Mike Allred Interview
Way back in 2016. Wow that was some time ago. I did a little email interview (for my old silver surfer collection website) with the awesome Mike Allred who was the artist at the time on my favourite comic ever. The Silver Surfer.
I thought I would reignite that conversation here. I 100% need to get an original Silver Surfer piece in my collection from Mike. Grail.
I would love to also one day make a history book about the Silver Surfer comics.
What made you want to pursue a career in drawing comics?
Comics were a part of my earliest memories and I began drawing before I could walk. But it wasn't until the "indy Boom" in the late eighties that I saw a path to making them professionally.
Seeing LOVE & ROCKETS, for instance, showed me there were no rules and that you could tell any kind of comic you wanted.
What was your first comic love? Is it still there?
All the classic icons: Batman, Spidey, X-Men, they are all still kicking around.First actual crushed were like Medusa and Gwen Stacy. I was thrilled to be able to draw Medusa in FF.
How did you get involved with the Silver Surfer?
Well we were wrapping up FF, which I started with Matt Fraction and then finished up with my genius big brother Lee. Our editor Tom Brevoort called me up and told me that Marvel wanted to launch a new Surfer series and that Dan Slott had a fresh pitch that everyone loved and everyone was hoping I'd draw it. Of course I jumped at it! Silver Surfer is one of my most favourite lifelong characters. And it's been pure bliss ever since.
Where do you draw you inspiration from?
Everything and everyone. I drink in Pop culture which energizes me. And of course the stories simply pop images into my head. It's just a matter of getting them to the page after that.
Does Madman influence your design of the Silver Surfer?
If I'm being honest I'd have to admit that it's the other way around. Frank "Madman" Einstein is my Frankenstein's comic book monster stitched up from the different body parts of all my favourite things. He's a little bit David Bowie, a little bit SilverSurfer, a little bit of The Spirit, The Jam, Daredevil. Just shake, stir, throw in huge chunks of yours truly and you get a weird wacky original creation.
They share the thick black around the eyes which I love making expressive and as alive as blank eyes can be.
What was your favourite issue to draw in volume 7?
Any time I can inject a personal passion into a book I'm alive with it. Issue 11 is in the top five of anything I've ever done. Just one big love song to Jean Giraud Moebius.
Anything you can say about volume 8, Anything special like the moebius strip in volume 7 issue 11?
I do my best to avoid spilling details if I can. Hopefully folks know by now that they can trust that we're spilling our hearts and souls into what we're doing and follow us blind into the void. But I WILL say that, YES, we have more wonky fun stuff planned to turn brains inside out.
How is the collaboration with Dan Slott?
Pure joy. Wonderful exciting ideas spill nonstop from that fella. Love him!
What does 2016 have in store for you?
More Surfer, more Batman, more Art Ops, more iZombie, at least on the Tee Vee, and hopefully more Madman. But, realistically, probably looking at 2017 for the next Madman Special. So 2017 will be all about Madman and the next Star Wars movie. Wink.
Where can we find you in the next few months?
I'm always within a bike ride to and from the ol' drawing board.
Is there anything you would like to say! Even what is your favourite fruit?
Given the chance I like to encourage people to only be kind to each other and themselves. Negativity will chew you up and spit you out. Might even help remind me to follow my own advise.So much more fun to look for the good and common ground in life.