But first, an explanation as to why I haven’t updated:
I’ve let my weekly meetings slip by me the last 3 weeks, since I injured my neck. I’ve been busy with chiropractic and massage treatments to begin the process of retraining the reverse curve in my neck, which kills when I lean over at my desk.
Okay, so the AWESOME news:
I went to HeroesCon 2015 on a whim. I found out it was going on literally 24 hours before it was going to end, so, I did what any maniac would, and I pulled an all-nighter. re-inking my first comic page with a brush, and also a page I drew over a year ago and never intended to keep.
After a night of no sleep and all ink, I headed out for the 3 hour drive. I didn’t even have time to go to FedEx and get copies of the dang things. I had no fancy portfolio. Just a worn out, orange scrapbook that I threw into a canvas grocery tote. I also included an ink I did of one of Terry Dodson’s cover art pencils, and a random Captain America page I found on the web and had practiced inking on. None of this was intended for the eyes of anyone… just my first attempt at inking someone else’s pencils.
There were about 22 others at the portfolio review. At least half were SCAD graduates. Every single person except me had a fancy black portfolio. Dammit!! I was the unprepared oddball. I listened intently to a lot of the other artists’ reviews, even after mine had been given, to get an idea of where I stood in this game.
The reviewer (a very big deal kind of guy) said that I definitely had talent. I did not hear him use the “t-word” in any other review (but then again, I did duck out once there were only 3 people left to review because I held my bladder for way too long at that point). All of my life’s struggles just vanished for a moment, when he said that. I so rarely tell myself I’m good. As stupid as it may sound, I needed to hear that, even if he was just saying it to keep me going. It did mean a lot to me. It meant the world.
I mentioned I held a BFA in Digital Art, but that my past work was conceptual and performative. He asked what I wanted to do in comics, and I said I wanted to publish a graphic novel, and also work as an inker for either Marvel or DC, eventually graduating up to a penciler. He said my work was ready for the industry and to “be annoying” by emailing editors with ink samples. He did mention that I needed to use the brush more (not the Micron pens) for the organic line look, and to get ahold of some additional pencils from a few other artists to demonstrate that I could ink anything, good or bad.
And regarding the epic 3-part 300 page graphic novel project (my Self-MFA program), he said (paraphrasing):
“Stop RIGHT NOW on your graphic novel, and get work inking. Then, when you’re working as an inker, you can pitch your story to your editor…” (and then he talked about that process)… “It’s not going to pay out if you self-publish something that long with years of effort put into it.”
Coming from the editor-in-chief of a big entertainment company, with an Eisner no less, don't blame me if that advice is gold to me right now. I do want to publish the GN. I want to do it right, with strategy.
I’m halting this experimental SMFA program right now to follow my leads to comic jobs. The real world called. It said I don’t need an MFA.
I’ll post here as often as I can with updates, however I’m going to be super busy trying to locate some sequential pencils from others to ink, and redesigning my website for comics jobs.
Not to mention, I’m moving back to my second home in Colorado in all this momentum.