2 min read

So, You Want to Be a Comic Book Artist? was just re-released with new, updated content, was recently interviewed here at Beyond Words.

Perfect for kids of all ages, this book guides readers through the process of becoming a comic book artist with advice from real-life artists and plenty of exercises and activities. Form more from Phil Amara, check out his Tumblr, Some Kind of Superhero.

So, You Want to Be a Comic Book Artist? has been out for some time. Why update it now? What's new?

I think of it like a cookbook. Skills don't change. You still need to know how to cook eggs. But tastes change. Maybe people like things spicer now. Same with comics. You ALWAYS need to tell a story with comics but art styles and genres evolve. Plus, with so much new talent out there, their advice in this book is added to the mix, especially with using new technology. It keeps comic books fresh and alive!

How did you break into the comic book industry?

I worked for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! Well, not the Turtles, but the creators, a guy named Kevin Eastman right from my home state! [of Mass.]

Why Should parents like this book? Comic books are not always perceived as educational.

Because Phil Amara is a triple whammy! Wait, is a whammy a good thing? Lol. I worked as an editor in comics for three different companies on award-winning comics. I created comics as a writer. And, I'm a fulltime, licensed teacher. For kids, that means I know how to make this book fun. For parents, I know how to make it educational. Seriously, I can't walk into a Target without saying "How can I make a comic book lesson with that thing." It's a sickness. Ha!

What made you decide to transition from comic book artist and edito to grade school teacher?

The best thing about being an editor is also the best thing about being a teacher. It's not the awards, but helping new students develop their skills and their confidence. It might be comics or math, but the approach is very similar. So going from editing to teaching was as smooth as a waterslide and just as fun!

What comic book artists have inspired you?

It changes all the time! It's true! Just like there's a song for every mood, there's a comic for every mood, too. From Bryan Lee's Scott Pilgrim to anything by Sam Henderson, I love pretty much all of it. Wow, that would be cool, to have a comic store arrange them that way. Thoughtful comics, lively comics, daring comics...


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