Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Digital vs. Print

In this day and age, I hear more people going towards digital comics rather than the traditional print comics. I understand the appeal, but I don't think I would ever switch entirely to digital.

For about 8 or so years, I worked with books... from your standard paperbacks you can find at your local store to textbooks. I worked closely with rare books and for about 4 of those years, my workspace was right in the depths of a "rare book room". This room helped to imbue me with a sense of nostalgia and a greater understanding of the tactile world. The feel and smell of a good book can never be replicated by a digital version. Sure, I may be able to acquire a copy of Frank Baum's "Wizard of Oz" easily through a digital service, but it provides little satisfaction from the sensation of holding an original printing of the actual book. You can almost feel the history from the actual book and imbibe it like a fine wine.

I'm thinking about engaging in a monthly digital comic book service subscription so that I can actually start reading what I'm buying, and therefore wouldn't necessarily feel so bad for not reading their stories until I get their subsequent trade.

Something I've also found is that there are comics from my younger years that actually haven't been compiled into a trade paperback format yet. I'm sure that I can find this issues digitally, so this would allow me to further rediscover my lost childhood readings without having to wait for the publisher to finally release a trade.

I'm sure that if I actually owned a tablet device to read digital comics, I wouldn't have nearly as much of an issue as I have. With the computers I own, I simply don't feel like either of them (1 laptop and 1 desktop) were ever meant to be used as a reading device for comics. I know that may sound a little silly, but I have a certain place where I read trades and I don't have my computers there. And my eye sight is bad enough without trying to read a comic book on my iPod Touch or smartphone. No thank you!

1 comment:

  1. My personal preference will always be individual issues. I enjoy collecting, pleasure simply in having them. I dont like the inorganic vibe of light pixels creating an image i can view in print, plus comics have resale value so it feels like a potential investment occasionally. For me nothing compares to single issues or a set of single issues. I enjoy that some covers are so incredible I have the opportunity to consider framing them and hanging them on my wall as art. Sometimes I will purchase a comic based on cover art alone. I hope single issues never Die, its a fear I have. I feel if the mainstream titles I love such as (Batman) were ever completely converted to being strictly distributed digitally for new issues, then there would be far more utilization of digital shortcuts in backgrounds and such in a panic to mass produce new stories in a digital assembly line. There would be compromises in art and story integrity as well as quality, character concepts would blur and eventually change all together. It would weaken the industry all together if it ever completely converted. I love comics, not PDFs.