So, after I was elated about getting an iPad, I was greatly disappointed with the same restrictions this new device would have like on my iPhone. Regardless, I’m sure about the next year or two, this will not be a problem. Seeing that Marvel is jumping first on the bandwagon with their app, here are some of my thoughts on digital comics.
Having my iPhone, I’ve downloaded many free comics which I keep to use as time killers where I am. One of the things I sort of like is the landscape vs portrait setting that I can quickly change on my phone by move it to a different direction. Having worked on my own comic and comic layout, I struggled to decide on the panel structure which had I wanted to have a certain flow. With the digital comics on my phone, if I used the landscape feature, I had a panel by panel view with the swipe of my finger. Going with the portrait, I could see the whole layout per page but the screen on the iPhone was too small to really read without having to enlarge the print. Moving forward to the iPad, I could see the benefit of the larger screen to read these comics.
Next, I have stopped collecting single comics together and have a limited my tradepaper collection to those who I feel is worth my money like the Ultimates 1 & 2. Also, having a family, I don’t have room for my stuff so going digital is a great option to have except for this notion. The tactile feeling I got from reading a book vs a digital version of the same book are two different beasts. The hardcore comic collector in me remembered the day Jean Grey died on the Moon during the Dark Phoenix Saga and I don’t know if I could feel the same way reading the same story on a computer screen or in this case, an iPad.
Carry this notion one step forward, one of the things you can do with comics is lend it out to your friends. How excited I was to be lent the hardcover edition of the Ultimates 2 from my friend Mr.Gene only to be over whelmed with a huge multi splash page. There is no way you can convey the same awe-inspiring scene frozen in time without having to either shrink down the shot to fit the iPad screen or to break it down shot by shot. As I’ve mentioned above, there will be a loss in the visual impact and the reader connection to a story.
I am not blaming the iPad for the digitization revolution but there has to some type of consideration and same thought process when it comes to making a digital comic. How can I recommend to someone to read a comic I own if I can’t lend it out my copy because it’s on my iPad? Can a transfer my copy…oh, I can’t because the iPad doesn’t have any USB ports; WTF? Or how can I get my favorite comic signed by my favorite artists/writer? What will happen to the plastic bag and boards industry? We won’t need to protect any digital comics? What will happen to my paper collection; will it rise in value or drop?
What do you think about this digital matter?
Submitted by Rich Johnston on April 2, 2010 – 5:00 pm (6) comments
Well, Marvel made it all official like. I understand a number of Marvel freelancers received e-mails concerning the news.
Dear Marvel Creators,
Today, Friday April 2nd, we’re pleased to announce the Marvel Comics App, a revolutionary new app that’s going to bring our comics to a whole new audience. It’ll be available for free on iTunes, iPod Touch and iPad. We’re also launching with some free content.
You’re likely to get a lot of inquiries from press about your reaction to this development, how it affects you and what it means for the industry. As always, we’re glad to see you get the press and represent Marvel on a global scale.
However, we’re hoping to keep the press focused on how this brings the Marvel Universe to a new audience, presents our great stories in a new way and drives customers to comic shops. Some reporters will try to make this about the notion of the print industry dying or Marvel abandoning the direct market, when we all know we’re 100% committed to our retail partners. From the Comic Shop Locator built into the app to the mention of comi