"Striving for the most effective narrative imagery in each panel and page layout" is Indianapolis-based illustrator Leon Buszka's declared modus operandi of drawing comics.
Buszka graduated in 2011 with a B.F.A. in general fine arts, which later became Herron's drawing and illustration program. Since 2014, they have collaborated with Eisner Award-nominee James F. Wright to bring to life "Lupina," a six-chapter saga about a girl raised by a wolf. Two new volumes of "Lupina" are set for release early next year by Legendary Comics, an arm of Legendary Entertainment.
In this Q&A, Buszka shares insights on how they approach collaborating, their creative process, and the challenges of freelancing while working a 9-to-5 job.
HERRON: What drew you to the storytelling medium of comics—or, as the renowned artist Will Eisner dubbed it, sequential art?
LEON BUSZKA: When I first started at Herron, I didn't really have a clear vision of what I wanted to do with art, I just loved to draw a lot. I actually didn't even read a lot of comics. I drew silly comics with my brother and friends as a child for fun. I didn't really consider it seriously until a friend online introduced me to independent comics.
I had always seen comics as an inaccessible path. When creators or artists become successful, they become celebrities in a way, and I wasn't aware until I got older how many of us view ourselves as disconnected from someone who has achieved success. I think I viewed a lot of published art that way. When this friend exposed me to independent comics, that shattered my misinformed view and it showed me that anyone can do it if they really wanted to.
HERRON: How did the "Lupina" story come into being, or how did you get connected with James F. Wright?