What makes a good Arachnid imbued Gangster these days? Or even an anti-vamp Super Soldier? Illustrative All-Star Dylan Burnett (Patent Pending) knows it all.
The Toronto based artist stole the show in late 2015 with Interceptor alongside Donny Cates published by Heavy Metal and yet again in 2016 alongside Simon Spurrier & Triona Farrell with Weavers published by BOOM! Studios
Interceptor is a testament to the art of world building, creating a vibrant yet dark rendition of a cyberpunk metropolis that never sleeps. His use of neon colours contrasting the dark environment is exceptional, painting a beautiful canvas of a space aged post-apocalypse.
Weavers however is a much simpler world. the inhabitants on the other hand; not so much. Burnett’s unique style allows for a cartoonish, almost comedic charm while at the same time being brutal as hell with gorgeous, dynamic graphic visuals of dismembering, maiming and full on bodily explosion – you know, the good stuff.
Earlier this year we were treated to this beautiful little teaser on the future of Interceptor. The project has been renamed Reactor and has switched from Heavy Metal to Vault Comics. While the mystery behind this project will hopefully reveal itself as the year progresses, we wanted to get up close and personal with the man himself.
The Independent Heavy Hitter has graciously agreed to speak to YDRC and to give us an insight into the man behind the panels.
YDRC - What were your experiences working on Interceptor & Weavers? Was it what you expected?
DB - Both books were firsts for me. Interceptor was my first creator owned project, and Weavers was my first work for hire project. They were both really different, but I had a blast drawing both. I was in art school when I got both projects, and I ended up leaving so I could devote all my time to doing the work. As a result, both books were huge learning experiences for me, and they made me a better artist.
YDRC - What was it like working with Donny & Simon?
DB - Donny Cates [Writer- Interceptor] and Si Spurrier [Writer- Weavers] are such rad guys, and such great writers, I was super lucky to work with the two of them, especially on my very first books. They both had their own visions that I was able to bring something different to, and they were cool with me taking their visual notes to weird and sometimes over the top places, which is always my favourite part. The part where the script says "go nuts, buddy."
YDRC - How would you describe your artistic style to someone who had no idea what you do?
DB - I'd probably draw them a picture and let them make their own assumptions. And then I'd shove my comics collection in their face and say "Lookit. Go. Read."
YDRC - Who/What Influences you as an artist?
DB - So many things. Punk rock music, cartoons and video games from my childhood (Batman: the Animated Series, Samurai Jack, Trigun, Street Fighter, Zelda), really anything that turns my crank.
Also a plethora of artists and creators that have inspired me for years. Katsuhrio Otomo, Jamie Hewlett, Mike Mignola, Moebius, Ikeno, the list goes on.
YDRC - If you could work on any run what would it be and why?
DB - It all depends on who I'm working with. I'd rather draw a character I'm not attached to, with a writer (and creative team) I really admire, rather than a character I really love, with a writer I'm not nuts about.
YDRC - What keeps you motivated?
DB - I re-read my favourite comics all the time. AKIRA, the Long Halloween, Batman Year 100, Hellboy, Shaman King, Calvin and Hobbes. Also working with a team that's really enthusiastic always keeps me going. Also surrounding myself with other artists that are always pushing themselves to be better has helped me do the same. There's a great comics scene in Toronto, full of amazing and helpful people. Definitely would not be where I am today without them.
YRDC - What books are you looking forward to this year?
DB - I don't think it's out this year, but definitely Paul Pope's Battling Boy sequel, and also Mike Mignola's Mr. Higgins Comes Home.
YDRC - What’s on your pull list currently?
DB - I honestly don't have one! I visit the comics shop once in a while and just look at new and old things that pop out at me. I recently started reading the original Dragon Ball, also just finished Azzarello and Risso's Moonshine collection and loved it, as well as Asaf Hanuka's latest the Realist collection. Deadly Class has to be my favourite book on the shelves every month. Brilliant stuff.
On behalf of YDRC I’d like to thank Dylan for his time and for his work in two of my favourite comic books. Keep an eye on the shelves of your local comic book store people, Dylan Burnett isn’t done with you yet. Until next time #deathbeforeundead
For more articles just like this make sure to check out more from us at the YDRC team & to keep up to date with Dylan follow his Twitter @dylrburnett.