Recently I was contacted by a 9th grader from the Denver School of the Arts and he wanted to interview me for an assignment. I don't know if he just chose me randomly from deviantart or what, but here's the quick interview.
1. How long have you been a working artist?
I've been cartooning and drawing comics since I was about 12 years old, however my first professional work was done in 2005, so for about 3 years now.
2. What media have you predominantly used?
Well, as far as comic book work, for penciling and sketching I use non-reproducing red colored pencils and sometimes a tablet for my PC and Photoshop. I ink with a traditional brush and India ink and Pentel brand brush pens, as well as an assortment of markers and pens, and for coloring I use my tablet with Photoshop.
3. Did you go to art school, if so where? Do you have graduate degrees?
I am an Honors Graduate with a degree in animation from The Art Institute of Phoenix.
4. When did you become interested in art?
I've always enjoyed reading and writing ever since I was little, I became interested in art around the age of 12 or so.
5. How did you get involved with a gallery?
I haven't had any solo gallery shows, although I was part of a group show early this year and I have also worked with galleries in the past doing lectures and presentations. Usually they contact me through local store owners and friends.
6. Where do you get your ideas for your art? Do you research, sketch from life etc?
My ideas come from everywhere, I watch a lot of documentaries, historical and scientific programs and they generate thoughts and story ideas for me, and I also try to keep up on current events and they can influence me as well. Once I have an idea I try and do as much research as possible until I know exactly what it is I want to portray. Often times I develop concepts with writers and other artists, so that's a great way to think of new and inventive stories and visuals. I don't do nearly enough life drawing or sketching, but it is something I highly recommend.
7. What percentage of your income do you make from art?
Currently, very little, but the potential is there and if I chose to adjust my lifestyle and cost of living, then I could make a living directly from my art and freelancing work. Hopefully within the next year or so I can move into freelancing full time.
8. How do you decide how much to charge for your art?
In my particular line of work, I don't get much request for original art sales, but when I do sell sketches or pages, I usually look to see what peers at my level are selling their work for and try to stay in the same price range. I want my pages to be affordable so there is an interest in it, but it is also work, and one should be compensated fairly for their time and effort.
9. Do you have any advice for someone in high school who is studying art?
Practice as much life drawing as possible, learn as many techniques as possible and study art in all it's forms from painting, to art history, film, comics, animation and everything in-between.
10. Where were you born? Where do you live now? Does the place you live influence your art?
I was born in Minnesota but have lived all over the place, including Okinawa, Japan, which really affected my outlook on society and culture, and helped breed my love for comics and animation. I currently live in Phoenix, Arizona, and the only affect it has on my career is the limited opportunities available here. Since my artwork all comes from my imagination, my surroundings have little influence on it.
And here is a pin-up I did for my buddy Mike (Lions, Tigers and Bears) Bullock's GIMOLES graphic novel, it's out in June I think, from Image Comics, go here to get ordering information.