You seem to be the master of collaborating with different artists. My question is, where does the writing end? Im wanting to work WITH an artist, but Im so close to my project Im having a hard time knowing where/when to let the illustrator do their thing. I'm worried of being a control freak and yelling "draw what I tell you!" Help please.
the answer to this question is so complicated that is actually takes up an entire chapter of my upcoming book on writing and comic book making ( words for pictures coming from Random House/ crown later in the year :-))
there is no right or wrong answer because art is art, but it is my personal belief through trial and embarrassing error that you never just tell your artist to ‘draw what I tell you’. what you need to do is write a script that inspires your collaborator to bring their best work. they are not your art puppets to do your bidding, your collaborators are your partners and you need to treat them with the respect they deserve.
if you need it done your way and you should draw it yourself. if you are collaborating that you have to let your collaborators express themselves. they say that a great director doesn’t tell his actors how to act, don’t tell your artists how to draw. give them something they want to draw.
I graduated from college in December and I can't make myself do anything. Before I started my illustration degree I had real passion. I don't know what's wrong with me-it's like school killed my motivation, my need to make art and tell stories. Have you experienced something like this and how did you get back to doing what you love?
I thankfully don’t suffer from anything like this. in fact, I have on occasion suffered from the opposite. even when no one was paying me to make comics I was able to create a deadline situation for myself to hold to. which is what you need to do. you need to give yourself deadlines and assignments and hold to them because if you decide to be a professional artist then you will be.
but I do understand how you feel and I know where it comes from so I will appeal to your basic human fears and hit you with this:
so, guess what? while you are sitting here playing call of duty someone else is working their ass off and they are going to live your dream life. so get off your ass and get to work so you can become the master of your craft because vacation is over!! get to work!!
if that doesn’t work for you, try this: we are all going to die one day. your job as a human being is to put something on this planet that wasn’t there before. God forbid you get hit by a bus tomorrow… get to work!!
Hey man, a question. At what point in your career did you realize "I made it," as a successful comic book writer.
This is a difficult question to answer because it’s never the things you think. I took a lot of pride in publishing my first books but it still didn’t feel like I had ’ made it’ I was proud of it but I was paying for it with my own money so :)
the day after I won my first Eisner I was back in Cleveland doing caricatures at someone’s bar mitzvah definitely thinking I thought this would be different.
when ultimate Spider-man number one came out I remember feeling very confused. I wasn’t sure if it was a hit or not. I wasn’t sure if it was meeting expectations. and all I could think of was if this gets canceled then I have to go back to the end of the line. but now I’m on issue 185 so I am feeling a little less neurotic about that today :-)
so I guess if you add it all up, all of these moments, all of the people that I got to work with, when I see that I have an actual library of stuff that I’ve created or helped create then I have to get over my natural sense of self-loathing and appreciate that things are working out.
but truthfully I get so focused on what I have to do, what’s in front of me, what I haven’t done, that I rarely sit back in my chair and go ‘aaahhh”
You ever write comic book character that maybe you weren't particularly a fan of in the beginning, but by the end of it you were a fan?
I have enjoyed writing certain characters more than I thought I would, for sure. it isn’t that I wasn’t a fan of theirs, just some characters connect more with you than others for whatever reason but then you start writing and getting into them or you find a different angle to look at them from and you realize you are having a blast.