So you want to make comic books?
Writer Shea Fontana and artist and colorist Monica Kubina, two of the creative team behind the DC Superhero Girls Finals Crisis Graphic Novel, recently converged at Earth-2 Comics in Sherman Oaks for a meeting of S.C.R.A.W.L. (Secret Comic Readers and Writers League) to answer questions and sign copies of the comic book for their young fans. Monica and Shea shared some of their perspectives and career wisdom with the members of the audience, many of whom proved to be budding comic book artists and writers themselves.
Writer Shea Fontana and artist and colorist Monica Kubina
1. Write or draw. Every. Single. Day.
If you’re an artist, if you’re a writer, do something to hone your skills every single day. Write a scene. Sketch. Design a character. Create a backstory. Every. Single. Day.
2. Watch a lot. Read a lot.
Become well versed in the medium you want to master. Study and analyze what you see. If your parents wonder why you’re reading so many comic books or watching so many animated shows, remind them that you’re preparing for your future career.
3. Have confidence in yourself.
When you’re young, you always think you lack experience. Don’t forget: there is beauty and creativity in you as a young artist. You may not see things as others do, and that’s okay.
4. The cliche is true.
Be yourself, follow your heart, don’t take criticism personally. There’s no one magic piece of advice that will lead to success. But the boring stuff about dedication, hard work and practice is what matters most.
5. Have your own opinions.
Think them through and articulate them well. Don’t try to change your voice to fit someone else’s ideas.
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Author Andrea Davis worked as a development executive in the film business after having earned her Masters Degree in Production from the Cinema-TV department at USC. Despite this, she still loves to watch movies and television. She lives in the Los Angeles area with her husband and three children.