The Cork artist who is helping create the world's top comic books

The Cork artist who is helping create the world's top comic books
An example of Ellie Wright's work.

ELLIE Wright is making waves in the comic industry and earning a growing reputation internationally.

Ellie, aged 28, who graduated this year from a four-year multimedia course at Cork Institute of Technology, has been working in the comic book industry while studying full time,

Since finishing her degree her career has begun to take off.

“I am colouring four different comic books at the moment that are released every month,” Ellie said.

“I am swamped in work.”

Comic book artist Ellie Wright.
Comic book artist Ellie Wright.

The colourist explained her role in putting together a comic book.

“There are five or six people who work together to create a comic book.

“There is a writer, artist, inker, colourist and one or two editors. It is interesting working with different people who have different artistic points of view but it can be time-consuming as you have to skype people in different time zones. The colourists are the cinematographers of comic books. They set the tone and mood with colour, and direct your eye across the page, and set up the depth of field of the story that you are reading.

“Colourists use equipment to help them paint. They digitally paint using a graphic tablet that they can connect into a computer and software which is usually Adobe Photoshop.”

Another example of Ellie Wright's work.
Another example of Ellie Wright's work.

Ellie, originally from Cornwall, but living in Cork city for the last 12 years, is working on two characters with Dynamite Entertainment, Betty Page and Elvira.

“Betty Page was an American model from the 1950s known for her pin-up photos, often referred to as the Queen of Pinups.

“In her comic book series Betty gets into classified adventures set back in 1951 Hollywood and she must set out to solve cases.”

Elvira is taken from ‘Elvira: Mistress of the Dark’ a 1988 American comedy horror film. “In the comic, she has become stuck in time and is on a journey through horror and history.”

Ellie described the characters as feisty women, taking on ‘The Boss’ role and always getting into trouble. “It is fantastic fun working on female leading roles. I get the script every month and I love seeing the different scenarios the characters get themselves into.”

The young colourist is also working on two other independent comic books, Black Ghost and Songs for the Dead.

Work by Cork comic colourist Ellie Wright
Work by Cork comic colourist Ellie Wright

Ellie said she is lucky to have the amount of work she has and as a freelancer you are nearly always looking for your next job. “One job usually leads to another. It is all about communication and making connections.”

She said while it can be stressful looking for work and working weird timetables in different time zones, it is a pleasure to be her own boss and to do something she loves. “I was always into art and comics. I am very passionate about what I do, it is definitely a labour of love.

“I love the adventure of painting the story. It could be a horror setting or an action scene and you get to paint the world.”

Ellie, who freelanced through her four years of college, said she would love to become a well-known colourist and work on Batman full time.

Work by Cork comic colourist Ellie Wright on Sherlock Holmes.
Work by Cork comic colourist Ellie Wright on Sherlock Holmes.

“I have previously worked on a Batman cover with DC and I would like to continue working on Batman books in future, if possible. That’s the dream.”

Speaking about the impact of social media, Ellie said that Twitter is very useful for finding work. “If someone likes my work they can message me instantly which is great. I often post samples online and I might not always get a job but you get a lot of positive feedback which is nice.

“I get a lot of work in America, Canada, the UK as well as in Cork.”

Ellie Wright also worked on the iconic James Bond character
Ellie Wright also worked on the iconic James Bond character

Ellie said she is starting to use Instagram a little more as it is a great way to showcase her images. “Social media is definitely playing a huge role in getting jobs. It is not always steady work but it is always fun.”

  • For more see Ellie will also be at the Comic Vault comic store on September 20 for Culture night for anyone who would like to meet her and ask her some questions. Anyone looking to get into comic books can go along to the Cork Comic Creators meet up on the last Friday of every month at Comic Vault at around 8pm.

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