When I first created the stick characters, I didn’t give them any faces at all. It was kind of an abstract shaded membrane. The idea was that to show expression they would ripple and change color. Because that would have required animation, I never really went in that direction. Instead, I added very simple faces with little black eye spots. That worked well enough for the time.
Looking back through the archives, it was around 2011 when I decided to give the characters scleras and irises. The characters all had specific eye colors. Brandon, brown; Dewey, Blue; Tyler, green; etcetera. Unfortunately you couldn’t really see the color as the eyes were still highly diminutive specs on their faces.
It was rather recently when I further increased the size of their eyes, but when I looked back at earlier panels, the cast almost looked bug-like with beady little wideset eyes. Of course it started to dawn on me that other comics utilize big oversized eyes, and I’m not just talking about anime. Yes, a few syndicated comics have the tiny dots for eyes, but it’s so much more relatable when the eyes take up a disproportionate amount of facial real estate.
So now I’m testing the limits of how big I can make their eyes. It may look a little disconcerting at first, but give it a few months and the panels with the smaller eyes will be the weird looking ones.