View Full Version : THE COMIC STRIP! : Kirt Stanke 2005 : "FORK!"

02 February 2005, 09:45 AM
I'm going to start this off a bit early so maybe others can see how the comic strip ( project may run. I'm not really far into the first subject ... Roberto will officially kick this thing off at the beginning of March.

However, I don't think it will hurt anything if other people want to post concepts of their characters before the project starts. Maybe a little background on your character(s) and their worlds wouldn't hurt either.

(The above promo image is WIP. Still putting in colors) - Kirt

Here's My Character and a little bit about him:

FORK! - is a semi-autobiographic fictional character that I created about 10 years ago. He's been sitting in a pile of sketchbooks for quite some time, waiting for me to do something ... anything with him. When I say "semi-autobiographic fictional character" I mean that he's loosely based upon myself and my own experiences.

A Literature Instructor of mine once told me if I wanted to write stories, I should write what I know. Well, this character couldn't be easier to write for. I've played through all of his adventures and tragedies in my head (and in RL) many, many times.

I'm not going to give away too much about the character himself ... those who know me, will already be aware that he's going to be a little grouchy, a little stupid & not much is going to go right around this poor guy. It's a comedy. :D


THE COMIC STRIP! : Quick Links to Pages Within my Thread
March 2005 : Sins of the Past page 01 (

02 February 2005, 10:51 AM
hi there
i love the "fork" character....specially his fork symbol ....i like the clarity of the expression and the feel of the scene.....

would be delighted to see more of these :thumbsup:

02 February 2005, 12:09 PM
Lol, I love it! I'll be starting my WIP thread soon. Do we post in the DSG or in the general 2D WIP thread?

I really like your style.....keep it up!! (You're already looking promising for #1!)

02 February 2005, 02:15 PM
Looking really cool. I'm also going to do something along the semi-autobiographical lines, except my main character isn't going to wear a funny mask. :) Your style is very cool.

Are you going to do it in comic book format, or in daily strips?

02 February 2005, 04:10 PM
zagor - Thanks! If I can keep a decent schedule on this, I plan on completing a page a week. They will probably stay in this pencil sketch form ... I'm afraid if I go with ink and color I'll never get anything done.

paperclip - Both actually. You'll post your progression in a WIP thread here (like I've done) and Roberto will have a thread in the DSG forum where you'll post finished pages/panels that fit the topic he's decided on. The only thing different that I'm doing (and probably against Roberto's idea) is that I'll have each month or topic listed within this thread. Starting a new WIP thread each month doesn't make sense to me. :shrug:

swizzle stick - This will be in comic book format. Check the comic strip thread, I posted a comic page template in .tif format that you could use.

I'm looking forward to seeing what other people will be doing on this project. I've always love the comic strip/book format for telling stories. Books just don't do it for me unless there are plenty of pictures. :D

02 February 2005, 07:18 PM
hey kirt
i like these in the rough pencil state too. They just look more natural ...i would love to get some tips from you for making storyboards and comic strips ...

keep doing good work...its inspiring :)

02 February 2005, 07:46 PM
I have another pic of this character that I wanted to show. This one is from 1999 so you can see that he really hasn't changed much (other than the logo on his shirt). I might just load this up in Photoshop and color it this week for use as a splash image at the top of this thread. I really liked the "Dirty Harry" look of this one and it's by far one of my favorite renderings of the character.

(Image moved to the top of this thread) - Kirt

zagor - Anything I can do to help. Just fire away with the questions and I'll try to lead you off onto the right path. :D I'm not an industry professional, but I have done plenty of research into many different fields of 2D art. If I don't already know the answer to your question, I'm pretty sure I know where to look to find it.

02 February 2005, 08:19 PM
ha! he looks awsome:D

even tho it says "fork" in the thread name, and you said "FORK"..i still thought he was carrying a spatula in the first one

spatula's are fun

02 February 2005, 08:28 PM
hjalmar - Yes, that is a spatula in the first pic. Maybe in the April topic I'll be able to reveal what it is that he does with these items. But, March is going to be just a character development piece. Hopefully some jokes and interesting dialog. But not much in the action department (despite his insistance to be "hit" in that first panel there). :D

Stay tuned ... he's a fun character to draw and write for.

02 February 2005, 08:41 PM
hehehe:D i can already feel my wheels turning


i suck at making things up...but as soon as someone gives me something i can make it run:P

like...maybe it was his partners spatula, and his partner was taken out by some dude and he swore to use that spatula for goodness and rightfullness and blah...or he just needed somehting really greasy to smack things around with or ARRGH!!! ARRGH!!! I WANT!!!

good job tho:) cant wait:D i hope to be joining the daily sketch group/comic thing as soon as i finish school in like 3 weeks:P but for now...too much work

02 February 2005, 08:54 PM
Maybe in the April topic I'll be able to reveal what it is that he does with these items.That's what I want to know. Are they weapons? Tools? Pets? Mmm, the suspense! :D

Are you going to color that image of him looking down at the viewer? It'd be interesting to see how different your color choices would be from the colors that I would choose for a character like that.

02 February 2005, 10:46 PM
hjalmar - What can I say ... ideas come quickly to me. Most of the time faster than I can get them done (my curse). And no, you can't have any of my ideas ... but I'll help you get started.

The easiest way to begin is to start simple. In most of my ideas for characters, I start with just a simple object, scenario or emotion. This one was born out of a few conversations I had with a friend regarding super heros and why they are always prepared to save the day. What if there was a super hero that was sort of a rookie and didn't really know how to be a hero?

Things just took off from there. Eventually, I filled in other simple things to refine the character.

Simple object = fork
Simple scenario = on the job training
Simple emotion = frustration
(there's more but I'm not going to give away all the info on this character yet)

Once you have the motivations for your character you can start to imagine what types of things will influence his/her decisions. How he/she reacts to things and the actions that he/she take will define who the character is.

My other advice is to find a really good friend who enjoys talking about your characters and go through some brainstorming sessions with him/her. Take notes, if you're like me you'll forget most of the really great stuff that you talked about the next day or week. My friend and I went over this character frequently while having cig breaks at work. We probably talked more than 500 hours about this guy over the course of 3 years.

Since the character is loosely based upon my own life it was easy to imagine what Fork would do if ...

... confronted by a villian/monster/thug.
... needed to make a superhero costume.
... got hungry in the middle of a huge battle that could determine the fate of the planet.
... lost his keys.
... bumped into Eva Langoria while doing grocery shopping. :love:

So, start simple and build upon your idea. I don't know anyone who can just start from scratch and have a huge epic world filled with strong characters and notable stories within a matter of hours.

swizzle stick - I mentioned the April thing only as a "maybe". If the topic of April's theme doesn't fit with the story or character, you may be in for a longer wait. Only time will tell. But, if I can keep at this for awhile ... all will be revealed. :D

I'll see if I can't get some color on that. But he's a basic American retro kinda guy. Levi jeans, T-shirt and Converse All Stars. His costume would probably change daily (depending on what's clean from the laundry). Only the mask, cuffs and symbol on his shirt would be constants.

02 February 2005, 12:38 AM I'm a new member...and from what the rules say here...I'm not allowed to have attachments. Does "attachments" mean not even sending my own strips like the rest of you guys? :shrug: 'Cuz I do have a strong character that have been inspired by the Gundam series...but over the years is no longer like the inspired character. I need help in how to send attachments if your answer says "yes, it's okay". :shrug:

I really, really want to participate in this...

02 February 2005, 12:43 AM
I think that to have attachments and some other things you need something like 40 posts. It might also be a good idea to have your own web space or something to host the image files on.

Ok, going to Photoshop class. Whee! Can't wait to start my own WIP thread.

02 February 2005, 12:47 AM
Loulu79 - Yeah, sorry. You need a set number of post before you can use the attachment option (just checked the FAQ - it's 30). However, there are a number of free webspace sites out there which can host your images until you reach that magic number.

I think is a popular one ... I couldn't really recommend any though. I haven't used a free service in ages.

Hope to see your strip in this activity. :thumbsup:

02 February 2005, 04:48 PM
Yeah got ya:thumbsup: I'm putting up my own website very soon... But does that count? Or photobucket's better for now?:shrug:

I am new at this so please help me....

Anybody know other free web space sites. Photobucket is cool...but just in case...

And how do you go about putting images on the web??? Like I said...I'm a newborn at this...
Must be my nerves...:shrug:

02 February 2005, 04:51 PM
You know what. Let me start my first and only one comic strip a day for now...That way I don't waste time...Meanwhile photobucket is in my bucket of a possibility. I know I can do this. Thanks you guys...:)

Haha! 29 posts to go!!!:scream:

03 March 2005, 09:56 AM
Well, I worked on my comic some more today and I'm happy to say I'm sticking to a schedule (so far). I just finished another 1/3 page and should have the rest done by the end of the week ...

Unfortunately, internet connection at work was buggy so I couldn't upload the new work that I did. Ugh. Maybe it's better that I have to wait. This way I can post the whole page when it's done.

Stay tuned ... :D

03 March 2005, 01:25 PM
That first panel's great!! :bounce:

I really like the contrast in body language.

And this whole comic idea sounds interesting... i think i'm gonna head off and read the rules...

03 March 2005, 11:41 PM
AHA! Internet is working today ... :D

Here's the 2nd third of this page & some more spoiler info ...

Careful observers will notice that Fork's friend is named, Duck (who is based upon a real person - but doesn't look like this) and that Duck's comments in this last panel lead the reader to the assumption that he's aware that he is just a character in a comic book. AHA!

Yeah ... not really that important to the story, but it's just a part of the way that I'm writing these characters into the book. It'll have a certain "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" charm to it and it wouldn't be uncommon for the characters to stop what they're doing and argue with the writer/artist over a particularly dangerous course of action.

Or address the reader directly ... :D

It's a comedic element that I've found works pretty well with my story telling style.

(see below for page 01) (

03 March 2005, 07:43 AM
Hmmmm ... I need to catch up here.
Already getting behind.
This is not good. :argh:

Here's page one.
Back to work for me.

03 March 2005, 07:59 AM
s'lookin nice.... i really like Fork's overacting!

I'm not 100% sure about the composition of the wide shot in the bottom left though... everfything seems a bit too bunched around Duck. Not really important but it was my first impression of that panel...

03 March 2005, 09:23 AM
Yeah, that cow could stand to be moved over a bit.
Subconciously leaving room for the speech bubble ... I guess I over-did it a little. :D

03 March 2005, 11:16 AM
very nice pencil drawings! The cow could be moved, but I like it! :)

03 March 2005, 03:13 PM
Kirt - regarding the word "oppugnant" in panel 3, "I don' tink tha' means what you think it means." I found REpugnant, with the definition:

2. Logic Contradictory; inconsistent.

It's been a while since a comic has made me look up a word, and I like it. :thumbsup:

Anyway, the hand lettering looks great - neat and readable, yet quirky and stylish. I was at yesterday and a pack of wild hyenas were tearing a guy apart because his otherwise stunning comic was lettered with MS Comic Sans.

Lastly, the sidekick looks like he's wearing a uniform of some kind, like the puffy sci-fi vest (somehow I'm thinking old Battlestar Galactica) and there's a patch on his sleeve. Is it just me?

03 March 2005, 05:12 PM
Ilikesoup - No, I'm sure that "oppugnant" is correct. It's one of those obscure and funny sounding words that I remember from HS vocabulary tests. However, it's not crucial to this story that you understand what the word means, just that he used it in a sentence (it'll make sense when I hit page 4). :D

If you absolutely must know ... here's a definition ( But I think the joke will be funnier if you're not aware of the meaning.

I'm happy that you can read my handwriting. Lowercase lettering is not common for me to use when writing, but my usual all-caps scrawl would have been a mistake I think. MSComic Sans would have been worse. :argh:

Duck's shirt is supposed to be like a uniform shirt that a mechanic would wear. There should be a patch on the sleeve and shop logo on the back, but what you're seeing is just guidelines for placement. I haven't really designed a logo or thought of a name for the shop so ... yeah, I can see how that's confusing right now.

Thanks ... :thumbsup:

03 March 2005, 12:38 AM
Looking good, I love the 3rd panel. The whole concept looks good.
Are you going to ink and color it too, I mean hand lettering... gotta respect that!
My handwriting sucks :)

03 March 2005, 01:08 AM
Art2 - They'll just be digital pencil for this CGTalk activity. If I get enough pages done to make a book ... and there is enough expressed interest in the characters and story then I might go back and finish them off properly for print.

Don't know when I'll find the time for that though. :D

03 March 2005, 10:10 PM
Editted a few things:

1. First post in this thread has a color image of FORK! (that is currently WIP).
2. First post also contains links to pages within this thread for quick access.
3. Page 01 - I moved the cow over. :D

04 April 2005, 11:41 PM

Hi Kirt, seems you are so active nowadays, cool things you've got here, keep it up and good luck man. :thumbsup:

hey, that cow looks familiar to me, I've seen her before! :-P

06 June 2005, 11:10 AM
Hey Kirt... how's it going?

It's been a bit quiet in Comic Strip land... you gonna keep working this up?

06 June 2005, 03:43 PM
duddlebug - I don't know when I'll have the time. I'm directing a short film again ... this will keep me pretty active for a couple more months. Then I need to get serious about updating and adding to my portfolio.

Sorry, I'd love to help support Roberto's comic idea, but it comes at a really bad time for me to seriously commit to. Such is my life ... :argh:

06 June 2005, 03:56 PM
Hey Kirt... i know what you mean. That's the kinda situation i've been in for the last couple of months. I'm just lucky that i know from this week i can find an hour or so each day to do some work on this... At least for a month or two...

Good luck with the film!!

07 July 2005, 03:24 PM


I would love to hear your ideas.


07 July 2005, 05:31 PM
... I'm directing a short film again ... :argh:

Wwwhat ... did ... you SAY?

07 July 2005, 06:09 PM
More cow! More cow! More cow! More cow!

Now, if only there were more cheese...

Awesome! Now - what of FORK'S half-brother - SPORK? Spoon-fork relationships so rarely last...


Rock on!


07 July 2005, 10:22 PM
Ah ... the resurfacing of old threads. :D

Roberto - I'll check out your thread and offer any suggestions that come to mind. But, until the film is done I'm afraid my participation is going to be null. :argh:

Ila - Yeah, there's a collab going on within the CGSociety forums. I don't know how I get myself into these things, but there it is ... again. My story, my direction, my concepts ... relying on everyone else to finish it up. It's a 1000 times much less ambitious project than AlienZ was. Hopefully we'll have this wrapped up in a few months. Current status is - storyboards & all pre-vis work completed. Looking for animators to get us through the next step and then it's all up to texture, lighting, render and composite to bring it all home. :D

Rebecca - Never under estimate the comedic value of cows, cheese or a spork! Those are words of wisdom that I live by. :D

07 July 2005, 01:55 AM
:wise: I shall remember...cows...cheese...spork - mainstays of our good society, 'aye!

Without these simple ingredients...we are but cowless, cheeseless, sporkless beings adrift in a world of chaos and pain. :sad:



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