PF: Patrick Fillion!
AG: Where are you from?
PF: I was born in the Province of Quebec in Canada, but my family moved to the Province of British Columbia when I was 5 years old. I grew up in BC and still live here today.
AG: How long have you been drawing?
PF: I started drawing in my Momma’s womb! LOL! Seriously – I’ve been drawing for as long as I can remember.
AG: Is Art a chosen career choice or a hobby?
PF: It’s kind of both actually! I feel really blessed that I can draw and make comics for a living – but honestly, if it weren’t my job, I’d probably be doing it anyway! It’s totally in my blood!
AG: Do you possess any formal training i.e. college, workshops, through work experience etc?
PF: I actually don’t. What I do is self taught.
After high school, I wanted to go the Emily Carr Art College. I had my interview with them, they looked at my portfolio, and they sort of dismissed me on the spot. They said I could actually be teaching comics if I wanted and that I didn’t need any formal training – (not sure I buy that, but that is what they told me!)
At the time, I did want to broaden my art horizons and learn about other things. I’ve always felt that the more you know, the better you get at what you do.
But their answer gave me a kick in the pants to just move forward and dive into comics professionally. So I guess you could say that for me, rejection worked out pretty well. HA! HA! HA!
PF: A lot of my fellow artists work directly on the computer, which is very cool. I’m pretty old school though. I pencil and ink everything by hand on paper, and I have to say that that’s really the part of my process I love the most.
Penciling is exciting because all that creativity can just flow through you. I find there is real raw energy involved in penciling an illustration. It’s not always about perfect lines – it’s about capturing something – I dunno – like a kind of essence you want to nail down and put onto paper. Sometimes that works really well, and those moments are so satisfying and very exciting.
Inking is the technical part I love most about my job. I love tight, clean lines and work really hard to make sure that everything is polished and smooth. The only real drawback to inking is that sometimes, because it is such a technical part of the process, you can lose the raw energy of the pencils when you ink over them. But I need to just let go of that sometimes, or I’d never be satisfied with anything I do.
There really isn’t anything I don’t enjoy about drawing comics. I love every aspect in its own way, because in the end it’s all necessary, and all comes together to create the final product.
AG: What is your creative process? Do you have one?
PF: I generally like to see where my imagination will take me. On some books, I write a complete script and follow it religiously from start to finish.
On other books, I have an idea in my head of what I want to accomplish, and then I just start drawing. Where that goes can be really exciting and sometimes, it’s more liberating that following a script.
When I’m drawing, I visualize stuff in my head a lot and in great detail. I work pretty hard at transferring those images from my brain to the paper, but I don’t usually do a lot of different takes on things.
Another huge part of my creative process is music. If I don’t have some great rhythm blasting away at me through my headphones, I find it trickier to find my creative center. I call it “going under”. For me illustration and music have always gone together, and it’s very hard (though not impossible when necessary) to separate the two.
AG: What is your main source of inspiration?
PF: My characters are my main source of inspiration. Their lives fascinate me and their adventures consume me. I absolutely love being able to tell their stories and draw them for others to enjoy. Thinking of what my Boytoons will experience next is what fuels my creativity.
AG: Do you have any favourite artists?
PF: I’ve always loved Alan Davis’ work. It’s beautiful and damn near perfect. The man is a real genius and has always inspired me to do my best and to continually push myself to better my craft.
I’m also a huge fan of Dærick Gröss, Sr., Terry Dodson, Olivier Coipel and Kevin Maguire amongst others.
I consider myself really fortunate that my work permits me to collaborate and work closely with amazing artists of male erotica. I recently had the chance to work with the fantastic Jacob Mott on Naked Justice: Beginnings #1, and that was real thrill. The man is brilliant.
I get to play with Logan, Mike, Ismael Alvarez, HvH, Carlos Garcia, Mark Brill, Benoit Prevot and so many other wonderfully talented creators for a living. Honestly, what more could a boy want! LOL!
PF: Yes I am. I always like to have more than one book going at the same time. It keeps me from getting bored.
Currently, I am working on Felinoids #3, Zahn #2, Stephane’s Funhouse of Fornication #1, and Boytoon Adventures #1.
I’m also writing several scripts for other artists such as Naked Justice: Beginnings #2, illustrated by Jacob Mott; Deimos #2, illustrated by Logan; and Space Cadet #1 as well as Ghostboy and Diablo #1 – the artists for those last two titles will all be revealed in time. It’s still top secret! LOL!
AG: Has your work ever been published?
PF: My partner Fraser and I created Class Comics together to publish my comics. We’ve put out a ton of my titles through Class, and there’s a lot more on the way!
My comics have also been translated in French and published by the France based publisher, H&O Editions.
My comics have been translated into German and published by the Germany-based publisher Bruno Gmunder. Through BG, I’ve also released several hard cover books such as “Heroes: The Men of Patrick Fillion”, “Hot Chocolate” and “Bliss: The Art of Patrick Fillion”.
AG: Any advice you would like to offer to our aspiring artists out there?
PF: Yup! If you’re trying to make it as a professional artist, be sure your work can cut it. What I mean that is that it’s always good to realize if you have what it takes. Look at what you like about the work of others. What qualities inspire you and what aspects of it you find appealing? Then ask yourself how you can achieve similar qualities in your work.
It’s really important to ascertain these things so that you are prepared for the professional art world.
That being said, NEVER give up on your dream to make it as an artist. I know that may sound a little corny, but it’s totally true. There is a way to make it – you just have to keep at your craft, keep honing your skills, keep knocking on the right doors and above all, never quit!
AG: Cake or Pie?
PF: Why choose? I love both cake AND pie equally... I have SUCH a sweet tooth!!! We are talking about dessert, right? LOL!
You can view more of his work on his personal website and at Class Comics.
Also check out his blog for previews and other cool features! :)
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