Rank #1: Off Panel #65: Storytelling with Chris Samnee
Chris Samnee, the co-writer and artist of Marvel's Black Widow, joins Off Panel this week to talk his work on that book and his new Daredevil Artist's Edition from IDW Publishing. Samnee talks how that Artist's Edtion came together, his approach to art, why the inking process is so important to him, what makes working on Black Widow so special, how co-writing that book changes things for him, the superpowers of color artist Matt Wilson, character acting, and more. It's a great chat with one of the best in the biz these days.
Oct 17 2016
Rank #2: Off Panel #205: Getting Started as an Artist with Jen Bartel
We have a special and atypical episode of Off Panel this week, as artist Jen Bartel joins the podcast for a deep dive discussion about how to get started as an artist. Bartel discusses the value of art school, developing your voice and style, having a day job, the tools of the trade, whether sequentials are essential, creating your portfolio, cover work, where fan art fits in a portfolio, the impact of social media, where conventions fit in, communicating with collaborators, the value of working with an editor, managing your own schedule, the importance of paying attention to the larger industry, and more. This is a beast of an episode, but if you're interested in working in comics, there's a ton to learn from here.
May 20 2019
Rank #3: Off Panel #123: Penthouse Forum with Matt Fraction
On this week's episode of Off Panel, writer Matt Fraction joins the show to discuss his work on comics like Sex Criminals, Casanova, and Solid State. Fraction talks the impact of the Warren Ellis Forums, the rise of the Brimpers, why so many connected deeply to Sex Criminals, the book's backmatter, following your gut in writing, accessibility, getting over the fear of writing, integrating Elizabeth Breitweiser into their creative routine, collaboration, Casanova's impact, the unique challenge of Solid State, the importance of a comic being of physical substance, the Milkfed newsletter, and more.
Oct 16 2017
Rank #4: Off Panel #119: If They Be Worthy with Jason Aaron
On this week's episode of Off Panel, writer Jason Aaron joins the show to talk his work and process. Aaron discusses how he balances his workload, his writing process, the difference between creator-owned and for-hire, the impact of a good editor, how far he planned out his Thor run, why the major story beats of his Thor run appealed to him, the Nick Fury mystery beat, whether he misses tackling smaller, more finite stories, turning the Legacy one-shot into a cohesive story, how his work differs (or doesn't) from artist to artist, his personal connection to Scalped, whether Southern Bastards feel like a different beast than his other creator-owned books, the community building of letters columns, growing up in a small town and its impact on his relationship with comics, Alabama football, and more.
Sep 25 2017
Rank #5: Off Panel #182: Frontier Psychiatrist with Jeff Lemire
In this week's episode of Off Panel, cartoonist Jeff Lemire joins the show to talk about his work on titles like Black Hammer and Gideon Falls. Lemire discusses his organizational abilities, what getting ahead with your writing offers you, a day in his life, studio space, his connection to rural locations, Black Hammer's connection to his love of comics, the divide between independent and superhero comics, how Black Hammer evolved, his collaborators, expanding its universe, the appeal of horror, Gideon Falls's development, working with Andrea Sorrentino, the JH Williams III effect, creating tension, writing for others versus himself, him stepping back from for-hire work, and more.
Nov 19 2018
Rank #6: Off Panel #84: The Story of Image with Todd McFarlane
In the final Image founderscentric edition of Off Panel, Image Comics co-founder Todd McFarlane joins the show to share his perspective on the story of Image. McFarlane talks the appeal of the move away from Marvel, the story behind Image's creation, the meeting at Marvel and why they went to DC after it, why he stayed exclusive to Image, how the Image deal became more appealing to others, Robert Kirkman's fit as a partner, Eric Stephenson's impact, whether Image looks as he expected after 25 years, what the biggest difficulties were in figuring everything out, and more.
Feb 16 2017
Rank #7: Off Panel #147: The Comic Life with Robert Kirkman
In this week's episode of Off Panel, writer Robert Kirkman joins the show to talk comics and his new book, Oblivion Song. Kirkman discusses why he keeps making comics, whether he's an art nerd, how his success allows him to take risks, learning from other creators and comics, Oblivion Song's lead time, his approach to writing, Savage Dragon's impact on him, how artists have changed the path of his comics, what made Lorenzo de Felici the right fit for Oblivion Song, what he looks for in his collaborators, the ending of Invincible, seeing so many other people working in his sandbox, the glory of Andrew J. Shaw, fictional editors, and more.
Mar 19 2018
Rank #8: Off Panel #163: The Horror with Al Ewing
In this week's episode of Off Panel, writer Al Ewing joins the show to talk about his new series, the Immortal Hulk. Ewing discusses his background as a comic reader, the strips hew grew up on, his Marvel background and love of the Hulk, Peter David's Hulk, how the idea for the Immortal Hulk came together, the Banner/Hulk dichotomy, Joe Bennett's impact on the book, how they're handling the art on the book, his writing approach, consecutive double page spreads, borrowing from other creators, using your tools correctly, and more.
Jul 02 2018
Rank #9: Off Panel #32: Happy Accidents with Michael Lark
Lazarus artist Michael Lark guests on this week's episode of Off Panel, as we talk about his Image Comics title with writer Greg Rucka. Lark discusses how the book's going, how he's handling the schedule, the depth the team goes to in the book, creator-owned comics, his process, the marriage of traditional and digital art, how his art is a happy accident, the fun of drawing comics, what appeals to him about Rucka's writing, and a whole lot more. It's a great conversation with one of the best in the business, with a ton of insight into how he works.
Jan 19 2016
Rank #10: Off Panel #125: Grand Design with Ed Piskor
On this week's episode of Off Panel, cartoonist Ed Piskor talks about his upcoming series X-Men: Grand Design. He discusses his comic book origin story, what a comic book collection says about a person, why the Byrne/Claremont run is so specifically his jam, hanging out with Chris Claremont at NYCC, how X-Men: Grand Design came together, the process of organizing and structuring the series, his process on the book, recoloring X-Men #1, making a Marvel comic as a cartoonist, style vs. storytelling, entering the world of superheroes, his Nike Air Force 1 project, and more.
Oct 30 2017
Rank #11: Off Panel #181: Marvel Knights with Jimmy Palmiotti
In this week's episode of Off Panel, writer and inker Jimmy Palmiotti joins for a deep dive discussion about the creation of the Marvel Knights imprint for its 20th anniversary. Palmiotti shares where he was before Marvel Knights started, personal branding, how the project came together, why Daredevil was their #1 draft pick, Marvel vs. DC, going for realism, Frank Castle punching a polar bear, why Marvel Knights focused on standalone stories, whether he considered sticking around at Marvel like his Marvel Knights partner Joe Quesada, whether this kind of project could happen again, its lasting impact, and more.
Nov 12 2018
Rank #12: Off Panel #81: The Rise of Image with Rob Liefeld
In a special edition of Off Panel, Image Comics co-founder Rob Liefeld joins the show to talk about the publisher 25 years after it started. Liefeld talks the popularity of the Image founders, why it needed to be more than just himself who did it, how Image came together, why Robert Kirkman fits Image so well, Eric Stephenson's role in Image's rise, whether Image's developing surprised him over its 25 years, who the heart and soul of Image is, what Image's future looks like, and more.
You can read the article I wrote on Image's history and evolution, featuring Liefeld, on The Ringer.
Feb 06 2017
Rank #13: Off Panel #101: The Comic Book Podfather with John Siuntres
On this week's episode of Off Panel, the host of the comic book interview podcast Word Balloon - John Siuntres - joins the show to talk about his 12 years hosting the show. Siuntres talks the origins fo Word Balloon, his background before the show started, the impact of having so many comic book podcasts, how he developed Word Balloon's audience, monetizing podcasts, the evolution of his show, Secret Empire and the state of Marvel and fandom, getting personal with his guests, show regulars, whether he thinks its harder to develop a show now, Newsarama's impact on the show's growth, before the show comes to a close with five questions about the 12 years of Word Balloon.
May 29 2017
Rank #14: Off Panel #33: Prolific Ways with Jason Latour
Jason Latour, the writer of Spider-Gwen and artist/co-creator of Southern Bastards, joins Off Panel this week to talk about his work, career and collaboration. We talk the difference between writing and art for him, how those two roles inform each other, his working relationships with his creative partners like Jason Aaron, Robbi Rodriguez and Rico Renzi, how growing up in the Charlotte area helped him, Coach Boss as Bill Belichick, challenging readers, Saturday morning cartoons, Spider-Gwen's success, the Carolina Panthers, barbecue, and much more.
Jan 26 2016
Rank #15: Off Panel #185: Hot Dog Icing with Chip Zdarsky
In this week's episode of Off Panel, cartoonist Chip Zdarsky returns to the show to discuss what's coming for him in 2019 and to dive deep into my favorite comic of the year, Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #310. Zdarsky chats about his Spider-Man origins, how the period when you grew up influences your writing, what formed his vision of Spider-Man, J. Jonah Jameson, the length of his run, how his approach and story on #310 came together, hot dog icing, what makes Spider-Man special, overcoming his rep as the funny guy, what's coming for him in 2019, tackling Daredevil, the appeal of Namor, and more.
Dec 17 2018
Rank #16: Off Panel #194: War All the Time with Garth Ennis
In this week's episode of Off Panel, writer Garth Ennis joins the show to talk his love of war comics and his latest series from TKO Studios, Sara. Ennis discusses where his love of war stories came from, why they speak to him as a writer, fitting those types of tales into Marvel and DC, the importance of editorial allies, the origins of Sara, Russia's secret police, the Eastern Front of World War II in fiction, how Sara thinks about war, the pacing and structure of the story, Steve Epting's art, why he worked with TKO on this book, why he works with so many different publishers, the importance of realism in his stories, and more.
Mar 04 2019
Rank #17: Off Panel #4: Constructive Comics Criticism with Oliver Sava
In this week's episode of SKTCHD.com's weekly creator-centric podcast Off Panel, David brings on someone who isn't a creator, but a journalist like him. It's Oliver Sava from AV Club, one of the best and brightest in the comic critic game. Oliver joins the show to talk about Marvel's All-New All-Different future, how the #DCYou is shaping up, the rapid recent changes in comics, the value of diversity in creators and comics, and much more. It's a sprawling conversation about what both David and Oliver would like to see more of in comics.
Jul 08 2015
Rank #18: Off Panel #197: Art is Hard with Jamie McKelvie
In this week's episode of Off Panel, artist Jamie McKelvie joins the show from Emerald City Comic Con for a chat about his art and The Wicked + The Divine. McKelvie discusses fandom, his partnership with Kieron Gillen, long running titles, cover design, the importance of highlighting other artists, formalistic experimentation, the faux cartoonist, what he's learned in the process of making The Wicked + The Divine, getting things right with your art, the physical toll of art, and more.
Mar 25 2019
Rank #19: Off Panel #20: Back to the Future with Joe Kelly
Writer Joe Kelly is the guest in this week's episode of Off Panel, and he joins the show to talk about his career in the past, present and future. We talk about how his animation work with Man of Action has changed his approach to comics, why he keeps coming back to them, the emotional appeal of I Kill Giants, the upcoming film adaptation of that comic, returning to Deadpool, what makes that character so very popular, his artistic partners, the resurrection of Four Eyes, and a whole lot more. It's a fantastic conversation with one of the real gems in comics.
Oct 28 2015
Rank #20: Off Panel #94: Breaking In with Jen Bartel
In this week's episode of Off Panel, artist Jen Bartel joins the show to talk about breaking into comics. She talks about her art background, the pros and cons of art school, her path to the world of comics, the importance of just making art, the power of the internet and social media, her advice for people looking to break in, why she's focused on covers over sequential art, the reason she prefers inking and coloring over the problem solving part of art, her affinity for neon colors, merchandising, valuing your work monetarily, before the podcast closes with five questions about Bartel herself.
Apr 17 2017