Name: Ember Cescon
Type of Creator: Artist/Writer
List your work:
Alley Cats Written and Created by Brandon Rhiness, Published by Higher Universe
Purgatory Chapter One Written and Created by Gary Johnstone Published by Gartoon Graphics
What was the first comic you read?
What inspired you to make comics? A specific story? Writer? Author?
I’m named after one of the Elfquest characters and so was ‘reading’ it before I could read. My next biggest love was the story Clover by CLAMP. From there I have influences all over the place including Sophie Campbell, Mike Mignola, and Kelly Sue Deconick.
What do you like about comics? What is it about them that interests you? Inspires you? Moves you?
I love visual storytelling. I love panels and colour theory and balloons and how they can all affect how a story is perceived. I also love that comics is a largely unexplored medium that is open to experimentation, various styles and stories, and audiences. When done well, it is beautiful and impactful and sticks with us for ages.
What is the most important thing people need to know about comics?
There are a lot of options out there. The Superheroes are great, but there are so many options and they’re all worth exploring
What comic would you recommend to a first-time reader?
As an artist, what medium do work in? Pencils? Ink? Digital?
I always pencil traditionally in a colerase colour (the colour changes constantly because I like colours) and then I ink with a brush pen. I do all my colours and lettering digitally.
What’s the first thing you do when you sit down to work? Do you have a routine?
I have a nesting habit. I gather all the reference books I could possibly conceive of needing, all the supplies I might remotely need, and then I sit down to work. I surround myself with the things I think I’ll need or to inspire me. I put on music or a show I don’t need to pay attention to.
Do you have a set work space? Where?
We have a very large bedroom so I’ve converted half of it into a studio. My drafting table is under a window with my computer desk in an l shape with it against the other wall. The walls are covered in prints I’ve picked up at various comic cons
Do you listen to music when you work? Other background noise?
Usually music, though sometimes I’ll put on a show I’ve seen before so it’s less likely to distract me. My music tastes are pretty broad but usually it’s Indie Rock, Alt Rock, or something Folksy
Perspective changes are always a challenge for me, as is reminding myself not to fall into my default comfort zones for each panel. I have to admit colouring is definitely not my strong point either.
If you had to pick one comic as a favourite, what would it be?
That’s so tough! I love different comics for different reasons. Currently I’d have to say it’s Jem and the Holograms. I grew up with the cartoon and the comic is just so beautifully done.
What is the:
Most romantic comic you’ve ever read?
Elfquest I love the relationships in it
Most exciting comic you’ve ever read?
I’m a sucker for Hawkeye especially Hawkeye VS Deadpool
I don’t know about scary but having me on the edge of my seat, feeling tense is Wet Moon
Who is your favourite comic character?
Another tough one. I don’t think I can choose just one. Bigby Wolf and Cindy from Fables, Hellboy, Deathface Ginny, So many from Elfquest
What three words would you use to describe your work?
Playful, Fantastical, Quirky?
What is your favourite place to go in Calgary?
I love walking from Steven Ave down to Eau Claire and then Kensington. So much to see along that route.
Future projects you are working on/would like to work on
I am working on two projects currently: Ghost Punchers is a story about two young women who investigate Canadian ghost stories and beat up any malignant entities they find. The second is as of yet unnamed and is about a zombie apocalypse during the golden age of piracy.
Fashion and history are two huge inspirations for me, I don’t know how unlikely they are.