We love science fiction and fantasy for stunning visuals. Comic books became a bridge between writing and cinema, combining the best of both worlds. Jalapeno Publishing is honored to present you a talented visual artist from the Lab99 project: Oscar Joyo.
J.P.: What styles do you prefer?
O.J.: I'm pretty flexible to be honest but if I had to pick: pop surrealism and glitch art. I find those two styles pretty fun to work with, realism and lucid, psychedelic art.
From Oscar's Sketchbooks
J.P.: Today a lot of art is created 100% digitally. Do you have an opinion about the value and skill level of digital art? I ask because artists seem to be divided in three camps: one believes in conventional media, another fully transitioned into the digital world, and the third does a little of both.
O.J.: I believe digital art is extremely convenient, accessible, and opens door for experimentation. It's quicker to start, edit, and send files and submit work at a rapid rate. Though that is true, I also think tradition is necessary in order to move faster as an artist and it gives you a sense of versatility. There will be times where you may be thrust back and forth from traditional to digital so it's in an artist's best interest to understand both to an extent.
J.P.: What software and hardware did you use to create Lab 99?
O.J.: The first half of the comic was done traditionally in ink and watercolor paper. I didn't have a proper tablet at that point so I was used to drawing traditionally. The second half, which was the coloring portion, was done using photoshop, alchemy, and both a cintiq tablet and bamboo tablet.
Follow Oscar on Twitter @OscarJoyo
Follow Nebula Creatives on Twitter @NebulaCreatives
J.P.: How can a beginning cartoon artist can get noticed? Where to showcase the work?
O.J.: For an artist to get noticed, it begins with just posting art on social media through facebook, twitter, instagram, etc. Also it's important to post in groups because they usually provide people that could give feedback and criticism, which are important to an artist's growth.
J.P.: If there is Oscar Jojo somewhere in the parallel universe, and that Oscar is not an artist, what does he do?
O.J.: Not sure what he might be doing, but it might have something to do with being a doctor of some sort. Particularly, being a surgeon.
Illustration by Oscar Joyo. Although we are not sure,
but it might be him in the parallel universes
wearing an alien surgeon suit...
J.P.: What is your favorite sci fi, if any?
O.J.: Cowboy Bebop, the story is extremely compelling with beautiful visuals and captures the noir, western, and sci-fi components that not a lot of animes were doing at that point, with Gundam (G,Wing) as an exception. Dragonball Z, this was actually the anime that got me to really love drawing. The over-the-top fighting is basically martial arts, action/adventure, and sci fi cornucopia on steroids with a lot of passion and pop culture. Lastly, AKIRA is another favorite of mine. Like Cowboy Bebop, it's a compelling masterpiece and it borrowed elements from another favorite, Blade Runner, however making its own unique and wonderfully told story.
J.P.: Where do you draw inspiration for scenes and the faces of your characters?
O.J.: I draw a lot of influence from film and music. It's weird to put that in a graphic novel sense but it helps create flow, pacing, and an atmosphere. Films or shows that I previously mentioned have those components, which I pull from. As far as people are concerned, I use the world around me as a guide. Some of the main characters and aliens are based on friends and close colleagues.
J.P.: Are you ever not in the mood to draw?
Illustrations by Oscar Joyo. All rights reserved by the author.
O.J.: I've drawn so much that it almost feels involuntary, though there are days where I draw less due to over-working.
J.P.: How long did it take you to create the first issue of Lab 99 (the 20-page comics volume)?
O.J.: It took about 3-4 action months and 2 months planning from adding pages to properly add flow to the comic.
J.P.: Your dream project would be?
O.J.: I would love to work with some of my favorite artists and musicians and create a series of works for their projects.
J.P.: Which Lab 99 character was the most challenging to create and why?
O.J.: Lumina was pretty challenging. She's very passive and calm, which is a lovely trait, however to make it stand with the rest was a bit hard.
Lumina from Lab 99.
By the way, from reading the first issue,
we think Oscar captured Lumina's personality perfectly. - J.P.
J.P.: If you had a chance to address the Lab99 fans and potential sponsors, what would you tell them? Why do they need to support the project?
O.J.: It was a labor of love and it took a lot of passion and energy to conjure a story like no other. You'll get to see elaborate environments and a gripping story with a slew of colorful characters. Though this is much our thing, through our funding campaign, we have created a community of creative, ambitious, and unique individuals. Hopefully this comic doesn't just end by being a typical comic but being a group of people wanting the same thing at the end, to connect.