Greetings, everyone! Have I got some news for you!
I've finally hit a point in my creative journey where the early pages of Sacrimony are no longer reflective of what I'm currently capable of and I feel like it's hurting me professionally. The first thing people see when they look at this comic are those old, janky pages with the weird lettering and well... first impressions are the only ones that matter, amirite? For the foreseeable future, I'm going to be working on a complete overhaul of chapter 1 behind the scenes.
So what exactly is being redone?
I'm going to be completely redrawing a lot of the earlier pages At LEAST the first twenty six. That's right. I'm a crazy person. The artwork for early chapter 1 is reflective of a time where I was trying to do things that I hadn't yet developed the skill set to do. The line work was choppy and inconsistent, poses were stiff, character anatomy and faces were way inconsistent and the coloring was R O U G H. In addition, I didn't have a good grasp on environmental design and atmosphere and panel compositions made no sense sometimes. It all looked a bit.. childish. The only way to salvage all that is to just do it over. From scratch. Because crazy person.
I mean, look at the difference between 2016 and 2019/2020.
But wait - there's more! I'm not just going to redraw the same old panels and poses with new fancy effects. I'm actually going to be redoing a lot of the layouts to improve story pacing, dialogue, 'camera' angles and composition. In addition, I'll be streamlining the timeline of chapter 1 altogether to improve readability.
The problem with chapter 1 is that when I was first writing it, I treated almost every scene like it was some sort of "BIG REVEAL" that I didn't want to spoil and, thus, expected readers to do a lot of work putting the whole non-linear narrative together. Unfortunately, it made the story hard to follow and I don't doubt that it was probably off-putting to new readers. Feedback from some close friends made me realize that it seemed like time travel or teleportation or... SOMETHING... was involved because that seemed to be the only logical explanation for all the back and forth. Yikes.
Overall, in terms of the actual plot, there's not going to be any changes. I'll just be reorganizing and consolidating most of those damn flashbacks so that the story flows together better with minimal effort (or leaps in logic) on the readers' part.
I'll also be redoing the lettering and some of the dialogue so that everything is nice and tidy and character personalities are more consistent across the board.
The artwork from the later pages in chapter 1 are still salvageable and will be tweaked for consistency reasons. Not a whole lot of that will be completely redone. I'm mostly going to be fixing up the line art and some of the shading and fixing up some of the environment designs. MAYBE I'll throw in 1 or 2 extra pages to elaborate on certain scenes, but it depends on what I feel like the story 'needs'.
I'm really excited to start working on this overhaul and I feel like it can't happen soon enough! It's going to take a long time to work on since I'll be doing the overhaul while continuing chapter 3 and also doing freelance work. I'm looking forward to 8 cups of coffee a day and 4 hours of sleep for the next year or so.
I'll be posting periodic updates here and on my discord. Once the entire chapter is complete, I'll remove the old pages from the website and replace them with the new ones.
Questions? Comments? Let me know what you think!