The Secret Sauce – Batman’s in the House

May 20, 2017

As I discussed in a previous post, Batman animated artist Rick Burchett is coming on board at the end of this month to work with me on Funky. I thought I’d dig a bit deeper this time to give you a peek at the process involved in our working together. This is where I should probably insert a spoiler warning because we’re going to check in on an upcoming Funky Sunday where the Starbuck Jones crew is kicking back at the Del Coronado hotel on Coronado Island following their Hall H rollout of the Starbuck Jones movie at Comic Con.

Things kick off with Rick and I going over the script and discussing the setting and tone of the piece. This is a particularly packed one as the actors Mason, Marianne, and Cliff, the director Martin Johns, and the writer and story board artist Pete and Darin are kicking-back after their Comic-Con experience, but Rick showed that he could take on a crowd with ease. I tend to prefer working from personal experience so I did a lot of writing and photo research for this when I attended the Eisner Awards at Comic-Con last summer. Armed with all of the information from our discussion of the script as well as my photos, Rick then lays-out and pencils the Sunday sequence. When that’s finished, it’s my turn to jump back in and ink it into a Funky Sunday. The lettering is then done on the computer after which it goes off to colorist Rob Ro who proceeds, as he always does, to turn it into a totally beautiful Funky Sunday.

Much like Chuck Ayers did, Rick brings an experienced and informed skill set to the work resulting in things like the beautiful establishing shot of the Del in the logo panel. With the crowning addition of Rob’s colors, the work is then digitally shipped off to King Features where all of my spelling gaffes get corrected. The end product is the strip that you see below which will run later this summer.

As I mentioned the earlier post, I’ll still be working with both Rick and with Chuck from time to time moving forward, and I count myself as pretty lucky to be able to work with these two titanically talented artists. In a future Secret Sauce, we’ll take a walk together through my writing process on Funky.

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