Creating Comics Panel by Panel
Freaks & Gods Page 9 by Chris Dreier


Tumbling down stairs. I decided to ink the background on this panel first on its own layer.


Once the background was good I turned off that layer and started working on the characters. I soon realized that what I thought was a shadow on the stairs was actually a character’s foot in shadow. You can see it outlined on the first image where only the Clown is inked in the background. Sometimes that happens. Best part about creating comics digitally is mistakes are easily fixed .

In the final inked panel, you’ll see I added some tones. I think it adds to the overall feeling of the scene.



The terrible aftermath. Again, I inked the background first. Sometimes when I’m not really “feeling it” and you artists know what I’m talking about, I’ll start on backgrounds or objects just to get the juices flowing again. It never fails to get me back into it.

This is a good panel to point out textures (again). It’s very important at least for me to add textures to bring a scene alive. The crate on the right side of the panel is a good example. In the pencils there is nothing indicated so I added a simple old wood grain. Along with all the other subtle textures this room looks run down and sort of “seedy”.



Two close ups! We have a close up of the Clown yelling and Magno’s fist powering up. These two panels are pretty straightforward. I added a bit more softness to the face (while perhaps cracking his teeth too much) and kept the fist close to what’s penciled. The energy waves were inked on a separate layer so I can change its color later.



Yikes! Poor Kid. You’ll see all the slight changes I made, mainly to give the form a sense of movement, of being organic. I’ve softened the folds in the costume with feathering that follows the shapes. The feathering on the face is lighter and the hair is more messed up.



In this “punch” panel I defined the arm a bit more than what was penciled. Again, on the boy’s face I “softened” the feathering. Oh, and added Magno’s logo to his chest. It wasn’t there in the pencils.


I hope you and your family are staying safe and healthy during this strange time. Keep making comics and we’ll see you next week!

Chris Dreier

Writer, Artist, Inker, Colorist
His career as an inker over the past twenty years had him working with Antarctic Press, Chaos Comics, AC Comics, Dark Horse Comics, Avatar Press, IDW,  SkyStorm Studios, and Joe Books. Chris is currently working on his creator-own project Freaks & Gods.