Guest Artist Week: Scott Koblish!
Scott Koblish is a nice guy. First and foremost, that’s what I have to say about him. Friendly, kind, unassuming. When people brought over his Deadpool comic for an autograph, he was always kind of gracious, and almost a little embarrassed. We live very near each other in Los Angeles, and I’ve spoken to him numerous times at the Comic Book Store about various projects he’s been involved in. He often works with George Perez and Kevin Maguire, two of my favorite pencillers.
Right now, he works on Deadpool, a character created by Rob Liefeld, a creator I’ve spent a lot of time taking shots at. The current Deadpool book is pretty good, and really highlights Koblish’s ability as an artist, with various “flashback” issues that allow him to draw in the style of previous comic eras. I’m a bit ahead of myself though…
When I asked him for the commission, and explained the Adequacy Concept, as it were, he asked “so what should she be doing?” I replied, “You’re the creator…you decide.”
“I feel like drawing mermaids. I’m gonna make her a mermaid. You figure out how to explain it.” With that, he began the art above, and we had a discussion about the process, sketch covers, random effects of red kryptonite, the comics industry, and so forth. Numerous times, as he drew the “arbitrary” image (hence here t-shirt), people came up with this cover art, to Deadpool No. 27, for a signature.
Bleeding Cool asserts that there is some debate about the Guinness Record here. Regardless, the award was given, and Marvel actually had a cover logo added about it. I asked Scott about the award, and he said, “I dunno…I think my editor has it.” With a smile and a shrug, like it doesn’t really matter. Scott…just likes drawing comics. Koblish has been in the comic industry for some time now, working on just about every mainstream character and title. After graduating college he joined up with Romita’s Raiders (an apprenticeship program with John Romita), and hasn’t looked back since.
His work has graced the pages of Marvel and DC’s finest, as a penciller and inker, but he is so much more than that. An artistic chameleon, Koblish has an ineffable ability to morph his style to suit the needs of whichever book he’s working on, from westerns to superheroes, and even a little Disney.
I remember talking to Scott years ago at length about Legion of Three Worlds, which he inked with George Perez penciling. There were delays, but the series was beautiful. We both love the characters, and are kind of geeky about them. At Wondercon we spoke a bit about it. When researching for this post, I found that Koblish’ dream project would be Legion of Superheroes. He told and interviewer, “I’d love to pencil and ink the Legion of Super-Heroes. Working with George Pérez on Legion of Three Worlds (and then Keith Giffen for one issue of the proper book) really drove home how much I loved those characters. I’d love to get a crack at drawing them – I’m a huge Legion fan. Being a real glutton for punishment doesn’t hurt.”
Koblish says that the current Deadpool project is the most rewarding work of his career, and for a guy that has worked with Keith Giffen, Kevin Maguire, and George Perez, that’s saying a whole lot. Although, both the Deadpool commission, the two panels, and the cover with a World Record attached do a whole lot to support that thesis.
Also from a recent interview, he said, “On Deadpool, Brian, Gerry and I have gone back and forth on how much reign to give one another: Sometimes they write a full script, and I follow it to a ‘t’, sometimes it’s a few paragraphs, written in the old ‘marvel plot-style’, but the result is just as great either way, which is kind of gratifying to me. I’ve been amazed at how great it is to work with Gerry and Brian, they aren’t afraid of my throwing in a few ideas and it’s been a great experience for me.”
How cool is that?
“I feel like I’m the luckiest guy on Deadpool – I get to come in and sort of throw in my 2c in between these really amazingly written arcs,” says Scott. He is really focusing on the book, but will also be teaming up with Giffen again on Infinity man and the Forever People, reinventing Jack Kirby’s space hippies.
For more about Scott, check out his blog, or the full interview with him recently here. There’s a link to the his blog along the right hand nav bar as well. You can even follow his Twitter, or tweet him at @Koblish.
The official interview ended with this below, which I think is fantastic, and in fact made me feel so much better about the uncertainty of my own job as I wrote this post:
Q: Do you have any last words for our readers?
“Yes. Follow your dreams – I’ve had a really rough time of it sometimes and I know what it’s like to be discouraged, or feel like you’re just marking time, but the peaks will come just as assuredly as the valleys, so you might as well strike off on your own path. It’s good to have people you look to for advice, but don’t bother trying to live someone else’s life – it’s yours, make the best of it. Also, don’t worry about starting something later in life, the only ‘too late’ is when you’re dead, everything else is just another chance. Take all the chances you can, it’s a wonderful world, embrace your part in it.”
Well…that’s just perfect.
Next Issue: Crystal Kan!