Inspiration can come from anything and at anytime. What can seem miniscule to someone; could be the spark of something great for someone else. It’s that apple falling from the tree or the lightening hitting a kite. Our Geek of the Week, Kate Sheridan, is a comic book artist and illustrator; found inspiration in the colorful world of comics and anime to create her signature art style. The Philly native has a fun and whimsy art style is instantly eye catching. The illustrations she creates showcase her love for Linge Claire style comics like The Adventures of Tintin; as well as the works of Ivan Bilibin, Mike Mignola, and some Shonen manga. Still, Sheridan is able to adapt styles and experiments depending on the particular project she is working on. Her versatility, whimsy, and overall geekiness makes her the perfect Geek of the Week!
After returning from Flamecon 2017 in New York; Kate Sheridan took some time to answer some questions.
What got you into art/drawing?
I’ve loved drawing as far back as I can remember. When I was younger what made me want to draw all the time was my love of Pokémon. I constantly collected figures, cards, and everything! Art was my way of turning my enthusiasm and love for something other people made, into something I made.
Can you tell me more on how anime and geek culture inspire you and your work?
Absolutely! I fell in love with comics as a medium when I first read Fullmetal Alchemist in high school; and I mentioned how inspiring Pokémon was ( and still is) to me. Reading and watching content that I love and that resonates with me is a big part of what keeps me making work. As a lifelong lover of fantasy, most of my favorite stories have been in that vein. My two most recent projects; Fallow Time ( a comic) and Cool Face Scars ( a zine collaboration with Emily Cheeseman) were inspired by Dungeons & Dragons.
Can you tell me and the readers about your comic, “Fallow Time!” ?
Fallow Time is a short Dungeons & Dragons inspired comic about a trio of adventures taking a well earned rest after a battle. Briar ( an elf archer), Morwen (an orc necromancer), and Petra (a dwarf paladin) are thrown together by ill luck and circumstance, and have to figure out how to work together in order to improve their fortunes.
Fallow Time, covers some of my favorite things in fiction: quiet stolen moments in between the action, found friendships, and queer women looking out for each other.
What goals do you have for yourself and your art going into the future? Anything coming up?
In the next year, I’m looking to expand my portfolio- more illustration, more short comic projects. I’d love to start pitching an original graphic novel by the end of summer, with any luck! I don’t have anything major in the short term, but I’m looking for freelance work currently.
What advice would you give someone looking to get into art/comics?
The best advice I can give is to make art! Even if you don’t think it’ll be good, or that anyone will like it. Comics can especially are intimidating because they’re so involved, but the only way to make good comics is to push through making bad comics. Figure out why they’re bad, and fix that mistake the next time around.
This is still the biggest hurdle for me to get over; to keep making when I don’t feel like anything I’m doing is any good. But you have to keep going. Other than that, hold onto what makes you love making art. Find things to enjoy in every project, look at your work critically but kindly, and push through. And network! Be friendly, kind, and supportive to other artist.
Since this is Geekadelphia; what is the geekiest thing about you?
Haha, that’s a hard question to answer! I think a good contender is the amount of time and brain space I spend on the “A Song of Ice and Fire” series. Sketching, reading meta, aimlessly scrolling on the Wiki. The first art book I participated in was a Game of Thrones fan book called “Draw’ em With The Pointy End,” edited by Grace Fong. I drew Jamie and Brienne at Harrenhal. However, when the books end, they’ll always hold a special place in my heart.
You can see more of Kate Sheridan’s work in her portfolio. Or pick up a copy of he comic Fallow Time on Gumroad. Sheridan also has a Patreon for those wanting to support her and her art. Also if you’d like to collaborate with her, feel free to email her.