Thursday, March 22, 2012

Eisner-winning comic artist Tim Sale on his time in the industry

Posted By on Thu, Mar 22, 2012 at 7:57 AM

Tim Sale
  • © Luigi Novi / Wikimedia Commons
  • Tim Sale
We've got comics on the mind this week here at The Pitch. Comic artist Tim Sale's first big work was inking the Myth Adventures comics for Phil Foglio. However, in the intervening decade, Sale has made the change from anonymous work to something with which people associate his name more readily: namely, the Batman series The Long Halloween and Dark Victory. Still, the work for which Sale is best-known also has a sense of the anonymous about it. It's his art you saw during the various drawing scenes in the television series Heroes. Sale appears at this weekend's Planet Comicon at the Overland Park International Trade Center this Saturday, March 24, and Sunday, March 25, and spoke with us via e-mail about his time in the comic industry.

The Pitch: You're probably best-known to the public at large through your work for the show Heroes. How'd you come to be involved with that program?

It was via a phone call from Jeph Loeb. He had a long-standing friendship with Tim Kring, and Tim had written the pilot script for Heroes and was looking for some art to include. Not knowing any artists and being aware of the comic-book aspects to Heroes, Kring reached out to Jeph for a suggestion, and Jeph mentioned me. It wasn't until they were prepping the pilot episode that they thought of including the paintings in a meaningful way, and they asked me to be a bigger part of the program.

Most frequently, you've collaborated with writer Jeph Loeb, making seminal works like Batman: the Long Halloween. What drew the two of you together as a team?

We were both looking for work in comics and were put together on Challengers of the Unknown by Barbara Randall, an editor at DC Comics. We earned a lot together, but it wasn't until we worked on Batman that it really came together.

tim_sale_cap_skull.jpg
What are your current projects?

Captain America: White for Marvel

Why do you attend conventions? Is it the fan interaction that leads a well-known artist to sit in a folding chair for an entire weekend, or something else?

Drawing comics is by and large a pretty solitary life, and it really helps me to get out and see fans and colleagues, and to draw commissions at the shows. I really enjoy it, though it can also be very tiring.

In my one geeky, nonprofessional question, I'd like to ask who your favorite character to draw is, and why — or is there a dream job you've not yet gotten?

Well, I never tire of drawing Batman. I like drawing the Hulk. Femme fatales. My dream job at the moment is to write and draw my own noir series, something I've wanted and planned on doing for some time. But there are a few other things rattling around, some other writers I like to try working with and learning from.

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