The PNP Crew Q&A Series, #5: BEN GILBOA

The PNP Crew Q&A Series, #5: BEN GILBOA

Our next cross-examination is with Israeli writer/artist Ben Gilboa, the man behind the Blue Moon graphic novel via PNP.

[BTW, if you missed #1 with PNP’s Galo Gutierrez you can check that out here, the one with Matt Kyme here, #3 with Graeme Jackson here, and Andrez Bergen was #4 here]


CP-BLM-1Who are you, and what do you do?

I’m Ben Gilboa. I live in Tel Aviv, Israel. During the day I work in graphic design, while at night I draw comics.

I’ve been writing and drawing comics for the majority of my life, but I’ve started working on serious work (long-form graphic novels and such) in the past 3 years. Blue Moon is my first full-length graphic novel.

How did you become involved with Project-Nerd Publishing?

After completing Blue Moon, I started reaching out to comics sites and blogs, trying to get some feedback and exposure. I submitted it to Project-Nerd for review, and they came back with an offer to publish. Guess they like it!

Why are indie comics so damned important?

Well, I don’t necessarily think indie comics are that damn important in themselves, as much as they can fulfill a vital function for comics lovers. Let’s face it, the vast majority of mainstream comics feature superheroes. The same genre, in literally hundreds of titles.

Reading just one genre can get repetitive, and stale.

So indie comics spice things up. Reads want different stories, different character and genres. And that’s what indie comics bring to the table.

DC, Marvel, Image, Dynamite, Dark Horse, all of these — or something else?

I honestly don’t care that much where something is published. The publishers are just the vehicle for the art, made by the creators. If my favorite writer switches publishers, why would I care?

In terms of your creativity, which styles/genres do you prefer to work with? Why?

I don’t really have a preferred genre to work in, but I do know my limitations as an artist. I’d love to do an action comic, but I just don’t have the drawing chops to pull that off (yet).

So instead I try to aim at my strengths, which means character-based stories, with strong emotional and philosophical overtones. I also tend to favor more genre work, like sci-fi, horror and the like, because it’s comics – I can do literally anything, so why not?

10437680_10153250679162178_6238938492383669897_nWhat are your creative plans for the future — what can we expect from you?

I’m currently working on the biggest project I’ve ever taken. It’s a sci-fi anthology, featuring shorts stories, all taking place in the Free City, an anarcho-capitalist mega-city in a post-apocalyptic far future.

I’m trying to explore the notion of freedom in its many forms, its costs and true meaning. I know, that sounds kind’a heavy, but I think it’s shaping up nicely. I’m at around page 70 out of an estimated 200.

Who’s your favorite non-comic book writer, and why? Which book of his/hers is the best, so far as you’re concerned?

If I had to answer that last year, I would have answered Jonathan Franzen. He’s not a genre guy, but his novels are so real, so layered, I find that a lot of my creative goals is exploring that kind of deep character and psychological work in a genre setting.

However, a few months ago I read A Little Life by Hayna Yanagihara. It’s a beautiful and amazing book, but also one of the most emotionally scarring pieces of art I’ve ever experienced. It shook me to my core, so I feel compelled to acknowledge her next to Franzen. The final answer is currently TBD.

  • Check out Ben’s Blue Moon site here.