For my first webcomic, I’m going MVP.  No, not this kind of MVP:

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This kind of MVP:

mvp

I shall explain.

In the software development world they used to develop everything using a technique called, “Waterfall Development.”  That means, they have lots of meetings, figure out every little bit, every part of the software, all the different things, and then they go off for a year and build this giant software package.

The problem is, by the time you’ve built something, it’s been a year later – and the whole thing is done, so if you need to make a fix, it’s a lot harder.

Where as the MVP model (associated with SCRUM and Agile development) is the Minimum Viable Product.

Basically, the bare bones thing.

Don’t build a car, build a skateboard, then iterate off of that.

You can also breakdown this MVP into smaller parts.  Meaning, don’t go off and build a whole banking application – build the LOGIN screen.  Then go from there.

In comics — there are a lot of moving parts:

Script

Penciling

Inking

Coloring

Lettering

Design.

So for me, rather than spend forever to get the “perfect” comic book done – and then up on the internet.  I’m going to iterate.

So the first stage is going to be black and white with lettering.  And then I’ll figure out color as I go.  Because coloring isn’t just coloring.  I have to decide what exactly is Medusa’s Snake Hair Color?  What is the difference between that and the green of her skin?

There are a whole bunch of decisions that I just plain haven’t made yet.  I’ve been so worried about just getting the darn pages done – I haven’t given a moment’s thought to… “what color is Peter’s T-Shirt?”

So – we’re going to iterate towards a MVP.

Now – while I’m not doing anything in color, I am still doing things in Ink and I do letter them, scan them, design them out.

So – that’s a lot.  For a while, I was trying to do everything every week.

M-F penciling, Sat was inking and scanning, then Sunday was going to be lettering and layout.

Those are some long days.  For me to ink a whole page takes about 6 hours.  Then, lettering and layout, and scanning – I just know that the minute I start doing that – I’m going to run into obstacles (just figuring out how to use illustrator to letter is going to be a problem of its own)

So – we’re going to do things for comics – in sprints.  Rather than doing things all the time.  I’m going to break things down in sprints.

Sprint 4 pages of penciling

Sprint 4 pages of inking

Sprint 4 pages of lettering and layout.

— that should take about a month.  So, while I’m ahead (56 or so pages done) this will keep me in the lead and the momentum going.

Here’s a fun video on SCRUM and MVP.