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CAPTURING THE MAGIC WITH DIGITAL COMICS
The Magic Window Comics Format: Explained
Magic Window Studios creates digital comics a little differently to most publishers, opting for an approach to framing so that the content remains fixed in a reader’s view. As they progress to the next frame (with the left and right arrow keys), new frames of the comic appear instantly and keeps the reader immersed. This approach enables the use of visual layering, pacing and transitioning within a story that would otherwise be impossible or impractical to implement in a traditional full-page comic book and also preserve elements such as surprises and spoilers until the very moment they are meant to be discovered.
This prototype comic demonstrates some of these elements here:
• Layering and Evolving Frames: An initial background shot can be ‘overlayed’ with additional frames and panels as opposed to creating a whole new scene.
• Dialogue Pacing: When used correctly, it can help readers focus on lines spoken by characters first, in the order they are meant to be spoken.
• Animatic/Animated Scenes: Fixed views allow for the use of limited animation/animatic expressions that would be impossible in a traditional comic book.
• Minimal Scrolling: Readers can stay focused on the action instead of having to scroll around all the time. (True for 1/3rd size comics like this, results vary for other ratios).
(For the best results, click the gallery below to display in front-view for a quick, responsive experience)
Magic Window Format is a presentation style for digital comics best viewed with a Comic viewer where archives can be decompressed and displayed quickly with access to keyboard controls. However, MWC comics are also designed to be convertible to standard comic book formats such as American comic book standards, though some adaptation may be required depending on the techniques used in the MWC version. Inversely, traditional comics can also be converted into the MWC format with adaptation techniques.
Creating Animatic-Style Comics
The Magic Window Comic Format and the Animatic-style of presentation is a way to stir up the excitement and imagination of the reader in a simple way that both creator and reader can learn and master quickly without the need for specialized or expensive software.
By blurring the lines between static and full-motion animation, the reader is given to more contextual information than they could ever have imagined with traditional comics, and are still given the ability to control their pacing and imagination to ‘fill in the blanks’, enhancing their enjoyment without burdening them with complex controls or accidentally ruining their own enjoyment by reading panels out of order.
PLANS FOR THE PRESENT AND FUTURE
There’s a future in this!
In the future, Magic Window Studios hopes to create both digitally enhanced MWC-style comics and also produce premium physical volumes of series and one-shot favourites, granting physical volumes additional content and bonuses not found anywhere else. Those purchasing physical volumes will also receive access to the digital versions of the volume’s contents and updates for free. MWS wants you to know that even if digital is the future, it will always remember the past and the importance and irreplaceable experience of holding a comicbook in your hands.