How to Draw Noir Comics: The Art and Technique of Visual Storytelling

How to Draw Noir Comics: The Art and Technique of Visual Storytelling

by Shawn Martinbrough


$18.17 $19.95 Save 9% Current price is $18.17, Original price is $19.95. You Save 9%.
Eligible for FREE SHIPPING
  • Want it by Wednesday, September 26  Order now and choose Expedited Shipping during checkout.
    Same Day shipping in Manhattan. 
    See Details


How to Draw Noir Comics: The Art and Technique of Visual Storytelling by Shawn Martinbrough

How to Draw Noir Comics: The Art and Technique of Visual Storytelling is an instructional book based on the cinematic, high contrast noir style of acclaimed comic book and graphic novel illustrator, Shawn Martinbrough.

Martinbrough’s work has been published by DC Comics, Vertigo and Marvel Comics, illustrating stories ranging from Batman to the X-Men. This is his first book, released through Watson-Guptill Publications and The Nielsen Company.

In How to Draw Noir Comics, Martinbrough shows how the expert use of the color black is critical for drawing noir comics. He demonstrates how to set a mood, design characters and locations, stage action and enhance drama, and discusses important topics like page layout, panel design, and cover design.

How to Draw Noir Comics includes The Truce, an original graphic novel written and illustrated by Martinbrough which incorporates the many lessons addressed throughout the book, and has an introduction by critically-acclaimed novelist Greg Rucka, author of the graphic novel Whiteout, currently in production as a major motion picture.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780823024063
Publisher: Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale
Publication date: 10/28/2007
Pages: 144
Sales rank: 506,233
Product dimensions: 8.56(w) x 11.00(h) x 0.48(d)

About the Author

Shawn Martinbrough illustrates many DC and Marvel comics, including
Superman, Detective Comics, Batman, and X-Men. Other clients include LucasArts, Playboy, and many others. In 2004, he was named one of "Washington, D.C.'s Best" by The
. He lives in Washington, D.C.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

How to Draw Noir Comics: The Art and Technique of Visual Storytelling 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a great inspiration for sequential artists who wish to work in the noir comics genre. The artist/author demonstrates the process of effective line weight and black placement design considerations. This speaks to lighting, mood, and dramatics. I recommend any artist wishing to push into this area of comics have this book on their shelf. Martinbrough gives insightful talk about his process. More so in the images rather than the text, but over all very useful reference.
Guest More than 1 year ago
How to Draw Noir Comics is an excellent instructional book. Great for all levels of experience, and a nice read even if you're not interested in learning how to draw using the noir style. As a non-artist who cannot draw a straight line w/a ruler, I found Mr. Martinbrough's comments to be extremely insightful and helpful.
Henry_Berry More than 1 year ago
Martinbrough shows how to get various kinds of dramatic effects in the noir style using the simple tools of ink and pencils, pens, and brushes. Additional work of this foremost artist/illustrator can be seen at the website But his work is already familiar to many in DC Comics and Marvel Comics and also the films Batman, X-Men, and others. Starting with how to visual a script 'or any text' to create noir illustrations for it, Martinbrough moves on to the fundamental of page layout and then the techniques of graphically portraying action and developing a series of illustrations generating drama. Panel design, backgrounds, and rhythm are among the specific topics covered with corresponding illustrations. While cautioning the illustrator should never forget text that is going to be inserted into many noir illustrations, in a series of three simple illustrations Martinbrough demonstrates choices that can be made in panel design or organization affecting the effects or prominence of elements of the noir illustration. In discussing 'Designing the Covers,' he notes, 'Remember, the more detailed your cover, the harder it becomes to convey a clear message of what the story is about.' The reader benefits not only from Martinbrough's exceptional talent putting him at the top of his profession, but also from his experience in the field of comics and films working on projects involving various persons 'e. g., writer, director' and thus various considerations. The expert instruction is capped off by a 16-page graphic novel titled 'The Truce' combining all the considerations and techniques Martinbrough has covered in the earlier sections.