What He Does: When Mason Sweeney's parents were going through a divorce he sought solace in comic books. He was an imaginative kid, always trying to build replicas of Godzilla out of tin foil, and he realized that art could be used to escape from reality. Trading in crayons for a mechanical pencil, he started to create.
"The 'style' is genuinely my own," says Sweeney. "I don't see much else that looks like it for better or worse. I was initially really influenced by Marvel, DC and then Image comics as a kid, then later really influenced by Japanese animation. Manga is probably often still my biggest influence today. I have always liked the way Japanese artists draw the face and body, as well as their willingness to distort or deform it for the sake of making a character unique. I also am a big fan of how susceptible the human mind is to the power of symbols, and the Japanese integrate kanji with their wild wardrobes beautifully. I just wish I was better so I could really capture the stuff that comes into my mind after an anime binge."
Why He Likes It: "How little money I make. Seriously though, I don't even know I've ever gotten anything out of it to make me 'like' being an artist. I do it compulsively because it's either cathartic or the best coping mechanism I have available for stress."More »