November 20, 2010

All about Patrick Rolo

Superhero artist

Illustrator takes on comic book monsters and villains

By Stephanie Woodard
Throughout Indian country, people know of Patrick Rolo’s illustrations for the Eagle Books series from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC has distributed some two million of the children’s books, which help Native kids prevent diabetes by means of proper nutrition, exercise, and traditional beliefs.

But Rolo, Bad River Band of Ojibway, wears other hats as well–including newspaper and magazine illustrator, painter and comic book artist. He’s been a penciller (the person who draws the figures that’ll be colored in) for comics such as “Mortal Kombat,” “Iron Man” and, most recently, the “All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z.”

Rolo’s first comic was “Nightmare on Elm Street” in 1991. The self-trained artist was 23 and had been submitting his work to comic book editors and showing his portfolio at comic book convention talent searches. “I’d been getting rejections for a year-and-a-half, then this job came through. Looking back, I’d say my craft wasn’t really there yet, but I got the job on the strength of my storytelling ability.”

He worked on expanding his drawing skills and still does to this day. As a result, he can tackle any superhero that comes his way, along with jobs illustrating magazine and newspaper articles, sketching courtroom trials, and executing a set of large paintings for a casino restaurant. “To survive as an artist, you must be able to take on different types of work.”
Comment:  I'm not sure anyone's artwork is known "throughout Indian country." But congratulations to Rolo for his success...even if it means he's too busy to work on PEACE PARTY.

For more on the subject, see CDC Books at NYC Con and Through the Eyes of the Eagle.

Below:  "At New York City’s Comic Con in October, illustrator Patrick Rolo appeared with a cardboard cutout of Coyote, one of the animal protagonists in a new series of chapter books based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Eagle Books." (Stephanie Woodard)

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