CAF Interview

Comic Art News: Nick Bradshaw Interview by Jason Versaggi

Face front true believers, your friendly neighborhood comic creator interviewer is back! Like Steve Rogers I have returned and boy do I have a great interview for you to shatter your senses. Dynamic artist Nick Bradshaw took some time out of his increasingly business schedule creating awesome art to chat with me for all you CAFers out there. So give it a read and learn more about this fantastic talent known as...Nick Bradshaw bwah hah hah ha! (Too much? I felt that might have been over the top?)

Jason Versaggi/CAF: Hey Nick, thanks for taking the time to chat. Let's start off by learning a little about your background and where you are from.

Nick Bradshaw: Well I am from the city of Moncton, New Brunswick, on the East coast of Canada. Born and raised here most of my life. I moved on to Ontario for 6 years but came back home in 2007. I work in gaming at the moment. Did some television animation work to pay bills after school. Worked for Wildstorm( Danger Girl , Rokkin)  and Dynamic forces( Army of darkness)

JV/CAF: How were you educated as an artist? School or self taught?

NB:  I'm mostly self taught. I spent a lot of time studying animation and film when I was a kid. Comics were a great time waster growing up too. Never really collected ( bag and board) I was more like a "consumer", still have most of em...all happily falling apart from overuse. After high school though I was pressured into going to secondary school...truthfully I learned a lot but life drawing was integral to my artist "tool belt". I started skipping a lot of my computer coloring classes ( have a progress report where I was dubbed digitally stupid) and whatever else I thought was more of a nuisance and snuck into the life drawing studio more. When I moved to transfer my Animation course to Algonquin college 2 years later in Ottawa I realized what I was missing after sitting in on my layout and design course, film study and structure...lifedrawing was still the most beneficial.

JV/CAF: Growing up, were you a comics fan? Any title or characters in particular that were favorites?

NB: I loved comics! I used to read comics that were considered obscure by most in my hometown. I dug on the old horror comics from EC. I loved Man Thing, Werewolf by Night  and House of Mystery. Superheros had their place as well in the pile under the bed. Loads of Spiderman, the Defenders, Hulk, Batman...whatever Dark Horse was putting out I was picking up.

JV/CAF: Who were some creators that inspired you?

NB: Don Heck, Ernie Chan, John Buscema, Bernie Wrightson, Dan Decarlo, Don Bluth, Herb Trimpe, Kaluta, Alex Toth (pick up Torpedo!), Disney art was a big influence and of course a ton of Greg Capullo and Arthur Adams!


JV/CAF: Your work does have a certain Arthur Adams feel to it. Are you ever compared to him? Any other artists influence your work?

NB: I like the kinetic, animated look to Arts work. Always been a huge fan. I never get compared to him at all until I start inking my work. I love the look to his work when inked, so organic and solid, I am trying to catch that. I only started inking really two years ago and I use his samples all the time as a start point. Some of it works for me, other times I find it gets a little cluttered over my pencils, I'll kick myself when I go too far, I just cant pull it together like he does. I'm starting to get comfortable with some aspects but evolving down my own road into something that works for me. His stuff has been a great jumping off point though. I used to have my Don Bluth stage and my Greg Capullo stage...I took what worked for me and moved on ( like when I was ten and copying everything I could from Don Hecks run on Avengers or Buscemas Marvel way ) . I'm happy I can look back on my work and see my influences in my style, I dig on that evolution.

JV/CAF: How do you prefer to work...Marvel style or full script?

NB: I prefer full script and I love it when I get tons of detail in panel description. The Marvel way works for me as well but I'll add too many panels. I used to storyboard and I love showing little tiny actions to move a story along.Way back when I started on Army of Darkness, Dynamic forces was first publishing so there was no real editor. We were all kinda starting out together, feeling our way along. Anyways I had some pages that were 15 panels thick! Panels going up, down, right to left! Didn't make any sense http://viagrasstore.net/! I was given too much control and I wasn't ready. But they were patient with me and I learned. Had great writers who were awesome with the feedback! Andy Hartnell, James kuhoric even did a short with Eric Powell, everyone of em was patient with my learning curve. People like Nick Barrucci and Scott Dunbier gave me time to figure stuff out too.Still prefer a script with the writers intentions all layed out for me though...not to say I wont elaborate here and there to make something visually interesting.

JV/CAF: If you could take over as artist of a book or character today what would you choose?

NB: I would take anything! I love a challenge and the opportunity to try and make something look cool and visually interesting...That said...I would give my whole family away including two fish and a dog to have a crack at the Hulk :) A 100 page book of the Hulk demolishing the world...sign me up! I'd also love to pencil Thor, A 100 page book of Thor bashing the crap out of the Hulk after his 100 page book of destroying the world.

JV/CAF: Do you prefer inking your own work? Are there any inkers you would love to see over your pencils?

NB: I have no love for my work after it's finished ( not in a self depreciating kinda way, just in the way that o.k.... it's finished... what's next). I Ink my work to kinda have another final� pass at it ( sometimes unsuccessfully but I like the practice and experimentation). I would gladly hand over pages to an inker to take a crack at it.� Mark Morales who inks Coipel I think would be interesting. Walden Wong or Danny Mikki would be fun too. I ink mostly out of fear that no one would make sense out of my art on paper.

JV/CAF: Any artist whose work you would like to try inking?

NB: Funny story...I had a few Art Adams original pages sitting on my art table for two years. I was supposed to ink em for a friend who was compiling an anthology...11 Adams pages in All. In my zeal I was like "f**k yeah! ART ADAMS work on my drawing table?? send it over... I did 2 and 1/2 pages over that time. Every panel I inked I would get really nervous and walk away, I'm talkin full shakes and breaking a sweat( it sonds soooo stupid now). Finally I shot the pages back to the writer with a mea culpa and reserved myself to the fact I will never ink over another artist again...as long as I live. Inking should be about adding your own strengths to that artists work but always enhancing the best of their pencils never depreciating the work. This was Arthur Adams...I was not in any position or skill level to be touching inks to this work, it would have been like letting a 10 year old repaint the Sistine chapel with a crayon. The writer contacted me telling me I was being silly and should have taken the shot...but I think it wouldn't have serviced the art at all. It was hard...but I have no regrets that I walked away...after I made some high res scans of course.

JV/CAF: Any up coming projects fans can look for from you?�

NB: Way more Stuff from Marvel( can't talk about it now though), stuff from Aspen( covers, few pinups)...stuff from Dynamic forces, sometimes, again, I hope ( I always like working for Barrucci and the DF guys) I'll do anything the Hero Initiative will ask of me. Just completed two Archie covers for em to auction off, That was a lifetime high point for me,ARCHIE! I had a blast!

JV/CAF: Art Adams decides to pop in to hang out for movie night and he's bringing a pizza...what's on your pizza nad what movie are you dialing up?

NB: I'll take most anything on my pizza but olives,anchovies and pineapple (who the holy lord thought to mess up pizza with that crap) and he can pick whatever delightfully crappy B horror movie I have on my shelf, I have over 450 dvd's of shameful "drive in" fare that makes most people stare in awe, they know it's cool I own it...but would be ashamed to own it themselves.

I could not agree with you more on that Nick. Pineapple and fish on pizza? That inventor deserves a strategically placed Snikt!, Bub.

Well this wraps up the comeback! Big thanks to Nick Bradshaw for taking time out to chat with us and stay tuned for more artist and creator interviews on CAF soon. In the meantime, if you would like to contact Nick or check out any more of his work you can do so right here on ComicArtFans.com by going to Nick Bradshaw's gallery page.