What kind of figures are you using? I mostly use STIKFAS and Shockini action figures for the heroes and humanoid type monsters (orcs, ogres, etc.) in Perils of the Bold. I also use kitbashes of Xevoz action figures for stranger monsters (such as the fiend depicted in Perils of the Bold #2). Unfortunately, the Xevoz action figure line has been discontinued. For Weirdscape, the elite team is composed of GI Joe Sigma 6 action figures from Hasbro.
How do you customize your Stikfas figures? I use Sculpey III for the hair, belts, and bootcuffs. I use CeramCoat water-based paints. The paint tends to scuff and chip after some usage, so I do have to touch them up. For some tips on customizing, visit www.stikcustomizers.com.
Why aren't all the action figures customized? Unfortunately, creating POTB is not my job. If it was I'd have more time to work on customizing the action figures so they look more appropriate. As time goes on, I'll be customizing more of the figures. However, I have to concentrate on the main characters, I don't have time to customize every faceless henchman. So, that means you'll be seeing orcs that are just green Stikfas, ogres that are just black Mechana, and so on. UPDATE: I've been able to customize all the figures for quite some time! Woot!
What are your sets made out of? My underground dungeon sets are composed primarily of HirstArts CastleMolds that I cast myself using dental plaster. I then glue them together, paint them, and arrange them as needed. I also use Playmobil and MegaBloks accessories for the banners, statues, crates, mugs, utensils, treasure chests, treasure, and so on. Finally, I use floral bits and pieces from Michaels craft shops for the debris. For exterior sets, I use real dirt, pebble, stones, rocks, twigs, sticks, weeds, and moss in addition to floral craft supplies. For location shooting, I just go to the backyard or a nearby park.
How do you add the speech balloons and faces? After I've taken the photos and cropped them in Photoshop, I compose the page in Visio. I also add the text, speech balloons, and faces in Visio.
What kind of camera do you use? I use a Sony Cyber-shot DSC-F88. It has loads of functionality, like candlelight and micro settings. Here's a
review of the camera. I like it because of the rotating lens, which makes it easy to take photos near the ground and from a variety of angles.
Why are some panels so dark I can't see anything? The majority of this webcomic takes place in a dungeon, which is dark and shadowy. Therefore, the pictures are dark and shadowy. If the panels are so dark on your screen that you can't see any contents, increase the brightness on your monitor. For instance, the Dragon entrance (panel #5) of POTB #9 is a very dark arch, but you should be able to see a dragon-headed gate inside it. If you can't, your brightness on your computer is set too low.
Why aren't all the pages funny? While I might aspire to be consistently funny, I ain't there yet. Some of my jokes need to be set up over multiple pages (such as POTB #1, #2, and punchline #3). Since I'm using photography and figures, I can't fit as many panels into a single page. Plus, sometimes I just want to show off my sets, and who cares if it's funny or not! Other times, I'm just advancing the plot. Finally, sometimes I need to add some filler episodes. These are episodes that don't advance the plot or tell a joke, but I need to insert them to gain more time to work on sets or characters that are coming up in subsequent episodes.
Why does it take so long for anything to happen? This is a humor comic. My first goal is usually to provide a joke. So far, jokes rarely coincide with plot advancement. While PotB does have a plotline, not every episode advances it. And, sometimes I just have a bunch of jokes boiling up that I put in to the detriment of the plot. As I get better at this, perhaps the plot will move quicker. Or not. No promises.
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