Each month we’ll be shining the spotlight on a Silverline creator and sharing their secret origin story, learning what makes them tick, and giving you the scoop on how they came up in the comics world.
Up this time is Dean Zachary, a professional comic book artist, who has worked with famous characters ranging from Batman, Wonder Woman and Green Lantern for DC Comics, to titles such as Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic for Dark Horse Comics.
Now, without further ado, we present to you…
10 QUESTIONS WITH … DEAN ZACHARY
SILVERLINE: So, Dean, who are you and where do you hail from?
DEAN ZACHARY: Jonesboro, AR.
SILVERLINE: What would you say it is you do here at Silverline?
SILVERLINE: Where might Silverline readers have seen your work previously?
DZ: I’ve done work with DC Comics, Malibu, and Dark Horse Comics, working with titles such as Batman, Wonder Woman, and massive franchises like Star Wars.
*Editor’s Note: Check out Dean’s extensive resume right here.
SILVERLINE: Many creators at Silverline have been in the comics industry for years — what’s kept YOU plugging away at comics? What do you enjoy most about the medium, as well as your specific trade?
DZ: I’ve always been fascinated with telling Cinematic Stories through drawings. Seeing the “Movie” in my head while reading the script, I have a natural ability to share the Signature Scenes that encapsulate and communicate the story in panels.
I also love Line Work, such as Contour Hatching, Motion Lines and Expressive Line to emphasize action and mood. As my colleagues are well aware, I also like Atmosphere, and insist on populating my scenes with floating leaves, rain, ash, snow, sleet, fog or dramatic lighting to accentuate themes and elicit certain emotions.
Referencing Locations with photos also helps with establishing the Setting as a Character, which makes the story more memorable. I’ve also been known to use what I call a “Strobing Effect” which is basically drawing several positions of a thrown Punch or Kick as if it’s captured by a sequence of stills and pasted into one panel.
My preference is also to use Hatching and Line Work to define Form and Volume, instead of depending on the Colorist. I’m often heard saying things like, “Every Line Counts!”
SILVERLINE: What was the first comic you remember reading that made you think, “Hey, I could do this!”
DZ: Marvel Preview #11 Presents Starlord (1977) by Chris Claremont and John Byrne. Seeing the comic in black & white really inspired me!
SILVERLINE: Who were some of your earliest influences on your art?
DZ: Neal Adams. John Byrne. Frank Frazetta. Gil Kane. John Romita, Sr. Jim Lee. Marc Silvestri.
SILVERLINE: What was the first comic you ever worked on professionally?
DZ: ‘It: The Terror From Beyond Space”
SILVERLINE: Can you still read that Terror from Beyond Space today without wincing?
DZ: No, I still wince!
SILVERLINE: If you could go back in time and give your younger self one piece of advice that would help him better navigate the comics industry, what would it be?
DZ: Hey, younger Dean, move to New York and go by the Marvel/DC Offices every day until they give you a job.
SILVERLINE: Morbid question, but still important — after you die, would you rather your memory be memorialized with an overpass or a parking lot?
DZ: Neither. I’d rather be memorialized with a cool statue. Just sayin!!
C&M Kickstarter: Four days left to fund some stretch goals!
It’s pretty exciting for us to be able to report to you that the kickstarter for the 2nd issue of C&M is fully funded and still in search of some stretch goals. If you’ve backed, thank you. If you’ve shared, thank you. If you haven’t shared—what are you waiting on? That’s EASY to do. If you haven’t backed, take a peek at it again—bet there’s something there for you! There are still several original art rewards left.
2 “convention commissions” by Cat & Mouse penciller Alex Gallimore
Mike W. Belcher original Cat & Mouse
Alan McMillian and Bill Nichols original Cat & Mouse
WidowMaker design original art (by Dean Zachary and Barb Kaalberg)
Original art by Alex Sarabia (pencils) and Barb Kaalberg (inker) featuring Cat & Mouse with characters from the upcoming Divinity series created by Barb!
Original art featuring Cat & Mouse with The Baboon by The Baboon creator/artist Jamie Jones!
So if you’re into original art, there’s still some great choices for you! And, coming later today will be a new reward tier. Our Colonel of Color, Kevin Gallegly has created some MOUSE earrings. They are sweet! So be on the lookout for those—probably 7-ish (EST) this evening.
The art rewards for Kayless #1 are all out. So Kayless is now 100% fulfilled. For those who had art, we apologize for the delay. It took longer to get the art from Luis than we anticipated because it came all the way from Argentina!
The good news is that the Kayless team is about 10 pages into #2, so it’s moving right along!
Other Silverline title news
There are still several projects in various stages of completion. We won’t go too deep into any one of them until they’re nearly ready to present to you. But just a run-down to keep you posted.
Twilight Grimm (4 issue mini) – by R.A. Jones (writer) and Rob Davis (artist). The first issue has about 18 pages of art complete. Yes, EIGHTEEN! Mike W. Belcher will be lettering and … well, we’ll let you know the colorist soon.
Bloodline (one-shot) – by Sidney Williams (writer), Rob Sachetto (penciller), Terry Pallot (inker), and Keith Wood (colorist). The only thing remaining on this one is the colors!
Divinity (4 issue mini) – by Barb Kaalberg/R.A. Jones (writers), Alex Sarabia (penciller), Barb Kaalberg (inker), Mike W. Belcher (letterer), and we’re about 95% settled on the colorist…but not yet. If we can get who we’re trying—you’re gonna love it! The art team is almost 10 pages into the first issue with this one, too. Can’t wait to show you some of this! WOW!
Speck (OGN) – Roland Mann with Alan McMillian and Bill Nichols. Wait…we can’t talk about this one just yet. Who put this here? Sorry, dear reader, you’ll have to be patient.
Don’t forget that November 3 will see the first real “official” Silverline (phase 3) convention appearance. Roland (Cat & Mouse, Demon’s Tails), Brent Larson (Kayless), Sidney Williams (Bloodline, Marauder, Mantus Files), Alex Gallimore (Cat & Mouse, &…), John Metych (Sniper & Rook, Silverline editor), will all be on hand to sign comics for you. There will be some EXCLUSIVE versions of the comics available, as well as an appearance by MOUSE (by Karrigan Walsh). Make plans now!
We’ve been doing some creator spotlights and will keep doing them, but in coming posts, we’ll be talking about some of the folks that work behind the scenes at Silverline. Those of you who have known Roland for a long time, or have known Silverline for a long time know that Silverline was Roland and Steven when it first started in the 80s(I’ve taken to calling that Phase 1), but it was all Roland in the 90s (Phase 2). As this is Roland writing this post, I’ll say that I couldn’t do it this time (yes, I’m calling this Phase 3) without all the help. Though Dean Zachary had life changes that doesn’t allow him to participate at the moment, his encouragement with Barb and Kevin and their offers to help are really what launched Phase 3. BUT, I’ve assembled a nice little crew of talented people who love comics…and that’s really the lifeblood of Silverline: Love of comics.
October 25-27: Wizard World Madison, Madison WI
Make your plans to visit these shows and bring your comics for them to sign!
Cat & Mouse Kickstarter update
Cat & Mouse with The Baboon by Jamie Jones
As of this typing, the Cat & Mouse kickstarter is 87% funded with 11 days to go. That means we’ve got about $500 more to earn in that time. We’re feeling good about hitting it, but Roland is getting both anxious and antsy.
“I’d like to get a couple of stretch goals announced,” he said, “and one of them is that I’d really like to hit 250 backers. We had 221 for issue #1, so it would be special if we could surpass what we had for the first issue.”
Divinity with Cat & Mouse by Alex Sarabia (pencils) and Barb Kaalberg (inks)
There are still several nice pieces of original art left, work by The Baboon’s Jamie Jones, Cat & Mouse inker Barb Kaalberg with penciller Alex Sarabia, a design piece by Dean Zachary and Barb, Cat & Mouse by Mike W. Belcher, and Cat & Mouse by Alan McMillian and Bill Nichols. Some good stuff, ORIGINAL art–which means you would be the SOLE owner of the art.
Anyway, check it out. Pledge if you can, share either way. Thanks!
The big news today is that we will be launching the kickstarter for Cat & Mouse #2…literally…like, in mere minutes now. We’re planning to launch at noon today (Tuesday, Sep 10) and the campaign will run through Friday Oct 5. We know that you’re here because you support someone from Silverline—and we thank you—and now we’re asking that you go check out the kickstarter and hopefully you see some reward level you like and consider backing the second issue so that Silverline can keep fun and exciting comics coming for you.
Obviously, if you’re getting this update right as it is released, you’ll have to wait a little while until it goes live, but we wanted to get this info to you so that you could be there AT launch and not miss any of the early stuff. Roland will be going live on Facebook live a few minutes before noon–so check him out there.
There are pledge levels to get just the book itself, of course, but there are a lot of rewards for art: If you’re a fan of original pencils, inks, comic pages, you’ll want to jump on those quickly, so you don’t miss them. With original art—there’s only one, so you don’t want to let a piece you love get away. Of course, Cat & Mouse artists Dean Zachary, Barb Kaalberg, and Alex Gallimore have some original work available, but some of the other artists include: Mitch Foust, Timothy Lim, Javier Lugo, Alan McMillian, Willie Peppers, Mike W. Belcher, and Bill Nichols.
Also, consider telling your local comic shop about it. For our last kickstarter, we had a few WONDERFUL stores carry the book—they report they sold out of them completely! While we can’t guarantee a sell-out, we DO think fans will find something they like.
We’ve gotten some pretty nice response to the first issue, too:
“The story was well done and intriguing. Roland Mann is still a great writer on top of his game.”
Dan Sehn, Argo Comics
“The artwork, story, and drama is there. This is really good, I really recommend it.” TheMtVernonKid, GeekRamble
Cat & Mouse #1 “is a really good book, a well put together comic that is an example of masterful storytelling. Roland Mann rolls out each story beat one after the next. Great art! The overall concept of the book is perfect. Roland sets them up perfectly for modern audiences. I can honestly see this as a television pilot. I really enjoyed it. I highly recommend jumping on the Cat & Mouse train as soon as you can.”
Martin Pierro, Cosmic Times
We’re getting some great feedback on Kayless #1. If you supported the kickstarter and had the chance to read it, we’d love to hear from YOU! Let us know what you think of it. We’re happy to report Luis is several pages into penciling the 2nd issue.
Daytona Beach Comic Con
Silverline will show up in a big way at the Daytona Beach Comic Con. If you’re in the area, this is a great show to attend and a great opportunity to meet a handful of Silverline creatives. In attendance for Silverline will be Roland Mann, Alex Gallimore, Brent Larson, Sidney Williams, John Metych III. Cosplayer Karrigan Walsh will be appearing as a special Silverline guest as she cosplays MOUSE, so come get your picture taken with her!
The EFGraphics publication of Cat & Mouse #1 by Roland Mann(w), Mitch Byrd(p), and Steven Butler(i).
All systems go for Silverline! 2019 is the 30 year anniversary of the publication of C&M #1 from EFGraphics, the very first published Silverline related title. We’ll tell an expanded version of the story later, but the short version is that we attempted to publish ourselves in 1988, but didn’t have the funds. John Drury and EFGraphics stepped in with a nice offer and published the first issue of Cat & Mouse #1 in color. EFG was also publishing Jazz Age Chronicles by the talented Ted Slampyak. EFG folded before C&M #2 could be printed (I still have all the color film for that issue–yes, I really do).
We took the EFG issue and submitted it all around, ultimately choosing Malibu’s Aircel as the new home. Cat & Mouse then ran for 18 issues before the series ended.
As it happens, May of 2019 is also the 20 year anniversary of the publication of John Metych III’s Sniper & Rook, from Beta3 Comics. We’ll talk more in the future about why that is important. But for now…
Kayless #1 Kickstarter is Live! Please check it out and consider supporting it.
In the 1960s, the CIA sent astronauts into space…and lost them. Until today…
Kayless: In the 1960’s, astronaut Scott Anders blasted off into orbit as part of a secret government-sponsored space program. Its purpose was to investigate a phenomenon in deep space known as the Kayless Rift. Three days later, Scott’s ship disappeared. The mission was covered up and forgotten.
Until today…and our series. Planned to be 5 issues, this is the first–and the comic is completely finished! Hopefully you’ll check it out!
While we could consider Tiny and C&M #1 (vol 2) to be Silverline crowdfunded projects, they were more unofficial, than official.
The website will be the home of the Silverline blog, which will be updated weekly. In rotating weeks, we’ll post: news, creator spotlights, appearances, title overviews. If you’ve got requests, send’em! We hope to make the creator spotlights personal and informative for you, not just a hype of the creator’s current projects. So if you’ve got a question you’d like to see a Silverline creator answer, send it in now so Wes can add it to the list. The appearances post will simply be a monthly listing of where you can find Silverline creators appearing: conventions, comic shops, podcasts(if we can get that info in time) so that you can find them and have them sign your favorite comics and maybe pick up some new ones.
The website also features bios of your favorite Silverline creators and summaries of Silverline titles. IndyPlanet is the Silverline select store for ordering, and there is a link to the Silverline store right on the website.
We’ve started an email list via mailchimp–some of you are getting and reading this via mailchimp already–thank you. We know that checking in on a blog can be difficult to remember and we encourage you to sign up for the email list. We’ll occasionally do things for those on the list before any other media–things like crowdfunding announcements so you can have first dibs at special rewards and early bird rewards.
We want to keep this list exciting and informative, so we’re not going to spill all the beans right here right now about everything Silverline has planned. Instead, we’ll tease you a bit. Hopefully you already know that Cat & Mouse volume 2 is already under way. The creative team is Roland Mann(w), Alex Gallimore(p), Barb Kaalberg(i), and Kevin Gallegly(c). Issue #1 was crowdfunded last year, and we’re well on our way to finishing #2!
In addition to Kayless, two Silverline veterans bring the next two books: Sidney Williams has penned a one shot entitled Bloodline, and R.A. Jones is teaming up with Rob Davis again to bring the four issue mini-series Twilight Grimm. More on these later, but that news is so exciting we just couldn’t keep it to ourselves!
Silverline creator appearances
While this isn’t the official “appearances” post, we wanted you to know where you could find your favorite Silverline creators the rest of June.
June 22-23; Might Con St. Louis, St. Louis, MO
Thank you for your support! Feel free to share this all around!