This comic is about being outside and enjoying the forrest.

[click here or on the image for a larger version]

To the forrest

I happen to be fortunate enough to live near a nice little forrest in The Hague (I think it’s actually way to small to be called a forest, but it’s called Het Haagse Bos which translates the ‘Forest of The Hague’, so there you go).
Every time I cycle or walk through it, I think to myself “I should do this more often”.
However the hassle of everyday life prevents me from doing just that.

One day, when I did manage to go, I thought it would be so great to make some drawings based on some of the lovely bridges, trees and stuff. So I made some pictures and some sketches and started to work on them.
In the middle of that it struck me that I now actually created an extra reason for myself NOT to go to the forest, but work on these drawings instead.
That became the inspiration for this comic.

Drawing style

For this I thought I’d experiment a bit more with a very ‘ink heavy style’ and stay away from the cartoon format a bit. It’s such a great exercise to look carefully at light/dark patterns and see if you can transfer them to the page.

ink drawing progress - comicsperimenter haes

Doing a comic like this is quite intense, since each panel takes you a lifetime to complete.
Usually I don’t have the patience for that.
Also mostly I wonder about the story telling value of these highly detailed pieces of art. Most of the time you end up with a lot of pretty pictures that can actually get in the way of story flow.

On the other hand, with this little story I wanted to really emphasize the serenity and beauty of the forest. And for that you really want the viewer to ‘see what you see’. So therefor I think a higher level of detail actually is necessary to prevent the images from falling flat.

As Scott McCloud pointed out in his Making Comics, working 17 hours on a panel, instead of 17 minutes an make the difference in looking at a scene, or the reader actually being there with you.

For some of the drawings I used the amazing pictures from the Fronz Photoblog as a refference. It has some amazing pictures on it, check it out!

Slow comic

This comic was first released with the individual panels being published on Instagram a day at a time. Providing a kind of slow reader experience appropriate for the message it conveys.

A bit like my latest one pager, Showing your art,  which was a ‘swipe comic’ first.
If you want to experience it in full slow-ness, head over to my Instagram account!

I think this slow publishing format does provide new possibilities and challenges. I might experiment with it more in the future.


Do you take enough time to go to the forest?
Should you?
And what did you think of the comic?
Let me know in the comment section below!

2 Replies to “To the forest”

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