Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Everblue Interview


Greetings friends and welcome to a new feature I hope to continue into the future.  This time I’m bringing you interviews from Webcomic Creators I enjoy.  This is a bit of a two for one as you get to learn about interesting creators while at the same time learning a bit about the stories I enjoy to read.

So without further grandstanding on my part I’d like to introduce Michael Sexton to you all, creator of a wonderful new webcomic called Everblue.  Thank you for joining us today on this inaugural interview.

Thanks for having me!

Would you give us a brief summary of the story of Everblue?

Luna is a young shipwright who is suddenly swept off on an adventure when strange circumstances force her to leave her home. She is eventually joined by a band of fellow outcasts and together they follow a mysterious map along a path that could lead them to uncovering the secrets of the Everblue, an endless ocean ocean that surrounds their civilization. All the while they must fend off the operatives of a government that seems intent on hunting Luna down.



You’ve got a very warm art style, are you self taught or have you been going to school?  What do you use to create the comic?

I've been drawing for most of my life, so I could say I'm self taught. Most of what I know about comics and art has been learned through trial and error, as well as paying attention to  and emulating the work of artists I admire.

Everblue is produced 100% digitally. I use a graphics tablet for drawing on the computer. The linework is done in a program called "Paint Tool Sai" and I color and finish pages in Photoshop.
As a “larger” person of a “larger” mother (laughs) I have to say one reason I was drawn to your comic was because your main character, Luna wasn’t a more commonly seen “rail” character or a “busty bimbo” style character.  Any particular reason you went with this style for her?

I've always enjoyed reading comics and watching animations which had characters who weren't just "cookie cutter" stereotypes, in appearance or personality. In Luna's case, as the main character, I felt like it was especially important to giver her a natural looking body-type. Characters who don't all have implausible physiques are much easier to relate to, I think.
Luna's character design actually started out being a bit skinny while the comic was in development, but later on after I began making changes, eventually something clicked and I could say, "This is Luna!"

So the cover for Chapter one is listed as going up on January 2nd, 2010 meaning you’re almost at your 3rd anniversary.  Do you have anything planned?  How hard has it been keeping the project going for three years?

Before the website went up, I had been posting pages on Livejournal since around September 2008, so it's been almost five years. I hadn't even realized until now, haha. I may have to do something special for the fifth anniversary.

Keeping the project going for that long has been... challenging, I'll just put it that way XD. There were certainly times when I felt like I could be overwhelmed by the amount of work, but it's a labour of love, and I definitely want to see it through to the end.

As a former webcomic creator myself I know how hard it is to make it past the first year, let alone five!   How responsive has your community been to your work?  How hard has it been to build that community and get the readers in the first place?

I think it's definitely the readers who have helped me keep the comic going. They've been nice enough to show their support through comments, critiques and even fanart (which I still freak out about).

I was lucky enough to know some artists who already had a following and directed some of their readers my way early on. I also think that starting up and maintaining social networking pages for the comic (such as on Facebook or Twitter) has really helped build a community around the comic.

There are those who think webcomics are “second rate” and if you were a “real” comic artist you’d create a print comic.  What do you say to folks like that?

"I have a few webcomics I'd like to introduce you to."

In my time reading print comics and webcomics alike, I've found that there are many on the web as good as or better than the ones you'll find in shops. That said, an awful lot of webcomics have printed versions as well, so really they might be the best of both worlds {laughs}.
Do you have any suggestions, tips, or warnings for those who are considering creating a webcomic?
I think that spending a fair amount of time developing the comic is a good idea. Practice drawing your characters, practice making pages, and as soon as you feel like you're ready to start, go for it!

Kickstarter is becoming a bigger and bigger deal for comic creators and webcomic creators specifically.  As your store is currently out of stock of all of your print versions of your comic do you think you’ll be running a Kickstarter campaign in the future to bring Everblue into print again?

Definitely. I want to save a kickstarter campaign for when I have more chapters and incentives to offer though, so it could be a while.

Thank you again for joining me for this interview.  Do you have any parting thoughts for our readers?

Thanks so much!
  
That was Michael Sexton of the webcomic Everblue!  I do hope you’ll give it a read and maybe we’ll hear from Michael again in the future as a Kickstarter campaign!