Sandbox Spotlight: SCOTT LOST, Comic Creator / Artist

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THE CONVENTION COLLECTIVE: Thank you for joining us in the Spotlight, Scott! How did you get into art and why did you want to become an artist?

Scott Lost: Thanks for having me! I got into art at a very early age; what I can remember the most vividly is drawing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I figured out a way to draw them easily and consistently. Looking back at it now, it reminds me of how certain artists have a quick head sketch of their characters for “remarks”. If someone asked me to draw a Ninja Turtle I could knock it out in a matter of seconds. 

TCC: What was the first work you completed, where you stepped back and thought, “Yes, y’know what, I can do this for a living!”?

Scott: I think after finishing the first issue of the 2nd Shift I had that feeling. I never wanted to stop and still feel that way to this very day. I don’t know that there is anything like it.

TCC: Which artists inspire you? And they don’t have to be in the medium you work in, either…

Scott: Art Adams was my first art love, then followed by Jim Lee for the majority of my life, now I’m really into guys like Ryan Ottley, and Simone Di Meo. I’ve been reading Invincible for years and still stand by my statement that Ryan Ottley draws the best teeth in the business. Obviously blood splatter too! Simone Di Meo has a very different view on how to make comics. His panel choices and composition are so different compared to other artists that he stands out tremendously in my mind. There’s obviously a ton more of artists in between that I’ve loved and have influenced me, but just way too many to mention. 

TCC: Can you tell us your greatest fan moment, interacting with a personal hero of yours where you may have gone a little weak at the knees?

Scott: Oh, one of the times I met Jim Lee I couldn’t really form a coherent sentence. He was doing a small panel at the San Diego Comic-Con Museum in Balboa Park and the room was very small. To the point where while he was drawing he was just asking people to shout out questions if they had them. What I tried to say did not come out as a clear thought and it was completely embarrassing. I had to reiterate the question, but at the end of the day, it was fine. I saw him after the show signing autographs and I hopped in line to show him my book. He ended up giving me a quick critique and he was on his way. Those few sentences of advice and him flipping through my book meant the world to me.

TCC: What is your favorite fandom? Who is your favorite comic book character/movie/tv character?

Scott: When I was a kid it was the X-Men, as a grown-up it’s been invincible. If anyone asks me about a comic they should be reading I always point them towards Robert Kirkman and Ryan Ottley’s beautiful series. Movies, as a kid it was Bruce Lee and as a grownup, I would have to go Scott Lang an Ant-Man. Paul Rudd is one of my all-time favorite actors and his portrayal is fantastic in that series. TV AND Comics is Mark Grayson!

TCC: Outside of the ones you create for a living, what characters/stories do you like drawing the most in your spare time?

Scott: Unfortunately, I don’t have “spare time“. All of the time that I am not drawing my books I am drawing commissions and freelance work. I’ve never wanted to draw characters from the big two. At one point Stan Lee said I don’t know why everyone wants to create new stories with my old characters. They should be creating their own characters with their own stories. That’s always stuck with me and it still holds true. I think if I ever drew characters from a well-known property it would be TMNT. Those were the only characters that I felt so attached to that I would want to draw a story.

TCC: What’s your working routine? Do you work regular set hours and days, keeping certain days free for personal time, or do you find you create any time the muse takes you?

Scott: Are Monday through Friday! No set hours really, but I do like to make sure I’m working at least five hours a day. I’ve tried to work on the weekends and for the most part it doesn’t end up happening. There’s just so much to do! Lol

TCC: When you’re creating, what do you use for background noise? Some creators use music or podcasts, some use a TV show that they just can listen to in the background. What do you use?

Scott: I am mostly TV shows and podcasts. For the most part, it’s TV during the day, usually something I’ve seen before or something that doesn’t require me to look up too often. There’s no way I can watch a new show and draw at the same time. Before bed I have a tendency to listen to podcasts or hop onto YouTube if I’m still working. I mainly work on an iPad these days so I basically take it wherever I go, even to bed!

TCC: What was the first comic con that you remember attending? And, indeed, what was the last?

Scott: The first comic con (SDCC) I can remember going to was the year before image was created. I remember the difference between the two years and they havoc that was wrapped around the image section. Jim Lee’s X-Men number one got me back into comics after a few years of not collecting between fourth and fifth grade. The last was San Diego Comic Fest 2020. It took place in March right before the shut down. 

TCC: What’s your favourite element of a comic convention? And which bits could you easily leave behind?

Scott: Meeting creators is my favorite thing about comic conventions. When I was a kid I would love to watch artist draw for hours and now as a professional, I love making connections. Meeting new artists who are also coming up in the business and building relationships. My studio is a result of that.

TCC: At a convention, when you’re not behind your table or doing the things you have to do at a con, which corner of the show would we find you in?

Scott: I rarely step away from my table at conventions. I have a couple of writers who will take over for me no problem, but I feel too guilty. If I do step away it’s usually to other artist alley tables to look at other peoples work. I’ve been back into collecting comics the last year or so, so more than likely I will be buying artists sketchbooks like I did when I was younger.

TCC: With the lack of conventions, a lot of artists are taking commissions online and mailing them out to people – is this something you’re doing? 

Scott: Yes, I’ve been doing commissions via mail and freelance design work digitally. It’s super cool that I am able to keep busy during all of this. Honestly, I love all of the extra time that I’m getting to work on my books, but the commission money doesn’t hurt!

TCC: A lot of creatives are also taking to crowdfunding – such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo – to generate income from their work. What’re your thoughts on that?

Scott: I am 100% in support of creators going to Kickstarter or IndieGoGo. I am a huge supporter of that world, not only because I create my books on Kickstarter, but I love supporting other creators. I feel like if you’re going to use crowdfunding for your books, you should also be supporting others as well. Not to just take but also to give back.

TCC: What projects have you recently finished? What are you working on at the moment, what projects are coming up that you can talk about? 

Scott: During quarantine I finished Wanderers and Melisanda #2 and 2nd Shift #11. I’m almost done with 2nd Shift #10 (I did them out of order for a reason ;)) and will be kickstarting that in the next few months. 

TCCHow do you stay connected with fans? Do you use a mailing list or newsletters, are you active on social media?

Scott: All of the above!

TCC: Where can people see an example of your art online and find out about your rates? 

Scott: You can find me @ScottLost on Twitter and Instagram and facebook.com/scottlost

TCC: Thanks, Scott, for your time! 

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