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 Karl Slominski Artist "Golgotha"
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Posted - 04/20/2013 :  2:19:58 PM  Show Profile  Visit Richv1's Homepage  Reply with Quote Bookmark and Share

Karl Slominski
Artist for Golgotha
Published by: Golgotha
Interviewed by: Richard Vasseur/Jazma VP
Posted: 20/04/2013

Rich: How did you come onboard "Golgotha"?

Karl: Somewhere after New Year's 2011 I came across an ad on a comics message board that Andrew Harrison had posted- calling out for artists for a potential graphic novel he had written. Initially I figured it would be a long shot seeing as the original style he was looking for was something more refined that my own, but I think he recognized my prolific work habits and invested a leap of faith in my ability to make something visually compelling.

Rich: How does your art bring across Aleister's personality?

Karl: I always treated Aleister like a punching-bag. He's very much a hero in his own mind, but to everyone else he's pretty much a chucklehead. As a character he's easy to empathize with because his moods manically oscillate throughout the story- so I kept his movement consistently wired and over-dramatic. He's like the youngest kid in a big family- always insistent and always trying to be a cheerleader for the over-the-top.

Rich: Why is there a black cat throughout the story?

Karl: Motif. Even brash, frantic punk songs have a chorus. Maybe the black cat isn't just a black cat. The next time you read "Golgotha" pay close attention to the juxtaposition of the cat's actions with Aleister's.

Rich: What did you find most challenging about drawing this comic?

Karl: Exercising subtlety. Throughout the book the characters are diving deeper down the rabbit hole and I really got to play with visually pushing the limits of storytelling in order to emphasize that- but not too much where as I'd be taking away from the narrative. No matter how trippy "Golgotha" gets- it's still pretty grounded, but just enough so that the reader is questioning how much of what they're seeing is ACTUALLY happening and how much is gonzo brain candy.

Rich: Would you like to work with Andrew Harrison again?

Karl: Actually we already have. We collaborated on a couple short stories for an upcoming anthology book coming out this fall. I like the way Harrison writes; he's almost sardonic with his approach to character development. He has the utmost respect for the characters he writes, but he also realizes (like REAL people) those characters are full of themselves and need to get taken down a notch- which I'll GLADLY do.

Rich: What does a Brazilian vampire look like?

Karl: Probably far more menacing than Os Cadaveres (the Brazilian vampire band). I thought it was funny you called them a "let down" in your review, because they're not meant to be the fear-mongering draculian terrors that we're used to seeing in movies. They're essentially posers. They're a hackneyed gloomrock band from Brazil that puts more effort into their mascara selections than actually being vampiric. But in their defense, they're great live.

Rich: How do you feel about H.P. Lovecraft?

Karl: To deny his impact on modern horror mythology is beyond my comprehension. If you're asking what are my thoughts on his penchant for the idiosyncratic? That's a little more challenging to answer.... Providence is a wild place when the moon's full.

Rich: Can you tell us all about "Ashes"?

Karl: "Ashes" is a graphic novel written by Mario Candelaria and illustrated by myself about a Brooklyn firefighter that sustains a career-ending injury and his struggle to overcome the obstacles thrown his way. It's a very gritty, true-to-life heroes tale, that's grounded in a place that's very dear to me. Mario is a phenomenal writer, with an attention to detail that just leaps of the page while I'm drawing it. I'm very proud to be a part of a book that has a very nuanced introspection of what it really means to be a hero. We've all read dozens of cape and cowl books, but you never get an intimate understanding of the sacrifices of those characters and just how much guts it actually takes to be selfless like "Ashes" does.

Rich: What did you do at Split Lip Comics?

Karl: That was one of my first comics gigs out of the gate from graduating art school. I did a short story with Sam Costello, which has since been reprinted in an anthology collection.

Rich: What do you have planned next for your career?

Karl: Aside from getting "Ashes" wrapped up and out there, I've got a couple pots on the stove. I'm currently working closely on an expansive portfolio of production illustrations for a horror movie going into production this fall. Comics-wise my focus is taking a detour from work-for-hire and placing more of an active interest in creator-owned projects. I'm currently in the midst of finishing the first chapter of my graphic novel, "In The Company Of Dead Men", which is unlike anything I've done up until this point both stylistically and narratively.

Rich: Which other artists do you admire and why?

Karl: I'm really fortunate to know some AMAZING creators whose work is always pushing me to be a better illustrator, so I don't really frequent the spinner racks too much. I'd highly recommend checking out everything my friends at Stock*Pile comics ( have ever published because they've consistently brilliant. Holli Hoxxx and Doctor Muscles from the guys at Bogus Books ( I'm also a big fan of my pal Ken Wheaton's work on IDW's "Popeye" series- I've known Ken since I was a young punk brat, so he could tell you some stories!

Rich: What comics besides ones you worked on would you recommend?

Karl: Admittedly, I'm not a very hardcore collector and I'm way out of touch with modern continuity, so my recommendations are pretty modest. If you're like myself in that regard, I'd recommend seeking comics from outside the big two. In fact, strive to find them from WAY smaller publishers- that's the only way we can really make positive changes in this industry. If you make a book that's visually enticing and has a distinct voice- I'll read it! I love creators who approach the medium from a storyteller's perspective- where the focus is placed on plot and character. I'm more interested in books that are striving to distance themselves from the cliche of what comics USED to be and skyrocketing toward what comics CAN be. As creators, we can come up with anything our beautifully unstable minds come up with- why would we handicap people's imaginations by not sharing that with them?

Rich: How can someone contact you?

@KidReverie on Twitter

Rich: Any words for the fans of your art?

Karl: Never let them take you alive.

Richard Vasseur
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