How to become a published artist is a series of talented local Boston writers and artists who have succeeded in promoting and publishing their works. All of the creative artists have freely given their time and advice for hopeful unpublished artists, journalists and writers. Based on each individuals different approach to publishing, their strengths, genres and their visions each offers options on what has proven to work well for them. Depending on what the goal is for you, we hope this series is informative and useful to completing your goals of publishing and successful promotions. Ciao!
With each interview the same theme repeats itself: “Don’t give up. Keep writing, keep practicing, don’t be afraid to fail!”
Baymax by Joe Daxberger
What motivated you to become a letterer?
My biggest motivation to become a letterer is combining my two favorite artistic mediums of graphic design and comic books. It really does feel like the perfect fit. To me each page is a puzzle I need to crack: where to place the words that works in conjunction with the art while not distracting or interrupting the flow. And this combines so many things I enjoy that lettering never feels like a job, its something I could do for fun and actually have a career in as well.
Black Canary by Joe Daxberger
What kind of medium do you find works best?
In this day and age, I think digital lettering definitely works best. While I personally love the look of decades old original art with its hand written word balloons and captions, computers have certainly simplified the process. Since so much of the work is passed back and forth via the internet, working on digital files just makes the process so much easier. Any revisions can be handled easily, as well as not worrying about rescanning artwork after its been lettered saves a huge amount of time. I would like to hand letter a book someday just to see for myself how different it can be.
Hows the budget? Is it cost effective?
As with a lot of comic work, being fast is an asset. And I think this certainly applies to lettering. Since I have a day job, my comic creating is limited to nights and weekends. So I find myself finding time when I can to work on projects. But if I were to sit and letter a book in one sitting I imagine I could eventually be at a level where I could complete an issue in a single day and be quite cost effective.
Hawkeye by Joe Daxberger
How does a team like Soul Binder come together? Were you contacted through another party or have you all been long time friends?
I came onto the ‘Soulbinder’ team through a recommendation by a mutual friend of mine and Jimmy’s, a very talented local comic creator in his own right, Tony Sedani. I had met Jimmy through Tony beforehand out and about, but Tony suggested me to Jimmy knowing that I was looking for comic lettering opportunities. I’ve yet to meet Aaron in person, so I’m looking forward to that at Boston Con. I’ve been able to see him grow as a comic artist over the course of two issues of ‘Soulbinder’, so I’m very excited to talk at length about what the process has been like for him.
Iron Patriot by Joe Daxberger
What have you used in the past to promote your work?
As with many artists, I primarily use social media to promote my comic endeavors. And especially in the weeks leading up to any of the conventions I do I’ll try to ramp up my posts to raise awareness for the whole event as well as myself. Currently I find Instagram to be perfect for getting the word out while also showcasing my work in an easily accessible format.
Do you have other projects besides this graphic novel?
For this convention season I lettered Soulbinder #2, as well as lettered Forever Winter #3, an ongoing series by another close friend of mine, Joel Lolar of Stockpile Comics. Currently I am producing my own graphic novel which hasn’t been officially announced, but will be available in 2016. This book I am writing, illustrating and lettering myself.
Scarlett by Joe Daxberger
Now that ‘Soul Binder’ is finished has the project given you a different perspective? How to use this experience in future projects?
With every issue I’ve lettered, I think I get a better perspective for the comic industry as a whole. I’ve always loved comics and sequential art, so to be a part of a team bringing new books into the world is one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences for me. Every time I start lettering a new page I’m presented with a new set of problems that are up to me to solve. And that’s what I can associate lettering with the most, problem solving.
Ultron by Joe Daxberger
Is lettering a lucrative endeavor for an up and coming design artist?
I think lettering can be quite lucrative for an upcoming design artist. With my graphic design background I feel that lettering is a great application of my skill-set, in that I regularly find opportunities to use my training while also having many chances to improvise.