SHOGAKUKAN provided its detailled critique on "初夏", one of the entries to the International Comic/Manga School Contest 2021.
Pen name: 帰田
School: Aichi Prefectural Toyohashiminami Senior High School
1. It was refreshing to see a panel that starts with a vertical split as the narrative hook. As you can see, arranging your panel layout to make it easier to read can be effective depending on where it is placed.
To all our readers, please keep this in mind in the future!
2. We think you could have gone one step further by using a bigger speech bubble here. The emotion conveyed here is the core of the story, and it's also the hook.
3. Our eyes stopped. This is a very good frame. The character is boldly cut out and placed, and the way the background is included is wonderful. Having such compositions really stand out and enables you to create eye-catching pictures.
4. We think it would have been easier to read if you had left a little more space between the panels here.
5. This line would have been easier to read if the composition was slightly adjusted and brought to the top. Considering the panel order, the gaze of the reader has to go down and up once between the line "I've..." and the next line "Or not...".
The human eye has a wide horizontal field of view, so moving the gaze vertically can be a bit stressful. To remedy this issue, adjust the position of the bubble so that the eye of the reader follows a horizontal pattern and not a vertical one.
6. This line should be on the right side of this panel to make it less tiring to read.
7. Overall, there are a lot of overlapping frames, so please try to limit this to a few places. For example, in this case, the left frame should be parallel to the right frame, as shown here.
8. Drawn letters are difficult to catch the reader's attention and may not be read. The direction is interesting, so it would be more appealing if the letters were, for example, thicker to make them more arresting.
9. Try not to have such a series of panels that are out of the frame as it makes it difficult to determine the reading order.
10. We like how the shape of the bubble was carefully crafted to convey the tone of the voice!
11. We think it would have been easier to read if you had left a little more space between the panels here.
International Comic/Manga School Contest 2021 Winners