THIS WEEKS GUEST
J.G Jones is one of the premier comic book artists working in the business today. Known for his photo realistic style, his covers are the stuff of legend and a Jones cover alone can cause a comic to fly off the shelves. No stranger to interiors either, his work in Final Crisis, Wanted, and Before Watchman: The Comedian is highly detailed, expertly composed, and beautiful to behold. I will say though one of the crown jewels in his impressive profolio is the fifty two covers he did for the landmark DC Comics series “52“. Every week for one year his incredible covers graced the comic book shelves and made us all take notice of that ambitious series. Truly a wondrous achivement and has yet to be topped by any comic book artist out there.
Recently I had the chance to get together with J.G and ask him 5 questions. Let’s not waste anymore time and get to it!
Erik: I always like to start these 5 questions out with influences. Tell us what artists you credit for inspiring you to get into the comics field and also challenging you once you entered the industry.
J.G Jones: The one artist I think of as really getting me motivated to quit my job and try comics would have to be Mike Mignola. I was reading some comics, at the time, and Mignola’s work just made me salivate. He had just created Hellboy around that time, and I still have the issue of Next Men where Hellboy made his first appearance. I had a lot of artists that I loved as a kid, and many more that I looked at when getting into the business. Name dropping all those influences would take days and pages of text that no one really wants to read, but the short list would probably have to include Frazetta, John Buscema, Ross Andru, Corbin, Moebius, Wrightson, Kirby. See? I could go on all day.
Erik: I loved your work on The Comedian mini series. The Before Watchmen project had an air of controversy surrounding it from the moment it was announced. Now that some time has passed and the world didn’t end, what are your thoughts on the prequels to Alan Moore’s greatest work? Do you feel the uproar was unwarranted or did you understand some of the adverse reactions to it?
J.G Jones: Not to be coy about it, but the controversy, if it’s still out there, is not something that keeps me up at night. Brian (Azzarello) gave me an interesting script to draw, and DC paid me a very nice page rate to play with a character that I really found interesting. If you are in the camp that thinks that the original should be sacrosanct, then you won’t read the prequels, and it won’t affect your enjoyment of the Watchmen. But if you do want to read them, you will encounter some amazing work by some really talented folks like Darwyn, Amanda, Lee, Brian, Adam, and the rest of the crew.
Erik: Can you tell us about any upcoming projects you are working on or generating at the moment? Something to get our mouths watering?
J.G Jones: I would love to talk about a couple of personal projects that I have in the works, at the moment, but since I have yet to ink a final deal for either, I think I’d best keep my big mouth shut for now. I’ll just tease it a bit, though, by saying that I am finally working on something with the one writer I have wanted to work with for most of my career. I love the story idea, and finally get to work with another amazing creator at the top of his field.
Erik: Your covers are some of the best in the business and the “52” Series, in my opinion, is the finest example of how to do them right that has ever been shown. With that said, I give you this simple question: Covers or interiors? (feel free to expand on your answer)
J.G Jones: Simple answer: both. Each exercises a different muscle. I always enjoy creating single images that entice a reader to pick up a book, but there is also something really satisfying about doing storytelling; setting a scene, moving the camera around, looking for the best way to bring the writer’s vision to fruition. That’s really satisfying, as well.
Erik: And finally the question I always end with, what are your top 5 bands at the moment?
J.G Jones: I am always all over the place with my music (though everyone already knows I’m a huge Tom Waits fan). I listen to Jazz, Blues, Rock, Alt Rock, Pre and Post Punk, Alt country, singer songwriters;I listen to every kind of music you can imagine. I also listen to a lot of podcasts while working, especially history and science stuff. I like to mix it up.
Erik: Thank you again J.G for your time and great answers. All of us here at NBC love your work and can’t wait to see what you bring us next!