We get a chance to have a pressure free conversation about comics with women in the comics creators community. Their creativity is inspiring to people throughout the fandom who enjoy their work.
They are our HERoes.
How do you tell the story of two tweens becoming crimelords, and still keep it all ages? This is the challenge that Jackie Crofts did not shrink from with her creative partners on Nutmeg. Comicosity got the chance to talk to Jackie about her favorite comics and learning the business while creating.
Jessica Boyd: What is your favorite genre of comics? Does it create any additional pressures working with that genre?
Jackie Crofts: I don’t have a specific favorite genre. If the writing, story, and art are good the genre doesn’t usually matter for me. My pull list is kind of all over the place!
JB: What issue or series has had the biggest influence on your work? Who is your favorite protagonist/antagonist?
JC: I think when I first started one of my biggest influences was anything by Chris Ware. I was reading a lot of his stuff at the time, and I still really love it. Right now I’m really liking Giant Days. It’s fun and charming and the characters have a lot of expression. I really look up to artists that can put so much emotion into still images. I’m not sure that I have a favorite protagonist or antagonist. At least not right now.
JC: If it’s a weekday, I do my 8-5 day job first, then I come home and try to do something active, have some dinner, and settle down to draw. I try to get a lot done during the week so I can still go out on the weekend and do something fun with friends, but typically I am drawing most of the weekend too if I have nothing else going on. I have a studio space in my house that I work in and I’ll usually throw up some music or a TV show in the background, then I just draw until I’m too tired to keep going.
JB: Musical inspirations? Or do you need quiet to create?
JC: I need music without lyrics when I’m doing thumbnails because I’m reading James’ (my writer) script and the lyrics get too distracting when I’m trying to come up with images in my head. Lyrics are okay though for line art or coloring. I have a playlist that’s full of more ambient/instrumental/beats stuff, things like Autechre and Flying Lotus that really puts me in the mood to draw. Any other time it just depends on my mood. Sometimes I’ll put on hip hop, electronic, jazz, old music, new music…I listen to a lot of stuff. If I’m drawing a sad scene maybe The Smiths. Haha.
JB: Do you think it is more helpful for an artist to be able to create many different styles of artwork or to find a collaborative team that fits with the type of art you create?
JC: I think it’s important to be flexible, but also have your style that people recognize. Then you can go for both.
JB: What is one of your favorite stories you have ever been part of creating?
JC: Nutmeg! The comic I’m currently working on. James and Josh are two of my good friends and I feel most creative when working with them.
JB: What role do you think social media plays in comics or the comics industry? How has that changed since you began?
JC: It plays a pretty big role, whether we like it or not. I’m terrible at being consistent on social media but I have them all because I realize it’s important. It is really great for talking to other creators that you meet and staying in contact. It’s also so nice for talking to fans and interacting with them. It also makes it so easy to get your work out in as many avenues as possible.
JB: What is some advice you wish someone had given you before you began working in the comic medium?
JC: I wish I had a little more advice about the business side of comics. I’m learning it slowly but I wish I knew more before I started. It’s really important!
JB: What message(s) do you hope people get when experiencing your work?
JC: I hope that they will understand that comics can have all kinds of stories. There’s a place for everyone.
JB: When it comes to comics, “all I want or dream is …”
JC: When it comes to comics, my dream would be to get to the point where I do them full time.