Time for some MarshallArts. Meet the black belt of drawing skills Lauren herself. Through Leigh we’ll get to know more about the woman behind the wicked art. Personally I’m a fan of all the study Lauren puts into her art skills.
VIDEO TRANSCRIPTION (text may contain errors)
Voice Over (00:03):
This show is sponsored by the ComX Shop. We hope you enjoy the show.
Leigh Chalker (00:25):
Good day and welcome to Tuesday Chinwag, episode 12. I’m Lee Chalker, creator of Battle for Bustle. Our guest this evening is Lauren Marshall. How are you mate?
Lauren Marshall (00:38):
Good day. How are you? I’m good. I’m good.
Leigh Chalker (00:41):
Lauren Marshall (00:42):
Chill for a Tuesday evening.
Leigh Chalker (00:44):
Yeah, yeah. Well that’s always a good start to these conversations mate, is to remain relaxed and stuff. So we’ll get into that shortly. But there’s one thing I wanna do tonight and at the start of the show, I would like to dedicate this to our friend Rob Lyle and his family’s little loss of or rather huge loss of their little mate thunder. So yeah, thoughts and prayers to the family and hope things get better for you. And hopefully we can bring a smile to your faces this evening on the show. So for anyone watching at home shows based on six prompting words or questions, which is who, why and how. We basically talk about anything in between. And I’m just gonna go straight into it, Lauren. So mate, we’ll start with who.
Lauren Marshall (01:40):
Oh gosh I feel like everybody’s met me about 10 times on comics, so I don’t wanna be repeating too much, but I’ll keep it short and simple just enough for people who’s new to the show pretty much out Morning, morning evening, Dave. You can tell I’m a little bit muddled for motherhood anyway
Leigh Chalker (02:02):
Lauren Marshall (02:05):
Obviously name’s Lauren Marshall. I’ve been drawing in the comic industry for a few years now. Obviously been doing art for a long time as well. Perth gal and yeah, that’s as simple as that. And I’m a creator of Oh Spy We Love You and a creator of Lu, which is one that I’ve created with Tanya and Kay here in Perth as well.
Leigh Chalker (02:30):
Very good. Now where did you get your start? What made you pick up pencil and paper?
Lauren Marshall (02:39):
Funnily enough, mum’s an artist as well. She was really big into doing a nude models using charcoal on much larger pieces. I’m talking at least meter to two meters long. She really liked doing the larger scale. We’ve got one that’s on display at mom and dad’s place. Growing up as a kid I used to watch her doing art, so I typically just followed her as a role model. And then in high school I got accepted into the art scholarship. So that was a special program through high school and then obviously did my, which was called TE back then. I think it’s ATAR now, whatever. It keeps changing, right? Evolving. So I did that and then fell in love with Toy Story when it came out from Pixar. That was the biggest thing for me was seeing animation and that’s what I wanted to do. And did my deployment animation when I left high school that was through a specialized institute in Freeman. And then from there I just sort of realized there was no industry back then. That was probably 2007 not huge industry in Perth for that. And that it’s comes hates a stride for the industry here in wa. But back then I wasn’t ready to either move to Eastern states or overseas. I was way too young. I was 19, not ready to do that. So then I looked at static images and that was comics illustrations and took the knowledge that I got from the animation course and applied it to doing sequential panels pretty much.
Leigh Chalker (04:20):
Yeah. What was the first comic book you grabbed that caught? Or was it comic books with the static as you’re saying that caught your attention or was it
Lauren Marshall (04:29):
Other? No, it was the game Guides that used to get, cuz I worked at EB games for quite a while. <affirmative> and the game guide books that come in had all the concept artwork and all the weapons and creatures and stuff like that. And that’s kind of what I fell in love. And I suppose comic, I’m not a huge reader of comics. I love the medium but it was kind of Hellboy and the darker stuff that really caught my eye. And then obviously those franchises bursting into movies and TV shows and stuff like that becoming a much more bigger medium for people to enjoy. So yeah.
Leigh Chalker (05:15):
Yeah, that’s cool. I guess it has created a wave of for people to get into the main characters and stuff like that. What got you into Hellboy Mate? Was it the movie originally or
Lauren Marshall (05:28):
It’s the movie was the first thing that I saw. Yes. I mean the Creatures, I think the biggest thing I really like gory, lots of teeth, lots of slime sl. if it’s got more than two eyes, way more happier <laugh>. But if, yeah, the more gory the better. I think that’s what I fell in love with and it was a little bit more abstract than what you would normally see and horror movies or whatever that it’s a bit more out there and just the way that they looked. And it kind of reminded me of gains because I was a big gamer as a kid as well. So I found the relation there. And then I saw Mike Mc Nola’s work and just the hard edges and the thick lines and it just, that really caught my eyes as well. So yeah, that’s anything kind of that route as well. And I think the gaming side of things really continued on because insomnia games that do ratchet and clank their style, especially Dave and Greg from Creature Box their stuff is really like gr, well I wouldn’t say gruesome, but it’s abstract, more surreal definitely. And the heart edges and lines and yeah, I
Leigh Chalker (06:47):
Have you ever gone back to animation or have you kept just pushing ahead with where you touched down and kept going?
Lauren Marshall (06:55):
Just dabbled in it here and there? Yeah, it’s, the knowledge hasn’t disappeared. I mean, 3D animation was a whole new level for me. I’m really good with pen and paper. I’m sure you understand in terms of using digital as a medium. So 2D animation resonated with me a lot more and that still hasn’t really come back and people are trying to get it back as a sold medium for films and TV and stuff like that. But even still it’s a lot of the time it’s all rendered through 2D animation software. Not so much hand drawn frame by frame. Right. So there was ever an opportunity to do that. I would prefer to do that because I feel like it would be way more up my alley than just rigging something up putting bones in it instead of actually drawing and understanding the movement and the inertia of stuff. I feel that’s way more interesting to me.
Leigh Chalker (07:50):
Yeah. Yeah. Well we were talking before about paper and pen being scary a little bit. It’s really, this is it. Yep. Gotta be careful here with the animation obviously and what you’re saying got you into drawing on your you use software, don’t you generally, most of the time to do your right
Lauren Marshall (08:17):
Work at the moment, clip studio, Photoshop, whatever it works.
Leigh Chalker (08:21):
And when you go to conventions and stuff, do you getting out the paper and things
Lauren Marshall (08:27):
Leigh Chalker (08:28):
Come over and have the arm and you can belt it out and stuff.
Lauren Marshall (08:31):
Yeah, I mean that’s the problem when you’ve got clients asking for deadlines and stuff like that, doing it digitally way more quicker and you’re not going through paper and having to redo stuff, you can easily just press controls Ed in terms of getting stuff done then yeah, a hundred percent go digital. But in terms of stuff that I like the quality of work my inking compared to traditional versus digital, completely different. I can still tell it’s my work but yeah, it’s just the way I hold a pen, the particular pen I’m using or brush pens or ink or whatever. And I find that it, it’s kinda like a thumbprint almost when you’re doing it on a piece of paper and that’s what I appreciate about it most. So yeah, I really do enjoy dusting off the pens and pencils and getting back into it at conventions and I really like it experimenting for them as well. So last one I did it on all the craft cards and doing co markers and a lot more of the white and posca pen highlights. So I’m Green Fusia really making it pop. Yeah,
Leigh Chalker (09:38):
Well that was plenty of drawings was a green goblin, am I correct? Yeah. With that coloring and stuff like that. Yeah, yeah. No they look good man. They look really good.
Lauren Marshall (09:49):
Yeah, there’s an artist that was following on Instagram ink pop. His stuff is phenomenal and he does a lot of that kind of work and that was a big influence for me was to try it and really push myself in terms of either backlighting or shadows or highlights, stuff like that. Yeah, his stuff I just keep getting drawn back to recently. Check it out if you haven’t seen it before, but similar.
Leigh Chalker (10:15):
Yeah. Have you got stuff that you’ve been really interested in of late? Anything springs out to mind that’s caught your eye in terms of work?
Lauren Marshall (10:24):
No, not at the moment. It’s be surprised how much I don’t wanna keep banging on about being a new mum, but it’s basically my life at the moment pretty much. I don’t actually have any time to be able to pick up a pencil, which is unfortunate because it was such a huge part of my life before and obviously it still is and I do wanna get back into it. But just a big transition, your mind completely turns either to my or just rewires completely and I can’t focus the way I used to, which is sad because I’m so incredibly in tune with hearing and looking after a little human being pretty much that I can’t drown. It drowns out everything else unfortunately.
Leigh Chalker (11:08):
Yep, yep. Oh I think that’s fair enough mate. It’s single person listening to this show that wouldn’t think that’s fair.
Lauren Marshall (11:15):
Leigh Chalker (11:16):
Come before drawing mate. A new person in the world is definitely
Lauren Marshall (11:23):
Hard for me to let go though because I was so, such a big I to get published. I need to make sure that I tick off all the things on my list that I wanna get done in terms of my art career and it’s all just come to a complete halt and I don’t know when it’s gonna start again. And I had such a big momentum before she came into the world, which I absolutely am so happy she is. But there are sacrifices you do need to make when it comes to being a new parent as well and just getting used to the new you I guess. <laugh>.
Leigh Chalker (11:58):
Yeah, I think that’s a hundred percent fair. Artwork requires well creativity itself requires a great deal of attention. And I read once, it’s not a direct quote cause I can’t remember who I read it from, but there for three hours of art, you have an hour getting ready, the good stuff happens in that second hour and then the third hour is wandering around and thinking about what you’d done in that second hour. So for every three hours is one good hour. I’m shocking for it man. I want to pace backwards and forward, but time is a requirement but you know, seem to, you’ll get back there mate. You’ll build plenty of momentum. Cause I now recently you had Lana Lu and that was a successful Kickstarter and you’re also in the GTO publications book Tell Guard, is that correct?
Lauren Marshall (13:12):
Tune two I was in. Yep.
Leigh Chalker (13:14):
Yep. And you’ve been hitting a few conventions <affirmative> just question cuz my dad’s family come from Gunda guy now Gunda guy is about two hours outside of Canberra and I’ve spent a lot of time in Canberra. How did you find that convention down there mate?
Lauren Marshall (13:36):
Surprisingly busy and a lot more enjoyable. I found. I was lucky enough to bring Lockie my husband with me and even he had the same note was that it was just a really chill, everyone was really friendly and it was a really good vibe. But in saying that, it had been so long since I’ve done a convention because obviously C’S done in Dusted now, but it just sort of zapped away a lot of that time. And being in Perth, it was just, you didn’t travel half the time cause you couldn’t get back in to your own home state without losing money. So yeah, it was just really refreshing, really nice, very positive attitude. Everyone there is really cool, really cool.
Leigh Chalker (14:17):
Yeah, that’s good. I, I often wonder, you hear a lot when people talk about conventions about or at least I have, they talk about your Sydneys and your Melbournes and stuff, but they don’t really talk about the cans. I mean even up here we’ve got a magnetic on and the smaller regional areas. I think on the weekends for memory there was a Mackay comic book convention called the Mac Pop Con or something. So they do get, it’s, from what I’m seeing, it’s definitely getting more and more populous. So no, that’s cool. I always wondered what Canberra would be like cuz that’d be for me anyway, just on a personal note, that’d be a good one to go to.
Lauren Marshall (14:52):
I’d like to do, yeah, I was surprised how small the city was to get to the airport to the city was 10 minutes or 15 minutes or something, which was crazy cuz at thought Perth was small, but yeah.
Leigh Chalker (15:06):
Yeah. So Perth art scene, <affirmative>, is it pumping pre covid coming out of Covid? Like what’s this? Cause I’m, I’ve never been to western Australia. I’ve been all down the east coast and stuff, man. Got that covered every nook and cranny of it. But what’s it over in terms of the arts, comics, all that sort of stuff?
Lauren Marshall (15:30):
There’s a lot of government funding <affirmative> in terms of not for comic stuff but for art in general. I find that the art sector is quite good here. If Freemantle is obviously the Freeman area, one of the OG cities, it’s very art orientated but you thinking more traditional painting and sculptures and stuff like that. But in terms of comic and that sort of stuff, it’s getting better. So a lot more places you can go to study and I feel like it’s a little bit more accepted here because unfortunately Perth is a little backwards in terms of letting people explore a different career that’s not money driven, if that makes sense. So yeah, I feel like people are accepting it and really appreciative of what a media brings content wise to people for enjoyment or whatever it is. So yeah, I think it’s definitely making getting a lot better. Yeah.
Leigh Chalker (16:38):
Yeah, that’s cool. Yeah, I always wondered that, I guess with that momentum you had coming up to the conventions and then Luna coming into the world and no timeframe could be years mate, depending on when you are comfortable to pick up a pen and pencil again, these things are entirely up to you. Where would you see yourself in a few years mate, with what you wanted to do and bring that back up. Si, I’ll read it out. That’s
Lauren Marshall (17:13):
A good point Dave.
Leigh Chalker (17:14):
Don’t worry about a bit of a lapse in productivity. Lauren. I didn’t start creating comics until I was in my fifties. You’re a long way from that, so there you go. Good on you Dave. Champion.
Lauren Marshall (17:25):
Leigh Chalker (17:28):
Where do you see yourself with say Lana, the
Lauren Marshall (17:33):
Conversation? Oh obviously Lana, I wanna keep going. That was always a little side passion of mine, but where I really wanna go is whether it’s a full-time thing or a part-time thing, I wanna start a publishing business but not particularly just for comics. I do love tabletop games, stuff like that. And I do a lot of my work that I did for obviously my normal job was a lot of procurement and stuff like that. So I kind of want to look into the world of producing and helping people get their products. Not only created but to a level that people would really appreciate and be good enough to put on shelves pretty much. But in terms of my art stuff, I want to obviously be published more <laugh> a lot more cover out i’d if anything, getting into new turtles. I just would love that.
Leigh Chalker (18:31):
That’s your one? Everyone’s got the one.
Lauren Marshall (18:35):
Oh, I wouldn’t say it’s the one. I’d say if I got that I would be like, yeah, I’m pretty chuffed.
Leigh Chalker (18:40):
Lauren Marshall (18:40):
Yeah, there’s a top, no top five, top 10 or whatever. Sonic would be really cool. Or if I know there was a ratchet and clank series, but I’m pretty sure that was just a short series. But even doing concept art or something for game development would be really fun. I really like exploring character design and I don movement body language, stuff like that. And I feel like that would be such a good avenue to really push and further the skill in terms of doing that. That would be really cool. Yeah,
Leigh Chalker (19:15):
Yeah. The publishing side of things that that’s always been something that’s been burning in you from when you’re young or is it something
Lauren Marshall (19:26):
I think it’s more a business thing. Yeah, I feel like it’s, we have no, there’s Marvel, DC whatever over in the states, but Australia can you really think just comics is basically probably the only one that really comes to mind. Comics another one. But I want, as in terms of a venue for someone to come and explore all ideas in terms of pop culture not just a niche in terms of just comics.
Leigh Chalker (20:01):
Like a creative hub.
Lauren Marshall (20:02):
Yeah, pretty much. And I’ve got the note, I do have somewhat some knowledge in terms of taking an idea and conceptualizing it and moving it forward into production pretty much. So just an idea of playing around in my head, which I would like to move forward with eventually.
Leigh Chalker (20:21):
Lauren Marshall (20:22):
Whether that’s from home or actually getting a premise to work from as well. But I mean that’s obviously five years, 10 years down the track, but an idea. Yeah.
Leigh Chalker (20:34):
Oh mate. From little things, big things grow mate you, there’s nothing wrong with ideas mate. I think you gotta have ideas someone, I don’t know, some ideas might be crazy but some ideas keep you driving, keep you going forward. So it’s like ah, you listen to everyone that tells you you can’t do these things man, you never get anything done so
Lauren Marshall (20:59):
Well I find that, that’s the thing, I’ve never been afraid to try something. I think that’s probably for my parents always been like, go just do it, try it and then instill that confidence and when people struggle so much to put a step forward and just give everything their own and just be like, well what’s the worst that could happen pretty much if it doesn’t work, maybe lose a little bit of money, maybe lose a little bit of time but it’s either gonna work or it’s not gonna work. There’s two options. It’s gonna suck if it doesn’t work, but it could also be really good if it really works. So indeed, yeah, just never had really much of an issue in terms of giving it red hot crack.
Leigh Chalker (21:43):
Yeah, yeah, no that’s fair enough as that. Are you competitive by nature?
Lauren Marshall (21:49):
Leigh Chalker (21:51):
<laugh>? Yeah, straight up.
Lauren Marshall (21:54):
Oh my god.
Leigh Chalker (21:55):
And what does that come from? Does that come from my siblings <laugh>. Fair enough. Are you the youngest or you sit in that
Lauren Marshall (22:02):
I’m the youngest. Yeah,
Leigh Chalker (22:04):
Yeah, right, okay.
Lauren Marshall (22:07):
It’s not bad competitiveness, it’s just natural obviously. But I’m, yes, competitive and stubborn as hell. So I don’t know if that’s a really good <laugh> duo there gets me in trouble sometimes.
Leigh Chalker (22:23):
Oh mate bit ya. Which it’s there’s nothing wrong with that. We are sporty in any way. Does competitiveness come into that or even just always been arty? Cuz some people that have competitive of get that from sport and things.
Lauren Marshall (22:42):
Well I wasn’t a sporty kid, give me a ball to throw and it’s gonna end up in the back of your head. I was not like my hand eye coordination comes from drawing, not from sports. And I hated PE class, it was terrible. I was so bad at everything. But in saying that as some might not, I was doing power lifting up until obviously pregnant. I think it was 30 weeks when I gave it up. But I’m super competitive with that. I felt really bad. I didn’t feel really bad. I felt like I could do better if someone similar to my body shape and size was lifting more than me and then obviously didn’t matter that they were doing it for five more years than I was and be training and actually dedicating a lot more time to it. I was still super annoyed and pissed. Sorry, annoyed
Leigh Chalker (23:37):
Lauren Marshall (23:37):
<laugh>. He rated at everybody.
Leigh Chalker (23:39):
Lauren Marshall (23:40):
Leigh Chalker (23:42):
Stilled by the of it <laugh>
Lauren Marshall (23:45):
Anyway. But yeah it does. It’s good to be competitive but it’s also not, it can be really frustrating sometimes, but the competitiveness does get you ahead more so than you think. Cuz you can’t hesitate if you wanna win.
Leigh Chalker (24:04):
Fair enough. Yeah, well I mean people get to their goals, Olympians and stuff like that by being driven and wanting the gold and you always hear sportsmen are always, I can do better, I can do better next year. I’ll get ’em and stuff. So it’s always a good thing, man, to take all levels of your life, I guess, into those sorts of stratosphere is made. So no, I think that’s awesome man. I reckon that’s a really good idea. And follow your passion. Absolutely. So I guess I always asking the guests, man the why question because coming from an artistic side, that’s what Chinwag, I guess is primarily we’re comic book people, <affirmative> creative. Why do you do it to yourself? Why did you do it to yourself?
Lauren Marshall (25:02):
I like to hurt myself in drawing hunchback, get RSI in my arm. I just love it so much. No <laugh> actually, my brother pretty much started in terms of interest into pop culture and I don’t like to use the word nerdy, but that gets the idea across quickly. He was into games and I used to just watch him game all the time and we really connected in terms of anime, gaming TV shows, dragon Ball Z was a big one and just from there just kept falling in love with it. And if I enjoyed it that much, why can’t I base my career work around it and just stuck it out the amount of times that I wanted to do illustration stuff. Even in high school doing the art scholarship, all they thought about was painting portrait to work, fruit bowls, just dumb generic crap. Sorry, PG rated <laugh>. Sorry, si <laugh>. Anyway,
Leigh Chalker (26:17):
Lauren Marshall (26:20):
That, I’m sorry. It was just, whilst it’s really good to learn s surrealism point, listen, all that kind of stuff. Just when I try to approach the final project, so our final project for mainly putting towards our mark, hr, mark, whatever you wanna call it. And it had to be a self-reflection one and it had to be like, what do you see yourself in, make that an art piece what’s important to you, blah blah blah. And so I went to my art teacher and I did a couple of sketches and I found a couple of books that was fully illustrated and it was kind of one of those ones that you have to find little bits and pieces in. So it kind of told a story. It was about a big giant and you had to find the artwork was incredibly beautiful. It was this beautiful watercolor, but it was all illustration so it was characters, it was pirates, it was all this kinda stuff.
So very el comicy kind of looking. And I said, oh this is my influence, this is what I love and I wanna create a similar scene and put myself in it because I see myself in this. And just immediately was shut down because that’s not art apparently. And from then I got really annoyed and wanted to prove not only her wrong, but just people in general wrong. Because sometimes people look at comics and illustration as an art form as not legit. It doesn’t make you a fine artist or that the amount of work that you put in is not the same as Van Gogh doing all his stuff. The guy was crazy, cut off his ear and ran down the street naked. So <laugh> <laugh>, yeah, it was just like, yeah, it was super frustrating and I, that competitiveness came into it and the stubbornness came into it and I just wanted to prove everybody wrong that I could make a living out of drawing and illustrating what I love and I just kept plugging away at it and got to where I am pretty much.
And now everyone comes up and going, it’s amazing you’ve been doing, it’s just so natural to you, blah blah blah. I’m like, well no it’s not. I kept having people telling me that it was not real art. I grew up in an era where it was still not acceptable as a career pretty much. And people idolized all these people Pixar, making all these strides and stuff like that. And yet someone who was idolizing them and wanted to follow in their footsteps, it was shunt pretty much. Especially by your teacher who’s meant to be mentoring you and leading you in a good direction pretty much. But no, just being told that this choice that you’ve made is incorrect. And so I just said, well stuff here, I’m just gonna keep plugging away at it. And now here I am. Yeah, I’m still going. Did
Leigh Chalker (29:22):
You get ever get an explanation from the teacher as to
Lauren Marshall (29:26):
She just said it wasn’t real art, she just kept saying it wasn’t real art and it was just like, and I didn’t, I didn’t understand. I asked her for a reason and she just didn’t believe that it was appropriate for whatever I had to do a past drawing, I had to do a painting portrait of myself. I don’t want to do that. That’s not who I am. A still face, not something that’s animated. I want something that’s intricate and detailed and yeah Peter, I feel like teachers of, oh my god, teachers are so much better now and so much more accepting and supportive of people’s dreams and stuff like that. But yeah, she, it really stuck with me and what the stinky part is, she shared the last name of me and I was like, that sucks. I don’t wanna associate myself with you, you down anyway
Leigh Chalker (30:16):
And think she related <laugh>.
Lauren Marshall (30:18):
We’re not worried.
Leigh Chalker (30:19):
See I see a couple of the communities teachers are chimed in there down the bottom.
Lauren Marshall (30:24):
Yeah, they’re not teachers I, I’ve seen cuz one of my best mates is a teacher now and I see some of the stuff that she does and actually went into her class to show the kids what Nere does and all that kind of stuff, which is really cool. And just the way that they handle things now so much better. And I just was unfortunately shunned. But that again, Perth is a little backwards but we’re getting there.
Leigh Chalker (30:49):
Hopefully. No, well I went to school at an all boys school in high school and there was only eight of us in the art class cuz you get to choose what classes you were and that’s when you stepped up, man I’ve gotta be here on a Monday and there, blah blah. Anyway we’ve all been there and she was really cool man. She lived on this little island that’s about five K off towns was coastal magnetic islands and wow back in the early nineties it was mate, there were like 2000 people living over there. There were ribbons in hairs, it was holiday commune sort of island. And she used to come backwards and forwards and man, this woman did not care what you were doing. I want you to draw something. I’d be off drawing the crow or something. Another dude would be, who’s a spray painter, sign writer up here now. Unbelievable work. He’s off doing that on canvases and things and she’d just walk around. Oh yeah, yeah, that’s good. Yeah, that’s good, that’s good. See you all tomorrow. And so you could sort bloody do anything, which was pretty lucky man for me. Yeah,
Lauren Marshall (32:05):
I feel like that reflects in your personality quite a lot. I think you forget how much those role models influence you as at that age and I feel that you just exploring and being free with your work, it just is still resonates with you a lot. Yeah, well
Leigh Chalker (32:23):
I think subjective, I don’t think anyone should be that again, just my opinion, I don’t think anyone should be boxed put the box when it comes to artwork. I think it’s an extension of yourself, really your voice, you know what I mean? What you create. So freedom in terms of creativity is a big thing for me man. That’s why I just enjoy doing it
Lauren Marshall (32:52):
And that’s the main part as well.
Leigh Chalker (32:55):
And for me too, it’s always been something that’s always there since I was a little kid. So I’ve just explored it through varying stages of my life. But it’s always been a constant pulse, if you know what I mean. There’s been years where I haven’t done anything mate. God, it took me 20 years to publish issue one, a battle for bustle. I’d just sit at home and draw for a couple of months and then not draw for a year. You know what I mean? To caught up from other stuff. So everyone’s different I think. But yeah, no, I’m all about positivity. If you love drawing, if you love creating, you go ahead and do it, man. You just throw it at the wall. It’s like, hey, as long as you’re enjoying it, that’s all that matters. And hopefully with the little bit of luck you can pick up a few people on the way that enjoy it too. So
Lauren Marshall (33:42):
It’s all about uplifting people a hundred percent.
Leigh Chalker (33:45):
Yeah, I agree man. I totally agree. So when you were mentioning before, just to go back had a comment that you and your brother of got together with gaming and that’s when you were of formulating, I like this sort of stuff. Did you get a sense of, did the feeling that you were connecting with your brother through that medium and that Oh yeah. Is another driving force that you could connect with people through your artwork, land Lu and your stories that you do and stuff like that. Was that a factor as well?
Lauren Marshall (34:22):
Yeah, definitely. I mean you can see people say when you go to conventions and stuff like that, you see the amount of excitement and even knowledge that people have about certain genres and anime or whatever. It’s exciting for them and I like participating in that excitement. And if I can create a world where people can get involved, say Lion’s world, people will be really involved in that and creating a little, even if it’s a moment of escape or just enjoyment or connection, they connect with a character or something like that. That’s what you wanna strive for as a creator pretty much.
I think that’s the big thing. Even now, just the stuff that we grew up with. I can still connect with my brother and sister and I still, it is the same at conventions or with the creators. With creators and stuff like that. It’s just really nice to be able to relate about, I don’t know, the hardships of being an artist and creating and yeah, it’s a different medium compared to whatever. I’ve got sports as well and Weightlift and whatever. I do really enjoy physical stuff as well. So small talk’s really hard for me and I don’t know why I really don’t like it. Oh the sky’s blue today, that’s nice. And so it’s just whatever. And in terms of I just want to explore different avenues all the time to create connection with other people and I don’t know, see what they see and I want to experience it, enjoy it and yeah, I kind of went off on a different rant, but you get where I’m going.
Leigh Chalker (36:12):
<laugh> all good. I understand totally. Yeah. With Lana extension of yourself, what was the driving voice behind that? And the other ladies that’s in Western Australia, that’s fellow creators with you, cuz you’ve got a colorist and a rider and stuff, is
Lauren Marshall (36:34):
That Yeah, Kay’s the colorist, but she doesn’t input on the story. Sometimes she gives us some feedback on the actual wording, lettering on the comics and stuff like that. But no, Alana when I first came up with her was sort pieces of myself in terms of what I like. So got some Moxi about her. Doesn’t take crap. Sorry again, still PG rated. I’m sorry <laugh>.
Leigh Chalker (37:03):
It’s seen up around the place yet. <laugh>.
Lauren Marshall (37:11):
Hey they can say it on TV these days, haven’t it. Whatever. Anyway, yeah. So in terms of, she originally was a boxing cause I was really into boxing back then. She was like this boxing bunny thing, whatever. She didn’t have the horns back then. But then through a couple of revisions and obviously evolving myself as a person she created more like this cuz Jackalope is sort of like, does it exist, does it not it, no one’s seen it, but it sort looks real enough to exist I guess. I’m sorry Nick. Geez, the teacher’s telling me off.
That’s why my art teacher didn’t lie me. Yeah, I suppose. Yeah, a hundred percent. She bits of me purple obviously. Purple’s favorite color but more like a take, no, I’m not saying it. <laugh> kind of gal. And I think I feel like as I evolve, she’ll evolve as well because I don’t really connect with many of the other characters. I feel like I really enjoy them. Chase is probably the other one. He’s the male detective I feel like, cuz he’s like a moody broody kind of guy as well. I swear to God I’m not moody broody, but that’s the kind of characters that I really like. Hellboy, obviously he’s a little bit challenged San Suki and little bit. I’m just not gonna take anybody’s c a p again <laugh>. But yeah, those are the kind of characters I naturally drawn to.
Leigh Chalker (38:53):
Yeah, yeah, no, that’s fair. Where you got what? You got a full story you want to get to with Lana or you just thought you do. So how many issues would you like to, if you get there, would you like to block it?
Lauren Marshall (39:10):
So we wanna do six arcs and each arc will have six issues. So big projects. Yeah, it’s like it is. And I hope once I get in the swing of things like Lockie at the moment is an apprentice, so we kind of just juggling that at the moment and hopefully I can pull back and focus on creating a bit more of a full-time gig for me in terms of illustration, which would be really nice. And I can focus on that a little bit more. Working from home, it’s a little bit gross, but I think I just have to create that rhythm I guess. But yeah, we know where we want it to go. We know what the main arc is gonna be for each one but it’s more about just post it notes. We do big post-it notes on the wall and just being like, we wanna include this and we’ll get a big idea and be, oh, where can that fit within the series or okay, it’ll be on that page or something like that. We tend to do it quite well when we’re in person and we are just very naturally just thinking about it.
Leigh Chalker (40:10):
So you get together with your rider in a room and basically just ideas. Ideas and then try and work out where you wanna place them into the story and fill the gaps in through just talk and communicating and using that as your avenue to push the story forward. That’s a cool way. It’s always good to have someone else, mate. I’m very lucky, I always say it, I’ve got TA that I get to bounce a crazy idea off and then
Lauren Marshall (40:39):
It’s just getting that,
The idea regurgitation out on them because I’m not a writer, I stink at it. I got an E in English, that’s how bad I am. And legit, I just kept flogging it off and anyway so it’s good for me. I’ve got the ideas of, and I just need someone to articulate them for me and make it sense and make it a little bit more fluent and good. But Tanya’s amazing with that and she’ll bring in, cause she’s got a huge knowledge in terms of she posts D and D all the time, she’s got a lot of fandom that she really likes and she gets a lot of influence from all them. Whereas my knowledge base in terms of fandoms is quite limited and just obscure stuff she’ll just throw out and then that will spark something for me. I don’t have a limit in terms of thinking of these ideas, but I just need someone there to just, like you said, bounce those ideas off because that’s where the magic happens, right?
Leigh Chalker (41:38):
Yeah, yeah, yeah, a hundred percent. Oh that’s again the ideas phase, man. That’s where he’s excited. Oh man. Yeah, you’re
Lauren Marshall (41:47):
Like, yeah, and then this can happen. I mean you start throwing these post-it notes on the wall and you’re like, what the hell’s going on?
Leigh Chalker (41:55):
Yeah, I know. And then you have these great ideas and then it comes time to draw <laugh>. Yeah, you sit there and you go,
Lauren Marshall (42:02):
Why did I do this? There’s just this wicked fight scene, which I did in the second issue and I just was looking at it, I’m like, why did we choose to do this? I have to actually draw it. So it’s just, yeah. But anyway, it’s done and it’s needed.
Leigh Chalker (42:20):
Well it was a very successful Kickstarter, wasn’t it? From my understanding. You covered everything. You got everything done and it’s out and about and very positive reception in mate. So I’m willing to bet there’d be a hell of a lot of people out there waiting in your time to see issues.
Lauren Marshall (42:39):
Well you better get my but to gear. Hopefully
Leigh Chalker (42:42):
<laugh>. You got time. You got time. Yeah, it’s one of those things I think we, again, you pressure yourself into these things, don’t you really? When it’s in dual control to do or bring out whatever you want out. For me, that’s the lovely thing about being an independent artist, the time is yours to control. So don’t, I’m not very good with deadlines, man. I tried that once and it was a suit that did not fit. Let me tell you, <laugh> that night.
Lauren Marshall (43:15):
No. And then you’ve also got the social media black dogs sitting there just being like, you need to post something, you need to do something. People are waiting for you to do something. Why are you not doing anything? And so you’re sitting there with that burning in the back of your head. You need to disassociate yourself from that I think, and then really let it go. But
Leigh Chalker (43:35):
Those really necessary evils though, isn’t it? In today’s world, your social media footprint, you know what I mean? Yeah. It’s like cuz you’re right if you leave it too long, people are like, if they do think, you know what I mean? And then you put something up and then Yeah, I know. Had difficulty with that man, it’s believe me.
Lauren Marshall (44:01):
Yeah, so as soon as you care less the better it gets.
Leigh Chalker (44:05):
Yeah, yeah. I think you have to have, there’s a level of care, but I think it
Lauren Marshall (44:15):
Depends if you wanna use it or something. Oh
Leigh Chalker (44:20):
For sure. For me,
I don’t know man, I’m just, I struggled with it a bit coming into it a few years back it was like I was just chewing everything. I could get my hands on me and then over the last 12 months I’ve just sort taken the paddle off the metal and I do care. But then there’s a level of you can care too much where it peaks you really stress and you do and yeah, you burn out and you don’t ever wanna pick up hand and pencil again. And I don’t ever wanna do that cuz it’s not fun, not worth doing. That’s half for the joy of it is the fun of it. So with I suppose all your knowledge from just all and your involvement in the come community with Shane and stuff and everyone that’s Friday night drink and draws and stuff, what I always like to ask everyone that’s on the show <affirmative>, what did one or two questions, what do you think of the Australian comics scene community at the moment? Do you feel it’s stronger than when you were younger or do you think Covid in its weird way, helped propel a lot more people out of the isolation? What are your thoughts on that?
Lauren Marshall (45:50):
It’s definitely better but goes back to that same idea that I said before, that there’s not a prominent existence of a publisher in Australia. Pretty much if you were overseas and lived overseas, you went out to someone who was from the say to do what publisher in Australia. Everyone will be like, no I don’t. So I think a little bit more it would get there, <affirmative>. But yeah, definitely that presence in the publishing industry would be a hundred percent needed. But other than that, I feel like it’s definitely making strides. The amount of creators like Tom Taylor and John Sova that just did never landers and that’s gaining so much traction, it’s ridiculous. And that’s because it’s just quality. Yes, they do work for DC Mob or whatever but it’s just really nice to see some really decent Aussie blokes just doing their project and getting it out there and they’re just doing such a successful job.
It’s really nice to see. And yeah, I honestly don’t think there’s too much of a barrier in terms of where creators come from. So if you are approached by, I dunno one of the bigger publishers and you did a cover or whatever, people would see you as an artist not from where you’re from. So that’s a bonus as well because people wanna know whether it was just stayed within the country’s consonants, whatever. But in terms of Australia, it’s just the publishing side of things that I feel like just needs to screen maybe a little bit more.
Leigh Chalker (47:42):
Yeah, yeah, that’s fair enough. That’s fair enough. Yeah, I can totally understand that mate. Yeah, fair perspective. It’s leads me to my next question because I know you’re a new mum and you do have times and things that you have to get through throughout the evening for Luna. So we’ll start slowly, we’ll wind down the show and stuff for you. And now this is a question that I do like to ask because I come from, you were saying Perth is rather isolated and stuff. Growing up, towns were where I’m from is the same. So it’s a long way capital cities like 1500 kilometers south. So it’s not going there on weekends. Sometimes you do, but anyway, that’s the story for another time. What is something that for someone that’s out there anywhere sitting in their room working hard, what is one piece of advice that you’ve learned in your time doing this that you would pass on to someone?
Lauren Marshall (48:51):
Don’t stick to one thing. And what I mean by that is if you are going to draw comics, don’t just study comics, study everything that might even slightly relate to it. Movies animation. My favorite one is doing acting and doing some acting classes like learning verbal and nonverbal communication. The amount of knowledge I’ve got from that is ridiculous. That’s my biggest tip is that one. But yeah, don’t be afraid to explore pretty much. It’s just don’t limit your knowledge base, keep learning.
Leigh Chalker (49:37):
That’s fair. I think just from my perspective, I remember when I was younger and I fell in love with comic books, it was that’s what I wanted to do is comic books and stuff. And it wasn’t until I progressed older, got into painting and you know, discover other artists that aren’t in the comic book medium that just as a higher value that you can get things out. And you’re right about cinema too. Cinema yeah, I, I’ve been through a huge phase of cinema it, I think it was weird cause when I was drawing battle for Bustle at the start, I found a book in the second hand store from the mid eighties and it was a big book and it was, it’s still around here somewhere and it was the hundred films that you need to see <laugh> before you Die. And this is a mid eighties, man. So yeah, progressively over the course of two years I went through video stores and found all of these videos and DVDs and ended up getting through ’em. Yeah,
Lauren Marshall (50:37):
Leigh Chalker (50:37):
Yeah, it taught me a lot in terms of storytelling and that for writing and artwork and motion and changes.
Lauren Marshall (50:44):
And even when people go, when you read a comic script and you’re doing, let’s say mid morning light, whatever being able to study your cinematic and someone obviously storyboarded all this, so they’re basically doing really quick comic sequentials to be able to do it. And so seeing that on screen and how it’s framed and the mood it creates and stuff like that, that you can implement that straight to your comics and your coloring and if you’re doing the coloring or you can advise someone to do the coloring and stuff like that. The difference between a low angle and a high angle and it’s just little, even if you get the tiniest little nugget of knowledge from something, if you enjoy doing it as well, that’s obviously the big part. But just keep exploring, just really don’t limit yourself. And that’s why I really like game guides and I go back to my beginning note about game guides. It’s just, it’s just covers a lot of stuff. Covers the character concepts, it covers strategy in terms of, it shows you a lot of the framing of the game and stuff like that. It has a lot of golden nuggets that you can pick out of there. Yeah,
Leigh Chalker (52:01):
<affirmative>. Oh, very good. Well there you go. All right, well Lauren mate, thank you very much for this evening and just wind it down with a couple of things, <affirmative> now everyone that’s watching or watches in the future don’t forget to and subscribe the channel. So more the merrier. I would like to thank Shane and Kerry comics for Letting Tuesday Chinwag. Go ahead. I’d like to thank you for being a guest. Thank you. Next week’s episode 13 is Mr. Neil Blandon, so I’m looking quite forward to that one. Yeah, recently been reading some of his comic books and they’re quite awesome. And on one last note, just like to again say, yeah, just good old thunder, raise a coffee cup or sugar free lemonade, or whatever it is that you’d like to do for the little fella. And wherever you’re this evening, just give thunder and the Lyle family a shout out. So
Lauren Marshall (53:15):
I’m giving my pops a cuddle tonight.
Leigh Chalker (53:18):
Indeed, indeed. All right. So anyway, always remember, community is unity and we’ll see you next week. Thank you.
Lauren Marshall (53:24):
Leigh Chalker (53:25):
No worries mate. Byebye bye.
Voice Over (53:27):
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