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Time to meet another of our creators, this time from our second anthology which features four stories drawn by relative newcomers. We were keen to give a group of newer artists greater exposure, and it’s something we intend to do again later in the year.

I first saw Neil McClements’ art on the 2000AD Online Forum. He’d posted some samples for scrutiny by forum members – always a sign of someone who’s got some cojones as they can be a merciless lot. I loved his eye for character, his textures and his ability to get a LOT of atmosphere into a single image. When I presented him with the script for Lee for our anthology, I knew those things would stand him in good stead: the story has a very specific and well-known time, place and cast list….

Here’s a little bit more about Neil McClements:

How did you get into drawing comics?

The strange answer is that I haven’t really. I’ve only been drawing for just over a year and digitally drawing only for about 3 months. Some lovely people via the 2000AD Forums asked for artists to contribute towards small press publications and I thought I’d give it a go. Some have worked really well and other attempts failed spectacularly and, with all these being my first attempts, I can’t honestly say I draw comics at the moment, I attempt at best.

What’s your process for drawing comics, ie, how do you work?

Read the script, gather an inordinate amount of reference images and sketch far too many ideas. Then dive into it at some random page I thought stood out amongst the rest. Generally I’ll do a very tight, clear pencil image and then take it straight to inking. I can normally knock out a page a day if it all goes well. Most of all, if I’m not having fun it won’t get done.

What’s your comics dream, ie, what would you love to do?

Make some money from it. I’ll probably never have the time or the ability to make a career from it but a bit of money on the side would be nice from something I really enjoy. One year ago I couldn’t have envisioned where I am now so maybe another year of learning and trying to develop my art/style further then I’d be in a better place to answer this. As for dreams…well, unlikely as it is, there is one publication and one well-meaning, violent, authoritarian thug I’d like to bump into somewhere along the line.

You can see more of Neil’s art at http://neilmcclements.deviantart.com/gallery/ and in the forthcoming Dr WTF!? anthology, edited by the incomparable Owen Watts.