Today, I’m excited to introduce everyone to one of the artists behind the newly released graphic novel, Dusk, Mr. Jerry Gonzales.
As a battered wife, Eve’s only concern was to keep her marriage together. But when she is kidnapped into the sordid supernatural world of vampires and foul magic, Eve finds she doesn’t want to leave. Her mysterious benefactor, the Vampire Lord Ash, wish her to have a normal life but Eve chooses to stay in the service of Ash. Dusk is the stories about Eve and her challenges living in the darkness. Dusk is a supernatural action/drama story done in a dynamic blending of the sequential art styles of American Comics and Japanese Manga. Several artists help tell these stark noir tales of Vampires and Unrequited Love.
Make sure you stick around because I’m getting to give away a copy of Dusk.
For those who have not discovered Dusk yet, how would you convince someone to pick it up?
If you don’t like vampires that sparkle… this is your book.(laughs) I don’t know how to convince someone to pick up Dusk. Not unless you pull a gun to some body’s head and tell them, “buy Dusk or I pull the trigger”. That’s not good marketing. I guess the big thing about this book, is that its not a big long explanation of how Eve came to be. Granted there’s a brief origin story in the book but it doesn’t dwell to much on that subject, David pushes forward with the story keeping it fast paced. So through out the book you’re getting a mix of what Eve does in this book without dragging on, on who or what she does, which I like. I dig the whole straight forward action story, it grabs the readers’ attention and it doesn’t slow down too much.
What was it about the concept of Dusk that drew you to this project?
I believe what drew me into this project was Eve. I like the concept of this woman who has a option to lead a normal life but chooses to live in a dark world of the supernatural. You usually read other stories where plays out the opposite, not this one. That’s why it got my attention.
What was the creative process like? How did you reconcile your work with the other artists?
The process involves a lot of discussing back and forth via email. David usually starts things off with sending me a script, with descriptions of each character physically and mentally. From there I just come up with sketches, email them to David, come up with some thumbnails of the entire chapter, and then (after the okay from David) I go straight to pencils and then inks. The process takes about three months to do. Apparently, David says I work fast but in my mind I’m going at a semi slow rate. As for reconciling my work with other artists, I believe, its more of an understanding of what the book should look like. I mean, Maki (Naro) was the one to start off the look of Eve and Ash. All I did was use his work as reference and interpret the look in my style of art.
How difficult was it to merge the two styles of Japanese and American graphic artwork? Do you have a preference between the two styles?
It wasn’t too difficult to merge the two seeing that I’ve dealt with both styles in the past. I used to do a realistic style to my work, but it didn’t feel quite right to me. So a friend of mine got me in to manga, and I was impressed with the look of it . So I much prefer the manga style than anything. There’s always a challenge with that work of art.
What was the hardest task about creating your contribution? What was the easiest?
Ask almost any artist, meeting the deadline is the hardest task that there is. There’s always something that is in the way of getting the book done on time. Currently I’m doing another comic with David, which I’m doing the pencils and the inks, plus I think I have another chapter of Dusk that I may be inking. So there’s a lot of work that needs to be done on time. By the way, the new artist for volume two is amazing, Jolene Houser does a great rendition of Eve which is awesome. I just finished doing the inks on a chapter she did and can’t wait to see the finished product. Anyway, the easiest task for me would be just doing the work itself. I love penciling out a comic page. I like doing new projects that involve illustration.
Why black and white? What was the thought process and ideas behind collaborating on a strictly black and white graphic novel?
I think it was David’s decision to make Dusk black and white. I don’t think the book would pan out very well in color. Take a look at the book, and see that if it was in color, it would loose it’s dark mood of Dusk.
The artwork for Dusk reminds me of Frank Millers’ Sin City. Was he one of your influences? Who else have you been influenced by?
Frank Miller was partly one of my influences, but the main ones are Fred Perry who does Gold Digger for Antarctic Press, Jim Lee (Batman, X-Men), and George Perez (Teen Titans, JLA/Avengers, Crisis on Infinite Earths). Fred Perry is the only reason why I’m still a comic artist and not trying to find another career that I can get into.
I’ll be honest, I really don’t get the idea behind the story of Dusk. What’s your interpretation of the hidden meaning? What did you want readers to take from it?
I guess it would be that nobody is really, truly normal.
Are you normally a fan of graphic novels and/or comics? If so, who are some of your favorite graphic novel/comic artists?
I’ve grown up reading comics and graphic novels, hell, I’ve even worked at a comic shop for like two years. That’s every comic geek’s dream come true. So far my favorite artists have been Frank Cho (Liberty Meadows), Alan Davis (Miracleman,), Adam Kurbet (Batman), Alex Ross (Kingdom Come), and Ben Dunn (Ninja High School). There’s more artists that I like but if I keep going at this rate my hand will start to cramp up from typing.
Who’s your favorite graphic novel/comic character?
At the number one spot would be Green Lantern. I love the idea that you can create anything your mind can think of with a powerful ring. The only downside is trying to recharging the thing every twenty- four hours. With the amount of work that I’m doing I would totally blank out on recharging (laughs).
Contest Time! We’re giving away a copy of Dusk to a lucky commentator and it’s very easy to enter. All you have to do is answer one simple question: Who’s your favorite graphic novel/comic character?
The contest is open to everyone, so everyone overseas can join in the fun as well.
As always, if you want more chances to win, you can post about today’s contest on your blog, social network, or anywhere you can. Digg it, stumble it, twit it (#litesc), share it with the world. Wherever you share it, make sure you add a link to it along with your answer (in the same post). The more places you share it, the more entries you get.
For more entries, purchase any novel through LE’s Amazon store sometime during this contest and send a copy of the receipt VIA email for your purchase to: myjaxon AT gmail DOT com. Each purchase is one entry and it has to be through the LE Link.
Join the Literary Escapism Facebook page and you’ll get an additional entry. Make sure you leave a comment so I know that’s why you’re joining. Only new readers to the group will be considered.
For an additional entry, subscribe to Literary Escapism’s newsletter in the sidebar. This is for new subscribers only.
I’ll determine the winner with help from the Research Randomizer. All entries must be in by midnight on July 28th.