For those of you not already familiar with the work of Sarah Graley, she is a Birmigham based artist living out her dream of being a full-time comic creator and illustrator, she is best known for the popular series Our Super Adventure and her work on Rick and Morty miniseries, Lil’ Poopy Superstar.
As part of our Daily Inspiration series, we caught up with Sarah in an exclusive interview to find out more about what living the dream is really like, how she managed to find success and to find out what her hopes for the future are.
Hi Sarah, Thanks so much for agreeing to interview with us here at Roll the Dice, firstly could you just tell us and our readers a little about your journey and how you started out?
Oh man, where does starting out count? I used to draw comics regularly when I was seven – they were all an ode to the British publication ‘Sonic The Comic’, but if we’re talking about when I started doing this more seriously, I self published my first comic around four years ago.
It wasn’t great, but it got the ball rolling for me! With a physical first comic, I had a reason to go to comic conventions – which I quickly fell in love with. Getting a box full of books of work you’ve done is one of the best feelings in my honest opinion, seeing your work in print is great!
That helped give me the drive to keep creating and self-publishing comics. Last year I wanted to self-publish a book collecting 200 of my comics – a real ritzy hardcover deal, and turned to Kickstarter to help fund it. That took off and got a lot of eyes on my work, including my agent at Curtis Brown LTD and Ari Yarwood, managing editor at Oni Press. A year on from that, I’ve written and drawn a Rick and Morty miniseries titled Lil’ Poopy Superstar with Oni Press (that’s in comic shops now, go get at it!), me and my agent are currently pitching a YA graphic novel and I’m currently working on a creator-owned series titled KIM REAPER with Oni Press due out in April 2017.
Wow, it sounds like things are really taking off for you right now! What would you say have been the biggest challenges you’ve had to overcome and how have you kept yourself so motivated throughout the process?
Believing in myself early on!! I think a lot of people get this – I’ve seen people who I think are ridiculously talented tweet about not feeling good enough at art, which is like, both unreal and also reassuring, y’know? Everyone seems to feel this way no matter how skilled they are – it’s a horrible feeling and it sucks when anyone feels like it! But it’s also good to know you’re not the only one, ha. The whole ‘am I good enough to do this should I be doing this maybe I’ll just lie face down on the ground for a bit’ feeling – I used to get that a bunch when I first started drawing comics. I kept drawing them anyway, and as I’ve put out more and more comics more and more people message me amazing things, or come up to me at shows to tell me how much they love what I’m doing – it’s incredible and so nice and I appreciate those people so much! I still get that feeling sometimes but I just think about all the great people or how much I’ve improved and i’ll be like, let’s do this!!