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Star Artist Will Conrad Cheats Death to Live His Dream

“It was Conan that first made me want to draw comics,” Will remembers. “It was drawn by John Buscema and Alfredo Alcala. It was just…”


Will Conrad works hard on a sketch for a lucky convention goer

It is 270 miles from Belo Horizonte to San Paulo in Brazil, and the road from aspiring fan to top comic book artist is longer than that. For artist Will Conrad, a journey that began in the mountaintop city he calls home nearly ended before it began, in a calamitous bus wreck on the road to San Paulo. In the end, not even that derailed his life-long dream.

Watching the joy as Will draws you would never suspect how close it came to not happening. At a convention as he does sketches with a smile, jokes as he takes fans requests and seems genuinely happy to answer their questions. He works at the drawing board twelve hours a day or more, and when he takes breaks sketches to relax.

It’s hard to believe but the mega-star artist, currently hard at work on Conan for Dark Horse and The Freshmen for Top Cow, never thought a career in comics was possible because of the low page rates paid by Brazilian publishers. “In Brazil, drawing comics was asking to starve,” he remembers. “They paid $10, maybe $20 a page. If you got paid at all.”

Things changed in 1997, when comic book legend Will Eisner paid a visit to Will’s hometown. The legendary comic creator was participating in a seminar and Will signed up. “One of my first comics was for a contest at the seminar.” Will Eisner was a judge. Will won, and as his prize got to spend five priceless minutes with Eisner, who critiqued his work. He considers the storytelling tips he received that day a key moment in his career.

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May 18, 2007 - Posted by | artist, feature, interview | , ,

1 Comment »

  1. Will does do some great work. His Serentity and Kull work looks amazing.

    Comment by Richard Vasseur | November 12, 2008 | Reply


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