Linework NW is at its heart a gathering of remarkable creators, editors, illustrators, cartoonists, and publishers who represent some of the best work that is being produced in these mediums today.
Each day from now until the show we are going to be highlighting the amazing creators of Linework NW in a series of interviews conducted by the awesome folks over at Gridlords. Today’s spotlight is on Farel Dalrymple, one of the artists responsible for the criticaly lauded reboot of Prophet and the creator of It Will All Hurt and the forthcoming The Wrenchies.
How did you get started making comics? Do you have any formal training, or are you self taught?
I went to the School of Visual Arts and got an illustration degree but I have been reading comics and making my own since I was a wee lad.
How did you arrive at your style? Do you have just one method of drawing/painting/etc., or do different projects dictate different styles?
I change my style up here and there just by natural evolution and always questioning my methods. It somewhat depends on the subject matter but I don’t know if anyone but me can tell.
In a similar vein, are there any sort of warm-up exercises you do before drawing? Or before writing?
No, I just dive into it usually. Sometimes looking at other artists helps motivate me.
Do you find that certain visual themes recur in your work? Any motifs or regular occurrences you’d like to talk about?
I draw cityscapes and children the most. The past several years while working on The Wrenchies I started drawing post-apocalyptic worlds and Moebius-inspired desert wasteland stuff.
What kind of stories do you find you like to tell?
I like light and surreal fantasy. I have heard it called metaphysical fiction and soft psychedelia, both terms I like. There seemed to be some sort of backlash against the term “magical realism” but I never minded that one either. I like dealing with children in the same way Peanuts did, a strange but somewhat familiar setting with subtlety and honesty behind the characters.
Are there any mediums outside the work that you do that you find inspiring? Any authors, filmmakers, performers, etc.?
Sure. I like books and movies and TV and music. Werner Herzog is probably my current favorite movie director. I like Jeff Nichols and David Lynch a lot as well. I’ve been listening to the Earthsea books by Ursula Le Guin and have been really enjoying those. Guided by Voices and Yob were both on heavy rotation while working on The Wrenchies.
Conversely, are there any other mediums you work in that you could talk about? Any video, performance, or music that you do?
Nah, I’d love to do a million other things but I am not good at any of it.
I figured a while back I should just focus on making comics and not divide my limited time up on things like having children and a savings account. Anyway, the world has enough people in bands and doing improv, yeah?
If you could collaborate with any person, living or dead, who would it be?
What would you work on?
A movie I guess? Be cool if he did a low budget movie version of Prophet and had Brandon and all the artists working on it, with no Hollywood bullshit studio involvement at all. Anyone got his number? This is at least worth considering. I have heard, though, that guys like him and David Lynch have trouble getting any movie made and distributed in the world we all live in now.
Who have you been looking at in comics recently? Anyone’s work just blowing you away?
Yes, there are just so many good artists out there. Tom Herpich has been my favorite cartoonist for a while now. I love Mike Mignola, Moebius of course, and Little Thunder, and Simon Hanselmann to name a few current inspiring people.
Do you have any new projects coming up that you can tell us about?
The book I have been working on for the last five years, The Wrenchies is due out in the fall. The second issue of It Will All Hurt should be freshly out for Linework. I am currently working on an ongoing story for Dark Horse Presents called The Earfarmer with Chris Stevens.
Gridlords Interview by Graham Kahler