- Amerikan Made Prints
- Art Buyer Magazine
- Art Order
- Association of Illustrators
- Cartoon Art Museum
- Cartoon Brew
- Design is Kinky
- Drawn and Quarterly
- Fantagraphics Books
- HOW Design
- Hi-Fructose Magazine
- ICON The Illustration Conference
- Illustration Class
- Illustration Friday
- Illustrators Illustrated
- Juxtapoz Magazine
- Lines and Colors
- National Cartoonists Society
- Plan 59
- Project: Rooftop
- Society of Illustrators
- Sugar Frosted Goodness
- Taught by a Pro
- Today's Inspiration
- UPPERCASE Magazine
Hi, I'm a comic book artist that has jumped into the advertising world, living in Los Angeles, California. I still occasionally work in the comic book field but the majority of my income is produced from commercial art. In the past, I worked on books like X-Men, Spiderman, Captain America, Thor, Green Lantern and the Hulk. These days I'll do a cover here and there but most of the projects range anywhere from toy design to video game cover conception. www.danpanosian.com and http://urbnbarbarian.blogspot.com/
When did you first decide to become a graphic designer/ illustrator? Was there a pivotal moment?
My father, an art director and illustrator, loved comic books. I think he would of preferred to be a comic book artist or syndicated newspaper cartoonist if he had his druthers. He would buy me those oversized treasury edition comics when I was in pre-school. I was fascinated by them. When I was older he took me to see Conan the Barbarian and after wards we went to a local bookstore/newsstand. He bought me a copy of Savage Sword of Conan. It was a black and white magazine style comic book drawn by John Buscema. From then on I knew I wanted to draw my own one day.
Who or what inspires you?
Graphic ideas inspire me. I don't look at anyone specifically. I look at everything. Before I knew much about art I would only look to comic book artists to show me the way. These days, a well done bumper sticker can inspire me.
Where does your training come from? Self-taught? College/Art School?
I was self taught. Surprisingly ( or not in some cases... ), my father didn't want me to pursue a career in art. So I learned from books and by doing. I started a business when I was 14 years old that forced me to draw every day. I placed a classified style ad in Dragon Magazine, a publication that focused on games like Dungeons and Dragons, etc. People would send me their Character Sheets from whatever Role Playing Game they were into and I would provide them with a visual. Practice is the best teacher. Later, I worked for Neal Adams early on in my career and he would take time before work to show me things. Some of the best art lessons I've ever had. I still recall things now that he taught me years ago and apply them. Later, I met Mark Pacella and he opened a lot of artistic doors for me. He showed me a world outside comic books. It took a while to stick, but now I rarely look at comic books when I'm faced with a drawing challenge. I try and approach things from different angles.
How do you keep "fresh" within your industry?
Blogs. They're amazing. There are so many talented artists out there doing things that blow me away.
What are some of your current projects?
They vary. Generally I work on advertising campaigns that last only a week or two. I am, however, struggling to make time to finish a graphic novel with Mark Irwin.
Which of your projects are you the most proud of? And why?
I can't say there is one. My work varies so much in style and subject matter. At the moment it's the Drink and Draw hardcover book. It was a bear to put together but I'm very proud of it. Check it out at: http://forum.newsarama.com/showthread.php?t=96005
Are there any areas, techniques, mediums, projects in your field that you have yet to try?
I'd like to paint. I paint with Photoshop but I want to try oils. Of course, I want a 10,000 square foot loft in Manhattan too...
Any advice to the novice designer/ illustrator?
Practice and compare your work to only the best in your field.
What makes a designed piece or illustration successful?
Proper composition and color choices. That's it.
What do you do to keep yourself motivated and avoid burn-out?
Luckily, the type of work I do calls for a new illustrative or design approach constantly. I rarely draw or attack a problem the same way for more than a week or so. As a result, it's hard to develop a consistent look but it certainly keeps things fresh.
And finally, what is the best thing on prime-time TV right now?
I don't watch prime time television, I'm never around during those hours and I don't have the dedication to stay with a show week after week. I do watch a considerable amount of UFC and Pride though...
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