COLLEEN DORAN ANSWERS 15 QUESTIONS WITH JULINDA MORROW
Colleen Doran has paid her dues. She has fought for her rightful position in comics and has paved the way for many women to follow.
Colleen has received much praise for the lush art she provided for her latest graphic novel Gone to Amerikay, written by Derek McCulloch.
A gallery of Colleen’s diverse art follows this interview.
Julinda Morrow: What path led you to comics and sequential art?
Colleen Doran: I liked comics as a little girl. I don’t know if that’s really a path or not.
JM: What schooling or training did you receive?
CD: I received no formal training before I went pro. I got my first professional assignment when I was fifteen.
JM: How do you define sequential art?
CD: Art that uses a series of images for storytelling purposes.
JM: Do you find that sequential art provides you with near-limitless possibilities for storytelling or do you experience it as constraining?
CD: Nothing is constraining unless you don’t have much imagination.
JM: What qualities or resources do you believe are most important for a sequential storyteller to have?
CD: The ability to convey a logical sequence of events to their parties who cannot read what you intended to say to them, but can only see what you presented to them.
JM: How do you approach your work process?
CD: It depends on the job.
JM: How many hours a day do you work? Are you uniformly productive on any given day or more productive on some days than others?
CD: It really depends. Some days four hours is no problem, some days two hours is a struggle. I go through very hot and very cold periods.
JM: Was it a struggle, at the start of your career, to find work and make ends meet?
CD: Not a struggle to find work, but commercial art does not pay very well for a long time. It takes a while to build a reputation and get good assignments.
JM: What has been your most valuable professional experience?
CD: Anything and everything has been a learning process. I’m still learning. Sometimes your bad times can be very motivating, and sometimes the good times give you that much-needed sense of appreciation and reward. It’s all to the good, in the end.
JM: What inspires or informs you creatively?
CD: Books, music, other people’s art. Life experience. All things.
JM: What is your position on digital comics? Are they a good thing or a bad thing?
CD: Good, of course. It’s just another medium.
JM: If you were to make any changes to the industry or the market what changes would you make?
CD: I would make the public appreciate the skill and labor that goes into comics so that they would better understand that this is not a hobby or game but a profession deserving of respect.
JM: If you could apprentice under any artist at any time in history and anywhere in the world who would it be?
CD: Hal Foster.
JM: What, in the future, would you like to accomplish creatively?