This week I got to speak with comic creator Juan Carlos Del Real. Their newest comic, Titanomancy, is now being funded on Kickstarter! I hope you enjoy our conversation as much as we did!
An Interview With Juan Carlos Del Real
Aaron Iara: Thank you for taking the time to chat with me this week! Please tell the readers a bit about yourself and the work you do.
Juan Carlos Del Real: Well, my name is Juan Carlos Del Real and I’m a comic book creator. I am a self-thought artist and writer. I suffer from dyslexia, so when I discovered comic books, I felt like they were made for me. I immediately fell in love with them, I discovered something about myself I never thought possible before: I love storytelling. I decided to make my own comic, however; I sucked at drawing and writing. I became disillusioned with the fact that making comic books was hard.
Eventually, I made peace that this was probably not going to pan out, I went to college, started pursuing a carrier in engineering. During this time discover Anime, and once again I was amazed by what storytellers can do. I decided to start my story back up, but this time it was different, I was ok with my comic being a side project. But this whole thing backfired on me when I fell in love with making comics. Now, with Titanomachy, I have decided to go all-in, and pursue this carrier as hard as I can.
Aaron Iara: You currently have a Kickstarter campaign going for your comic Titanomancy. Could you tell us a bit about this story?
Juan Carlos Del Real: Titanomachy takes my love for mythology and folklore and comics and allows me to create very unique and epic stories. Titanomachy takes place in the world of Pandora. Pandora is full of magical creatures, scary beast, and terrible monsters. When they become a threat to average citizens bounty hunters are called upon to take care of them. That’s where our three main characters come into place.
Perseus a young and inexperienced bounty hunter, who is not aware of how difficult the life of a bounty hunter could be. He came to be a bounty hunter by a tragic incident in his life and he must pay a large sum of money to make things right. Becoming a bounty hunter seemed to be the best way for him to earn money. Atlas and Siris are experienced bounty hunters who Perseus looks up to. Perseus will have to team up with them in order to fulfill his goals and do right by those he owes.
Vol 1. of Titanomachy will takes us to the town of Kulle-vra where kids seem to be going missing. The King of Nezal (the country where Kulle-vra is found) has placed a bounty on the head of Medusa a Gorgon who is known for turning children into terrible monsters. After making a promise Atlas, Siris and Perseus find themselves teaming up in order to take down Medusa.
Aaron Iara: What made you land on comic books as your preferred medium?
Juan Carlos Del Real: As I said before I suffer from dyslexia so comic books hold a special place in my heart. I guess my goal is to do for others what comics, manga, and anime have done for me. I want to help others overcome their problems by making them relate to fictional characters that are going through a similar struggle than they are. Moreover, I think the comic book format allows me more creative freedom, I get to decide what my characters and environment looks like. In other words, I get to take people on a trip inside my head and get have full control over their experience. Is that egocentric? Maybe.
Aaron Iara: What are your biggest obstacles when it comes to making comics and telling stories? How do you overcome them?
Juan Carlos Del Real: I’m the kind of person that obsesses over the small details, so when coming up with a story it takes an absurd amount of time just planning. However; in retrospect, I would not have it any other way. The other thing I would count as an obstacle comes as a result of me being a writer, artist and everything else. I find my self overwhelmed most of the time, although I got to say I love it. I usually just power through these feelings, but when it becomes too much, I usually find myself trying to learn something new. That usually gets me to get over these bumps on the road.
Aaron Iara: Do you ever get performance/release anxiety when you are showing your work to others?
Juan Carlos Del Real: Most definitely, I have this thing where I don’t take compliments very well. As soon as someone says they like my work, I find it patronizing, so I dismiss most compliments. I know that they don’t mean it the way I perceive it, that’s just one more thing I need to work on. I also have found it that in previous projects I find it hard to look at any of my work as “Good”.
Aaron Iara: Making comics takes a lot of time and effort. What do you do to stay productive?
Juan Carlos Del Real: Other than drinking unhealthy amounts of caffeine, what I do that I think has helped me the most is the fact that I have been doing research into storytelling and different mythologies in the form of audiobooks whenever I can. While I’m at work, when I draw, or anytime I find myself doing something where I can, I listen to all kinds of audio books. This has helped me come up with plot ideas as well as getting a better understanding of plot structures. Audio books have most definitely taken my knowledge of storytelling to the next level.
Aaron Iara: I love the indie comics community. How has your experience been with the indie comics community online or in-person?
Juan Carlos Del Real: The indie comic community has been nothing but amazing. I have found myself taking amazing advice and embrace from complete strangers. I have had some of the best conversations with other indie comics creator in the past couple of months. I find that that indie comic community is a very open place, the only thing you need to be embrace is a story to tell. When it comes to indie comic creators in person, I have met a few in conventions, and again, I found myself amazed by the amazing people that make up this amazing community. They were very few excepting to this, I did have a couple of bad experiences, but they were definitely the exception, not the rule.
Aaron Iara: How do you foster creativity? Do you wait for inspiration or work at it?
Juan Carlos Del Real: I treat creativity as a muse, I invite creativity into my mind, and you do when someone refuses an invitation to your home, I often just accept it and move on. When creativity does not strike, I just work through it no matter what I’m doing. If I draw or draw something, I’m not happy with, I just finish it and move on. In my opinion, you cannot draw good drawing or write good scripts if you don’t own the bad ones. The funny thing about writing bad scripts I have found my self revisiting them and mind small parts that are good and recycle them. I much rather have 3 bad drawings than 1 good one, It just means I drew more.
Aaron Iara: What advice can you give for people who want to start creating comics?
Juan Carlos Del Real: The one advice that I wish someone had given me is that you should know what you want out of the stories you’re making. If you are ok with making comics as a side project, behave as such. Get your priorities straight. When I began this endeavor, I told myself that I was ok with my comics being a side project. However, I did not behave like that was the plan. I put way too much effort into it, it doesn’t sound like a bad thing, but I was attending college at that time and was more focused on my comic than my school. I felt much more passion when it came to storytelling than school, but for whatever reason, I refused to accept it. I think it might have been fear of disappointment from my parents, but I could not have been more wrong my parents have been nothing less than super supportive.
Aaron Iara: Thank you for taking the time to do this! Please tell the readers where they can find you and your work!
Check Out Titanomancy!
A huge thank you to Juan Carlos Del Real for taking the time to speak with me this week. Titanomancy looks like an awesome comic. Make sure to check it out and contact Juan!