I get asked many questions. Sometimes they’re easy to answer in a reply. Sometimes it’s better to answer them all in a block. So today I thought I’d go through some of my most recent questions and answer them all at once for you!

If you ever do have a question feel free to send me an ask them in the comments, or email me at shadows@shawnmccauley.com

Here we go!

Q: What Kind of scanner is good for newbies?

A: With technology the way it is today most scanners are going to do the job well. If you’re just starting out there’s no sense in buying a super top-of-the-line scanner, but you will get what you pay for. Avoid any scanners that seem extraordinarily cheep. You really can’t go wrong with anything that HP, Cannon, or Epson makes. They will have scanners that are affordable and do a good job for you newbies.

Q: What kind of scanner do you use?

A: I use a large format scanner so that I can scan my comic book pages in all one scan. It’s a Mustek A3 1200s

Q: When I scan my artwork it looks very dark. How do I adjust it?

A: Most scanners come with digital photo editing software. In whatever photo editing software you have available you should be able to control the brightness, contrast, and other variables of the photo. Make the proper adjustments until your artwork looks the way you want! Everyone’s scanner and software is different so unfortunately I can’t be more specific on the “how.”

Q: What Software do you use? Illustrator? Photoshop? Manga Studio? A combination?

A: I don’t necessarily use any software. But when i do, the software I use depends on the art I’m trying to make. I make logos in Illustrator. I color my art in Photoshop. I’ll pencil and/or ink my pages in Manga Studio. But I don’t want any of you to get the impression these are tools you NEED. I also use paper, pencils, ink, brush pens, and markers. Software can streamline an artistic process, but it’s limited by the skills of the user. It’s not a magic tool that makes art great, in unskilled hands it will certainly make your art worse.

Q: Should I get a website? or should I just get one on Blogspot or tumblr?

A: Do what you want. I know that’s not a great answer, but we live in an age where you don’t NEED a straight up website. Blogspot, wordpress, tumblr, are all acceptable ways to showcase your art and comics. You don’t need to build one from scratch.That being said, what you SHOULD do is get your own URL. I have www.shawnmccauley.com for my art. I built that site from scratch because I want to have total control over how my art is presented, But if you rather use Tumblr you should still have your own URL. It’ll make it easy to direct people to your work.

Q: Is there any particular comic book making software you use?

A: I do use Manga Studio EX 4. I have not yet tried Manga studio EX 5 yet, but I’d like to. Manga Studio is a wonderful piece of software that lets you lay out, pencil, ink, tone, and color your comic. There are a ton of tools in the software that makes comic creating faster than if I had to do it by hand… I still do alot of it by hand, but If I didn’t have Manga Studio I’m not sure my creator own comic Shadows of Oblivion would be in print right now.

Okay that’s all the questions I have for today. Again if you have your own that you’d like me to answer send them in! Put them in the comments or email them to me! I’ll make answering them a weekly thing!

In the mean time check me out around the web:


And remember, Make Comics! No Excuses!!