NYCC 2018: Image Comics Live Draw With Mirka Andolfo, Wes Craig & Todd McFarlane!

by Tito W. James

[*This panel took place this past weekend at New York Comic Con 2018!]

During New York Comic Con, I attended a live-drawing session with artists Mirka Andolfo, Wes Craig, and Todd McFarlane. The three artists drew one of their favorite creations and talked about the comic book craft.

Andolfo drew Leslie from Unnatural and talked about how she grew up reading European Micky Mouse comics. Andolfo’s first exposure to American comics with with DC’s Lobo series. Andolfo says that her influences are a mix between Disney animation and badasses like Lobo.

Craig drew Maria from Deadly Class. He talked about how Maria and Saya are adored by cosplayers and fan-artists. Craig then expanded by saying that the key to creating an iconic character design is to make sure they are recognizable even at different distances. Marcus, the protagonist of Deadly Class, has a scar on his eye. Readers can always recognize Marcus, even if the panel is only showing a close-up of his eye.

McFarlane drew Venom, a character he inadvertently co-created. McFarlane was set to draw Spider-Man but was having an editorial dispute. Spider-Man at the time was wearing the black costume. McFarlane hated the dark suit but his editor loved it. McFarlane said he’d invent some other character to wear the black suit so he could draw the classic red-and blue Spider-Man. From that esthetic disagreement Venom was born.

After some questions by the moderator, all three artists agreed that there should be a rhythm within a comic. Craig actually listens to music while drawing Deadly Class and tries to capture some of that energy. Andolfo uses straightforward panels during dialogue scenes then more dynamic paneling for action and suspense. MacFarlane uses vertical panels when he wants the eye to move quickly across the page and horizontal panels when he wants to slow the reader down.
A final note came as a surprise when the three artists expressed that it doesn’t matter how well you draw but how well you communicate the story.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: