A web of comics

Quality Enhancement

The Quality Enhancement Plan or QEP led by Director Hatem Akil held a weeklong event for Comic fanatics on the Sanford/ Lake Mary Campus where activities ranged from Coplay to trivia and even a film festival.

One event-featured comic book artist Alex Saviuk who is known for his work on the Marvel Comics character Spider Man. Saviuk worked as a key artist on the Web of Spider-Man comic series and has been drawing spider man for 30 years now. He continues to work closely with Stan Lee and his brother Larry Lieber creating Spider Man comics for the Sunday papers. Saviuk joked that no matter what age he would always be the kid; “Stan is 94, Larry’s 85, and I’m still the kid. When I speak to Stan on the phone he always says ‘Hey kid, how are ya!”

Alex Saviuk sat down with a full room of Seminole State students, faculty and staff during the Comic Con Go week to talk about his career in the world of comic books and answer questions about the process of bringing to life some of America’s favorite superhero’s.

The question and answer that was lead by Professor Michael Mendoza started with a brief history of Saviuk’s work: Starting at DC Comics working his way onto the Green Lantern and the Flash and eventually doing work for the Superman comics. He then transitioned over to Marvel Comics in 1987.

With the transition to Marvel Professor Mendoza questioned Saviuk on what the phrase “the Marvel way” meant. Saviuk explained that, “the writer writes a short story for you, more or less… Stan Lee was the proponent of this whole thing, he’d give a one paragraph synopsis and the artist was actually the story teller.”

The Marvel way allowed for more creativity on the artists part since “It was his [artists] job to break it down into 20 pages and write notes to Stan so that when the art was done. Stan would basically… look at the art work and words would just fly out of his head.” Thus creating the marvel comics that are so well known today.

One student in the audience asked Saviuk about the mentality needed for an artist or writer, “to not get lost in the whole story… what tools do they surround themselves with, are they working together?” From receiving the script or plot from the editor to communicating to the writer about the direction of the art if things were not clear, Saviuk stated that while some artists and writers worked well together as a team, “I followed what was there, I didn’t take it upon myself to be a primadonna”.

One piece of advice he gave was that the in’s and out’s of the comic book business is structured by the editors and according to Saviuk, “if you became friends with an editor… you’ll get more work.”

Although Comic Books are a large part of Saviuk’s life he does take downtime to do other things: like, “play golf, I like watching movies, I enjoy reading….” He does state that the question often gets asked that after he’s done drawing comics if he likes to sit and paint. To that question he states, “Well if my bedroom needs repainting, Ill repaint the bedroom, but that’s as far as I’m going to go.”

Saviuk closed the discussion panel by signing prints he brought with him for everyone in the room; the students and staff received some of his most popular works, from Captain America to Spiderman and his villains. Alex Saviuk brought some new insight and passion to Seminole State during Comic Con Go week and provided an in-depth look to how superhero comics are made.

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