Thursday, June 26, 2014

Interview: Josue Acevedo Creator of Life Span, Artist of God Shop and Flaming Pie

By Aliraluna

When did you decide to be a mangaka and how did you start?
A: I think it was when I was around 15 years old.  I’ve been drawing since I was 3, I took a lot of art courses since then too.  I discovered Anime and manga at the age of 10.  But yeah, I started taking a serious approach to it when I turned 15.  I began buying a lot of comic creation books, educational ones, to learn paneling and sequential art.  Then branched out to manga art to catch the differences between both styles and see what I could and could not do.

Can you tell us a little bit about your current and future works?
A:  I’ve been working professionally for writers since 2008, so I decided I wanted to stretch my own story telling muscles again and created LifeSpan.  That manga recollects a lot of lucid dreams I’ve had for years and condenses them in a cohesive story.  I’m also self-publishing it, just to see how far I can get with it; it’s a personal challenge.  The future is uncertain for now.  All I can say is that we’re working hard to publish two stories (God Shop and Flaming Pie) written by a long time friend/editor Alan J. Porter. We’re closer to transform Flaming into a serialized manga sooner, but I can’t give too much detail yet.

You were published by Tokyopop on 2008 along with Alan J. Porter (the writer of God Shop) how was that experience?
A:  It was a fun one, very hard too, a great learning experience.  The editors were easy on me, or maybe they thought my work was good enough hahahahaha.  But not everything was smooth sailing, Tokyopop was dying, they cut one of my editors on the fly and just assigned me a new one that didn’t seem to care that much for the project.  Nonetheless we got to finish it, I got paid and we all lived happily ever after.

  Which is the easiest and hardest part of a drawing to develop?
  A: If we talk about a technical level, proportions are always a tricky part of art.  In the sequential part of things is continuity, making sure that your character looks the same in every panel.  And in context of creation, the background of a character, making him/her interesting for readers.

What helps you to get inspired when you are working?
A: Reading my favorite manga stories is always a great source for inspiration.  Also, listening to great music gets my hype rolling…

  What do you like to do in your free time?
A: Gaming, watching movies, and spending time with my wife J.

Do you have any tips for those future mangaka?

A:  Well, learn a lot of anatomy, real one, you have to learn how a realistic human body works and looks to then make alterations.  Know the rule so you can bend it, practice at least one and two points perspective.  Draw your characters in all possible angles you can challenge yourself to, draw a little more.  Respect the source material, if you’re drawing manga, research it, learn from “how to…” books, read a lot of it and study them.  Manga is not just drawing characters with pointy hair and bloody noses, there’s a lot more to it.  Participate in all contests that you can even if you fail all of them.  You’ll have professionals giving you feedback that will greatly help you grow.  We’re humans and we get depressed easily, just be strong and never stop fighting for what you want.  

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