DC Collectibles: How did you get your start as a professional illustrator and what inspired you to become one?
Ant Lucia: Believe it or not, I've been a major DC fan all my life and my favorite heroes are what inspired me to be an illustrator. In fact, my parents left the mural I painted in my old bedroom of all my favorite characters I did as a teenager. I went to school for fine arts and design, class of '98. I started like many young artists doing small jobs for family and friends to doing wall murals. I then started my internship at a state revitalization program until I found my first job in design. I developed my own brand of illustration around 2008 with the Spookshow Pinups line and that is what really got the ball rolling.
DC Collectibles: Where do you pull much of your pin-up inspiration? Do you have a favorite pin-up artist?
Ant Lucia: I'm a big fan of vintage pin-up illustrations. Whenever I brainstorm a piece, I always fall back to some of my favorites for inspiration. I'd have to say my favorite is George Petty. His illustrations have such great movement and expression. The pose, expressions, and composition have an "exaggeration" to them that appeals to me. All of your illustrations are created as vector artwork.
DC Collectibles: Why did you decide to choose digital as your medium?
Ant Lucia: I create all my illustrations in Adobe Illustrator. As a designer, it is a program that I use on a daily basis to create graphics and logos, etc., so I've become very familiar with it and I think it gives the illustration such a sharp, polished look that I couldn't get with my hand-drawn stuff. I'm also a nut when it comes to details, so it allows me to zoom in and go crazy on the smallest of details the viewer may not even notice...but I know it's there!
DC Collectibles: What are the advantages and disadvantages of generating digital artwork?
Ant Lucia: Advantage: I like having the flexibility to apply my illustrations to different mediums whether it be a 4' Canvas or a 3" sticker. Also, client changes are much easier. Not to mention my file sizes are much more manageable working in a vector format vs. pixels. Disadvantage: Working vector probably takes twice or three times as long to create blends and shading.
DC Collectibles: Do you have a favorite DC Comics character and what DC Comics characters would you like to see appear in the bombshell line?
Ant Lucia: My all-time favorite character has always been Batman but I don't think he'll be showing up in the bombshell line. ;)We've already done a lot of my favorite "Gotham girlies" but I'm excited to see what we could do with Catwoman!
DC Collectibles: What’s special about the DC Comics Bombshells line?
Ant Lucia: That I get to be involved! Seriously, I think this line is so unique. I love the fact that we are taking these characters and showing them in a light that they have never been seen before. As an artist, I love re-imagining little details of their costumes and tweaking their personas a bit to make them feel familiar in an unfamiliar way. Not to mention the thought process behind each and the intense collaboration with DC Collectibles team has really added to the richness of detail and character that they each have.XX
Short answer: A series of 12 illustrations based on classic movie monsters and their sexy counterparts.
Long, boring answer: Spookshow Pinups was my debut line I developed when I first started this particular style. I started doing pinup illustrations but wanted to do a collection that had a common theme as my first series. I've always been a fan of classic movie monsters and noticed that a majority of the vintage posters featured a damsel in distress. The dames always look terrified by the monsters, in mine I wanted to present them as if it where more of a romantic comedy.
The series consisted of 12 pieces total. The first attempt was "Beauty Killed the Beast" and I was going for kind of a Marilyn Monroe vibe to it...dress blowing up, surprised expression, etc. It also helped set the tone for how the composition would work for the entire series. Color palette, type treatment, illustration style and format. After finishing the first I compiled a list of my favorite monsters and got to work on the rest. The challenges for this series was creating a new color scheme for each piece that not only would work well with the characters but compliment each other if they were displayed together. Another challenge was trying to give each it's own type treatment to coordinate with the illustration. And lastly, to come up with a clever phrase for each.
Process typically consisted of doing some concept sketches of the figures then scanning to build the final illustrations in Adobe Illustrator. All of my type treatments are built on the fly, I find it easier to incorporate the type after the fact. That way I can see if there is a natural pocket in the illustration to fit it into.
The "album" size was another feature to this set I wanted to incorporate. As a collection, I wanted the buyer to be able to pick and choose their favorite and be able to hang them in a variety of formats; stacked, 1 row of 3, 2 rows of 4, 3 rows of 4, etc.
Well, that's the long and the short of it, hopefully I did not bore you to death with my first ever blog!