Posted October 19, 2012 by Cooper Point Journal in Arts & Entertainment
 
 

Artist Profile: SAM BOURMAN-KARNS


 

How long have you been drawing?

Since second grade I guess, I started drawing little video game puzzles, levels, the little monsters that would fill up the arenas. I remember doing little projects I guess. Since I could hold pencil.

What is your favorite material to work with?

Pens, definitely. I haven’t been too good about brushes with ink, but I really love ink, different quill pens and nibs. If I make a mistake, I just put more ink on the paper and cover it up. It feels good to do it once and do it right that first time, it makes you want to keep doing just pen stuff.

How many hours do you spend drawing per week? Do you ever feel burnt out?

I try to work until I feel burnt out. I have to get a lot of it done to really show it to anybody. A painter might be able to just paint a couple layers and sit back and stop, but I feel like I have to finish a page or two pages to show somebody what I’ve been working on. I work about 30 hours a week. I’m in an SOS, so this is all I do. I spend a lot of time analyzing it.

What kind of artists have inspired you?

“Moebius”, aka Jean Giruad. He was a comic artist that started in the 1940s who died last year. I was introduced to him two years ago and he just kind of changed the way I look at every comic now. I’ve never been a big comic reader, but his line work and his colors, stories, everything is in the package. I hold others up to his standard.

How has attending Evergreen affected your work?

I’ve learned how to discipline myself. I’ve been drawing these comics with these characters since high school just to make my friends laugh, but now I’ve learned how to discipline myself and stick to my own schedule. I do the work that I feel needs to be done. Self-motivation.

What kind of messages do you convey through your comics?

That I don’t know anything. My main character, Ozger, roams through the universe and hears all these different philosophies and they all go over his head. I feel like I’m always learning, but never getting the whole story. The biggest message is you always have to keep your ears and eyes open and pay attention to what’s going on around you. Even if you do that, it still might go over your head, which is my experience.

Do you do any research for your work?

A little bit. The comic I’m working on right now is a fairy tale, and I really wanted to give it a Victorian era look, so I got a bunch of books out of the library that have great examples of ink drawings with cross-hatching. Most of my drawings are very minimalistic and simple, but now I’m working with a lot more lines than usual. Whatever book I’m reading, movie I’m watching, kind of finds its way into my work.

Do you feel like comics are dying or gaining strength as a medium?

People have always respected comics, but only a small group of serious lovers. I think a lot more comics are being made that aren’t just shock and awe horror, or scantily clad women; there’s a little bit more thought being put into it. Because of that the readership is putting more thought into what they’re reading. If comics can embrace the technology that is offered, but keep the comic aesthetic, they’re on the up and up. I hope it does, because then I’ll have business.

What’s your ultimate goal with your art?

My goal with art is to not work a day job. I want to become a successful artist in the sense that my bills and food are paid for by the art that I’m doing. I want to perpetuate more work by doing work.  If you love it enough, the hard work will feel all the more better.

By Kelli Tokos