Hire This Woman: Cartoonist Corin Howell
In the overwhelmingly male comic book industry, it has been a challenge for some editors and readers to see the ever growing number of talented women currently trying to make a name for themselves. With that in mind, ComicsAlliance offers Hire This Woman, a recurring feature designed for comics readers as well as editors and other professionals, where we shine the spotlight on a female comics pro on the ascendance. Some of these women will be at the very beginning of their careers, while others will be more experienced but not yet “household names.”
Cartoonist Corin Howell attended the Savannah College of Art and Design and graduated with a degree in Sequential Art. Also one of the first students of the Murphy Apprenticeship with the great Sean Murphy, she writes, draws, and colors her projects, which so far have included work for Viz and Oni, as well as work she's self-publishing.
ComicsAlliance: What is your preferred form of creative output?
Corin Howell: I really like to pencil and ink. Drawing is what I do best, so when the writing is all done it’s refreshing to finally take all those words and make them real.
CA: Do you work on paper or digitally?
CH: I primarily work digitally. I used to work traditionally, however after a while it became expensive for me to afford. I like working digitally because I feel that I can do more with my Cintiq. Not only that, I work far more faster digitally then traditionally. I occasionally draw traditionally, but I save those for the special projects.
CA: What’s your background/training?
CH: I’ve been drawing ever since I could remember. However, I didn’t completely dive into comics until I got to college. I went to the Savannah College of Art and Design and graduated with my BFA in Sequential Art. It was at SCAD that I actually got my first professional project with VIZ Media LLC. After SCAD, I was accepted to the Murphy Apprenticeship with Sean Murphy.
CA: How would you describe your creative style?
CH: Very Animated. When it comes to comics, I like to push and pull the characters in their expressions and their movement. I like experimenting with other types of styles as well, from cartoons, to mainstream, to multiple types of comics.
CA: What projects have you worked on in the past? What are you currently working on?
CH: My first project was with VIZ Media LLC., where I worked on a short Ben 10 silent comic, then I worked on a short comic for Hello Kitty, and a couple of projects with Bravest Warriors. Recently, I’ve gotten done with a book with Bravest Warriors and the Murphy Apprenticeship book, Café Racer. Currently I have a project with Oni Press, and I’m also working on a few short stories of my own, one of them being The Owl’s Knight which is now available online for purchase!
CA: Approximately how long does it take you to create a 20-page issue?
CH: That really depends on the project, though recently I’ve been getting at least two pages done a day. I like to work fast and get things done so I have enough time for edits. Though if it is a detailed project, I will work on at least one page a day.
CA: What is your dream project?
CH: Given the chance, if a publishing house came to me and asked if I would work on a version of Sherlock Holmes that involved either steampunk or scifi, I would take it in a heartbeat. Either that, or perhaps X-Files (because I'm an X-Files nerd), or I would love to publish my own comics.
CA: Who are some comic creators that inspire you?
CH: I have a few comic creators that inspire me, however my biggest influence wasn’t from comics it was actually from animation. Glen Keane has been my biggest inspiration ever since I started drawing. I love his push and pull with his characters, their expressions, their movement; every time I go back and watch one of his movies I always find myself studying the scenes and later drawing designs and creating new characters for short comics. Alongside Glen Keane, there is Juanjo Guarnido (artist for Blacksad) who is another artist with a beautiful animated style, and also Rodolphe Guenoden (Flight). There are more artists that follow like Sean Murphy, Becky Cloonan, Sergio Toppi and Craig Thompson who I admire their talent in inking and storytelling. The list goes on and on, but these are the top creators that inspire my work.
CA: What are some comics that have inspired you either growing up or as an adult?
CH: Growing up, I became a huge fan of Transformers, so much that I wanted to draw them. I learned to have patience when it comes to detail thanks to the Transformers comics. Character design and development came a lot from animation.
CA: What’s your ideal professional environment?
CH: Put my desk in a room with a lot of windows and hard wood floors, my cintiq and computer set up, a wall of all my books on either side of my desk, and have Dixieland jazz or Celtic rock playing. Also a fridge full of soda.
CA: What do you most want our readers and industry professionals to know about your work?
CH: I’m always open to new projects, anything to grow and learn from, and to explore anything that might be considered complicated to others. I like drawing giant robots, fantasy creatures, and knights. I don't mind comedic stories either because I like making people laugh. I just love drawing comics and creating stories.
CA: How can editors and readers keep up with your work and find your contact information?
CH: You can always find more of my work on my portfolio site where it has all the links to my Tumblr, my Twitter and my contact information: http://rin636.wix.com/rinpin