Since he recently worked on The Man of Steel (which we’ve been loving) we spoke to Evan “Doc” Shaner about his approach to drawing Superman, his previous work on Future Quest and what he’s got lined up next!
Firstly, how did you get into drawing comics – and what has been your favourite project so far?
I’ve been drawing since I can remember, and I’ve always loved drawing comics. I started out by getting into newspaper strips, and that kind of 3-4 panel strip is how I started drawing my own comics as a kid. When I got out of college in 2008 I gradually sort of fell into drawing comic books just because that was where the work was. I’m awfully fond of most eveyrthing I’ve been fortunate enough to work on but if I’m being honest I think the run on Flash Gordon with Jeff Parker and Jordie Bellaire is my favorite.
You’ve recently been working on covers for various volumes of Silver Age versions of popular characters, what did you enjoy the most about working on these covers?
They’re just fun! I don’t have to worry too much about the storytelling, it’s all about making big punchy iconic shots of these great characters. A bunch of these have included characters I haven’t had a chance to work on professionally yet or even in some cases some that I’ve never drawn period. Getting to bounce around the classic DC Universe for a second is just a lot of fun.
Your work on Future Quest has been fantastic, how did you start bringing characters like Space Ghost to the page? Binge watch the original animated series perhaps?
I didn’t have to, but I did anyway. I grew up on repeats of Space Ghost and Jonny Quest and those two in particular have always been favorites of mine. With the two of them it was a pretty direct adaptation. With Jonny it was just a matter of figuring out how he’d look through my “filter” and I maintain that Space Ghost is already a perfect design, regardless of the time period. Some of the other characters were altered a bit more, like Frankenstein Jr. or The Impossibles, out of necessity to make them “fit” into this world a little better. So much of the hard work is already done for us because of the great designs, though.
When you first found out that you were going to be drawing Superman, how did you approach bringing the Man of Steel to life?
The Man of Steel is actually my second time drawing Superman, so it was largely about figuring out how my take on him has changed and grown since 2014. I didn’t realise it back when I drew the one issue of Adventures of Superman but my Superman back then was actually kind of lanky and thinner. In the years since I’ve rounded and bulked him out a bit. I spend a lot of my free time, even before I was hired for The Man of Steel, drawing Superman for fun so a lot of the pre-production work was already done, haha.
What was the most intimidating thing about working on Superman?
As with a lot of these DC characters, it’s the legacy and history that comes with him. He’s been a favorite of mine since I was young, and he’s the most iconic character in comics, so it’s hard to not be a little intimated. Honestly, the trick is just not thinking about it and moving along with the drawing. Otherwise it’ll completely freeze you up.
And what are you most excited for readers to see from you in the future? – We completely understand if you’re not able/allowed to answer that one!
Next I’ll be returning to The Terrifics, DC’s pastiche of the Fantastic Four, though I can’t say just yet what that’ll look like. Still doing the covers for collected editions as well.
Thanks for chatting to us Evan! Read our review of The Man of Steel #2
that Evan worked on. Make sure you follow us on Twitter @HeroesDirect
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