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Home  >  Features  >  Spotlight on Mark Texeira: A Hero's Journey

Ghost Rider, The Punisher, Wolverine, Union, Spider-Man, Vampirella ... those are just a few characters that have highlighted the remarkable comics career of artist/painter Mark Texeira. We got the chance to talk to Mark earlier this year about his past work and upcoming project, A Hero's Death. Want to know which characters Mark's been dying to get his brush on? Read on!


 

Ghost Rider, The Punisher, Wolverine, Union, Spider-Man, Vampirella ... those are just a few characters that have highlighted the remarkable comics career of artist/painter Mark Texeira. Joe Kach got the chance to talk to Mark earlier this year about his past work and upcoming project, A Hero's Death. Want to know which characters Mark's been dying to get his brush on? Read on!

 

MightyVille: So, Mark, list off your Top Five favorite characters to paint/draw or Top Five favorite projects and briefly why.

Mark Texeira: Aww … that’s hard!

 

 

Yeah, I figured it would be, but whatever comes to your head.

Alright, well, I did Spider-Man: Legacy of Evil with Kurt Busiek. That was fun to do, Spider-Man is always fun, I can do that forever. Spider-Man’s a great character, as is Peter Parker. I haven’t ever done Superman, or Batman, and I’d love to, but I've worked on The Punisher and he’s a lot of fun … in space! I just finished doing four issues of that – 88 water colored pages! That’s four painted covers and 20x4" pages. The first issue was 22 pages, then they cut them down to 20. It was about a year’s worth of work and so much fun! I haven’t put anything in Photoshop yet, I’m trying to do it all by hand. So, we’ve got Spidey, Superman, Punisher, Batman, Eenie, Meenie, Miney …  what have I done that was painted that was a lot fun or what would I like to do?

 


 

 

You did Ghost Rider...

Ghost Rider, sure! I've done plenty of painted covers and even interiors.

 

 

I love your Vampirella, too.

There’s many more … those are almost “been there, done that” except for Batman and Superman … So, stuff, I’d love to do … Batman, Superman, I’d love to do a Hellboy, that’s three…

 

 

You’d be a FANTASTIC match for Hellboy.

I’m trying not to make it all these major characters that are out there … of course, there are some other obvious combinations. I’d love to work with Frank Miller on something, he’s just amazing. At this point in life, I think he’s just doing what he wants to do, which makes sense, y’know?

 

 

Talk to us now about A Hero’s Death!

I've got a new book! In the past, I had something with Image called Scythe. Basically, it was a psychological thriller I did for Image in 2000, but in black and white. I’m going to re-launch it next year at Image as well, it’ll be about a 60-80 page story. But this one here in particular is a 48 page one-shot, it’s gonna be launched with Kickstarter right around San Diego [Comic-Con] time this year, July 13th, 14th, so we gotta get our crap together. It’s written by Richard Sanchez, he wrote this several years back and got critical acclaim for it, but did never had an artist on THE book. So, he asked me, I kinda read through it quickly, I thought, “I’m gonna have to lay this out to figure things out.” And as I kept laying it out, I kept thinking, “man, this makes a weak male character, but as a female character, now we have something...” Because a male character, I can see him lift five people, but she could only lift three people at a time and couldn't save the others. So, there’s regret, there’s accomplishment, there’s saving lives, but then there’s accusations. There’s like all these really jumbled emotions in this one 48-page story. There’s sort've a salute to heroes, as well as super heroes, sort of an iconic past to present thing, completely independent, a female character. That was sort've the big switch, it was initially a male character.

 

 

What drew you to the project? (Pun intended.)

Rick had worked with DC, so he showed he already had “field work”. Right now he’s managing the Marvel video game projects over here in San Francisco, online for Facebook. So if you sign up for free, he’s running that whole thing. He called me up for a Punisher giveaway poster that Marvel wanted to do, I think it’s still out, I’m not too sure. Anyway, I did the original, and we had worked in the past with other companies, so we just went from there. So, I laid out three pages in three days so I could get a coherent sense of the storyline. And then over the weekend I painted this [above image] … after I did some costume designs.

Nice, I like it. A classic Hollywood face.

I had a more modern style initially, spiked hair, sort of to the side, it was very out there, but it was kinda cute. Rick said “No, this is a '50s story”.

Oh, it takes place in the '50s?

Yes, so I said I would give her '50s hair, but I’m keeping the rest of the costume! I guess I should have put some towered arches in the city and stuff to sort've antiquate things. But there’s a twist at the end of the story, so I don’t wanna give away too much. It starts off in the present, but we go right back to the '30s, early '40s. It’s been so much fun as an artist to try to capture these older cars, older settings. Even the tones of the pictures are a bit browner, sepia tones. Then coming back, it’ll be all these bright colors. It won’t even be the present, it’ll be some kind of future. The cars, even now in this story, are kinda slightly hovering. So, it’s now, but it could be the near future … there’s sort've like faded circular buildings in the background that don’t exist now, so, I’m placing it somewhere in the possible future.

 

 

That sounds great. I’m looking forward to it. When can we expect the book if all goes according to plan with Kickstarter?

I think It’ll end up at the end of July…

That’s when the Kickstarter starts, right?

Yeah, but, oh my God, it takes so much money. At this point I’m just praying we get it. If we ask for a certain amount and we don’t get it, with Kickstarter, then we have to start all over, they won’t give us the lesser amount… so that’s the only frightening thing, “I’m gonna have to eat this sucker!”  

 

 

I've heard that if you have an easier to attain goal, you may get more people to “over”  bid…

Yeah, but then it’s not realistic! I can’t tell you the number… [laughs]

Well, I’ll definitely be donating!

Thank you! It’s just that, you know, If I ask for $1000, that’s not gonna be that awesome. And If I ask for $10,000, then we’re getting a little closer...

 

 

Hey, $10-15k is about the norm, if that’s what you’re looking for.

Yeah, I’m not asking for the moon! I know guys that have asked for four times that … youch! I’m trying to be slightly realistic. And the pages, based on how much I got, will be somewhat matched to the speed of the support time that I have. So, if I only have three months worth, then I gotta rush to paint the story in three months time, moving like a son of a B, you know? And afterwards, when it’s all done, then we’re gonna send it off to Image, and print it all out. [Editor's Note: The project was successfully funded on November 7th, 2013!!]

 

 

Well, I think a lot of our readers will be excited to check it out. So, thank you for your time today, Mark, and best of luck to you with A Hero’s Death!

 

Alright readers, keep your eyes peeled for A Hero's Journey coming out early 2014 and let us know what you think. In the meantime, why don't you list your favorite characters that Mark's worked on below?!

 

More Spotlights on MightyVille:

Mighty Creator Spotlight: Mat Heagerty & JD Smith of JUST ANOTHER SHEEP

Mighty Artist Spotlight: Tony Fleecs

Mighty Retailer Spotlight: The AudioComics Company

 

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