You draw so amazing. Are you a pro? Did you ever do any professional work for big companies? How did you get this good!?
And my reply:
"Thank you. Really. Coming from an artist as creative and expressive as yourself, that means a lot.
I was trained by a couple of relatively unknown pros, Todd Herman and Dan Schaefer. They steered me away from shitty '90s Image rehashing toward some sensible Loomis-esque and Mazzuchilli-esque realism. (Or, that's how they saw it, at least; I wanted to draw like Michael Turner at the time, and sometimes I still do.)
From there, it was a LOT of practice. I do a lot of thinking. I'm too slow. I use a lot of reference. Thanks, Hugh Hefner.
I could have been a pro in my mid-20s. Maybe. I got a business card from a Star Wars comics editor many years ago, asking for further samples. It felt like a great achievement. But following up would have meant drawing Star Wars comics, to start. And I only kinda like Star Wars. I don't love it enough to draw it. I wish he'd been a Star Trek editor.
Or maybe I don't; I wrote SwordCat Knights instead of sending him a stack of Yodas and Leias. I'm hoping it'll make money. I have yet to promote it at a con."
In other news: I've hired a flatter! Woo! I'm going to color at least all of issue #1 myself and I'm the world's slowest flatter, so this is GOOD NEWS, EVERYONE.
I've been cleaning up and prepping old pages for color, and I noticed Smiley mentions Ellen DeGeneres way back in issue #1 as he exits MacKnight's office; I had completely and totally forgotten this when I "ad-libbed" Kathryn's line referencing Ellen on this page.
Kathryn is awake 24 hours a day, and thus watches a lot of talk TV.
As usual, COMMISSIONS ARE OPEN! Send me a PM, or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter. My rates are reasonable -- don't reason a cow.