Despite the fairly sizeable comic book fanbase in South Africa, it’s no easy task becoming a big-name illustrator on the South African comics scene. However, a handful of local illustrators are proving that hard work and determination can get you far – in fact, it could make you an international star.
Meet Sean Izaakse, Loyiso Mkize and Jason Masters – three local artists who are taking South Africa to the international comic book stage. From uniquely South African superheroes in the form of Loyiso’s Kwezi to Jason and Sean bringing comic legends like Batman and The Avengers to life, the world is taking note.
We asked these three illustrators to draw themselves in their own unique style, taking them from illustrator to comic book hero.
Jason Masters is the man behind several DC Batman comics. He also illustrated James Bond #1, one of the first comics based on the Ian Flemming character in years. Starting off in the advertising industry, Masters soon worked his way towards becoming a commercial illustrator.
“Over the years I’ve gone from wanting to draw the most striking cartoons to wanting to tell the most memorable stories. That’s the real power of comics, engaging storytelling.”~ Jason Masters
Loyiso Mkize brought to life one of South Africa’s most well-known comic book series – SupaStrikas. More recently, he gave the world a truly South African superheroe in the form of Kwezi and the series has gained global traction.
“I like the idea of proudly South African superheroes because when people read Kwezi they immediately resonate with the characters and overall story.”
Sean Izaakse ensures his illustrating genius keeps a solid Marvel fan-favourite alive – Thunderbolts. The superhero team first appeared in 1997 and Marvel handed over the reigns to Sean late last year. He also recently worked on the highly anticipated Avengers Monsters Unleashed special which was released mid-January this year.
“When I was young, reading comics was like going to new worlds, making new friends and experiencing epic stories. Now I get to create new worlds and share those stories with everyone else.” ~Sean Izaakse