When did you first decide that you wanted to create your own comics as a career?
I knew since I was a second grader that working as a comic book artist is what I wanted to do. I worked on some small independent projects and self-published a comic book called the Cape in 1998. Unfortunately it only ended up being one issue but I learned a ton of valuable information and even managed to license the book to be used in a television commercial.
2. Who has had the biggest influence on you outside the comics industry, and how did they affect your life?
I was fortunate enough to have an amazing teacher and painter named Budge Hyde who completely re-directed me and forced me to focus on some fundamental drawing issues that I needed to work on. He helped me cement a positive attitude and taught me the mentality to become a "soldier" and work through problems. I pass on his teachings with the best of my ability whenever I have the opportunity.
3. Who has had the biggest influence on your comics career, and how has that person changed your work?
I was very fortunate to have met Bob Schreck who was extremely generous with his time and wisdom. Strangely, he was also the man responsible for the first comic con I ever attended called Creation con in Boston. If it wasn't for Schreck I don't know if I would have honed all of my skills to the point I did. I learned so much about many aspects of the industry from him and will always be grateful.
4. What do you do to recharge your creative batteries?
I play with my kids, spend time with my girlfriend and watch the WWE network.
5. Describe your typical work routine
. I like to have more than one page going at a time so I will get some music cranking, or listen to some talk on satellite radio and get to work for a few hours at a time. When I have the option, I prefer drawing after dinner into the early morning but I find time to get the work done and hit the deadlines.
6. What tools do you use to create comics and what makes them the “right tools” for you?
I use HB lead and a kneaded eraser, ideally on Kubert School bristol board. Inks vary but I like Dr. Martin's Black Star, #1 and 2 brushes, 102 crow quill as well as any tools necessary to get the job done. I use watercolors, acrylic, gouache and a touch of digital depending on the specific kind of job.
7. What element of your work gives you the most personal satisfaction?
If I don't hate the piece when it's done I consider it a victory. Those rare times when I come close to achieving the image in my head, on the paper is the most satisfaction I get.
8. What has been the most rewarding project in your professional career – in or out of comics – and why?
I think it's a tie between a nine issue Batman mini-series called Gotham Underground that I did for DC Comics. It was amazing to work on a 9 issue run and the nature of the book reminded me of one of my childhood favorites, Batman Family. The other would be my creator owned book, Malice and Mistletoe, which was a two year passion project. I learned a lot and it meant a great deal to me that I owned it, and got to make the decisions with my co-creator Nathan Graham Davis. I feel like we produced a graphic novel that is truly unique which is saying something. We also managed to license it to create our own brand of whiskey with a Massachusetts distillery, Damnation Alley. To be able to really distinguish ourselves like that was meaningful to me and certainly not something I could ever do with work-for-hire at DC, Marvel etc... Malice and Mistletoe is available through Amazon.com
9. We’ve all met very talented newcomers who are trying to get their first professional projects. What’s the best advice you’ve ever heard given to a promising new creator?
I always tell newcomers that if they are obsessed and feel like they have to do comics, they should give it everything they have and make it happen. If not, don't bother. This industry can be very uncertain, unreliable and an enormous amount of work with challenging deadlines. Learn anatomy from life, not comics and remember that you don't deserve to have any kind of arrogance. Be humble and proud and remember that you aren't curing cancer, hopefully you are producing amazing art!
10. Time to get philosophical: What’s the most important “big idea” that you’ve learned in life – in or out of comics – and why is it important?
Never take anything for granted and do it while you can. I always approach every gig as though it could be my last and always did. I never felt entitled to work and always remembered what a privilege is was to do what I did. I always tried to embrace opportunities when they were presented and presumed that they might not come around again.
Tale of the Unexpected UnPublished
the Gentleman Ghost story originally intended to run in Tales of the Unexpected #8
written by James Peaty, pencils by Yvel Guichet & Inks Purcell
Tale of the Unexpected UnPublished
A Christmas tale of bloodshed and treachery. After a series of Thanksgiving murders, a suit-wearing, cigar-smoking Santa Claus hires an assassin to track down and kill Krampus, the Christmas Devil.
It's TERRIFIC!!!!!!!!!!!! Loved the mystery and adventure behind the scenes of the North Pole ! Best use of Krumpus I've ever read. ByM. Hallockon February 5, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition