My story into comics

Updated: Nov 20, 2018

Hello!


I'm Katherine and welcome to my website and blog!


I am an aspiring comic artist currently living in Wolverhampton, a little town in the West Midlands where we don't pay more than £5 for anything. Seriously, we have more pound bakeries and pound shops than any other place in the world I think...


I am not going to lie and tell you I was brought up on comics and lived and breathed Batman because I didn't. I always feel really awkward talking about my way into comics to other comic artists and I hardly know anything that they are on about... But I am brushing up on my knowledge now I am serious about it.


I grew up instead on cute cartoons and manga. I loved the Power Puff Girls as a kid and I have never forgiven my parents for not buying me the movie on dvd. My sisters were always drawing around me, the eldest Louise, was doing illustration at University and drew a lot of manga heavily inspired by clamp. So I watched her a lot of studied her art.

I always wanted to draw as good as her but always found myself enjoying to draw more cartoon art more.


I moved onto shows like Danny Phantom and Kim Possible and religiously drew every scene from Danny Phantom and stuck them to my wall. I loved him. I loved the story. I loved the animation and I loved that I could draw him pretty well! I knew by then I would never draw like my sister so started focusing on what I wanted to draw and started to take real influence from shows such as Card Captors and Teen Titans.


I decided to choose art in High School as clearly it was something I was passionate about and could do well, better than most the other kids! It was probably the worst choice I ever made. I hated every second of those classes. My teacher constantly belittling me and telling me to stop drawing cartoons and focus on the class. I know she was only following the criteria but I was a wanna be rebel and avoided any real work in those classes when I could. She asked me to draw a flower so I drew a bouquet of dead roses with faces... that kind of thing... Clearly I was heavily inspired at this point by Tim Burton. I left high school hating everything to do with art and never wanted to draw again.


The next time I really focused on art again was 6 years later when I started attending comic conventions. I wasn't sure what to expect from my first convention. I wasn't really even sure what cosplay was and didn't even realise that comics were still a thing and that regular folk like myself could do it!


A couple of cons in and Rick and Morty had become quite popular and I was already heavily obsessed. I saw that Sarah Graley and Marc Ellerby both artists for the comics were at London Comic Con and I was freaking out! I was going to meet actual artists from the actual comics! I went to meet them and found out that Sarah actually went to my University and lived near my home town! I remember that moment too well. I remember her words blurring into one, my eyes glazed over, wait... someone.... from my university... from my home town.... can draw for the most popular cartoon at this moment in time? My favourite cartoon? She can draw... for Rick and Morty.... why can't I?

And again with Marc Ellerby! Someone so close to home was able to do something so world wide! They were both so lovely and talked to me about how they did it and got into it.


The first time I met Sarah Graley

The first time I met Marc Ellerby

By the time I had come back into the room I turned to my friend and said "I want to draw comics". My mind had been made up. I wasn't sure how to do it but as I looked around I saw so many artists who could and if they could they I can learn too and I can be where they are one day.


I began drawing like mad, almost every other day, I needed to improve and I needed to improve fast. My first doodles of Rick and Morty were god awful but slowly after practice they started to look more and more like them.




Before I knew it I could pretty much get general likeness and was pretty proud of what I could draw! People started to message asking for commissions and I couldn't believe that people wanted my art! I happily drew what they wanted and loved getting photos of my art at their homes!


In May 2018 my friend messaged me with a link for a comic course for aspiring artists in the West Midlands. I dismissed it instantly as I didn't believe I would get on, I wasn't good enough. I didn't know enough about comics to do this! They would think I was a fraud! But with almost an hour to closing time for applications I decided to just do it! What was the worst that could happen? They say no? Then what? I just carry on. Best scenario? They say yes and I learn a lot of cool stuff!


Best scenario... they said yes!


I started the course a few weeks later and was put back by how brilliant everyone was! But I won't talk much about this experience here as I have a whole other blog post about the Comic Creative Catalyst Course here. But short story, I left learning a great deal and improving quite drastically over a six month period. Almost to the point that I don't recognise my old art. I also left with 13 new artist friends, experience being taught by the legends John Mccrea, Dave Gibbons and Laura Howell to name a few! and oh yeah a comic book too, with my art in it. My art. I drew things. And it went into a comic book. The book has my name on and everything!


Look!

Off The Mark- Comic Anthology


Me and my book!


Now?


Now, I am writing this blog post ready to set up my own website, my online shop, start tabeling at conventions next year, my first issue of my first completely me comic written and ready for planning and a partnership with an the incredible Ginger Problems brand.


I am still not quite there but I am doing everything I can do be there. One step at a time. It has been a long journey already and I am no where near close to being where I want to be but I can see it and I have hope that I can do this.


I wanted to start this blog to show other aspiring artists that a little ol' normal girl from Wolverhampton with a pretty normal childhood, a decent education and an unhealthy obsession for Rick and Morty and mince pies could do this.








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