CONVERSATION WITH NICOLA SCOTT
(DC COMICS ARTIST TEEN TITANS, EARTH 2)
Oz Comic Con in Melbourne Australia, Impulse Gamer sat down with artist
Nicola Scott to discuss her career, superheroes and the future of Earth 2.
[IG] Welcome to Impulse Gamer
[IG] How did you become involved in comics?
It's kind of a round about way actually. A lot of people I know who work in
comics, almost everybody who work in comics kind of grew up reading them but I
didn't really have them in my life when I was a kid. I didn't know they existed.
It wasn't really until I was in my late teens that I understood that there were
comic books about superheroes. However I did grow up on TV shows about
superheroes and as a kid, they really excited me and I never quite grew out of
I made the
decision to draw comics based on the fact that I could draw and that I liked
Wonder Woman and thought... wouldn't it be fun if I could draw Wonder
That meant drawing comics.
[IG] What were you doing before becoming a comic book
artist? Did you try commercial art? I also read somewhere that you tried
acting as well?
I came from a
performing art high school and I was training to be an actor. That was the
career that I intended to do but it just wasn't particularly happening. When I
look back on it now and dissect the reasons why I don't think it was happening
is that it is a competitive industry and that I wasn't getting anywhere. It then
came down to finding something else that I could do that would be creatively
One of the
things that I have always been able to do is draw and I've worked as a
commercial artist a couple of times as a freelancer that was mostly incidental
work. It was not the career I wanted to pursue or even get serious training in
it. It was just if I happened to know someone like my sister who is a graphic
designer and I've done a couple of little jobs for her that was nothing
too taxing. I didn't really find this kind of work satisfying or enjoyable and
making a career out of drawing was something that I never really considered
[IG] So as an artist, how often do you draw? Do you
practice much? How does it all work?
I draw all the
time now, seven days a week. The nature of having a monthly book is that the
deadlines are ever present and as soon as you finish one book, you move onto the
next. I've been drawing full-time for about 8 to 9 years and I've been working
on monthly books for around 7 1/2.
[IG] Who's your favourite comic book character and why?
Wonder Woman would be my favourite character as she was my first super
hero I ever saw that created the initial connection to me and watching the Linda
Carter series (of Wonder Woman) as a little kid also helped. That initial impact
of her has never really disappeared. However, I've developed a great love of
other superheroes since then, particularly characters that I have worked on and
any other characters that passed my radar as a kid such as Superman, Batman
and obscure characters like Electra Woman and Dyna Girl... they
all had a big impression on me but Wonder Woman was the first and to me
will always be the best.
[IG] How did you come to work for DC?
I've been at DC Comics full-time now for 7 1/2 years and I've got an exclusive
contract with them which came from me pursuing them directly. They were the
company that owned the characters I was familiar with the most and I had an
emotional connection to them, especially because they owned Wonder Woman,
Superman, Batman, Batgirl and Catwoman. These are the
characters that I really love. It was also the company that I was zeroing in on
at San Diego Comic-Con which I visited every year to promote my portfolio and
hopefully get some work.
CLICK TO ZOOM
[IG] How did you come to Earth 2 and work with James
When DC Comics rebooted their entire universe, the New 52, I had been working on
a book called Teen Titans. I've been working on team books at DC most of
the time I've been there and when I was finishing off Teen Titans, they
came to me with the offer. I got an e-mail from Dan Didio asking if I would be
interested working on a Justice Society related book with James and it
was exactly the kind of book that I've been angling for, for the last couple of
something that was much bigger in scale with the books that I've been working on
in terms of readership and content. I was offered the book six months before I
started working on it. By the time I started drawing it, it evolved into
Earth 2 and what Earth 2 is currently about.
[IG] Do you have any difficulty in drawing any of the
characters in Earth 2?
I don't have any difficultly in drawing the characters in Earth 2 and I like to
draw the diversity. I like drawing different body types and using body language
when I draw. So no one is particularly difficult to draw but they may be
challenging at the start when I'm getting to know them but anything that is
difficult tends to be the most satisfying thing to do.
[IG] Who's your favourite
character in Earth 2?
My favourite character... oh gosh, I'm really enjoying all of them. I quite like
drawing Jay Garrick whose our Flash just because he's really young
and he's quite awkward with his powers so far.
[IG] With Jay Garrick, did you have any influence on
His costume has gone through a number of designs before I started working on the
book. There were a couple of people who were doing almost all the designs for
every character in the new DCU. By the time I was starting to work on the book,
there were already about 7 or 8 designs in motion and I got the chance to play
around them and refine them. But at the 11th hour, we were given a design by Jim
Lee which were quite different from any of the other designs we were toying with
previously and that was the design they wanted to go with so I actually ended up
having very little influence on the design.
[IG] You probably can't answer this but I'll ask
anyway, can you make any comments on why James left Earth 2?
It's kind of
more James' story but there was no big drama or anything. It is however James'
comment to make. He did let me know it was going to happen about a month before
it actually happened. He said that this was something that was kind of in the
mix and was possibly quite likely to come up. It's a shame as I really enjoyed
working with James and I'm still working on his scripts now. I know who the next
writer is and I'm really looking forward to that too.
[IG] I don't suppose you can tell us who that is?
[Nicola laughs] No I can't sorry.
[IG] More importantly, you're still staying on Earth 2
as its artist when James departs right?
Yes. They approached me straight away and said you're sticking around right? I
said yeah absolutely.
announce who the next writer is, people will understand why it would be
important for me to stick around and I'm really looking forward to the
continuation of Earth 2.
[IG] Speaking of writers, who would your dream writer
be that you would like to draw for?
Oh gosh... I just love working with writers as I'm very collaborative, so anyone
that's a character driven writer is really my favourite person to work with.
I've been lucky enough so far to work with Gail Simone who I think I'm really a
natural fit for and I get along so well with her. I love working with her.
I've had a
very brief opportunity to work with Greg Rucka and he's one of my all time
favourite writers. I just think he's brilliant so any opportunity to work with
him would be at the top of my list. I would also love to work with Mark Waid as
I'm such a fan of his writing. I'd love to do something with him.
[IG] I don't suppose you can give us a spoiler of what
you're currently working on?
The story arc that is coming up is the war against Steppenwolf. Steppenwolf has
revealed himself as still being on Earth 2 and the superheroes band together to
go in there and do the super heroic thing and take him down. Unfortunately they clash
with the World Army and they're sort of super powered soldiers, so they're
clashing with them and Steppenwolf. There are also a few other little elements
that were being teased along the way and are starting to come to the surface
now. A lot of these are desperate issues that are starting to come together.
[IG] So will you be drawing the Red Lantern or Red
Arrow in the future issues?
[Nicola laughs] I don't know what I can say there. Yes, I'm pretty sure that
this will happen. I'm not sure on one of the characters but I'm pretty sure it
will happen and I can definitely confirm that I've drawn one of them.
[IG] With Oz Comic-Con, what are you most looking
I'm just looking forward to the show and there's been some great shows this year
here and Oz Comic Con is such a big comic show, there tends to be a great
comics crowd there. There's some great guests lined up that I'm looking forward
to meeting and catching up with. I love being down in Melbourne and I'm really
looking forward to being there again.
[IG] At the conventions, who do fans usually ask you to
I would say that 40% of the time, I'm asked to draw Wonder Woman and the
rest of the time, I'm pretty much drawing everybody else.
[IG] Lastly Nicola, what does the future hold for you?
I've been with DC for nearly 8 years and my contract with them continues for
another year which is at least September next year (2014) and then we'll see.
You know, each time my contract expires, they ask me to re-sign depending on
what I'm working on at the time. My plan is to stay on Earth 2 and by the time
that the contract renewal rolls around, we'll see where we are at.
And if there's
something that I really want to work on or if there's something that they would
like me to work on that I feel it's the next best thing for me to sink my teeth
into, then I'll probably be sticking with DC for awhile. Otherwise, there are
creator owned projects that have been calling my name for a little while and I
wouldn't mind having an opportunity to sink my teeth into them as well.
[IG] Thanks for your time Nicola and all the best with
Earth 2 and the Melbourne Oz Comic Con.
Nicola Scott will be visiting Oz Comic Con in Melbourne
on the 6th and 7th of July at the Royal Exhibition Building
Copyright DC Comics, Nicola Scott and ABC