Spotlight

Binary Stars – A Science Fiction Romance Mystery

Caragh hails from Los Angeles and makes a webcomic called Binary Stars!

Synopsis: Anastasia’s life as the daughter of space’s richest entrepreneur has always been safe and secure. But her dreams show her a different life – one with war and conflict and tragedy. She tries her best to ignore it, but her universe is shaken as her dreams suddenly become her memories. Now, she must race across galaxies to discover who she was and who she’s meant to be.

Did you go to school for either art or writing? If so, what school?
No, I didn’t.

What genre(s) does Binary Stars fall under, aside from sci-fi?
Romance, Mystery, Adventure

What was your inspiration behind the comic?
Binary Stars actually started as a book that was inspired by media such as Mass Effect, Jupiter Ascending, and other various science fiction sources.

Do you have any favorite artists who influenced your style?
There’s too many to count. If I had to pick three, I would say Matt Rhodes, Charlie Bowater, Ron Koza.

How long does it take you to complete a full episode?
Around 1.5 – 2 weeks.

What is your process like for creating comic pages? What tools do you use?
I only use Clip Studio Paint for making comics.

First, I reread what I wrote in the script and sketch out really crude thumbnails to get a sense of composition. I also draw in the text bubbles to make sure there’s enough room for the dialogue. Once I have it all laid out, I do a more refined sketch on top, making sure that the expressions are exactly what I want. Then, I add the text and finalize the line art.

Once the lines are done, I block in the flat colors for the entire episode. Then, I add overlay layers to show shadows and lighting. Once that’s all settled, I go in and render the flats under the overlay layers. Once that process is done and I’ve added in any final details I need, the episode is all done!

How long did it take you to plan the comic before even beginning to physically create it?
Tough to say. I have a long-running script document where I meddle around with the dialogue long before I ever have to work on the episode. Right now, I’m working on Episode 13, but in the script, I have up to Episode 19. However, lots of changes will probably happen before I get to that 19th script.

How long do you intend Binary Stars to be? Is there a definitive ending or will you just keep going as long as you keep getting ideas?
Since it’s a mystery, I’ve had a definitive ending planned since I first thought of the idea of Binary Stars. I’m not sure how long the final comic will be since episodes get split up and combined all the time.

What was the biggest hurdle you faced during the course of making Binary Stars? If you could go back in time to the point where you just started making it and give yourself a pep talk, what would you say?
The biggest hurdle was just thinking I had no idea what I was doing. When I first got the idea to adapt Binary Stars into a comic, I spent weeks trying to convince myself to do it but held back because I was scared that it wouldn’t live up to the vision in my head. In the end, the urge to see the story come to life overpowered the fear that it wouldn’t be as good as I wanted it to be.

If I could go back in time and talk to myself when I first started, I would just say that it seems scary, but it’s better to do it and get the learning process over with earlier. And I would have told myself to make a bigger buffer.

What is your favorite part about working on Binary Stars?
Seeing the final product and reading all the nice comments people leave on the episodes. Also, I LOVE reading people’s theories on what they think is happening. No one has correctly guessed the answer to the mystery…yet.

What was your LEAST favorite part about working on Binary Stars?
Flats. Uggggh it’s just coloring in the lines, but it’s the most tedious and least creative part.

Do you have a favorite character to write for? If so, why? Tell us more about them!
It’s a tie between Anastasia and Kass. Anastasia is fun to write because the whole mystery revolves around her and it’s interesting to see it play out both in the comic and in her mind. It’s like having a living person in my head and sometimes the things that she does or says in the comic surprises even me.

Kass is also fun to write because she’s silly! The mystery has a sense of urgency and seriousness, so it’s fun to write a character who’s having fun and along for the ride.

Do you have a LEAST favorite character to write for? If so, why? Tell us about them!
Ian. I LOVE Ian, don’t get me wrong, but he is the most complex character and the most unknown to me. Many times, I have to rewrite and rewrite his dialogue because it’s not quite what the character would say. Sometimes, when I write Ian, it feels like I’m stumbling in the dark hoping to finally type out the perfect line for him.

Also, I’m super excited for his character arc, but readers only know him now at the start of it, so no one’s a fan of his yet 🙁 Hopefully, that’ll change soon!

Do you have a favorite character to draw?
Joana. I really like drawing the prosthetics she has, and her eyebrows are always fun to draw.

Do you have a LEAST favorite character to draw?
Any man that’s in the comic, but specifically Ian. Again, he’s the hardest to pin down in terms of character and design.

Where can we find you?
Comic – https://www.webtoons.com/en/challenge/binary-stars/list?title_no=325340
Twitter – https://twitter.com/ephcomics
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/ephermeres/

Anything else you want the people to know about yourself or your comic?
I’m new to comics and the online art community in general!

 

Have you read Binary Stars yet? Let us know what you think in the comments! Or, hey, go to the creator’s site and show some love 😀

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