Who dares take on the tyrannical twelve question interview? None other than Jeff Beckman creator of ULTI-MAN!
1. For the poor souls not already reading, please give a brief synopsis of your comic.
Ultimate Man was once the worlds greatest superhero, back in the 80's he saved the world from monsters, demons, aliens... you name it. But then one day he defeated ALL of the bad guys in the world and was suddenly forced to retire. Now we bring you to modern day, Ultimate Man has become a loser, for lack of a better term. Almost nobody remembers him, he has girl trouble, a drinking problem, etc. The comic follows UM in his everyday life and the trouble he gets in.
2. What materials and/or software do you use?
I pencil and ink on some grid paper with my favorite pen. A Pentel brush pen I got on Ebay. Then I scan it and add the pink shading in Photoshop.
3. Are there any books, movies, toys, artists, or authors that have inspired or continue to inspire your comic?
I go through phases with my comic obsessions, right now it's Daniel Clowes. Other print comics I've gotten like "Carl the Cat that makes Peanut Butter Sandwiches" by Jim Mahfood, and "Mesmo Delivery" by Rafael Grampa have really inspired me to make comics focused on what I think is cool and what makes me laugh.
And just the webcomics (too many to list here) I read keep me motivated to keep on updating.
4. Are any of your characters based on real people in your life?
I like to think that all of my characters have at least a small aspect of my personality in them, but I don't really tend to base my characters on anyone.
5. Are there any actors you know you would want to play or voice certain characters in a movie of your comic?
I'm terrible with remembering celebrities names and whatever they do... But I would have to say, I would want Hulk Hogan in there somewhere.
6. What songs would you like in a soundtrack of your comic?
Man, I never really thought about this one either... but if it had a soundtrack it would probably just be the music I listen to all the time, grunge bands like L7, Nirvana and Alice in chains and some rappers like MF Doom, Danny Brown and Das Racist somehow.
7. What is your overall goal for your comic?
My goal is to keep on going with it as long as I can. I don't really have an end for Ultimate Man's story in mind, so it's gonna keep on going.
8. How has managing a comic impacted your life?
At first the thought of updating so often was intimidating, but as long as you have a few weeks or months written ahead of time you can draw it whenever you have the time, and continue writing when you get inspiration for the next story arc before you have to worry about your updates. It also forces me to think and write and draw more for myself, which is a huge relief when most of my day is filled with doing art for clients.
9. What do you do to advertise your work?
I do a little bit of advertising over on Project Wonderful, like anyone else that ever mentions them... I love PW!
10. Web comics can be very time consuming and sometimes expensive to keep up. Often there is little reward in regards to money and sometimes public attention. Why do you do it?
I do it for the love of comics! It's something I feel very passionate about and it's a lot of fun.
11. Got any other projects we should know about?
Not at the moment, I have a few projects in brainstorming phase right now though, and I'm hoping to have a couple of them done by the end of the year. I'll be posting progress and updates for future comic projects on the ULTI-MAN blog as well.
12. What advice would you give to aspiring creators?
Make stuff that makes you happy, that's all that really matters. But if you're ever looking for critiques, don't get offended if someone doesn't like what you're making. As long as they are offering advice you should take it and learn from it. The critics won't always be right, and you shouldn't always change something just because someone doesn't like it either - but you can still learn a lot from what other people have to say.
Thanks a lot Jeff! I think the advice web artists give in these interviews is my favorite part. Some valuable info here.
So once again we ask what you think? Leave us some comments below to tell us how you feel about ULTI-MAN, Jeff's answers, the questions or additional questions you'd like to see in the future. If you don't have anything clever to say, please check the funny, interesting, or cool boxes at the bottom to let us know you were here.
Thanks for reading! Once you're all caught up with ULTI-MAN check out some of Jeff's animations at beckmanimation.com.
Next Weds.- Mike Leckrone artist for The Other Sun!
If you would like to be interviewed about your web-comic send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org titled "interview" with a link to your comic.