Joel Thomas is one of the 5 artists at Ritual Entertainment. He does conceptual art, which is basically the job of designing the characters and weapons and stuff that you'll see in Sin. He has got his B.F.A. in sculpture from Auburn University and his M.F.A. in Illustration from Savannah College of Art and Design. He collects action figures and his life long dream is to do special effects make-up. He doesn't knit ;)
How did you get your nick AceFace?
That's the name of my pet project. The story of a little kid who slaps an ace card to his forehead and becomes the most power being in the universe. He just doesn't know it yet.
What are your favorite comic books? Do you prefer the long, drawn out series, or the short, sweet selfcontained graphic novels? (Dark Knight Returns is an all-time favorite of Millennium.)
Uhm, I suppose I prefer the short sweet variety. My all time favorite artist is Mike Mignola... I'll buy it if he drew it. My other favorite artist is Simon Bisley. They both rock. I also dig the stuff Greg Capullo is doing on Spawn and the mini-series the Creech..
What drugs do you take? Do you share with Ritual employees? Can I have some?
I was about to ask you the same thing.
What do you think of the recent Spawn phenomenon?
WELL, I think it's great. I met Todd McFarlane in Detroit a couple of years ago and he was the nicest, most genuine person I had met in comics. I admire his vision. I'll do one thing the best I can and if you love it great, if you don't, I could care less.
Can we expect SiN to include a comic book? Seeing those sketches, the characters are perfect for a comic book.
That's what I'm hoping for... we'll see.
What influences from the comic world have you brought over to Ritual?
Well- I draw alot. (Oh really? :)
What's it like to see you 2D drawings become living 3D creatures?
That's the coolest part. I really am impressed with the work I see coming from my fellow artists ( plug time) Beau Anderson, Rob Atkins, Michael Hadwin and Mike Washburn. They are some of the best.
Have you been able to use your art skills in other areas besides concept sketches? Have you worked on any cinematic sequences?
I have, but not for Sin. Here everyone uses 3D Studio MAX and I'm Alias trained. so I'm a babe in the woods as far as software here goes.
How important is a formal art training in this business?
Well- one way or another, you better know your stuff. There's alot of us out there wanting to do this and there is always someone better than you. It might be me or the next guy you meet. You need to stay on your toes and up to date on the Entertainment industry as a whole.
That's it! Many thanks to Joel for taking the time to do this. More interviews with members of the SiN team on RITUALISTIC soon!