BLOG@16: READ COMICS ON YOUR PS3! // VIDEOS! PODCAST!!February 24th, 2011 |
Lots of cool stuff in this blog entry! We’ve got our “Reading Comics on your PS3” tutorial, a lettering video from Brant Fowler, PLUS the return of the podcast, with this month’s guest, Colorist: Lisa Moore!
Let’s dig in!
One of the criticisms I hear often regarding digital comics is: “I hate reading them on a screen!” To me, it hasn’t really been an issue– after all, I watch TV, Videos, and read stuff off screens all the time– so, porting to comics was a fairly easy transition.
One aspect of screens that I do get, is: “I hate reading them on my little 13 inch monitor!”– This, I understand. There’s a lot of scrolling/zooming/resizing etc…
But what if you could read comics on your big screen TV?
Chances are, your TV is set up near a comfortable sitting area; one that you’re used to spending lots of time planted at. If you own a PS3, it’s likely that you’ve got a nice flatscreen to boot– after all, who’d want to headshot n00bs on a 15 inch, 4×3 Magnavox?
(who DOES this?!)
If you have a PS3, you’re probably already playing games, watching Blu-Rays/Netflix, and streaming music through it– that was always Sony’s intent: Build a system that would serve as a gatekeeper to your digital entertainment area.
So, why not read comics on it as well?
To do this, you’ll need a few things:
1) A PS3. (I’m suddenly reminded of the Simpsons episode where Homer put his typewriter in front of a TV and wondered why the Internet wasn’t working.)
2) A Laptop or Desktop computer.
3) PS3 Media Server– which you can download here.
4) Some comics to read in the .cbz format (more on this is a minute, but for a test run, might I suggest Spy6teen #1, available at MyDigitalComics.com? Only 99 cents! Ka-CHING!)
Now, I’m on a Mac– so screenshots will represent that version, but PS3 Media Server is also available in Windows and Linux flavors– I presume that the screens should be relative.
The first thing you want to make sure of is that your PS3 is LOOKING for a Media Server– you’ll find this option under NETWORK SETTINGS– click it to Enable, if it isn’t already (I think it defaults to “on”)
The next thing to do is install PS3 Media Server on your computer. That should be fairly easy.
Once it’s installed, make sure your PS3 is turned on (say nice things to it, compliment its hair) and launch PS3 Media Server– you should get something that looks like this:
Now, your computer is connected to your PS3! But, it doesn’t know where to go to find your comics!
Head over to your Desktop (or wherever you choose) and create a folder called “PS3Comics” (or, really whatever you want to call it)– Now, BACK to PS3 Media server and click on the tab marked: “NAVIGATION/SHARE SETTINGS”
Make sure that the selection “Browse .RAR/.ZIP/.CBR archives” is checked ON!
Now, head down to the bottom section where it says “Shared Folders” and click the + Folder and add PS3COMICS to it.
Go ahead and drop your Spy6teen Issue 1 .cbz file into your PS3COMICS folder–
Now, let’s go back over to your Playstation! You’ll see a new icon under the Photos menu titled: MEDIA SERVER! Let’s click on that!
Chances are, you– like me, have a 16×9 (widescreen) TV– but, comics (built to a different aspect ratio), don’t fit nicely into the widescreen format– not a problem, and in fact, this is one of the things that makes reading comics on your PS3 a unique and cool experience!
Grab your PS3 controller– y’know, the one that your brain has mapped your fingers to, from playing hours and hours of Call of Duty.
The Analog sticks (the little round guys) control ZOOM and MOVEMENT– use the RIGHT STICK to control zooming in on a page and focus it to a panel– now use the LEFT STICK to control where you’re looking on the page.
It takes a little getting used to, but you’ll quickly find yourself Zooming and Moving at the same time– almost like a game. It really adds an interactive aspect to reading comics. You almost sort of get a Ken Burns documentary feel with it, where you’re playing the part of the director.
You can choose to read 3-panels across– or zoom into each one. Your reading experience is up to you! Pretty cool, right?
When you’ve finished a page, hit the L1 button to move the page forward, or the R1 to move a page back!
So, now you’re off and reading Spy6teen on your big screen TV! But, what’s that? You like it so much that you want to read MORE comics?
Well, you’re covered! One of our distributors, MyDigitalComics has a ton of titles (both free and paid) that you can download in the CBZ/CBR format (both of which work with PS3 Media Server) legally! Head on over to check ‘em out!
If you guys have any questions (if I missed anything)– or if you found this little tutorial helpful, please drop us a comment and let us know!
Hey! It’s a Brant Fowler lettering process video!
This week Brant talks about his method for this week’s page– Pretty interesting stuff, including: the little tidbits about transferring a script (from a word .doc) to Illustrator– The “O” in Schrodinger (who knew?!) and a sneak look behind our somewhat ramshackle editing process!
Brant did an amazing job laying out the text for this page– I highly recommend checking out his short video to see the execution and thoughts behind it!
As always, keep up with Brant at his weekly comic: Wannabez! They’ve wrapped their first issue– so this is a PERFECT jump on point!
Hey! It’s the return of our Monthly Podcast– juuuuust under the gun! (Hey, we’ve still got 4 more days, right?)
This month, we’re talking to Spy6teen (and every other title under the sun) Colorist: Lisa Moore!
Lisa talks about how she got started with coloring– some thoughts on process and technique, Mumford and Sons, Bones/Glee/and Red Dwarf (!)– Lisa also lets us know who her favorite Doctor is– and answers the most important question of all:
What is Lisa’s favorite color?
You might have noticed that our “Home” link has vanished from the toolbar– Funny story, I noticed via Google Analytics that 88% of our traffic seemed to be clicking that button–y’know, the button that simply refreshed the page.
That seemed silly to me, so I’m currently in the process of re-vamping that page (Currently “About”) to our new “Home”–
If you’re a webcomic creator, I highly recommend signing up for Analytics, as it’ll give you a ton of insight into what your audience is doing on your site.
Also, a MASSIVE shoutout to Papa Llama, who put me in touch with ComicPress wizard, Frumph, who was able to walk me through the intricate .php surgery I needed to do.
I have no doubt in my mind that I would have broken something without their assistance! Thanks so much, guys!!
Still working on the “Store”– yes, eventually that will happen– and a few other site updates. If you guys have any functionality you’d like to see added to the Spy6teen site, let me know!
Ok, that wraps up today’s BLOG@16! We’ll be back next Tuesday with an ALL NEW Spy6teen page! Seeya then!!