Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Meet a Local Cartoonist: A Chat with Hobbes Holluck

Hobbes Holluck and Karly Perez at SPX 2016

by Mike Rhode

Hobbes Holluck of Winchester, VA participated in the Heroic Aleworks comic book fair this spring, and asked to postpone an interview until he launched his new Kickstarter campaign.  It's live now, so he's telling us about his career by answering our usual questions.

What type of comic work or cartooning do you do?

The things that seem to be constantly recurring in my work are monsters and humor.  Right now I have two fairly distinct styles I work in.  One is a very colorful cartoony style that I use when I do my own storytelling.  The other is a much more dark and expressive style I developed working with Karly Perez.

How do you do it? Traditional pen and ink, computer or a combination?

I generally work traditionally if I can.  I use pencil, ink, inkwash, markers, airbrush, acrylic paint, gouache, etc.  I basically use whatever medium is appropriate for the effect I want.  For Fuzzbuquet, the current story I'm working on, I will generally start with a pencil sketch, ink it, color it using copic markers and then use airbrush for the background and special effects.

When (within a decade is fine) and where were you born?

I was born in San Juan Puerto Rico in 1981.  Growing up in the 80's had a substantial influence on my work.  Saturday morning cartoons, toy culture, Garbage Pail Kids, and that era of comics definitely resonated with me.  I could go on and on....

Why are you in Washington now?  What neighborhood or area do you live in?

I grew up in the suburbs of D.C. in Chantilly, VA.  I spent about 5 years in Richmond for grad school and then moved back to the area to work as an art teacher.  I recently moved to Winchester.

What is your training and/or education in cartooning?

I have a BA in fine art from Virginia Tech but I didn't learn much about comics or cartooning there.  I probably learned more about the art of cartooning from the blog of John K than anywhere else.  Spending time studying my favorite artworks/cartoons/comics and trying to recreate techniques I see is also quite illuminating.  I learn a lot from artists who share their work on YouTube and social media.

Who are your influences?

The classic Looney Tunes and Disney shorts (especially those by Jack Hannah and Chuck Jones) John K, Ralph Bakshi, Dave Sim, Eastman and Laird, Brom, Tony Diterlizzi, Eric Powell... again the list could go on and on.

If you could, what in your career would you do-over or change?

I wish I would have spent more time making things and less time playing video games.  

What work are you best-known for?


What work are you most proud of?

Fuzzbuquet.  I finally feel like I am producing a story that's close to the way I envisioned it in my head.  It's a fantasy story that's heavily influenced by my love of the cartoons in the 80's and early 90's but it's also very much its own thing.  While it's a whimsical tale, I think once I get through the whole story it will be a meaningful one as well.  I also really identify with the main character- He's an idiot chasing his dreams. 

What would you like to do  or work on in the future?

If and when I finish Fuzzbuquet, I'd like to get into making wooden nutcrackers from scratch.
What do you do when you're in a rut or have writer's block?

If I don't feel like drawing/painting I try to force myself work for at least 30 minutes.  If I'm still not feeling it I'll take a break and come back to it when I'm ready.  As far as writer's block, I usually let my best thoughts come to me when I'm driving to work in the morning or taking a shower and then record them as soon as I can.  My wife is also a phenomenal help when it comes to writing, critiquing and bouncing off ideas.

What do you think will be the future of your field? 

It seems things are going more and more digital.  Maybe that's why I enjoy working traditionally so much.
What local cons do you attend? The Small Press Expo, Intervention, or others? Any comments about attending them?

Small Press Expo, Awesome Con and Baltimore Comic Con.  I think each one appeals to a slightly different crowd.  I've had good experiences at all three. 

What's your favorite thing about DC?

Joining the DC Conspiracy and finding other people that love making comics as much as me.

Least favorite?

The traffic.

What monument or museum do you like to take visitors to?

The National Gallery holds a special place in my heart.  I vividly remember my trip there in 5th grade and it changed my life.  It has a little something for everyone and it always brings back great memories.
How about a favorite local restaurant?

This is outside the city but in Burke, VA there is a tiny little Spanish restaurant called El Pueblo.  If you go, get the Xango's for dessert.  Bananas and cheesecake never tasted so good.

Do you have a website or blog?

1 comment:

sam forrest said...

Hobbes and Karly are good friends of mine.