Visiting Artists to My Studio: Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky

October 24th, 2014

So yeah…that happened. Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky, creators of “Sex Criminals” (and yeah, you need to read this series…it’s incredible) came for a studio visit with me during their “Crafting Your Hustle” appearance here at CCAD.

Rarely have I been as nervous as I was for this meeting. These guys are responsible for one of the best new comics out there right now, maybe ever. Fraction’s writing has brought new life to characters at Marvel like Hawkeye that years ago I’d had to treat as my ‘guilty pleasure’ reading when I collected series like “Marvel Team-Up” (the only place you often saw Hawkeye regularly for a time), and Zdarsky has a clean line style and layout arrangement that is so perfect for comic work that I can only stare at it gap-jawed the way I’ve looked at the work of guys like Chris Sprouse and Frank Quitely in the past.

The meeting went great despite my shyness and nervous stomach. I showed them the concept sketches, explained a bit about “Beyond the Grass Ocean” and got a pretty good professional grilling from them about where I’m at, the approaches I’m taking to the creating and executing of my work, a few side bits and my past in comics and writing. In the end, it was a meeting that felt really whirlwind, like somehow I’d managed in a little over a half-hour to relay my entire soul and blather-gush my entire creative life to these guys, who took it all in gracious stride. And why not? They’re pros, after all.

In the end I gave them each signed copies of “Sin Gorge” and a couple of the sample bottles of my “Horsley’s Cure-All” promo that people always seem to get a kick out of when I show them. I felt like I owed them a little something at least for their time and all the guidance they crash-coursed me in for continuing this book.

Great guys. Solid craftsmen and people of caliber in this world. You don’t always find that. And they didn’t hmm, huh, and kiss my ass for twenty minutes with useless small talk. They nailed me on my weaknesses and told me where my strengths could be brought to play more effectively on my work…and now I definitely feel more confident going forward with this project.

Thanks, gentlemen. Next time your in town, sandwiches on me.

Matt Fraction is Honored to be Photographed with Me Chip Zdarsky & Me...Chip has the Softest Skin of a Comics Artist...

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