean people facing left? I'm confused and intrigued.


Left handed people can draw characters facing right more easily, and a right handed person can draw characters facing left. This is a hand-brain coordination issue and habit that can be broken with practice. so to draw an entire comic facing and going in the direction of which your hand and brain aren't used to drawing becomes a daunting task that many manga-inspired artists typically use "Reads right to left like a manga!!" to cover their said handicap and inability to draw action in a particular direction.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby darkenergy » April 18th, 2012, 1:22 pm

xkrazydog wrote:Left handed people can draw characters facing right more easily, and a right handed person can draw characters facing left. This is a hand-brain coordination issue and habit that can be broken with practice. so to draw an entire comic facing and going in the direction of which your hand and brain aren't used to drawing becomes a daunting task that many manga-inspired artists typically use "Reads right to left like a manga!!" to cover their said handicap and inability to draw action in a particular direction.


That's odd...I wonder why that would happen at all. Does it have anything to do with the dominant eye as well? (Personally...I find 3/4 views easiest, not gonna ask about that.)

Creepy, this totally applies to me. I don't think about it much since I don't draw profiles that often, though.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby TennoujiSaki » May 17th, 2012, 11:03 pm

Right to left is logically for Chinese/Japanese AFAIK. Korean and Western are read from left to right. That way of reading for JP/CH and ancient Korean came back from how the Chinese wrote Kanji and bound their books. So IMHO a book with a binding on left when it faces the front cover on you should have contents read from left to right too.

What gain would an artist have when he makes his english manga right-to-left? I don't really get if they use western alphabet that is read from left to right, since western books are read that way too. Maybe it's more acceptable for me if the comic is bound in a Japanese book which have a binding in the right when you face its front cover.

Other than than, it's mere personal preference AFAIAC.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby Jadiekins » May 18th, 2012, 11:53 pm

Wulfmune wrote:I personally don't think that a font would be as offensive as tons of spelling errors and an atrocious website. I have terrible handwriting and I don't notice fonts for the most part unless it's illegible. I guess I don't have an eye for it. *shrug*

It can be on occasion. Good typography and lettering should be seamless and blend in with the artwork. When you use a typeface that is nearly instantly recognizable like Comic Sans or in a few cases Digital Strip, it can be a bit jarring. Also Comic Sans has issue in that the kerning, the space between the letters, is pretty terrible.

As for the right to left thing, I'm kind of in the same camp in which unless the person's native language is written right to left, I'm probably not going to have much interest in the comic.

What gain would an artist have when he makes his english manga right-to-left? I don't really get if they use western alphabet that is read from left to right, since western books are read that way too. Maybe it's more acceptable for me if the comic is bound in a Japanese book which have a binding in the right when you face its front cover.

They'd gain hocking it to all the 14 year olds who want to read authentic 'manga'. I've seen a few manga style books published right to left, and most of the people who buy them tend to be high schoolers. They're more interested in having something in a specific style than having a substantial piece of storytelling.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby Charil » May 19th, 2012, 12:37 am

* preface note, I'm referring solely to webcomics; I haven't seen any printed comics guilty of this, but then again, I haven't read printed comics in a long time

I said something similar in another thread a while ago, but to me the biggest gripe I have about Western comic artists drawing right-to-left comics to be "more like manga" is the lack of flow. These artists make a conscious effort to lay out their panels from right to left, but the contents of the panels are all oriented left to right. And while I don't want to jump to conclusions, as I haven't seen every Western comic that has ever been written right-to-left ever, from what I have seen it just seems like these artists are fighting against what comes natural to them so that they "appear" to be "like a professional manga-ka". Does that make sense? It's 1:30 in the morning.

Sure, in a perfect world the direction an artist decides to draw their comic in shouldn't matter, but I've seen some of these right-to-left mangas that are, seemingly, like left-to-right comics with the panels rearranged. The speech bubbles read from left to right, the action flows from left to right, but the panel order goes right to left, and it's awkward and clunky to read and kind of takes you out of the story when you have to step back and go "oh wait, he says this first, and then she does that".

With those kinds of comics, it's as if the only reason they're writing their comic right-to-left is because that's how Japanese comics read. They don't seem to take into consideration that it's not a stylistic choice in mangas, but the way the language reads.

As for the font thing, I know this is like the worst thing to say, but it honestly doesn't bother me. I know the typesetting is something the artist should really consider and is a legitimate part of the comic, but if I'm just starting to read something that otherwise looks pretty interesting, I'm not gonna throw a fit and click away if the artist is using Comic Sans. The only time I really care too much about what the text is written in is if I literally can't read it (I know, the swirly curly fonts are pretty, but PLEASE they are not suitable for tiny speech bubbles). If I start reading some comic and the dialogue is in Comic Sans, I just kinda laugh a little or roll my eyes and keep reading.

However if I pick up a professional comic in an actual book store and open it up and there's Comic Sans in there, I will friggin throw it on the floor.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby RTSSH21 » May 19th, 2012, 4:39 am

You guys make for a lot of reading sometimes, lol. My excuse is that I started reading manga before I even got into reading novels or western comics - I somehow managed to get started on the "wrong foot" to some degree. Years later, when I tried reading western comics [Batman ftw] I kept reading the wrong way and getting confused. That's when I found out there was a difference. I was too lazy to fix it though, is to this day I still get confused when reading my Batmans and Conans. I do remember choosing to be a lazy derp, so I guess that will continue to be my own fault, haha.

There really is a lot of interesting information here though guys. @.@

Also, I like comic sans when it is lower-case because it has the normal a's and not these weird-looking things that I wasn't taught to write in school. Other than that, even I think the font sucks, but I'll still read whatever. There's a lot of comics that use unfitting fonts that aren't comic sans, so I gave up on that long ago.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby Asj » May 19th, 2012, 8:48 am

I always figured the right-to-left people were just really used to reading that way (I guess like RTSSH21 above). If people read a lot of manga, then want to make a comic, it would only be natural for them to write it in that format.
Even before I started reading manga, I could read English just as easily backwards (except times new roman font - that font's really confusing backwards). And it's easy for me to read in either direction, but I've decided to make all my comics left-to-right because I felt I was a little more used to that way (but I think some people are annoyed that I don't have the pages the other way).
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby darkenergy » May 21st, 2012, 11:23 pm

Charil wrote:And while I don't want to jump to conclusions, as I haven't seen every Western comic that has ever been written right-to-left ever, from what I have seen it just seems like these artists are fighting against what comes natural to them so that they "appear" to be "like a professional manga-ka". Does that make sense? It's 1:30 in the morning.

As for the font thing, I know this is like the worst thing to say, but it honestly doesn't bother me.


It makes sense, maybe because I'm tired too. I'm inclined to agree though I imagine a lot of people who do it aren't thinking super hard about it :O

And yes, it is the worst thing ever. /haha

RTSSH21 wrote:Also, I like comic sans when it is lower-case because it has the normal a's and not these weird-looking things that I wasn't taught to write in school.


Oh man I spent 6th grade writing computer-esque a's. So valley girl.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby RTSSH21 » May 21st, 2012, 11:36 pm

Asj wrote:Even before I started reading manga, I could read English just as easily backwards

This. THEN THIS:
Asj wrote:except times new roman font - that font's really confusing backwards


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darkenergy wrote:Oh man I spent 6th grade writing computer-esque a's. So valley girl.

I didn't even know people butchered the poor little letter until I bought my own laptop. Seriously, all I had read were comics that used all-caps and I made-up my way through everything because all I wanted to do was draw. Didn't even notice. When I did find out, I took white out and tried to correct it as many times as I could. I didn't win, but for some reason it just really pissed me off... **shrugs** Now I just refuse to write or draw it. Can't do much since it's invaded the computer so much, but I still feel better with every normal a I write. Which is stupid, I know, but seriously, its just a thing with me.

Man the principle was pissed at me for trying to correct the text books.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby ZaraLT » May 22nd, 2012, 12:23 pm

I admit, I used to do this when I was younger, but that's mostly due to the fact that pretty much all the comics I was reading at the time were manga and I just became used to reading them in that direction. Eventually I realized my errors and expanded my comic reading material, which lead me to start paneling things left to right as an English-raised person would usually do. I'm glad I figured out why it wasn't necessary, but I can see how some people would make their comics that way if their comic knowledge spawns mostly from manga.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby Crimson Chains » May 22nd, 2012, 1:33 pm

eeehhh...my opinion doesn't really count for much but here's how I see it! XD

So yeah, I draw right to left, and yeah the main reason was just because I read too much manga but ultimately I don't think it's really that big an issue. Sure, For those who are not used to it reading that way can be a huge turnoff and a pain in the ass but I really believe that in a way this jarring feeling could also have a benefit. (of course it isn't good for something to be jarring if you're trying to attract fans and all but I'm just saying what comes to my head without a filter :P)

It's like how our own language limits our perspective on the world and shapes the way that we are able to think. Once we learn a new language we gain new perspective and can think about certain things a bit differently (for example China in Chinese translates to "Middle Kingdom" when your own country's name is basically saying "you are the center of everything" your perspective of your country and all other countries can be a little skewed, by learning to look past some of the limitations of language a person is able to gain a new view on many things.)
In the same way I think that drawing right to left in english can open new doors. I'm not saying it will lead to "amazing" discoveries that would benefit man kind or anything but certainly different techniques and maybe even styles could be developed.

Perhaps it is going against the natural flow of how a person in an English speaking nation should draw, and that by doing so the pages are confusing. This is VERY bad for the reader, but maybe not so much for the artist. If we assume that they realize the pages don't flow well then they will try and fix it and in doing so challenge their mind to work against how it wants to think. This sounds taxing but like learning a language ( I dunno why but since comics are a form of communication I like comparing it to language ._.) after a time you will understand the format, the structure, and how to make it all flow effortlessly. I think that this is a very good challenge for a comic artist to try (even if they don't want to publish a comic that reads that way) because it really makes you think about what makes a comic flow, how do transitions aid or hinder in comprehension? I guess it's a bit like drawing something that you see upside down....it makes you appreciate all the things that usually come naturally to you, and in gaining this understanding you are better able to use these techniques.

By reading in a direction that you are not accustomed to in the language that you are your brain is forced to make new connections and think in a new way. It's an exercise that maybe can be tedious at first but in time it becomes easier and flows better. Yeah, it's definitely not a good thing to make reading your story tedious and by writing right to left you turn away many potential readers, but I'm just saying that maybe there can be even the tiniest value in reading and even writing/drawing something that goes against the general expected flow.

Phew! That was my spiel...sorry if it didn't really make any sense!! >_>;;
and also I'm probably very biased because I do for one believe that my pages are not limited by reading right to left and that they still have some kind of logical flow :P
POMPOSITY!!!! >:D
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby overlordrae » May 25th, 2012, 7:39 pm

Crimson Chains wrote:eeehhh...my opinion doesn't really count for much but here's how I see it! XD

So yeah, I draw right to left, and yeah the main reason was just because I read too much manga but ultimately I don't think it's really that big an issue. Sure, For those who are not used to it reading that way can be a huge turnoff and a pain in the ass but I really believe that in a way this jarring feeling could also have a benefit. (of course it isn't good for something to be jarring if you're trying to attract fans and all but I'm just saying what comes to my head without a filter :P)

It's like how our own language limits our perspective on the world and shapes the way that we are able to think. Once we learn a new language we gain new perspective and can think about certain things a bit differently (for example China in Chinese translates to "Middle Kingdom" when your own country's name is basically saying "you are the center of everything" your perspective of your country and all other countries can be a little skewed, by learning to look past some of the limitations of language a person is able to gain a new view on many things.)
In the same way I think that drawing right to left in english can open new doors. I'm not saying it will lead to "amazing" discoveries that would benefit man kind or anything but certainly different techniques and maybe even styles could be developed.

Perhaps it is going against the natural flow of how a person in an English speaking nation should draw, and that by doing so the pages are confusing. This is VERY bad for the reader, but maybe not so much for the artist. If we assume that they realize the pages don't flow well then they will try and fix it and in doing so challenge their mind to work against how it wants to think. This sounds taxing but like learning a language ( I dunno why but since comics are a form of communication I like comparing it to language ._.) after a time you will understand the format, the structure, and how to make it all flow effortlessly. I think that this is a very good challenge for a comic artist to try (even if they don't want to publish a comic that reads that way) because it really makes you think about what makes a comic flow, how do transitions aid or hinder in comprehension? I guess it's a bit like drawing something that you see upside down....it makes you appreciate all the things that usually come naturally to you, and in gaining this understanding you are better able to use these techniques.

By reading in a direction that you are not accustomed to in the language that you are your brain is forced to make new connections and think in a new way. It's an exercise that maybe can be tedious at first but in time it becomes easier and flows better. Yeah, it's definitely not a good thing to make reading your story tedious and by writing right to left you turn away many potential readers, but I'm just saying that maybe there can be even the tiniest value in reading and even writing/drawing something that goes against the general expected flow.

Phew! That was my spiel...sorry if it didn't really make any sense!! >_>;;
and also I'm probably very biased because I do for one believe that my pages are not limited by reading right to left and that they still have some kind of logical flow :P
POMPOSITY!!!! >:D

You know, looking at your panels, I really would have thought they'd read left-to-right. This one in particular caught my eye as a very left-to-right format.

Sure, making comics right-to-left may be learning a new language. However, making them that way without ever learning how to make panels the way your language reads FIRST is like learning a new language before even learning to write your own(even if you understand it). I think it's detrimental overall.
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby Crimson Chains » May 25th, 2012, 10:43 pm

overlordrae wrote:
Crimson Chains wrote:eeehhh...my opinion doesn't really count for much but here's how I see it! XD

So yeah, I draw right to left, and yeah the main reason was just because I read too much manga but ultimately I don't think it's really that big an issue. Sure, For those who are not used to it reading that way can be a huge turnoff and a pain in the ass but I really believe that in a way this jarring feeling could also have a benefit. (of course it isn't good for something to be jarring if you're trying to attract fans and all but I'm just saying what comes to my head without a filter :P)

It's like how our own language limits our perspective on the world and shapes the way that we are able to think. Once we learn a new language we gain new perspective and can think about certain things a bit differently (for example China in Chinese translates to "Middle Kingdom" when your own country's name is basically saying "you are the center of everything" your perspective of your country and all other countries can be a little skewed, by learning to look past some of the limitations of language a person is able to gain a new view on many things.)
In the same way I think that drawing right to left in english can open new doors. I'm not saying it will lead to "amazing" discoveries that would benefit man kind or anything but certainly different techniques and maybe even styles could be developed.

Perhaps it is going against the natural flow of how a person in an English speaking nation should draw, and that by doing so the pages are confusing. This is VERY bad for the reader, but maybe not so much for the artist. If we assume that they realize the pages don't flow well then they will try and fix it and in doing so challenge their mind to work against how it wants to think. This sounds taxing but like learning a language ( I dunno why but since comics are a form of communication I like comparing it to language ._.) after a time you will understand the format, the structure, and how to make it all flow effortlessly. I think that this is a very good challenge for a comic artist to try (even if they don't want to publish a comic that reads that way) because it really makes you think about what makes a comic flow, how do transitions aid or hinder in comprehension? I guess it's a bit like drawing something that you see upside down....it makes you appreciate all the things that usually come naturally to you, and in gaining this understanding you are better able to use these techniques.

By reading in a direction that you are not accustomed to in the language that you are your brain is forced to make new connections and think in a new way. It's an exercise that maybe can be tedious at first but in time it becomes easier and flows better. Yeah, it's definitely not a good thing to make reading your story tedious and by writing right to left you turn away many potential readers, but I'm just saying that maybe there can be even the tiniest value in reading and even writing/drawing something that goes against the general expected flow.

Phew! That was my spiel...sorry if it didn't really make any sense!! >_>;;
and also I'm probably very biased because I do for one believe that my pages are not limited by reading right to left and that they still have some kind of logical flow :P
POMPOSITY!!!! >:D

You know, looking at your panels, I really would have thought they'd read left-to-right. This one in particular caught my eye as a very left-to-right format.

Sure, making comics right-to-left may be learning a new language. However, making them that way without ever learning how to make panels the way your language reads FIRST is like learning a new language before even learning to write your own(even if you understand it). I think it's detrimental overall.


Geh...I'm looking at that page and can't see why...! >_<;;; You could be right though! XD
I can't honestly tell if something looks right myself anymore >_>;;
But oh well, It's just the way I role and enough people seem to comprehend what's going on that I'm content going the way that I am :3

Technically if you learn a new language first it IS your language XD
I don't think there's anything wrong with doing something new before doing something familiar. If it really is detrimental then I believe that it is possible to adjust it so that it can flow better. I can see that I probably don't have it down but that doesn't mean that there won't be/is someone who is able to do it well or can come up with new innovative ways to use it. I just think that it's good to keep moving forward by working off of anything and that by only working with what we're used to we are limiting possible horizons. Once again, I can totally see how reading right-to-left is a turn off and doesn't seem to make much sense in an english speaking country but, I still think that it's not a bad thing to experiment with things that maybe are inefficient right now. It's a slow and tedious trial and error process but I'm interested to see what people might come up with :3
But yeah, I have drawn left-to-right as well and it's strange but doable for me, so maybe it would be better reader wise to draw that way but I feel like I'm just going to do what's comfortable for me at this time
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby Asj » May 26th, 2012, 8:59 am

I wonder what would happen if someone tried a small comic project, where it's neither right-to-left or left-to-right, but instead depends on what's happening in the comic. Kind of like how (for English) people moving toward the right is supposed to show more action, while people moving to the left shows hesitation (although that would obviously be predominantly left-to-right). So, I would think it would make an interesting exercise to have a short story filled with action and hesitation, and have each page read accordingly. That should teach about flow, right?
I know some comics have dialogue that moves in the opposite direction at times, so it wouldn't be that weird, and if it's done right, it would be very obvious for readers. ...Unfortunately, even for published comics (or maybe especially for published comics), I have trouble telling what to read first in those situations (and sometimes with normal reading direction, but where there's a panel to the side and also one below, where I'm not sure which comes first). :/ I think it's just me, though. ^_^"
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Re: Right to left, really?

Postby inhuman-comic » May 26th, 2012, 9:40 am

climbing on board the agreement train here.
if your comic's language isn't one that reads right to left, you really shouldn't be building your pages in right to left.

it forces the eye to flow one way for dialogue and another way for artwork, which leads to a generally awkward looking piece. the only reason manga began being published in right to left form is that if you flip the artwork in most manga, the flaws in the art become readily exposed and creators didn't like that.

also, tip? no matter how much you attempt to emulate "manga" style, your art will still smack of whatever your home culture's comics are. go ahead, take that 'manga' of yours to japan. but when they tell you it is a 'real american comic' and 'really american' in style? don't come crying to SJ.
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