Pronto Presents: Artist & Phrases to Pages Judge Jim Shaw of Blu Trinity Comics

By David Rondinelli

Last month, Pronto Comics brought its semi-annual networking and creative workshop, Phrases to Pages (P2P) to Big Apple Con.

For those who have yet to attend, the main event at P2P is Pronto’s writing and drawing contest, in which aspiring writers and artists are paired up, given a phrase, and instructed to create a one-page comic based on a phrase. The work is then judged by professionals from the comics industry, and first, second, and third place winners receive prizes and get published in a special P2P comic book.

P2P Con Edition was the first time the event was held right at a comic convention, but it certainly won’t be the last!

The phrase this time was: “Oh the things you can do with a sorcerer’s stone.”

We were very fortunate to get some great judges, including the talented Jim Shaw, who co-founded Blu Trinity Comics. Shaw holds an Associate’s Degree in Studio Art and is the creator of such projects as Will Draw for Food. Here, he shares with us part of his comic book-making journey and what it was like judging P2P.

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Phrases-to-Pages Con Edition Winner Christian Espiritusanto

P2P artist winner Christian Espiritusanto with Pronto Comics editor in chief Dominic Sparano.

By David Rondinelli

Last month, Pronto Comics brought its semi-annual networking and creative workshop, Phrases to Pages (P2P) to Big Apple Con.

For those who have yet to attend, the main event at P2P is Pronto’s writing and drawing contest, in which aspiring writers and artists are paired up, given a phrase, and instructed to create a one-page comic based on a phrase. The work is then judged by professionals from the comics industry, and first, second, and third place winners receive prizes and get published in a special P2P comic book.

P2P Con Edition was the first time the event was held right at a comic convention, but it certainly won’t be the last!

The phrase this time was: “Oh the things you can do with a sorcerer’s stone.”

Now, Pronto is thrilled to announce our first place winners: artist Christian Espiritusanto and writer Jesse Pindus, for their comic, “Dating App.”

Together, the pair created a funny and charming story of a sorcerer using his magical stone to turn a bad date into a charming companion. With a humorous punch line and a clever premise, it’s easy to see why Espiritusanto and Pindus took first place. Below, we talk to Espiritusanto about his experience.

A native of Jersey City, NJ, Espiritusanto started drawing at a young age, creating stories as early as age 5. He hasn’t stopped drawing since! In 2016, he furthered his education and love of comics by attending the Joe Kubert School of Cartooning with the hope of breaking into the comic industry. Now working as a freelance artist, Espiritusanto’s latest pin-up work can be seen in issue #18 of The Walking Dead official magazine.

Click the image to read Christian’s comic full-size.

Pronto Comics: Tell me how it felt participating in Phrases-to-Pages?

Christian Espiritusanto: I had a great time teaming up [with writer Jesse Pindus] in creating a killer page. It was definitely a lot of fun.

PC: Did you find the phrase challenging to illustrate when you had a limited amount of time?

CE: With the time limit, I knew I had to create something quick that would capture the topic and keep the panels interesting to the reader. That is what’s important to me.

PC: What approach did you take to laying out the page and adding the detail?

CE: I approached the page with the direction from the writer giving me what he wanted in every panel, and I let my imagination flow.

PC: What was is like collaborating with someone you just met?

CE: It was a lot of fun and exciting to work with someone new.

PC: Would you like to pursue making comics in the future? If so, what do you have planned?

CE: I am currently working on my own comic book called Warriors Amongst Realms, which will be out in October and presented at New York Comic Con this year.

See more of Christian’s work on Instagram @artofChristianEspiritusanto, or reach out on Facebook.

Pronto Presents: AG, Writer and Creator of “Core”

Pronto Presents: Writer and Creator of Core – AG
By David Rondinelli

Core follows the story of Redd, a young boy who has a passion for robot battling, set against the backdrop of a futuristic world in which he lives a blue-collar life as a scavenger. However, a chance discovery sets Redd up for a quest that could take him from his humble life to an adventure among the stars.

core-headshot

AG himself, in cartoon form.

Before jumping into Pronto Comics’ new action/sci-fi world of Core, get to know the creator behind the book. Although his pen name is short and to the point, writer AG has been pursuing a lengthy journey of his own into the world of comics with his new book.

 

While growing up in New York, AG always had a passion for the comics and animation industry. Core is his first project in the industry, but it is his love of writing that has directed the ship he hopes will lead him to a steady professional career in comics.

Despite keeping a level of anonymity, AG is excited to have a project that anyone can check out and he looks forward to feedback from the Pronto community.

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Pronto Presents: Artist Miguelangel Ruiz

Pronto Presents: Artist Miguelangel Ruiz
By David Rondinelli

headshotMiguelangel Ruiz is one of the newest artists at Pronto Comics. His debut story, “The Black Skull Cowboy,” will be featured on Pronto’s website and in print in Deathology #4. Ruiz has developed a distinctive style that gives The Black Skull Cowboy a brittle, old-west look for his first solo tale featuring the character. Writer Steve Lucarelli collaborated with Ruiz on the project to craft a tale centered on bad blood between family ties that escalates into some dirty revenge.

Originally from San Juan, Puerto Rico, Ruiz moved to New York with his parents when he was 4 years old. His interest in art and comics developed early right along with his talent. After being accepted into the prestigious Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts (aka the Fame school), he continued his graduate studies in college with a focus on art history and studio art. Now an art teacher himself, Ruiz passes along his skills to his students while working on his own projects.

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Pronto Presents: Lawyer Dave Kozlowski

Pronto Presents: Lawyer Dave Kozlowski
By David Rondinelli

Dave KozlowskiPronto Comics welcomes Dave Kozlowski as their new legal representative. Kozlowski is a Bridgeport, CT, native who, in addition to his law background, balances being a fan and a sports enthusiast by playing baseball, football—and Nintendo.

After graduating from Western Connecticut State University with a history degree, Dave bounced around the country working for a fraternity, waiting tables, and selling ad space in college sports program books. Along the way, he attended St. John’s University School of Law, then went on to clerk for a federal judge, worked in Manhattan at a national law firm, and recently opened his own law practice representing businesses and entrepreneurs.

With an already full background, it doesn’t end there for Kozlowski, as he is also a fiction writer.

For many creators, the business side of their art can be unfamiliar territory, but is nonetheless important. Kozlowski’s insights into the legal side of creating comics are a priceless tool that all up-and-coming creators should take to heart.

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