Dustin Evans, artist of “Imaginary Friends” from Viper Comics, answered some additional questions for Nerdage readers.
Matt Price: Who are your main artistic influences?
Dustin Evans: I’m definitely into the more “animated” style of comics. I had no idea this style was really happening and acceptable in American comics until I discovered my main influence, Humberto Ramos, while I was in college. I just remember seeing his work, and being blown away by the energy and style of his lines. Tim Burton has also been a big influence of mine. Not just his movies, but his concept art and animated work. Tim Sale and Frank Miller both stick out in my mind as big influences as well. Their lighting and storytelling is among the best in my book.
MP: What’s your favorite comic-book story?
DE: One book sticks out in my mind, “The Dark Knight Returns”. I remember my older brother getting the book for Christmas one year, and I “borrowed” it for years to come. I probably read the story a dozen times and flipped through the artwork hundreds of times before I even really knew who Frank Miller was and what he was about as a creator.
MP: What’s your dream project?
DE: My dream project would really be a project of my own creation. I really want to get my own book out on shelves, so everyone can get a real sense of my unfiltered style and storytelling. I’m actually writing and illustrating my own side project right now call, “Old Man Claus”. It’s about who else, but Santa Claus. Santa has lost his magical powers and fallen into a dark depression. He must rise up against packs of zombies, sasquatches, and bodacious babes to save the world and reclaim his title as world’s best holiday mascot.
MP: What are the challenges of living in Oklahoma and working in the comics industry?
DE: I would say, thanks to technology, the challenges of working as a comic artist in Oklahoma are few and far in between. Everyone can FTP or Fedex their work to the desired location. I’ve started and finished big projects via email. It’s great! The hardest part was making that first break into the comic business, not knowing anyone in the business. It’s true what they say, you HAVE to go to comic cons to make connections. I’ve been able to build a great working relationship with a few people, and they’ve been kind enough to introduce me to other companies and work opportunities. Having a great work ethic is extremely important in comics.
MP: Anything else you’d like to mention?
DE: Just to give thanks, really, to my wife and my family for supporting and putting up with a comic book artist for a husband, son and relative. They’re definitely the biggest influence and support in my life. I have no doubt I would have given up far before I broke into the comic business without them.
More art from Dustin Evans: