Sunday, February 21, 2010

Kevin Frank - Cartoonist Survey #79

Born in 1962 (the same year as yours truly), illustrator and cartoonist, Kevin Frank, started drawing cartoons at the age of 10. Throughout school he would delight his classmates with his humorous drawings, even creating his own comic book, “Captain Clod”. His first published cartoons were in his church’s newsletter, being mostly illustrated Bible verses. After high school he moved from Peoria, Illinois to Chicago. His strong Christian faith led him to work at an inner city missions organization which served the poor through a soup-kitchen, homeless shelter and thrift store. In 1982 he became a staff artist for Cornerstone Magazine. Kevin created a two page comic feature for Cornerstone in 1984 entitled, Oboe Jones, which ran until 1998. While working in Chicago he met his soon to be wife who is Canadian and eventually they moved up to the Great White North. In 2002 he released the comic strip, "True North" which was syndicated through Universal Press. “True North” was based on his own experience of being an American transplanted to Canada and the cultural differences he was coping with. He now draws the faith-based, Sunday feature, “Heaven’s Love Thrift Shop” which is internationally syndicated by King Features Syndicate. He has also published two books, “Balaam’s Chicken” and “There’s a Monster Under My Bed”. For all things Kevin Frank, visit his website.

What is your favorite pen to use?
Fine-point Sharpie!

Do you draw in pencil first and if so do you use a standard pencil or a mechanical one?
Pencil first, then I trace it over a lightbox.

Do you do your coloring by hand or on the computer?

What type of paper do you use?
Cheap bond for roughs, and slick glossy stock for the inking.

What thing(s) do you hate to draw?

Do you buy your supplies from big chain art store catalogues/websites or a local one that you physically go to?
Dollar store when I can!

Are there any rituals that you do before starting to draw?
Well... Coffee!

Do you listen to music while you draw and if so what genre?
Yes, all kinds of stuff. Mostly oldies.

Did you read comics as a kid and if so what was your favorite?
Yep--I liked the old army stuff ( SGT. Rock) and the funny ones like Plasticman.

What is or was your favorite comic strip?

What was your favorite book as a child and do you still own a copy of it?
Can't remember, --no.

Did you have any formal art training and if so where did you receive it?

Do you feel that the Internet is a blessing or a curse?
Curse so far, but am hoping that will change.

Did either of your parents draw?
Yes, My dad is quite good.

Who in your life is/was the most supportive of your art?
My mom.

Do you keep a sketchbook?
I have a book of gag ideas, with rough sketches, but nothing more than that.

Have you ever taught cartooning/drawing and if so did you enjoy the experience?
I've done a couple of things at our local library for kids. I'm not good at it. The kids just seem to want to see me draw "Spider-Man" and I'm trying to show them some old Zippatone dots ( which was my biggest question when learning to draw, "how do they get those grey tones...")

Do you feel that talent or passion is more important in drawing?
Do you collect anything and if so what?

If you were an animated cartoon character who do you think you would be?

Are you a righty or lefty?

If you weren't an artist what would you want to do for work?
Unfortunately that's all I know how to do.

In one or two sentences describe your drawing area.
Messy, cluttered, with a lot of drawings from my kids on the walls.

Do you play any musical instruments?
I pretend to play the guitar.

If you could give one piece of advice to someone who wants to pursue drawing as a career what would it be?
Go to college!!!

Who is your favorite artist?
Edward Hopper.

Thanks very much Kevin.

MAD magazine cartoonist and the creator of Fishstiks, Kevin Pope is next.

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