Sitting here making endless little (I thought) fiddling (definitely) corrections to the almost finished pages of Garage Sale, and the time came to erase out page 4. Just to refresh your memory:this is the page we’re talking about. Looks fine, right? More or less? Weird photographer with interesting pose, nice shot of the camera, garden gnomes inked with the stub pen, one detailed background … a decent mini page in mime, drawn to the usual size. Or is it? As I erased and tweaked the details, it started feeling a little off to me. Is it too wide? Finally I pulled out the ruler and measured it and yeah, it’s a half inch too wide.
“Idiotic” is mild word for this mistake. I don’t know exactly when I started drawing the pages for my quarter size minis on 8 1/2″ x 11″ sheets ruled to a 6 1/2″ x 9″ image area, but it was sometime in the 1990s, and probably close to 20 years ago. I certainly had been using that page size for some time when I started numbering my minis in series. I have drawn more than 50 minicomics to that size, and that represents many hundreds of pages. A thousand? Maybe, maybe not. But definitely at least five hundred. That’s five hundred times I’ve taken an 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of Bristol, knocked an inch off every side and started to draw. I’m sure I could do this in my sleep, and I probably have, more than once.
So what possessed me, this one time, to make my left hand margin 1/2 inch? No idea, but I feel very stupid. And of course now I have to fix it, which I did by ruling a second long side edge inboard a quarter inch on either side, and whiting out everything outside of it except Suki’s hand in the upper left and her foot at the lower left. That doesn’t really disturb the composition at all, which is either lucky or a sign that it wasn’t such a great composition in the first place.
Either way, I’m glad I caught it before anybody tried to make a printing master out of it.