I had the time to sit down with the artist Howard Simpson from Abba Studios. The artists and writers from Abba's have been around for years making comic fans lives better. Writing and illustrating for Disney, Warner Bros. Animation, HBO, Random House and so many more. After checking out Howard's work and that of his team, all I can say is everything new from Abba's is a classic waiting to happen. Now in a time of blockbuster comic movies and the next generation of comic book fans moving toward their teen years, Abba's has a hard road ahead. Making their brand relevant against the backdrop of the big two comic companies seems like an incredible task. The talent of this Studio seems primed to take on the challenge.
Howard how goes the art today?
It's going very well. I'm currently illustrating a novel titled The Heritage of Yawnogard by John Long and working on my own projects. And I'm in a contest to get a high score to get my designs printed on T-shirts and other stuff at Threadless
What inspires your quest for comic greatness?
I have this burning need to tell stories. It's a life or death need.
I've had great instructors who fanned my burning need; Gary Singer, Mr. Guderian, Mr. Carden, Constance Hansen, Don Lanzty and many more.
Any kickstarters in your future?
I'm doing my research to find the best way to approach it and get maximum response.
Can you give the readers any exclusives on your next projects?
I'm currently working on two graphic novels I'm writing and drawing. Two graphic novels I'm working on with writers – Said Dibinga and Kevin Fukunaga. And one comic book series with another writer. - The Executioner with Audrey McCombs. I'm also doing a Dr. Arcane story for Heroic Publishing.
What is Abba Studios really going to be remember for in your eyes?
Hopefully for the web comics I'm about to unleash on my site in April. They can get a sneak peek of them at here on the Tapastic site before I put them on my site and reformatted with some added features.
What can you tell other independent artists/writers about the business?
The main thing is to learn about the business. Creative people spend so much time learning about their craft; they never learn about the business. That's why creative people get taken advantage of so easily.
What would you call your style?
Depending on which of my work people see first, they say I have a humorous style, a realistic style or a cartoony style. I once lamented to the Dean of my art school (Don Lantzy) that 'I don't have a style.' Because I could see such strong styles in my fellow students. He told me “Don't worry about style, just draw.” Since then, I haven't and I just draw how I feel for the story I want to tell.
Thanks Howard any parting words for the readers?
The easy way isn't always the best way.
Every day another artist takes on the world, Howard and the guy’s at Abba Studios are breaking new ground with great comics. Their work outside the mainstream is creating new rivers that feed the ocean of artwork on the web. Without writers, artist, fans, and other creative types inspiring and being inspired where would we be. Take some time and support your independents, for the future of comics/art is in their hands.