Last week we talked to Brandon Montclare, writer of November’s Chaos War: Chaos King one-shot. Since then, we’ve heard from the art-side of the equation — veteran illustrator Michael William Kaluta, known for Starstruck, Madame Xanadu and numerous other works over the course of his prolific career.
His thoughts on his current project, and his own history with Marvel Comics, follow after the jump!
Although the cover is done and out there, the real first drawing of Chaos King is on my board right now, awaiting the pen and ink .. folks have often described ideas appearing like cream poured into tea, like accelerated film of cumulonimbus appearing out of an empty sky. Something similar happens with the pencil on the paper, especially when a character appears, as does the Chaos King, in panoply of War, surrounded by plunging minions tearing through the assembled ranks of alien gods defending their reality from Nothingness Incarnate.
Luckily, I have Brandon’s words to guide and inspire me… his restraint in Haiku and caption for the readers; eyes plays counterpoint to his wide-ranging phantasmagoric scene descriptions. You know that scene in The Wizard of Oz when Toto pulls the curtain from around Professor Marvel at the controls… remember how furiously he was slamming those levers and trip-switches to effect that magnificent manifestation of OZ in his glory… that mechanical dance is Brandon’s Script, I’m the levers and Chaos King will be The Great and Powerful culmination of it all.
Most of my work at Marvel has been a several issue cover stint on Conan the King, some Moon Knight covers, a Thor pinup page, Marvel Masterpiece cards for Storm, Dr. Strange and Spider-Man and the art poster of Magik. Of course, Starstruck was originally a Marvel Graphic Novel as well as a 6-issue mini-series from Epic. Covers and strips appeared in Epic Illustrated, and Marvel published the Shadow graphic novel: “1941: Hitler’s Astrologer”.
A little-know thing: it was Jim Shooter, when he was helming Marvel, that made it possible for me to draw the cover of the first issue of Buckaroo Banzai that appears in the film of the same name … Marvel had been tasked with coming up with a cool pulp-like cover and Jim picked me out of the crowd.
Stepping into the world of the Chaos King is very new ground for me, but I feel my pulse racing at the prospect (though that could also be because the deadline is thunderingly close and gaining!)
— Michael William Kaluta