PDA

View Full Version : First Person Perspective


gmartyt
05-10-2016, 03:02 AM
So, lately I've been thinking about the first person perspective and how to use it in comics. I know that POV shots are used from time to time, but they are usually used for a single panel. I'm talking about using it for an entire sequence, or even an entire scene. I'm just curious to see what it can actually do, or if it's even worth using. Anyway, here's a little exercise I did to give it a try. Let me know your thoughts. (I'd like for this to turn into a discussion, but that's me.)


PAGE ONE (six panels)


Panel 1. Outside Greg's house. Daytime. Greg has opened the driver side door of his car (doesn't matter what kind) and is getting into the car.

NO COPY


Panel 2. Shot from the passenger's seat. Greg, sitting in the car, is closing the door behind him.

NO COPY


Panel 3. Same shot as the previous panel. Greg, a look of discomfort on his face, looks like he is pulling a loose hair off of his cheek with his right hand.
NO COPY


Panel 4. Same shot as the previous panel. Greg is examining his right hand, which he is holding a ways out in front of him over the passenger's seat. His fingers are pinched together, as if he is holding a hair in them.

NO COPY


Panel 5. Greg's POV. Greg is looking at his right hand, fingers still pinched together.

GREG:
Weird...

GREG:
I thought I felt a hair.


Panel 6. Greg's POV. Greg is looking down at his leg. A blurry brown dot (a small spider) is hovering over his leg.

GREG:
What the...?


PAGE TWO (six panels)

All of the panels on this page are from Greg's POV.


Panel 1. The spider has come into focus. It is attached to a web, but the web can't be seen, making it look like the spider is hovering in the air.

GREG:
Oh. Hey there, Spider-bro.

GREG:
How's it hangin'?


Panel 2. The spider is crawling up the web towards the top of the panel.

GREG:
Heh. “How's it hangin'.” I'm so cle--


Panel 3. The spider is moving straight towards the camera.

GREG:
What?!


Panel 4. Greg is leaning back against the window. The spider is still moving towards the camera.

GREG:
N-no!


Panel 5. Greg has made a horizontal chopping motion with his right hand, as if he is trying to cut the spiderweb (use motion lines). The spider has moved even closer.

GREG:
Go away!


Panel 6. The spider has almost reached the camera.

GREG:
Stop!



PAGE THREE (six panels)

Panel 1. Shot from the passenger's seat. Greg has desperately grabbed at his face.

GREG:
Gah!


Panel 2. Shot from outside the car. Greg is frantically stumbling out of the car.

NO COPY


Panel 3. Greg is frantically wiping off his clothes. The car door is still open.

NO COPY


Panel 4. Greg, freaked out, is looking back at the car, rubbing his arms in discomfort.

NO COPY


Panel 5. Greg, still rubbing his arms, has recoiled from the car.

NO COPY


Panel 6. Greg, glancing at the car over his shoulder, is walking away, still rubbing his arms.

NO COPY

Forkdude
05-10-2016, 12:55 PM
I don't have any pool of experience to pull from here on the topic of POV scenes, but I think that it may be disorienting. On this page, we were looking at the same basic panel, with one thing varying the entire time. that's easy to understand and follow. But if the POV is moving fast, when sprinting or turning his head, it might be harder to follow.
I would imagine POV during fast action could be done with speed lines possibly?

Kiyoko, Rin
05-10-2016, 01:21 PM
First Person Perspective

PAGE ONE (six panels)


Panel 1. Outside Greg's house. Daytime. Greg has opened the driver side door of his car (doesn't matter what kind) and is getting into the car. (Im claiming this script on behalf of the UK; therefore, hes getting into the right hand side of the car.)

NO COPY


Panel 2. Shot from the passenger's seat. Greg, sitting in the car, is closing (its a static medium so this will look like a static image. Either mention motion lines, or change the picture so hes just slammed the door shut. The latter will need a SFX to this effect.) the door behind him.

NO COPY


Panel 3. Same shot (not the same shot its the same vantage point) as the previous panel. Greg, a look of discomfort on his face, looks like he is pulling a loose hair off of his cheek with his right hand. (As this is now set in the UK, hes using his left hand. I forgive you.)
NO COPY


Panel 4. Same shot () as the previous panel. Greg is examining his right hand (), which he is holding a ways out in front of him over the passenger's seat. His fingers are pinched together, as if he is holding a hair in them.

NO COPY


Panel 5. Greg's POV. Greg is looking at his right hand (), fingers still pinched together.

GREG (OP):
Weird...

GREG:
I thought I felt a hair. (Hmm. Im not a great fan of speaking aloud for the purposes of exposition. But then, the comics industry in this present day is even less fond of using thought balloons. They might be useful here.)


Panel 6. Greg's POV. Greg is looking down at his legs. A blurry brown dot (a small spider (How small? You need to be specific because its size will be a factor in how scared well be when it later crawls towards us) is hovering over his leg.

GREG (OP. In fact, all the subjective POV shots need an OP tag before Gregs copy):
What the...?


PAGE TWO (six panels)

All of the panels on this page are from Greg's POV. Nice clarification.


Panel 1. The spider has come into focus. It is attached to a web (do you mean its dangling from a thread in which case itd be upside down or do you mean its standing on, or clinging onto, a web? If the latter two, we need to know if its horizontal or vertical) , but the web can't be seen, making it look like the spider is hovering in the air.

GREG:
Oh. Hey there, Spider-bro.

GREG:
How's it hangin'? (Again, clarify the position, otherwise this pun wont work.)


Panel 2. The spider is crawling up the web (So the web runs from top to bottom, meaning panel 1 should have been position 3.) towards the top of the panel.

GREG:
Heh. How's it hangin'. I'm so cle--


Panel 3. The spider is moving straight towards the camera.

GREG:
What?!


Panel 4. Greg is leaning back against the window ( but because this is a POV shot, the details the artist needs to convey this would be that Gregs arms are pushing at the dashboard and seat). The spider is still moving towards the camera.

GREG:
N-no!


Panel 5. Greg has made a horizontal chopping motion with his right hand, as if he is trying to cut the spiderweb (the last few words convey his intention, which would be more easily conferred if he wonders aloud why he cant find webs to chop through. To the reader, a flying spider isnt that unusual in a medium where anything can have super powers, so theyd wonder instead why hes not trying to attack the spider itself rather than webs theyve no reason to believe are there.) (use motion lines). The spider has moved even closer.

GREG:
Go away!


Panel 6. The spider has almost reached the camera. (Because we cant see Gregs mounting panic, rather than relying solely on the copy you should probably ask the artist to make the approaching spider steadily more menacing.)

GREG:
Stop!



PAGE THREE (six panels)

Panel 1. Shot from the passenger's seat. Greg has desperately grabbed at his face.

GREG:
Gah!


Panel 2. Shot from outside the car. Greg is frantically stumbling out of the car.

NO COPY


Panel 3. Greg is frantically wiping off his clothes. The car door is still open. (This sequence of moves has a good logic and pacing to them.)

NO COPY


Panel 4. Greg, freaked out, is looking back at the car, rubbing his arms in discomfort. (How far away is he from the car?)

NO COPY (Two silent panels in a row. Consider giving him some panting / panicked huffing somewhere on this page. It would help keep the mood, rather than going straight to dead silence.)


Panel 5. Greg, still rubbing his arms, has recoiled from the car.

NO COPY


Panel 6. Greg, glancing at the car over his shoulder, is walking away, still rubbing his arms.

NO COPY The last three panels all have him performing the same action. Id recommend changing one of them to a self examination either have him look in a wing mirror, look down at his clothing etc. Thats how I would reassure myself.

Overall, not too shabby, Greg. It was a simple idea that was well executed, with only a few tweaks needed, in my non-professional, two cents worth of opinion.

gmartyt
05-11-2016, 02:21 AM
I don't have any pool of experience to pull from here on the topic of POV scenes, but I think that it may be disorienting. On this page, we were looking at the same basic panel, with one thing varying the entire time. that's easy to understand and follow. But if the POV is moving fast, when sprinting or turning his head, it might be harder to follow.
I would imagine POV during fast action could be done with speed lines possibly?

Sprinting and head turning might be possible as long as you keep the camera steady. Keeping a steady camera is always important, or else you'll risk losing the reader (this is actually where the 180 rule comes from). Sprinting should be fine as long as the person is looking forward , though I'm not entirely sure how to show that the character is moving faster than normal (maybe show their arms moving? Have them move a greater distance between panels? These are just guesses). As for turning their head, if you have the actual head turn take place between pages you might be okay, but it's probably not a good idea to go from facing forward to looking backward back to looking forward in quick succession. (Maybe putting a panel in between each would work, but I have no idea what you could show.) Of course, this is all just me thinking out loud. I have no idea if any of this would work.

gmartyt
05-11-2016, 02:51 AM
Thanks for the feedback, Rin.

I'm claiming this script on behalf of the UK (There's a very real possibility that this isn't the same color you used. Colors aren't my strong suit (it took me three tries just to pick the standard green)).

I... I didn't know it worked that way...

GREG:
I thought I felt a hair. (Hmm. Im not a great fan of speaking aloud for the purposes of exposition. But then, the comics industry in this present day is even less fond of using thought balloons. They might be useful here.)

Honestly, I wasn't a big fan of this line (or any of the dialogue, for that matter). A thought balloon would work, though I can't say I like that either. Maybe a voice-over caption. Then I can have another caption in the next panel that reads "It turns out the truth was far worse." Can't you just feel the drama?

GREG (OP. In fact, all the subjective POV shots need an OP tag before Gregs copy):

I wasn't quite sure how to handle this. I was thinking about making it off-panel, but he's still in the panel (we're looking down at his leg). Whether or not his leg stays visible throughout the entire sequence really depends on the artist.

Panel 4. Greg is leaning back against the window ( but because this is a POV shot, the details the artist needs to convey this would be that Gregs arms are pushing at the dashboard and seat).

I was more trying to say "pull the camera back." I figured that would get the message across. Of course, your suggestions would make it even clearer.

The last three panels all have him performing the same action. Id recommend changing one of them to a self examination either have him look in a wing mirror, look down at his clothing etc. Thats how I would reassure myself.

The self-examination kinda-sorta happened when he was frantically wiping off his clothes (or at least I thought it did). The rubbing of his arms was to try and show discomfort. I tried to think of what people do when they're uncomfortable, and that's best thing I came up with other than some sort of involuntary twitching-type thing, which would be kind of hard to show in a static image.

T_F_Mann
05-11-2016, 03:40 AM
Pretty cool. Just thinking about it, the POV has a lot of potential. You could also use it for a delayed payoff. Something along the lines of Prodigy's video for "Smack My Bitch Up". It also could be used to provide interesting characterization. Like for example if you tell the story from the character's POV as they are walking down the street and you can show people's reaction to that character. It's definitely something that could be fun to play with.

SamRoads
05-11-2016, 10:39 PM
The descriptions are much too imprecise. As you haven't said, I assume Greg lives on a farm, and his car is a Herbie VW Beetle. I presume this isn't your intent.

The POV idea does not work well, imo. Neither does it work in Hardcore Henry. It's not conducive to interest. We go to the movies to watch movie stars, not see through their eyes. I like looking at Judge Dredd, I don't want to see things his way. Especially not his way! :D

gmartyt
05-12-2016, 02:27 AM
The descriptions are much too imprecise. As you haven't said, I assume Greg lives on a farm, and his car is a Herbie VW Beetle. I presume this isn't your intent.

It doesn't really matter. He could live in a crypt on Tatooine, and his car could be a Hummer Limo (okay, maybe not that extreme. Point taken).

The POV idea does not work well, imo. Neither does it work in Hardcore Henry. It's not conducive to interest. We go to the movies to watch movie stars, not see through their eyes. I like looking at Judge Dredd, I don't want to see things his way. Especially not his way! :D

I wouldn't say it's not conducive to interest (found footage is a thing, after all, and that's essentially POV) so much as it's very hard to build interest. I originally wanted to write an entire short story in POV, but I couldn't figure out where to start it so that I could quickly grab the reader's interest. This might be because using POV naturally slows everything down, otherwise the action will seem to skip around and you'll lose the reader.

I was also thinking about making the story about something a little more brutal to try and make the reader uncomfortable, but, like you said, I don't think people want to see things the way Judge Dredd does.

So, I was thinking I might be able to use it to get readers to empathize with a character (which is probably why using Judge Dredd is a bad idea. No one wants to empathize with someone like that). For example, having Peter Parker hold a dead Gwen Stacy in his arms would be a powerful image, but what if I showed the whole sequence from Peter's POV instead?

I dunno. I'm just messin' around here.

SamRoads
05-14-2016, 07:27 PM
The scene I recall the strongest from Blair Witch was the monologue to camera.

The most important panel in comics is the 'reaction shot'. A shot of a corpse is sad. But a shot of Peter Parker holding it is much worse.

gmartyt
05-17-2016, 02:19 AM
The most important panel in comics is the 'reaction shot'. A shot of a corpse is sad. But a shot of Peter Parker holding it is much worse.

True. I was thinking you could use Peter's POV as the buildup to the reaction shot, but doing that would probably lessen the impact since the reader would have already seen it coming.

Hmm...

I suppose you could do the common horror scene where the person hides in a closet or something, cut to their POV, show the murderer/monster/whatever sniffing around before walking away, only to end with the "I found you" closeup and cutting to the reaction shot right after, although that might take too many panels to be worthwhile. Or you could show someone running away, then cut to the killer's POV as they approach the victim, ending with the victim's reaction when they see the killer, but that might be too close to the Judge Dredd example.

The main reason I've been thinking about using POV is because I figured that it's the easiest way to let the reader know that a character can see/hear something that they normally shouldn't be able to. For example, if you see a thought bubble or caption while in someone's POV, the assumption would be that the character can hear/see it. I think.

DarkHalf05
05-22-2016, 11:39 PM
A POV comic is something that I had tried to talk Liam into doing one time, as a spoof on FPS video games. I'm actually incredibly interested in the concept, and challenge, it poses. While I haven't yet seen Hardcore Henry, so I can't agree or disagree with Sam, I think it could be pulled off to a certain degree of success.

I do agree with him that it may be harder to relate to a character if we don't see the character. Instead, the challenge would be making the reader feel as if they are the character, no?

Anyway, my thoughts are this. Character acting comes primarily from two things. The facial emotion and the hands. If you eliminate the expressions from the panels all acting must be preformed through the hands. Off the top of my head I can think of two examples of this. In Office Space there is a scene where the main character is deleting messages from his answering machine. All we see is the answering machine and the hand. The hand offers all the acting for this scene, and for me it makes it the best scene of the movie. Another is Hellboy 2 (as blasphemous it may be I've never read any of the comics) and the character with the diver suit. Since we don't see his face he has over the top acting with his hands.

To come full circle, my opinion is that if you want to attempt the challenge this poses, you should include what the hands are doing, and the "emotion" that they are attempting to convey.

fritzthefox
05-25-2016, 06:25 PM
I think this is an interesting experiment. I think it is problematical to make the reader the protagonist, though. The reader is not driving events around them so much as simply watching stuff happen to themselves. POV movies solve this problem by making the viewer the camera guy, a largely passive supporting character who is still close to the action. Hardcore Henry is the first really serious effort I've seen to make the viewer the protagonist, but I have not seen it so I cannot comment on its effectiveness. However, I imagine it is much like watching someone else play a video game, which I personally find both boring and frustrating. There are a lot of people who love to watch other people play video games on Youtube and Twitch, though, so who knows? Could be a whole new genre for a new generation.