First off, I'd like to say that I wouldn't be the obscure but capable webcomic creator I am if it weren't for a whole slew of artists before me. My comic, HOSERS: The Comic Strip was inspired by my personal faves of the early greats of webcomicdom, primarily GOATS: The Comic Strip, GPF Comics, College Roomies From Hell!!!, and Nukees!. Thank you, Jon, Jeff, Maritza and Gav. As always I must tip my hat to you and your dedication to the art.
Second, anyone really interested in creating comics should pick up and read two or three of Scott McCloud's books: Understanding Comics, Reinventing Comics, and Making Comics. All are available from Amazon.com or you local bookstore. McCloud is very astute and has great suggestions on putting together a comic. If you read only two, you can omit "Reinventing Comics" -- but really, you should read all three. Also for good practice on framing comic strip panels, try out Wally Wood's 22 Panels That Always Work.
UPDATE: In addition to the books and sites above, you should also purchase and read the excellent How to Make Webcomics by Brad Guigar, Dave Kellett, Scott Kurz, and Kris Straub. It is an excellent book and I highly recommend it.
Anyway, this instructable will deal with the useful mechanics of webcomics production, in my opinion: how to sketch and ink your comic on paper. I plan a future instructable about how to make it into a nice-looking image for web - and possibly print - presentation. (Coming Soon!)
The process I use cribs parts from a dozen other webcomic processes, and of course doesn't apply to work drawn entirely on the computer, say using a tablet. I do that also, and will create a separate instructable for my fully-digital production methods if someone would like to see one.
So let's get started! For this tutorial, I am going to draw a comic strip. Well, don't act so surprised....
Step 1: Drawing the Comic: Supplies
(Note: some artists just us printer paper, and if this works for you, that's fine. However I have comics drawn on printer paper and with sharpie markers that have noticeably not withstood the test of time over the past 8 years, while images made with the Strathmore paper and the pens noted below are still as clear as the day they were drawn.)
I have a full compliment of artist's pencils but most of my sketching is done with .5mm and .7mm mechanical pencils or a #2 yellow pencil. I erase the lines anyway. Many artists use non-repro blue pencils so they don't have to erase. I've tried this, too, but I don't buy non-repro blue pencils because they're expensive. There's really no "official" color known as "non-repro blue" to my knowledge. Any hard-lead light-blue colored pencil does the same job, for much less. Modern scanners and software are pretty good at ignoring the pale blue lineart regardless what instrument was used to draw them. You can also use light green or yellow.
My eraser of choice is a white plastic Staedtler eraser. It does a great job lifting the pencil from the paper without removing any ink at all. For detail erasing I use a Pentel ClicEraser, it also uses the white plastic type of eraser material. I know people who swear by kneaded erasers. Personally, I don't like them. Pink erasers are too rough on the paper and can cause the paper to fray, and then have trouble holding ink properly later on.
My pens of choice are a set of Koh-I-Noor Rapidograph technical pens. They're anywhere from a little pricey to exorbitant depending on where you buy them and if they're on sale... and the really fine-line pens need to be used often or drained out, otherwise the ink dries in them and turns them into expensive darts. Many webcomic artists prefer a nice set of disposable Pigma Micron pens or Staedtler Pigment Liner pens, which have archival-quality ink in them and so shouldn't fade even after many years. I started with these, and occasionally use them when I travel (I don't travel with the Rapidographs). For coloring by hand (which I'm not covering here) you have dozens of options. Colored pencils, watercolors, and markers seem to be the most popular choices, but this is really a personal decision. Try them all and pick what you like. I usually color digitally, which will be covered in an upcoming tutorial.
(Note: as I mentioned above, I've seen people use sharpie markers to do the artwork. I've done this myself. Sharpies however are not archival quality ink, and do not stand up to the ravages of age. I also find that even on high-quality paper, the lines they leave behind look sloppy. If you want your images to last a long time and look crisp, use a pen that contains archival ink. They're not much more expensive than sharpies, and they'll look better.)
I don't use white-out or white liners to fix mistakes, because I can do that on the computer. When I work with all of my artist pencils, erasers fix mistakes. When I use charcoal, kneaded erasers are actually useful here. When I use colored pencils... well, try not to make mistakes. I haven't found anything good for that yet.