Exhibition shows creative process of webtoons

Exhibition shows creative process of webtoons

In the digital age, drawing cartoons and characters does not require pencils and paper anymore.

All you need is a computer - a PC, laptop or tablet - and electronic pens and pads, as most Korean comics are now being consumed by readers in the form of webtoons.

The new, digitalized creative process of comics is the focus of an exhibition currently on at the National Library of Korea in southern Seoul.

Inside a small-space exhibition on the third-level basement of the state-run library, there are a couple of computers with software programs for visitors to learn how to draw lines and colour the characters - the most basic step in the production of digital comics.

"The House of Webtoon" exhibition, which resembles Korea's traditional comic book stores with dark lighting, also has various statistics of Web comics on display graphically illustrating the 10-year history of webtoons.

Comic artist Yoon Tae-ho's hit webtoon "Misaeng" ("Incomplete Life") had record sales of over 2.2 million comic books, which later turned into a cable television drama series with high ratings.

"Tower of God" by SIU had a record of more than 740,000 comments by fans online.

There are over 5,700 webtoon series published on over 30 platforms by over 4,600 artists working in Korea, according to the statistics displayed at the National Library of Korea.

Dramas and fantasies accounted for almost half the webtoon genres, with the rest being romance and comedy.

Also, visitors will be able to get a glimpse into the future of webtoons, which can also viewed on smart displays such as electronic mirrors in bathrooms, and other Internet of Things products.

The "House of Webtoon" follows last year's exhibition at the library marking the 10th anniversary of Korean webtoons.

"This year, the exhibition is more about offering an experience to visitors, while last year was about showing the historical overview of the arts and crafts," said Cho Su-yeon, public relations librarian.

Visitors can also read webtoons on PCs and tablets just outside of the library.

Special public lectures on webtoon drawing and production will be given by artists including Writer Hong ("Star Wars") and Lim Duck-young ("Kitman") every weekend.

The exhibition, in partnership with Korea University of Media Arts, Chungkang College of Cultural Industries and the Korea Cartoonist Association, continues until Oct 31 at the library in Banpo-daero, Seocho-gu, southern Seoul.

For more information, visit www.allwebtoon.net.

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