Comic Strip / Comics

What Are the Parts of a Comic Strip Called?

Comic strips have been a popular form of entertainment for many decades. They are a combination of art and storytelling that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. If you’re interested in creating your own comic strip, it’s important to know the different parts that make up this art form.


The panel is the basic unit of a comic strip. It’s a rectangular space where the artist draws out the action or dialogue. A comic strip can have one or more panels arranged horizontally or vertically.


The gutter is the space between two panels. It separates one panel from another and helps to create a natural flow between them. The gutter is an essential part of a comic strip as it allows for transitions and pacing.


A balloon, also known as a speech bubble, is used to indicate dialogue or thoughts by characters in the comic strip. It’s usually drawn with a tail that points towards the character who is speaking.

Types of Balloons

  • Round Balloons: These are used for normal dialogue.
  • Tailless Balloons: These are used for internal thoughts.
  • Rectangular Balloons: These are used for narration or captions.
  • Irregular Balloons: These are used for shouting or emphasis.

Sound Effects

Sound effects are an important part of creating atmosphere in a comic strip. They can be used to indicate background noise, actions, or events that happen off-panel.

Examples of Sound Effects

  • Bang!
  • Splash!
  • Creak!
  • Zap!


The background is the setting or environment in which the comic strip takes place. It can be as simple as a blank space or as complex as a detailed cityscape.

Types of Backgrounds

  • Static Background: This is a consistent background that is used throughout the comic strip.
  • Dynamic Background: This changes based on the action or setting in each panel.
  • No Background: This leaves the background blank, allowing the focus to be on the characters and dialogue.


Characters are the heart of any comic strip. They drive the story forward and provide entertainment for readers.

Types of Characters

  • Main Characters: These are the main protagonists and antagonists of the story.
  • Supporting Characters: These are characters who help move the story along but aren’t main players.
  • Extras: These are characters who appear in one or two panels to fill out a crowd scene or add depth to a setting.

In conclusion, creating a comic strip requires careful attention to detail and an understanding of these different parts. By mastering these elements, you can create engaging stories that captivate your audience.