Industry Artist Interview: Erick Adrian Marquez (1 of 2)

Erick Adrian MConan O'Brien bio-comic cover artarquez is a growing name in the comics industry.  His most well-known titles to date have been Bluewater’s Taylor Swift and Conan O’Brian bio-comics.  The comics were very well received, and show off Erick’s distinct coloring and inking style.  He is a graduate of the Kansas City Art Institute and now lives in Florida.  You can find his work here: http://www.ixtstudio.com/
When did you first get interested in comics?
You know, I had a typical beginning. I saw issues of Spider-Man at the grocery store when I was little and just immediately went for that.  The Boomerang, the Beetle, other cheesy ’80s villains.  From then on it was full-on addiction, anything I could get my hands on.  I was there when the Carnage stuff started up with Spider-Man.  I remember I had a holo-foil of Robin when he had his own comic.
Who are some of your favorite artists?
My favorite artists have always been outside of comic books.  I’ve always thought that, whatever field you’re in, you have to bring stuff from outside of it.  One of my favorites has always been John Singer Sargent: he did the most amazing portraiture.  Another is photographer Diane Arbus, who did a lot of portraits of people with physical deformities.  She almost reminds me of the Cohen brothers in how they put in interesting, different people and characters into her work.  You can tell her subject matter really effected her personally.  A lot of music has influenced me too.  You bring all sorts of things from different mediums into what you do.
Do you have a favorite comic book or genre?
I think lately, as I’m getting older, I’m accepting TV and movies as comic books.  A lot of writers – Joss Whedon, Matt Fraction, Robert Kirkman – are bridging that gap.  There’s a definite movement there.  And I really am behind that.  I think some people get down on you by saying “oh, you’re just in comics because you want them to become movies and make money.” Well, no.  It’s all about reaching people.  You want to get your story out there.  So there’s not a big difference between comic books and movies and TV for me anymore.  I’ve also been too busy for comics lately, it’s easier for me to take in a TV show these days.
Left: Marquez’s cover for Harvest Island, an comics project for which he’s also done concept art.  Right: Character design for Arcana’s upcoming Sabbath title.
Prairie City Response concept art
Concept art for Prairie City Response.

What has been your favorite project so far?

…I dunno.  I always feel like the project I’m waiting to do is my favorite.  Sabbath, a title I’m working on for Arcana, is all about mummies, werewolves, Frankenstein’s monster – basically I get to just go nuts. There’s also Prairie City Response, a superhero title I’m creating for.  It has a city within a city thing going on that I really like.  So yeah – it’s always the next one that I”m the most excited about.

What are you working on now?
DC sample pages. I do have a few contacts at DC so I’d like to use them.  I love the energy and ideals behind independent stuff, but you know.  No reason to limit my self.
What’s your dream project? Where do you hope to be in ten years?Erick Marquez plus hat

What’s my dream project is to see – like I said, I love independent work – my dream project is to work on the animation projects in my head.  And in ten years I want to be well established in animation, children’s books, and comic books.

Stay tuned for Part Two, when Erick Marquez tells us about his internship at DC’s home office (including a humorous encounter with Frank Miller)!

About the author

Marshall Edwards