February 12, 2007

Karl Christian Krumpholz

Comics: Currently working on "Byron: Die, Byron! Die" which is the follow up series to "Byron: Mad, Bad, and Dangerous" (currently being published by Slave Labor.com. Can be purchased at: http://www.slgcomic.com// and http://www.eyemelt.com/.) I have also done other comics: "Angst Boy Comics", "Sturm und Drang", and "Shadenfreude".
Website: The easiest place to reach me is my MySpace page. It's got art. There is also my LiveJournal page where I bitch alot about things.
Making comics since year of: I think I started doing Angst Boy about 1998.
Art education/schools attended: None really. Took some art classes at Temple's Tyler school of Art in Philly, but most of my actual comic art was self taught. From working at a comic shop, I knew quite a few other professional cartoonists in Philly who offered me a lot of criticism advice. I also worked at an art supply store for a time, which helped me learn about some of the tools.


Okay, I create my comics in a weird sort of way. Probably a lot different then most others. I pencil all of my art on one page, using blue lines and lead, and ink the art on a whole other page, using a lightbox to guide me. So, in the end, I have two pages of artwork. I also use my Mac quite a bit. I use Adobe Photoshop to clean up the page and straighten lines. I then convert the art work to an Illustrator document using Adobe Streamline. I letter and place the doc in printer spreads using Adobe Illustrator.

Pencils: I use Stanford Turquoise 02022 Lead Holders rather then actual pencils. I just like the feel of them as well as the sharpener. As actual lead, I use blue lead (doesn't matter what kind: Staedtler or Stanford non-photo blue) for the start of the page before I use HB lead (again: Staedtler or Stanford) to tighten the sketches up.

Inks: I used Winsor & Newton Black India ink for a while. However, I didn't like the kind of varnish they apparently use in it (makes the black look shiny.) I wound up using (and still use) simple Black Sumi Ink. I pick up one of the big green canisters and it lasts me quite a long time.

Brushes: For inking, I use crowquils and brushes. It took me a little while to get use to the crowquils, but love them now. I use the Hunt #107 crowquil point, but will also use a #102 if I can't find a #107. Just love the sharp line that it can create. For brushes, I generally use a size 6 Round brush, though it really doesn't matter what brand. My current brand is Princeton Art & Brush Co.

Pens: I don't use pens any more. I used to use a Koh-I-Noor rapidograph for a long time (cause I worked at an art supply store and could get them at a discount.) However, they were always a pain in the ass with clogging, clean, and they always left me dissatisfied. They are simple to use, but the lines have no wait. So, I have a large stock of them now that I never use.

Paper:I love the 14" x 17" Strathmore 500 Series bristol since it just sucks the ink right up. I also lean now towards Plate bristol rather then the Vellum. I used Vellum bristol for a long time, but after accidently picking up a pad of Plate, I got hooked on the smoothness of the paper. The crowquil just glides over it. Brilliant.

However, since moving to Denver, I haven't been able to find any Strathmore paper at any of the art supply stores (we have only two here in the center of the city.) So, I have been using whatever bristol I can get, mostly Bienfang for my inks. I also use a cheaper bristol for my penciled pages. I could simply use drawing paper (and have in the past), but I like the weight of the bristol.

Lettering/Color: For both lettering/color, I use the Illustrator CS computer program. All of my actual comic pages are b/w, so the only coloring I do is for my covers.

Layout/ Composition:I do my thumbnails on a simple legal pad. I do them quickly and throw them away.

Convention Sketches (when different from illustrations done in the studio): For conventions, I generally use a series of pens. I do the sketch in non-photo blue (it's what I'm most comfortable with) and then do quick inks using a Faber-Castell Black PITT brush pen. Also, if the person asking for the sketch is not annoying and seems appreciative, I will also do a quick color with a Tombo art pen (light blue: #451.) An inked sketch using only one color looks really good.

Tool timeline, starting from when you began drawing in any serious way until the present, and what spurred the changes: I think I pretty much answered most of this above. When I first started with Angst Boy, I used those Comic-Pro blueline comic pages and a series of pens. I then moved to bristol board and rapidographs. I slowly moved away from tech pens and started using crowquils and brushs.

What tools you'd never use, and why: Those Comic-Pro blueline pages and rapidographs. Never again. I've already explains the reasons for the rapidographs. I don't like the blueline pages simply cause I don't see a reason for them. I mean, you can get better blank bristol board cheaper. With the Comic-Pro pages, you are only paying for the easy of the printed guides on the page. You can easily measure them out yourself.

And lastly, any advice you'd like to give: Well, the complaint I hear the most from other artists that are just starting out (and I was guilty of this as well for a time) is that they get stuck on one page. They aren't happy with their results, so they obsess and redraw their comic over and over again. My view is to get over it. Move on. You will improve. It's more important to finish the work and get it out there then to fret on it's not perfect. It will never be. I cringe looking at my earlier work. Even the stuff being published now.

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