Friday, February 19, 2010

This year of Hell, and happiness...

What the Hell just happened? Wasn't I sitting at a drawing table hundreds of miles away this time last year? How the heck did I get in Wilmington, drawing the final chapters of a graphic novel being published in a few months? Where was my brain when all of this was going on? I can tell you for the past five or six months I have been drawing at a breakneck speed. It has been unlike anything I have tackled in the past. Jesus Christ, before this the longest story I had ever drawn was forty pages long. I've never done a monthly series. Who the hell do I think I am taking on a 150 page graphic novel?

But, then I look at pages 79-80...

This is some of my best work...

This year has also been my best. I've BEEN my best. It has been the peak performance Joseph Campbell talked about. The glimpse into the infinity of parallel mirrors. Jesus, I draw comics. I made money this year DRAWING COMICS! One of the books I worked on in 2009 won a bronze medal Independent Publishers Award. Who the HELL do I think I am doing this kinda crap?

Don't get me wrong...some of it sucks. I don't get out much. I work and I sleep. I cook dinner, drink some wine, then I work. Then, I sleep. get it. But at the end of every day, which is usually very early in the morning, I have the moment of "man, I draw comics." Yeah, I sleep pretty well.

Behind 50% of the guys hanging art in galleries is a comic book geek wishing for the legitimate chance to work in comics. I know, I was one and know many others. We tend to go pretty extreme and throw the artwork way into left field for the chance to shake things up. But, deep down, we all want to draw Superman. When we don't get the chance we tend to take the "fuck you" attitude and go about painting our id and sexuality all over the canvas. It's childish, I know, but it's pretty sweet getting away with it, I must admit.

When Quarantine comes out this year a lot is going to change. It's all going to be a little different. It's cool. I'm ready for it. But I'm really going to miss it. Mike and I are talking about future projects already. And, Bob Heske and I have a book we're pushing this spring too, but, Quarantine, damn it. I miss you already. I don't know what it's going to be like coming home in the afternoon and only having a single page to draw. Or to wake up in the morning and turn on a television instead of slurping coffee at a drawing table.

But, it is getting late...and holy shit, I draw comics.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

20 questions with Monty Borror

This is a REALLY old interview that I am posting. At a guess I would years? I've just been going through some old files and came back to it. I copied and pasted it from the original site so forgive the typos... but it was fun for me to read it again after soooo long ago. P.S. the Inferno Graphic Novel I'm talking about never took off.

1. Where did you grow up?
On a farm in southern Virginia. Very close to the North Carolina border. My parents moved my sister and me to Raleigh when I was nine or ten. We did some more moving around after that but eventually settled in Charlotte permanently. I consider that my hometown

2. That’s a lot of time in the Bible belt. What kind of effect do you think that had on you?

The opposite of what was intended, I’m sure.

3. Were you drawing as a little kid?

The quick answer would be: My mother has graffiti in her uterus.

4. What brought you to Colorado?

I didn’t so much move to Colorado as move away from Seattle. I was basically getting nothing done there. Just wasting time really. I was always drawing but nothing was really coming from it. I was kind of stuck in that typical artist ego trap of thinking you’re brilliant and no one else can see it because they are so beneath you. The truth of the situation is that the artist becomes a lazy imbecile and expects the world to come to them. That was me.

5. So what changed when you moved to Colorado?

Nothing but my cruddy attitude. and that was all that was necessary. I started doing better immediately. Some of it had to do with the opportunity I had teaching art classes. Generally one’s students become one’s best following. But I think I started taking more responsibility for myself then as well. Instead of wondering why the world wasn’t “letting” me do what I want to do I allowed myself to take on the task of making myself more professional. and actually investing my money in myself was a big help. I know so many artists, many of whom have actual talent but they romanticize this rags to riches story to such a degree they can’t see the sensibility of spending their own money to promote themselves. I’ve learned that if you don’t value your own art no one else will.

6. Did you get shows and work quickly?

Pretty much. There was a gallery here called axis Mundi that showed interest in the first few months I lived here. I hung work there a few times made some sales and showed work at coffee houses in between. Then the restaurants I’ve done work for approached me for illustration and some design work. at the time I was making more money at art than I ever had before in my life. Forget that it was only a few hundred here and there. To me that was a fortune.

7. When did you meet your painting teacher?

My first year in Boulder. I had just been hired at the art store here and one day Bob Venosa walked in. To this day he has no idea that I knew who he was already from the Museum Morpheus web site. It was Bob who gave me my training in classical oil painting. One of the oldest techniques in the world. It was soon there after that I actually found my voice in art. I am convinced it was this painting technique that did this for me. I owe Bob and his partner Martina Hoffman every cent of what I make, metaphorically of course.
8. Do you consider yourself part of the fantastic realists then?

Yes and no. I enjoy it and love the roots it has in the surrealism works. My teachers and their teachers are all part of it. My work is a little more in the field of story telling though. It’s dark. I can’t argue that. It’s fantasy in more of the illustration realm than fine art.

9. Have you ever done a series of paintings or drawings?

Only on a very small scale. I did three paintings bases on the Ctuhulu Mythos by Lovecraft. Just sketches of some of his ideas. I like them but they’re too rough to exibit. I suppose you could say my charcoal portraits are an ongoing series. I’ve done eight of those so far. I think all but two of those are portraits of old Hollywood stars. Myrna Loy, Boris Karloff, Joan Crawford and a few others. I really like doing those. There’s a lot of detail that goes into those charcoals. More than enough to keep me interested.

10. If you had to pick one what would your favorite genre be for painting?

I would say horror or really far out fantasy. I think those are the two facets of art that require the most in translating the imagination into a readable image for the audience. They let an artist expand the possibilities of their own thoughts and forces them to paint those thoughts in a convincing manor. For me, I think that has integrity. I know that some people find horror childish and I really don’t mind because that’s not the only art I do. But I do get very exited when I meet another artist who appreciates it as well.

11. What’s your favorite word?


12. Name three movies you’ve loved in the past few years.

Donnie Darko. Way of the Gun. Waking Life.

13. Three books?
Blood Meridian by Corrmick McCarthy. American Scream, which is the biography of Bill Hicks. Time Out of Joint by Phillip K. Dick.

14. You’re obviously a fan of comic books. What comics have had the biggest influence on you?

V for Vendetta by Alan Moore and illustrated by David Lloyd. That book shaped so much of what I still hold true. A lot of my own personal philosophies were shaped by that book when I was fourteen or fifteen years old. I think that book shows so many people what is out in the world. How ugly it gets but how beautiful too. It was a fantastic introduction to a character with perfect integrity. I’ll of course buy anything drawn by Bernie Wrightson, and of course I’ll still pick up X-Men every now and then just to keep in touch. I was a freak for anything Batman when I was a kid. I think I liked that character so much because it showed a guy without any amazing powers being amazing in spite of it. I’ve been looking at Richard Corben’s work lately. I love how distinct his style of drafting is.

15. How important is music when you’re drawing or painting?

It’s everything. Music drives me like a train when I’m working. Entire albums go by with the speed of a single song. That’s how I’ve always pictured myself as a professional artist, sitting in front of my drafting table with fast and loud music filling the room. I would hate to think of being an artist as anything else.

16. How do you think an artist like yourself can be famous in the society we have today. I mean with the internet anyone can post their work and say they’re an artist. Or start a ‘zine to promote their own work.

I really don’t care about that sort of thing anymore. Who cares how you get famous? I think artists should just worry about how to get good. and what’s more, they should worry about it their entire lives. If they’re not constantly concerned with getting better then they’ll be the same their entire life. They create a ceiling for themselves that will never be breached. So get famous. Good advertising will do that. But the people who know will know it’s fake, and it’s the opinion of one’s peers that reflects most.

17. So how do you work into that picture?

If you’re asking what I expect from my art then I would have to say that I expect the work to be famous, not my face. It’s not so much Montgomery Borror doing well as the art itself doing well.

18. You’ve been working on a graphic novel for a while. Can you tell me about it?

The graphic novel is based on Inferno and it’s just a modern retelling of the story with modern characters. I’m over three quarters of the way through it but, luckily, I’ve been busy enough to put it on the back burner for a while. I’m not too concerned about it. It will be finished sometime this year. There’s a funny thing about taking your time like this though. I am so happy with the look of the book but if I go back and look at it from the beginning I see a few inconsistencies. Like the stuff I did a year ago is just a bit different in style from what was done last month. Unfortunately, no matter how much I may like them I will have to go back once I’ve finished and redraw those pages that are just a bit off.

19. Is that part of the pursuit of artistic perfection or just an anal retentive personality?

Well I hope it’s more philosophical than Freudian.

20. The final question is always the same one: What do you want to see happen most in the world in the next decade?

I want the people of the world to assume ultimate responsibility for themselves and stop blaming each other for their personal problems. I would like to see the majority of people acting with clear integrity. I would like for us all to stop being so terracentric and begin to look positively towards exploring what is beyond our own little dome of life. People are too proud of being well grounded and I think it hurts our intelligence as a race to not look up and be curious of what’s outside of the Earth. I don’t believe the aliens are coming to us. I don’t think they ever have. I think it is our responsibility to go to them. If we truly want to evolve we have to take on the burden of deciding our own fate.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Marvel and Disney...What the hey?

Sure it is unusual...but is Disney owning Marvel a terrible thing? I can't be entirely sold on either argument just yet. But I can say that Disney owning Miramax has actually worked out pretty well. They are now great production company and a distribution company that gives a shot to new independent movies, and with the purchase power of Disney behind them. So one would be inclinded to think it to be a good move.

Of course it is Disney which alone is cause for concern. Are our hopes of rated R comic book movies dashed upon the rocks? Well, look at it this way, if it keeps Fox's paws off of Marvel properties I am all for it.

I do have to comment as well, Marvel really sucks at making their own movies. They are truly terrible. They are falling back on the old habits in the 80's and 90's when they made the Dolph Lungren Punisher and Marc Salinger (yep, J.D.'s kid) Captain America. So putting the character properties in someone else's hands is not so incredibly terrible. I really wish they could have done it on their own, with no one to answer to, but better this than sending themselves into bankruptcy again.

So I would guess my stance is worried...but not panicking.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Here is what happened

Well...been a few months since I've bothered to write. Write ANYTHING. But I have to preface with the fact that busy doesn't even begin to describe what my days have been like lately. I'll try to elucidate and if you follow, great. If you just think I'm a lazy ass... well, you wouldn't be entirely unfair in that assessment.

So for the past several months I have been working on not one, not two, but three comic book titles. I knocked one out of the way and another grew in its place so until the end of September that is just the way life is. And let me tell you, I love it. I am making the deadlines, albeit barely. This is what an illustrator wants.

The details:

Code Red from Pickle Press, issue one is done and on the shelves. One could order a copy by emailing and paying 5.00 plus shipping if one were so inclined. So incline yourself.

Next up, I just finished a short story for the one and only Robert Heske (The Night Projectionist writer.) Fans of horror are definitely going to dig this. It is another book of short stories based on the idea of 2012 myths as reality. When the printin' is done you will be told where to get your copy but good bets are on keeping up with to find out. Hell, the last book I did with him won the bronze IPPY award so who knows what roof this will blow off.

The new title is a story for a book called Grave Conditions from Scott Nicholson at You can trust be on the baddassedness of Scott's writing and this will be a book to look for and demand from your local retailer. I'm doing things a little differently for this one just to shake up my own artwork a bit. No more details until Scott sees the work.

Lastly, the BIG KAHUNA. I am working on a new graphic novel for Insomnia Publications. Those who know me already know I was published in their anthology book Layer Zero, Choices. After another title's writer flaked out on me they were kind enough to throw me another bone. This book is called Quarantine and is written by the hyper talented Michael Moreci. Describing this one is hard without being derivative. I could say things like 28 Days later meets Escape from New York, but really not like New York, more like The Stand. But not entirely. You see were this is going... it would take another paragraph. But Mike and I were already discussing the push for San Diego next year so you can see that this is going to be huge. I'll be done with the drawing on this by the end of 2009. We will have to see what happens with the colors as I'm trying to find someone with no life to color it for me. If not, I'll be doing the deed myself which will add about another two months. After which, I think I'll have a drink.

Heske and I are already plotting for 2010 so be on the lookout for more from us as well...

As far as my waking life is concerned, much has happened as well. I have, after almost 20 years become a non-smoker. Believe me, I am a complete dick right now so better that I stay at home and get my drawing done. I don't know who out there has attempted this before but I'm pretty sure I could shake heroin after this. It is truly awful so, kids, don't ever start.

I also have moved back to my home state of North Carolina. In the process I have reconnected with so many of my old friends and family and am kind of gushing over it. You never know exactly how much you missed someone until you get the chance to see them or hear from them. It sounds stupid I know, but it is on my mind and this IS a blog, isn't it?

That's about it for tonight. This entry doesn't really follow the format of this site. Hell, I'm supposed to be writing about new comics and movies. But, screw it, I like this site and so what if it has become a little personal. Next entry: Marvel and Disney and DC getting their own studio at WB. I promise I have a few things to say about these.

Sorry for any typos. I kinda puked this one out.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

That's : Award Winning Bone Chillers Thanks very much.

BONE CHILLER has won a Bronze medal at the 2009 Independent Publisher Book Awards in the Horror category.

This just doesn't seem to stop for us. Every time I turn around either it's a good review on USAtoday's site or a damn IPPY award. WHEN WILL IT END????!!!

This is actually my first association with a book that won an award so you can imagine I am more than elated. I think R. Heske has been incredibly kind to include me in his anthology and am happy just to contribute at all.

This calls for a beer.

But then what doesn't?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

I've had it with FOX

Normally, I try not to be a Negative Nancy with my blog. I'm not about burning bridges or anything and am very interested in giving everyone a fair shake. But after much internal dialogue I feel it is my duty to rant a little bit. So get ready with your grains of salt as this is just one guy's opinion of sticking it to The Man.

Fox Studios as a film company has been more than dubious of late and their "Let's take 'em to court" business model has me suspicious of their creative abilities. After sitting on The Watchmen for so long and being on record as saying the movie was "impossible" to make they went forth with a contract to WB to allow them the rights to make one of the best adaptations I have ever seen. But of course WB in their rush of giddiness failed to read the fine print and got slapped with a lawsuit regardless. Lately we have watched Fox destroy the story lines to many of fandom's favorite characters to dumb them up for a public who loves American Gladiators and Professional Wrestling. It would almost seem as though Rupert Murdoch doesn't have a lot of faith in the average American intellect. This is obviously the reason that Fox News can exist at all by creating false news stories.

I would love for everyone to remember the fact that every time you watch Fox television or a Fox movie, one way or another you are putting money into the pocket of Bill O'Reilley. By spending your hard earned dollars for a Fox film, Fox News can exist whether it turns a profit or not. I think Fox is a perfect example of what happens to an entertainment company when they have no one creative in charge of anything and the company is run entirely by business executives.

Unfortunately, Marvel is in a lock with Fox at this point and WB and DC Comics are the same entity. All that leaves are the independents. Although it is difficult to refer to Dark Horse and Image as independent anymore. But as far as I am concerned there is absolutely no reason an independent comic book company should be dealing with Fox at all. For your consideration I would like to recommend a company by the name of Screen Gems Studios located in beautiful Wilmington, North Carolina. They are one of the studios behind the Underworld films among others successful franchises. I would love to see Screen Gems corner the market on films produced by independent comics. They seem to be more of a company willing to take creative risks and for that I applaud them.

Just click the video below to see where your money really goes.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Marvel seeks the New Generation

I got the following post from

Marvel Entertainment is Hiring Writers
Source:Variety March 27, 2009

Marvel Entertainment is readying to assemble a group of writers who will pen scripts for various properties Marvel wants to develop, reports Variety.

Marvel will invite up to five writers each year to work on specific projects. Those could include staffers behind Marvel's comic books.

The trade adds that the company will provide the specific pitches it wants the writers to tackle. Those could involve certain plot points for movies already in development or characters it would like to see in its future film slate.

The gathering of screenwriters will help Marvel come up with creative ways to launch its lesser-known properties, such as Black Panther, Cable, Doctor Strange, Iron Fist, Nighthawk and Vision.

So far, it has focused its efforts on more popular superheroes like Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor and Captain America.

A group of Marvel executives will choose the writers, with the final decision made by Kevin Feige, Marvel Studio's president of production.

Terms call for Marvel to own whatever the writers work on during the year. Company has the option to continue a relationship with the writers after that period

Now could be your chance, Attention Robert Heske, Attention Scott Phillips