While covering the 2015 Rhode Island Comic Con I was privileged to meet some very talented people. I am pleased to say that one of these people was Mr. Enrique Savory Jr. an independant comic book artist who was kind enough to let me take a few minutes of his time to pick his brain on his work and just the genre of comic books in general.
Graphic Policy: So how long have you been drawing professionally?
Enrique Savory Jr: As far as comic books go, my first published work was back in 2007.
Graphic Policy: What press or imprint was that with?
Enrique Savory Jr: I was working for Big City Comics at the time and I did some penciling and inking for a title called Totem.
Graphic Policy: Ok, is the title still being published today?
Enrique Savory Jr: Um, well it’s still going on in trade format but if they decide to use the character it’s totally up to them. I’m really not sure if they are still using the character.
Graphic Policy: I see. Well I love your work from what I’ve seen personally and it pops out at me a lot. Especially these rendition pieces, what gives you the inspiration for them?
Enrique Savory Jr: Actually for me it’s about turning a negative into a positive. As a kid I didn’t have that kind of a talent to conjure the official image out of my head, so I decided that I would just start making stuff up and it kind of caught on a little bit. The more I did it the more I got sucked in. So I keep using it and it’s worked out pretty good so far.
Graphic Policy: Now what do you currently have published? Any ongoing titles?
Enrique Savory Jr: Not quite yet. I am currently working on something that is co-written, inked, penciled and colored by me. It’s going to take some time to do, because I’m pretty much doing it all by myself. I’m hoping the first issue will be out either the middle or late next year.
Graphic Policy: Well I will definitely have to look and keep an eye out for that. Now, how long does it take you to do a normal 22 page book and for the people out there how detailed a process is this?
Enrique Savory Jr: Well because of the detailed nature of the book it doesn’t take 22 or 23 days for 22 pages it takes quite a bit of time, it can range for penciling and inking anywhere from 30 days to 40 days to really nail down a finished product. It all depends on how the piece itself is constructed from cover to cover. So that takes some time. Doing it yourself rather than being assisted can take say three to four months. Once I nail down my process and get into my groove. I hope to put out about 3 issues a year. It’s all about efficiency.
Graphic Policy: Wow that’s quite involved. Switching gears who is your favorite comic book character?
Enrique Savory Jr: For me, it’s Batman for DC Comics and Spider-Man for Marvel. Grendel is my favorite Independent character.
Graphic Policy: Grendel by Matt Wagner, nice.
Enrique Savory Jr: Yes.
Graphic Policy: What comic books do you currently follow today, and do you have a favorite artist?
Enrique Savory Jr: Well if I follow a certain book it is only because of a certain artist. Like if I’m going to follow Batman, at this point I’m getting the title because Greg Capullo is on it. I truly admire his work. For me I jump on when the artist jumps on, so I don’t necessarily follow the title as much as I follow the artist. So I will flip-flop back and forth and hunt their titles down at times. Chris Bachalo, he did a long run on X-Men that I enjoyed, and Dale Keown if he does anything I’m aboard. I will get him on anything.
Graphic Policy: He was great, I loved him on the Hulk and Pitt.
Enrique Savory Jr: Yes indeed. It’s like pick a run and I will get it. As far as he goes. I will hunt him down and collect it. His artwork is superb.
Graphic Policy: Sure.
Enrique Savory Jr: Of course you can’t go wrong with Jim Lee and Mark Silvestri either. I also keep an eye on people who I was fans of when I was younger to see if there styles have changed or evolved and if it was for the better or the worse. It if it’s for the worse I’ll leave it alone if it’s for the better I’ll pick it up.
Graphic Policy: Absolutely. So for anyone who’s looking to get in to this trade, as someone with experience, what advice do you have?
Enrique Savory Jr: Don’t think its as complicated as you think. It has it’s stresses, but the you decide to start, is the day you become a comic book artist. Not the day you have the idea, but the day you decide to start because getting hired is harder. Not getting published. So if you have material and a means to do it, there are outlets that will allow you to do that, day one. You have on demand printing now. You have digital comics, hard copy etc. The outlets are there you just have to find them.
Graphic Policy: To that point, how do you think that websites like Comixology or those digital imprints effect you the artist personally, or does it?
Enrique Savory Jr: It hasn’t effected me, because I haven’t really put anything out in the digital format. So only time will tell, right now I can’t really answer that particular question.
Graphic Policy: Do you ever go a day without drawing?
Enrique Savory Jr: I try not to. I like to stay loose. I get quite cranky if I don’t. If I go a day without drawing or two, by day three I get very hard to deal with. That’s the honest truth.
Graphic Policy: By the flip side of that, don’t you get burned out?
Enrique Savory Jr: Oh yeah. You get burned out but that’s usually when the work you’re doing isn’t really cooperating. It can get quite frustrating. Another way you can get burned out is when you are doing the work for someone and not for yourself because of the demands. It’s harder to get burned out when you are doing your own work, rather than for someone else. Once you put an issue out, the process starts all over again with no down time at all. So working for someone you can burn out pretty quick.
Graphic Policy: Understood. Last question.
Enrique Savory Jr: Shoot.
Graphic Policy: Besides comic books, what’s the one thing you are passionate about?
Enrique Savory Jr: Easy. Football. For me, football is my life. I’ve liked football since I was four years old. I am a big, big Dallas Cowboys fan. However I am a homer, because I’m from New England I have a little bit of a homer streak in me. So I am a fan of my local teams but when I was four years old, I said that is my team and I haven’t looked back since. Good or bad.
Graphic Policy: Well this was fantastic and I hope you get the exposure you deserve. I’ll keep my eyes peeled.
Enrique Savory Jr: Thank you.
Graphic Policy: Here’s to hoping my Pats can still meet your Cowboys in the Superbowl.
Enrique Savory Jr: Haha thanks.