Find a New Hero Series: Paul Guinan
Multimedia artist Paul Guinan started out at First Comics, retouching the first manga translation published in the U.S., Lone Wolf and Cub. While at First, he co-created Cargonauts, a precursor to Firefly. Paul later co-created Chronos for DC Comics. With his wife, Anina Bennett, he created the groundbreaking science fiction series Heartbreakers. Paul’s art for their graphic novel Heartbreakers Meet Boilerplate was nominated for an Eisner Award, and in 2011 the couple was honored with Inkpot Awards. Most recently, he and Anina collaborated on the unique illustrated hardcover books Boilerplate: History’s Mechanical Marvel (in development as a feature film from producer J.J. Abrams) and Frank Reade: Adventures in the Age of Invention.
Where do you find inspiration for your work?
In life. As a history buff I often incorporate historical events in my concepts. It's important for an artist to look at things outside of their own field. So, comic book artists should look at other forms of visual narrative than just comics.
What is your favorite work you have done?
Boilerplate: History's Mechanical Marvel is a hardbound illustrated "biography" of a Victorian era robot. It's not quite a graphic novel, it's more like a Time-Life history book with text and images. According to the futurists at Intel, it's a new form of narrative literature, quite unique. I conceived the work and created the graphics. My wordsmith wife Anina Bennett wrote most of the text.
Boilerplate was optioned by Paramout as a major motion picture to be produced by J.J. Abrams, and this has given Anina and I the opportunity to write pitches for film & television. It has kept us busy, but I took time to produce a new Boilerplate comic book, which is debuting at SDCC.
What is one thing you would like to pursue if you had additional free time?
There is no one thing. I'm an information and experience sponge, everything is interesting to me! Too bad we humans have to spend a third of our lives asleep.
What do you typically offer at your booth at SDCC? Are there typically any exclusive items?
We have our own books, prints, t-shirts, and lapel pins. We do have some prints and postcards that are only available at our table in Artists Alley, CC-01.
What other uses have people found for your designs?
Several fans have shown us their tatoos based on my work, it's just about the most flattering tribute you can have as an artist. There is one fellow who is building a full scale articulated replica of my Victorian robot Boilerplate. That blows my mind!
Connecting with childhood obsessions. Getting Yvonne Craig's signature.
What is the best SDCC or convention moment you have had?
The time J.J. Abrams sneaked onto the convention floor exclusively to meet with me and Anina, so he could personally express his enthusiasm about making Boilerplate into a feature film. He then bee-lined out of there, leaving us jaw-dropped.
How do we find you online?
We, and Boilerplate, have pages on Facebook. My Twitter handle is @Boilerplate1893, and Anina's is @BigRedHair. Check our news feeds for info on our SDCC panel appearances.
Here's hoping many of you will have the chance to stop by and meet Paul!