Creating Comics - 47 Master Artists Reveal the Techniques and Inspiration Behind their Comic Genius
Back in 2006, an author named Spencer Drate called me out of the blue and asked me if I'd like to be included in a book he was writing about comics and the creative process behind them. He'd found my work and he thought I'd be a good fit for the book.
I was certainly honored to be asked, but I explained to Spencer that, although I did illustration work in a cartoony/comic book kind of style, and I'd created some comic strips for myself and some very small publications, I hadn't ever been published in an actual comic book. But Spencer told me that didn't matter - he liked my work and wanted me in the book. So I agreed, picked out a few illustrations, wrote up a bio and a short piece about my process, and sent it in.
Over the past few years, I kept an eye out for the book. Spencer and his co-author Judith Salavetz have published a bunch of books - on movie posters, rock posters, album cover art and more - so I fully expected the comic-creating book would come out someday. I even bought the authors' book Pure Animation in 2008, mistakenly thinking it was the book I was to be included in, but when I got it home and realized I wasn't in its pages, I assumed that this was the end - that their book on comics had come out, and I wasn't in it.
Then last week, an e-mail hit my inbox telling me that Creating Comics: 47 Master Artists Reveal the Techniques and Inspiration Behind Their Comic Genius was finally coming out, and asking me to confirm the address where my comp copy should be sent.
I haven't seen the physical book yet, but I quickly did a "Search inside" on Google Books and was stunned - first at the title ("masters"?! "genius"?!), and then at the other artists included. Paul Gulacy, Michael Golden, Danny Hellman, Tara McPherson, Paul Pope, J.J. Sedelmeier, Ward Sutton, Mark Texeira… and Jim Steranko?! High-profile people who actually work in the comics industry?! At the risk of sounding like I have a low self-opinion, I have to admit that my first thought was, "I don't belong here!"
But it's fantastic to be included, and I am humbled. I hope the short piece I wrote is interesting and helpful to someone out there. Now I feel like I need to generate a few comic book concepts and try to get them published, if only to justify my place in the book!
Creating Comics from Rockport Publishers on Amazon.
And a great interview with the authors and some of the contributors on Red Velvet Media.