Sunday, September 4, 2016

STGCC 2016: Artist Mark Torres Talks About Jinns and His Art Jobs Wish List!



It's been 4 years since Red Dot Diva got to know artist Mark Torres. Back then in 2012, he was making rounds in Red Dot Island, meeting art collectors and comic book fans. Red Dot Diva and a few other geeks had a chance to hang out with him a few times, which included a rousing rock 'n' roll party at Garbage's concert.

Since then, she would consider that they have both become pretty good friends. It is always a joy to meet, chill and Jim Beam with Mark. There is hardly a lack of topics to talk and discuss about!

Plus, Red Dot Diva thinks Mark's art is awesome. It has evolved organically since she first met him, and she noticed he has experimented in a few different styles but yet retaining his unique linework (especially those inks!) and an eye for the dramatics. So much love for it!

For those who might want to check out and grab some comics with Mark's mark on it, go check out IDW's "The Shrinking Man", "Jinnrise", "Zombies Vs Robots: Undercity", "Infestation 1 and 2: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" and "Judge Dredd".

Thanks to Flabslab, Mark Torres is making his way back to STGCC this weekend as a convention guest! WHOOPEE!! To celebrate his return to STGCC, Red Dot Diva and Agent W tagged team Mark with some nosy questions:

STGCC 2016: GBA induges in a little of Mark Torres

Preview of Tales from the Acker-mansion

Agents Red Dot Diva and W, went deep with Mark Torres who will be back this year at Booth B19. If you love TMNT, Judge Dread or the X-files comics, this dude is your guy. You can drool over his Mike Mignola-esque aesthetics in the upcoming Tales from the Ackermansion but before that, let's get down to business.

Jinnrise #3
Red Dot Diva: Sohaib Awan, creator of Jinnrise is of Middle Eastern origin, and hence, is very familiar with the world of jinns. How different were his story-telling styles compared to Tom Taylor, who also wrote a few issues of the series?
Torres: The back-ups I did with Sohaib was ala “Marvel way”, plot-based. He’d give me a general idea of what’s supposed to happen on a page, then I break it down to how I feel would best capture the story, especially the beats per panel. With Tom, it was more detailed scripting, he lays it out per page and panel, camera angles and specific graphic elements.

Different approaches, both equally fun to work with.

Red Dot Diva: Jinnrise is steeped in Middle Eastern mythology about the jinns or "genies". They are actually very different from what most people think about when you mention "genies" - the Westernized translation and more pop-culturally known version of the those beings. What were the new things you learnt about jinns when you were illustrating for the series?

Torres: The world that Sohaib is building with Jinnrise is MASSIVE! Literally spanning not only continents, but also galaxies & eras, with a narrative bursting with many possibilities. Qualities akin to one of the most beloved sagas, Star Wars (both Sohaib and myself, being huge fans).

It was awesome to now only draw the various Jinns already inhabiting the world, but design new ones too. Taking inspiration from Sohaib's notes of these mythical creatures watching over mankind and cohabiting the planet, even adapt to certain countries. There's indeed more to the "Genie in a Bottle" concept. A bit on the sinister side even. Wink!

**Must know STGCC fact: Mark worked together with guest Tom Taylor on Jinnrise! One can only guess if there would be any special event involving both writer and illustrator! Moving to Agent W!


Agent W: When are you releasing your own creator owned work?
Torres: Creator-owned has always been a main goal. Anything more and I’d have to sic Liam Neeson on you.

Agent W: Having worked on covers, some interiors for Zombie vs Robots, Judge Dredd, who would you like to draw next?
Torres: I maintain a short(ish) bucketlist outside my IDW family: Hellboy/ BPRD (Dark Horse), Spawn/ Darkness (Image), Daredevil/ Punisher/ Moon Knight/ Ghost Rider (Marvel), Batman/ Hellblazer (DC).

Agent W: Any upcoming gigs coming up?
Torres: New work can be found via Famous Monsters / American Gothic Press’s Tales from the Acker-Mansion, a star-studded anthology in honor of the legendary Forrest J. Ackerman’s 100th birthday. As well as a cover for an upcoming series from Action Lab Entertainment. There’s a couple in the oven as well that’s just about to pop.


Agent W: Do you prefer analog or digital and what is the future of illustrating comics with the digital comics scene taking some buyers off monthly floppies?
Torres: Analog or digital… I’m biased to the former because I love the feel of lead/ink touching paper, and the fact that there’s no CTRL+Z/Undo, so all the years drawing and the lessons learned be it through other media or in real life, are constantly put into practice. Plus, the happy accidents. Though Digital brings with it convenience, being mobile when I’m not in my home studio, or for fixes, so I’m not against it either.

I think the industry’s taken critical steps to the right direction with the digital format. As with everything in this world, there’s no fighting the future, and with society living more of a “fast food” culture, you really need to deliver the goods straight to the consumers’ hands, because not everyone have the luxury anymore of heading out to a shop to pick up books, especially for casual walk-ins, just playing it by chance to score specific titles. There just needs to be a balance so that everyone (publisher, creators and readers) benefit equally out of it. Brick and mortar shops are still essential, and a great way to enjoy the hobby, especially with other enthusiasts.

Get your affordable and fantastic art from Mark Torres!
Agent W: This isn't your first rodeo in Singapore 😃 what do you hope to see and experience at this year's show? Hottoys? Urban art? Cosplayers?
Torres: It’s always the people. Seeing old friends and meeting new ones. The Philippines and Singapore share a mutual appreciation for pop culture events, so the goodies and activities are never that far apart. The experience makes it always something to be excited for.

I will definitely be hanging out with old friend Mark, or JD. Remember, Booth B19. He has a stash of loot available and if you like something a little more personal or customised, hit him up for some sweet commissions. He's accepting pre-con orders at artinktoxicated@gmail.com.

Also, thanks to Agent RDD and W for doing the heavylifting!



Red Dot Diva really really really can't wait to see Mark Torres again. She happily volunteers to be his booth babe!! :D :D :D

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This article was originally posted in Ed's own website, Toys-etc!

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The Glam Bloggers Alliance - a collaboration of four geeks - Red Dot Diva, Ed from Toys-etc, Agent W and Andre aka Mr Million Dollar Smile - will be back at STGCC 2016 being busybodies checking out the guests, exhibitors, cosplayers and all forms of biceps during the convention.

Both Red Dot Diva and Toys-etc blogs are also proud to continue their Supporting Blog status with STGCC.

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