Monday, September 20, 2010

Robert Sergel - Cartoonist Survey #166

Robert Sergel is a cartoonist who was born in Boston in 1982. As a child drawing his own strips and comic books he knew that he wanted to be a cartoonist and actually had his first comic published when he was only 13. In his late teens he switched his creative endeavors to photography and went to NYU’s Tisch School of Arts. Halfway through his studies Robert realized that he really wanted to be making comics. In 2005 he graduated from college with a BFA and has been making comics ever since. His comics have appeared in publications such as the New York Press, Noo Journal, Zine Arcade, Free Comics NYC, The Wellesley Townsman and many others. His first book Eschew was self-published and is available for sale on his website. The second issue of Eschew was recently published by Sparkplug Comic Books in Portland, OR and is also available from his website. Besides drawing comics, Robert also plays in the band, The Channels. He lives and works in Cambridge, MA. Visit his idiot comics website to see his comics and photos. You can also follow him here on his blog.

What is your favorite pen to use?
Micron 03.

Do you draw in pencil first and if so do you use a standard pencil or a mechanical one?
I do pencil first, and I use a mechanical one.

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

What type of paper do you use?
Cheap computer paper from Staples.

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?
I physically go to either Utrecht or a place called Artist Supply. They are both on Mass Ave in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Are there any rituals that you do before starting to draw?
Not that I’m aware of.

Do you listen to music while you draw and if so what genre?
Sometimes, but I usually listen to podcasts or documentaries on Netflix.

Did you read comics as a kid and if so what was your favorite?
I did. My favorites were Spider-Man, Calvin and Hobbes, The Far Side, and Punisher War Journal.

What is or was your favorite comic strip?
Calvin and Hobbes.

What was your favorite book as a child and do you still own a copy of it?
It was a book called “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.” I probably still have it somewhere.

Did you have any formal art training and if so where did you receive it?
I have a BFA in Photography & Imaging from Tisch, which is a part of NYU.

Do you feel that the Internet is a blessing or a curse?

Did either of your parents draw?
My mom draws and paints. She’s very good at it.

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

Do you keep a sketchbook?
Not really. I have a computation book that I work stuff out in, but it’s barely legible.

Have you ever taught cartooning/drawing and if so did you enjoy the experience?
I haven’t. I wouldn’t know what to say.

Do you feel that talent or passion is more important in drawing?
I would say passion because it’s something you maybe have some control over.

Do you collect anything and if so what?
Records, comic books, and old photos.

If you were an animated cartoon character who do you think you would be?
A young Mr. Magoo.

Are you a righty or lefty?

If you weren't an artist what would you want to do for work?
Book design.

In one or two sentences describe your drawing area.
It’s a large piece of wood held up by cinder blocks.

Do you play any musical instruments?
Drums, guitar, piano, and glockenspiel.

If you could give one piece of advice to someone who wants to pursue drawing as a career what would it be?
I would advise them to ask someone more qualified than me.

Who is your favorite artist?
Chris Ware.

Thanks very much Robert.

Editorial/Sports Illustrator, cartoonist, fine artist and sports radio talk show host Larry Johnson shares his answers next.

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