Kelly Wil­liams

On what it was like draw­ing a Down’s syn­drome su­per­hero

ImagineFX - - Imagine Nation - Kelly is a US comic artist, draw­ing ti­tles such as The Dark, The Cabi­net and An­gel with a Bul­let. www.tree­beerd­stuff.com

How did Me­taphase start?

Chip Reece did a write-up about The Cabi­net, a crowd-funded horror comic I was work­ing on. He emailed me about Me­taphase and asked if I’d be into draw­ing it. I read the pitch and saw the heart and thought­ful­ness in it. So, I was in.

What style were you go­ing for?

We wanted Me­taphase to be an all-ages story, to ap­peal to kids and par­ents who may not read comics at all. I de­cided to draw the book dig­i­tally, with a re­ally clean look and bright colour­ing. It was fun to play around with.

What was it like draw­ing a child with Down’s syn­drome in a sen­si­tive way?

Com­ing up with the de­sign for Ol­lie was tough at first. I had con­cerns about be­ing very de­tailed and try­ing to draw a per­fect rep­re­sen­ta­tion of DS and it com­ing off as a car­i­ca­ture, or jar­ring. Plus, this char­ac­ter was based on Chip’s son and I re­ally didn’t want to ac­ci­den­tally of­fend. But I prob­a­bly had more fun com­ing up with Ol­lie’s look than any other char­ac­ter.

How well do comics rep­re­sent dis­abil­ity at the mo­ment?

The comics in­dus­try is slow to change. Far too many peo­ple are hold­ing on to old ideas and out­dated con­ven­tions of what de­fines a hero, vil­lain or mean­ing­ful story. The fact we still have to work so hard for every­one to be in­cluded is nuts.

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