QWTD: lba interviews kiandranishan!
lucky7s76 at 6:40AM, April 28, 2008
posts: 229
joined: 10-25-2007
Username: kiandranishan
Comics: Kenyagi, Beyond the Pale, Stupidity in the Right Ear, Of Snakes and Apples, The Telltale Leaf

Can you give us all a bit of a quick background on yourself and how you got into comics?

Well, I was born and mostly raised in very small towns in west Texas by my mother and grandparents. I�m the middle child of seven children�but if you count my step siblings there are nine of us and there are only two girls. I�ve drawn since I was very young; I remember drawing trees and birds in preschool. I excelled in school and ended up skipping most of high school (I only went though ninth grade halfway), starting college not long before my seventeenth birthday. After college I worked as a graphic designer, which is what my degree is in, for a few years but I found that it just wasn�t for me. But before I could go back to school I fell ill and slowly but surely have been building myself back up. I�m planning on starting college again next year to get a degree in art education. My plan is to become a middle/high school art teacher, that is, unless this comic thing takes off.

I�ve read comics since I learned how to read, mostly Marvel comics�especially X-Men. I always thought that it would be so cool to create my own but never thought that my art would ever be good enough. So, I concentrated on writing. I wrote a few short stories, tried starting a few novels, but my descriptive writing was defiantly lacking. I completely forgot about creating a comic of my own, that is until I read my first web comic. I ran across Talisman a few years ago on a fantasy art forum and it inspired me to create my own. At the time I was working on a short story about a girl with a mark on her back and strange powers�wala! Kenyagi was born. And now I can�t stop, I�m a total web comic addict!

A couple of your comics are based off of the story of Adam and Eve. Are they based off of your own personal beliefs or do you just find the story of Adam and Eve interesting?

Not my own belief. I was raised as a Christian household, my mother and brother and uncle are all ordained ministers, but I converted to Wicca about six and a half years ago.

I have a deep passion for religious mythos, especially Christian. As a child and teen my favorite things to read were the Christian bible, which I have read from front to back nine times during my lifetime, and mythology books. I find man�s stories about deity extremely interesting�especially in dealing with the creation of man. I plan on doing a biblical series; I already have the research and notes started on two sequels to �Of Snakes and Apples.�

�The Telltale Leaf� was a twenty-four hour comic experiment in writing comedy. It was pretty successful and I�ve gotten many kind words and even a review on it (she gave it a B which made me do a happy dance).

Kenyagi is you biggest comic, Do you happen to have any plans for it's future and anything special you're planning on doing with it compared to your other comics? You don't have to share any details if you'd rather not.

Not to give away too much but if Chi�era (the main character of Kenyagi) thinks the worst things in her life are over she is sorely mistaken. In the near future the fellow hinted as a romantic interest on Valentine�s will be revealed. And soon, the white haired lady from the first chapter will be back and many questions will be answered. I�m really excited about where the story is going starting with the third chapter. Chapter two only has a few more pages and then I�m going to do an end of chapter special, similar to what I did when OSAA chapter 1 ended. And I�ve been thinking about character cameos from my other comics and from other DD comics, with their creator�s permission of course.

How exactly do you go about making Kenyagi? And how long does it take you to finish an average page of it?

Kenyagi is done mostly by hand. I already have a detailed script written out, not for the whole comic but I like to be ahead of what page I�m working on by fifteen or twenty pages. Then I do thumbnails of each page, usually in groups of five pages at a time, of panel layout and character placement (this is usually drawn with stick figures haha). Then, on a sheet of nine by twelve inch drawing paper, I draw the panel borders using my trusty and well used gridded triangle. Then I pencil in the art and ink over that with India ink and a dip pen. After erasing all the stray pencil marks I color the page with colored pencils. Once I�m done coloring I use a colorless blender to burnish most of the page, making it look smoother. Then I scan and clean it up a bit in PS and then add speech bubbles and text.

It takes me anywhere from 8 to 10 hours a page.

You've created a comic called stupidity in the right ear based on true stories from working in a tech support call center as well. How often does the odd stuff that you show in that comic actually happen? And how do you and your coworkers usually treat it when it does happen?

It happens quite a bit actually. What�s even crazier that these things happen is that they happen multiple times. Most of the things in those strips have happened to many of my co workers, or at least something similar. It amuses us and we usually tell someone. The reason this comic was created was that me and my co-workers so often sit around and tell funny call stories. One time someone said that we should write these down and get them published. And that conversation gave birth to the idea for SitRE.

Do you ever plan on putting Kenyagi or your other comics into print or doing anything with merchandise for them?

I think about it sometimes but I don�t know if they would sell really. To tell the truth I never planned on going past chapter two on Kenyagi. It was just a way for me to test myself and learn how to create a comic. I didn�t think I�d really get any fans�but I was proved wrong, happily. I�m planning on putting �Of Snakes and Apples� into print and I�ve been thinking about doing merchandise from Kenyagi and OSAA. SitRE is more for me and my friends really so I don�t plan on it unless there is a call for it. And �Beyond the Pale� is a bit new to think about that yet.

Do you see yourself making your comics as part of a career in the future? Or do you like to do them for other reasons?

I would love to make it a career. That would be a neon-lit dream come true. I do enjoy doing them but my plan from the beginning was to try for a career in comics.

For that matter, where do you feel art fits into your life?

It is a huge part of my life, one of the largest parts. I do something artistic every single day. Other than comics I also paint, sculpt, write, sew, and embroider. I also enjoy designing clothes and costumes. When I was a teen I wanted to be a fashion designer and though it�s not a goal any longer I still enjoy designing stuff and have a great love for fabrics. I don�t think I�d would ever be able to stop doing art�I�d have to loose all my limbs or be paralyzed from the neck down to stop.

What is the thing that you as an artist are most interested in improving about your art? What do you feel is your biggest strength?

Improving? Anatomy. And not just human but anatomy of everything. I have to use references a lot. And buildings, I suck at drawing buildings.

Biggest strength? Eyes. Something I�ve heard over and over again, since I was a child, was my ability to put life into eyes. That�s something I pride myself on is that my drawings have personality and life in their eyes.

You've got a bit more experience than many on Drunkduck. Do you have any advice for younger artists or any myths you'd like to debunk?

Practice and study the world around you and other artists. And don�t be afraid to experiment, some of my best stuff started as an experiment. Don�t let rude/flame comments get you down�lots of comic artists get them.

Most important. Do your comic for yourself. If you enjoy your work it will show through. It�s the same with just about any art, if a dancer loves to dance that will show to those watching.

One last question to wrap things up:

Have you ever had the urge to draw on people with your drawing supplies if they fall asleep near where you're working? Because if you haven't you really should.

I actual haven�t but the next time it happens, which happens a lot in my department since we aren�t that busy, I�ll want to.
By the time you finish this, you'll have read it. :3

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:48PM
lucky7s76 at 6:47AM, April 28, 2008
posts: 229
joined: 10-25-2007
Nice informative interview :) You both did a great job!

And so as not to distract from the interview - thanks again, Skool, for posting those interviews while I was gone! :)
By the time you finish this, you'll have read it. :3

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:48PM
amanda at 7:46AM, April 28, 2008
posts: 2,075
joined: 9-19-2007
Interesting answers, Kian - and great questions, Iba. This was a fun read.
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:51AM
Steely Gaze at 10:47AM, April 28, 2008
posts: 824
joined: 7-7-2007
Great job you two. Boy, those were some professional questions Iba, and some equally smart answers Kiandranishan! I enjoyed it. :)
A Roll of the Dice now with full-size pages!

John Clyde now with ten times the tacky Hawaiian shirts!
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:57PM
lba at 1:59PM, April 28, 2008
posts: 2,750
joined: 5-29-2007
Man, I just realized how long some of those questions really were. hehe, sorry kinadranishan. lol!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:29PM
spiritmonkey at 12:28PM, April 29, 2008
posts: 501
joined: 8-11-2007
Very good interview and interesting answers
Timmy And the Bleach

There are many things in this world that are uncertain
I'd say I'm one of them
But I'm not sure
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:54PM
trevoramueller at 9:48AM, April 30, 2008
posts: 1,462
joined: 9-17-2007
I dig it! Good advice in here.
My Drunk Duck Comics:

Nominated for numerous web awards, see more news at My Website
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:33PM

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