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David Jacob Duke For BIOWARS: Exploring Comic Book Artist’s Career, Style & Upcoming Projects [Interview] 

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Check out Duke’s majestic art!

David Jakob Duke is a Canadian artist who makes stunning comic book illustrations.  

As publishers who like to keep an eye on talented artists and discuss comic book art with them, we spoke with David about his inspirations, artistic process and upcoming projects. 

Read on and discover what it takes to become a comic book artist! 

Uncover the battle raging within. Read the BIOWARS comic book for free!

1. How did you get into comic book illustration and what inspired you to pursue a career as a comic book artist? 

I started way back when I was knee-high to a grasshopper.  

I have to say it is all because of my father who would read me comic book stories before bed complete with voices and sound effects.  

This lead me to start drawing my favorite characters and eventually, I became decent at it.  

I continued to draw all my life and I attended a high-school for the arts. Then, I studied traditional animation at Sheridan College.  

2. You regularly share your takes on some of the most popular comic book characters with your followers. What is your favorite comic book or graphic novel, and why? Has it influenced your work in any way? 

While my favorite characters change with time, so do my favorite comic books.  

Different authors and artists have pushed characters to have greater depth and meaning. 

Currently, my favorite run would be Kill or Be Killed by writer Ed Brubaker and artist Sean Phillips.  

It has not influenced my work just yet… but when I start my next creator-owned book it will, as the level of depth and storytelling in Kill or Be Killed is cinematic! 

Check out how we drew the BIOWARS comic book protagonists!

3. Can you describe what your artistic process looks like when you’re making comic book art? How do you approach character design and how much freedom do you have to make Marvel and DC characters your own? 

This depends on if I am doing something traditional or digital. But in either case, I tend to do research on the characters and their uniforms as well as look for resources on the environment and lighting.  

I tend to always try to keep licensed characters on model so that they don’t fall far from the brand unless I’m doing some sort of variant where I go off into my own world from life experiences.  

Generally though, when designing my own characters (depending on the genre), I try not to look at art but rather at real life items and things to gather inspiration. 

4. Does the process of creating a comic book cover differ from making other types of comic book art? How do you choose what to draw on a cover? 

Yes, of course.  

When you are doing interior pages, you have to plan a flow of the importance of each panel and set visual pacing to be able to complement the story.  

It is also important to keep in mind perspective, scale, framing, composition, the stage line, etc. So many things are done now without a stage line in mind for sequential art. 

As for covers, you have free reign and creative freedom to capture the interest of the onlooker.   


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A post shared by Duke Comic Art (@dukecomicart)

5. When you do commissions, how much creative freedom do you have? Do you find it difficult to balance your artistic expression and the client’s expectations? 

I leave it up to the client to tell me exactly what they want, or they let me surprise them.  

I have never felt hindered creatively by what the client wants.  

This work is for them, and I want them to be satisfied with whatever it is they envision.  

I have more than enough time to play around and be creative on my own to never feel stifled by artistic direction. 

6. Can you share any upcoming projects or collaborations that you are particularly excited about? 

Recently, I have been asked to take part to work on the Upper Deck Skybox Metal Avengers 2023 series!  

When I say recently I mean a few hours ago, so I have not come down off that high yet.

7. How do you see comic book illustrations evolving in the future? What will the biggest changes or challenges for the industry be? 

I see more and more versatility in the styles of art in comics and I am always impressed with how the medium is being pushed.  

I think one of the biggest changes/challenges in the industry is anime taking over and the traditional comic dwindling.  

I have no solutions for this, other than perhaps anime is easy for the new generation to digest and that perhaps purchasing and reading an actual comic is.

I’m really not sure, but time will tell.

Follow us on Instagram for more drawing tips and the latest BIOWARS updates!

8. What advice would you give to aspiring comic book artists who are just starting out? 

Draw… and draw.  

I don’t feel that art is a natural talented gift.  

Sure, some get it quicker than others, but no matter what you have to keep at it.  

Just keep drawing and learning and as you go things will burst and you will scale up your skill level.

Follow us on YouTube and learn how to draw!

9. What do you hope readers take away from your work and what impact do you hope to have on the comic book industry? 

My only hope is that it brings them a little joy or evokes an emotion, just as when I see other art by others does for me.


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Thank you for doing this interview with BIOWARS, David! It was so good to welcome you to the BIOCOSMOS. See you soon! 

If you’re interested in getting to know other comic book artists, check out these interviews with Ceren Sultan Ekinci,  Flaviu Pop, Sean Damien Hill,  Anthony Carranza, Lucius Cross, Joseph Falzon,  Gonçalo Lopes and Chrigel Farner. You can also explore artist profiles, including Jack Kirby and Jim Lee.  

Let us know in the comments below who you’d like us to interview next! 

Want to make a comic book? Read this guide!


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