Creating a mock-up is the last design experiment and pulls all of the other experiments and learnings together to create a single artefact for testing.

The problem

It has not been possible to carry out integrated testing of all of the different design elements.

Designed pages have not been been compiled into a ready-to-print book format.

The hypothesis

Creating a mock-up containing the learnings and decisions made from the previous experiments will allow me to test:

  • Rhythm and layout across a sequence of pages
  • Readability
  • If/how splash pages work and juxtaposition of different visual styles
  • Text and lettering
  • Use of colour across a sequence of pages
  • Pacing
  • Rendering of characters – are they believable?
  • The technical set-up of book in a print-ready format

Expected results

Seven artworked pages will be compiled into a book format using InDesign. A PDF version of this will be distributed for testing.

The mock-up, along with feedback and learning from testing will form the design toolkit for production.

What happened

Individual pages were all set-up using a US comic format including allowance for bleed where necessary.

This was the point in the process where text was added to speech bubbles, bringing the pages to life.

I used technical specifications from the Lulu Book Creation Guide (Lulu, 2022), and followed the page creation process explained by Scott Drummond in his video How to Set Up a Comic Book for Print in InDesign (Drummond, Scott, 2018).

Once the InDesign template had been set-up, pulling the pages in was straight forward. At this stage I reviewed each pages and came up with a list of snags/changes. These were quite minor and included rationalising the colour to make it consistent and adjusting the size and placement of speech bubbles to better match text.

The final layouts were exported as a PDF with facing pages; a format easily shared.

What I learned

At the time of publishing testing is ongoing so this section to be completed over the coming days.

Rhythm and layout
ReadabilityReads logically up until the last page where it’s not clear what’s happening in the final two panels.
What caused the explosion?
Who do the wide eyes belong to?
Splash pages work and juxtaposition of different visual styles
Text and letteringGood comments about the sound effects on page 4 and 5
Use of colourLike the use of colour. Could use different colour palettes for different scenes?
PacingSeveral positive comments about the variation in panel shape and layout in the man falling sequence on page 5
CharactersNo comments about the characters – I take this as positive i.e. readers understand and can differentiate between the different characters

What I’ll do next

Take what I’ve learned into the Production phase.



Drummond, Scott (2018) How to Set Up a Comic Book for Print in InDesign [Online video] At: (Accessed: 28/09/22)

Lulu (2022) Lulu Book Creation Guide [PDF download] At: (Accessed: 28/09/22)

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