Jenna Bryan is a concept artist and illustrator https://jennbry.wordpress.com/ who at the moment works at Ultimate Comics. I passed by the shop from taking care of errands in Raleigh, on the way to Crosswoods Plaza (it could be CrossStreet Plaza) I’ll find the exact address later. Anyway I walked into the comic book store looking for works and publications that had a similar flavor to my own and I really could not find it.
I ended up collecting the first few comics that struck my fancy or that I want to get into.
~Gillen Hans Cowles: D.I.E. #2 ~
~Mirka Andolfo’s: Unnatural #6 ~
~Fernando Ruiz & Dan Parent: DieKittyDie - Heaven and Hell #3 ~
I don’t normally do comic reviews of other’s works, thinking their work ought to speak for itself and does not have to be oversold by the likes of me; but I like the art and the uniqueness of the pieces.
While I am browsing at these works, I still can’t find the comic or illustrator that reminds me of myself, so I ask Jenna Bryan, who at the time I was not aware of her credentials or expertise. She has this shyness that would suggest, working in a comic book shop, was not always where she wanted to be and the fact that she has to sit in an archive of art material and look at characters or creators who get published for material that is beneath her talent, well I was almost afraid to ask her anything, from fear of boring her. When I mustard up the courage I asked, “Which illustrator would you compare to my personal online illustrative showcase?”
She took my card and I thought she’d wait until she got home and was able to relax. Not having to think about work, or the boyfriend who lives ten hours away in New York and the distance that separates them. Instead, right there on the job, she pops up my website, www.avproductionsblog.wordpress.com and right off the top of her head she says, “Criminal.”
Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips, who work for Image Comics, (where have I heard of that company before?) they created Criminal with the help of Jacob Philips with the coloring. I know exactly who she was referring to because Sean Phillips has been popping up all over my twitter feed. I could not understand why for the longest time. I told her as much, “ You know, for some reason as the years have gone by, no matter how many companies come and go, or stories produced by Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, Tokyo Pop, and a lot of the heavy hitters, my hands tend to always gravitate to Image Comics.”
I was flattered and pleased that she took the time and I was able to learn so much from her, that she was wanting to talk shop and when she saw my work, was not completely mortified.
She compared me to Sean Phillips of “Criminal,” and that was just from looking at a portrait of Stormy Daniels. Which if I am honest with myself is not bad at all and why he is all over my twitter feed.
I was not going to read “Criminal,” at first, believing it to be like every other story produced by Image Comics, but I wanted to know what she saw, so I bought it.
After the first ten pages, I was hooked and can’t wait to finish the rest but I understand her vision and I respect her input.
Thank you Jenna Bryan for introducing me to such an interesting story. I also hope as you continue on your path, we crossways again.