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Old 02-10-2010, 01:59 PM   #1
lazzyfair
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Formating For Comics In Epub

So I've been attempting to figure out how to get a comic into the epub format that actually preserves page formating and layouts so that it can eventually be read on the iPad. I do realize that this goes against the notion of reflowable content for readers. The way I'm looking at this is, if epub is going to be the standard (at least for apple) then at some point, the question of comics is going to come up.

The straight PDF to epub does not work, it essentially gives it is best guess and then cuts it off about an inch from the bottom and continues to do so, each subsequent page being offset by the same amount until you eventually have a blank page and then the process is repeated. I've seen this with numerous attempts of my own and others.

So is there a way to lock the format? I'm sure this is going to involve coding of some kind which I don't have any background in, but even if you can point me in the right direction I'm sure that I can find someone that can help on that end.
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Old 02-11-2010, 06:51 PM   #2
hapax legomenon
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Check this out.

http://www.zorba.us/?page_id=676

I've been trying to deal with images in my ebooks although on a significantly lesser scale.

It shouldn't be that difficult to do a four panel graphic or conversely to include an image that is 600x600 (more or less) and set the width max-width: 600px for the entire panel.

I think the key is to let css scale the height and width of the image. Epub supports many css properties http://www.idpf.org/2007/ops/OPS_2.0...tml#Section3.3

Once you have the template and images no more than 63K you can let the screen size determine their width and height. The image can be large (800x600 or larger), and then you can specify the maximum height/width for each image.

Keep in mind that ipad will have a dimension of 1024x768. You also need to test the 800x600 dimension.

This sounds like a lot of trouble, but once you have done the css for your template and made sure your images conform to the requirements, you should be able to get them to work.

(Then when you have epub, you can use calibre software to convert to mobipocket format).

The question I wonder is how many images can go in a single epub file without the ebook device starting to choke. I have a feeling this is going to differ according to the device.

Last edited by hapax legomenon; 02-11-2010 at 06:53 PM.
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Old 02-11-2010, 06:58 PM   #3
hapax legomenon
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Let me say: this points to the need to have a "graphic novel epub template" with sample html, image requirements and css to scale things.

Basically you're going to need 1 new html page for each panel and you're going to have to add extra lines to the manifest for each graphic and html file.

I'd have to wonder whether any of the epub GUI tools or addons could handle simple 4 panels. Opinions?
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Old 09-07-2010, 02:15 AM   #4
kennymann
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Pages (desktop), now with Export to ePub, of course <http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4168>; Page Setup set to Tabloid Extra; all margins set to zero; care with the Edit Mask function.

800 x 1236 PNG files go full-frame, no prob. No jaggies; no cutoffs; no blank pages.

Trying to do a Table Of Contents, bollixes all that though. (Perhaps a page of just text, ahead of the chapter.)

Be sure to check the box for "Use first page as cover image," in the export dialog.

Last edited by kennymann; 09-07-2010 at 02:30 AM.
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Old 01-16-2011, 04:46 PM   #5
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I hope it's alright to bump this thread. I have been developing a hobby comic project using Sigil (available for both Windows, OS X and Linux). It's completely free, the only thing you need is knowledge of HTML/CSS. Otherwise Pages is a good bet.

I have not however managed to get acceptable results with fullscreen images without tearing/splitting up pages and other side effects. In Stanza you can get a pretty good reading experience with nice swipes from page to page. You can set a cool background to fill out the parts the page itself does not.

Anywho. My 2 cents.
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