10 Questions with VANISH colorist Sonia Oback!
11 actually... that last one doesn't count.
The VANISH creative team has another member!
Colorist Sonia Oback joins powerhouses Donny Cates (writer), Ryan Stegman (pencils), JP Mayer (inks) & John J. Hill (letters & design) to bring the story of Oliver Harrison and Baron Vanish to life. Sonia has worked with the fine folks at DC Comics, Top Cow and Marvel Comics (with our very own Mr. Stegman on the hit series Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows!), and now brings her incredible stylings to KLC Press’ biggest project. Get to know Sonia with this interview and keep your eyes on this very Substack to be among the first to see her amazing colors fill the pages of VANISH!
***Note you’ll all get a first look at three of VANISH #1’s pages fully colored for the very first time, right here!***
01: Can you give us a little background on how you became a colorist? What was your very first job as a colorist?
Sonia Oback: When I was 18 or 19, I saw an ad in Wizard Magazine for a contest with Top Cow. They were picking one penciller, inker, and colorist to come to LA for a six month internship. I was selected as one of the winners and got to learn in person about the business, going to the studio every day back when an in person bullpen was still a thing. My first real coloring job was on a fun collaboration with a video game company for their online multiplayer game, City of Heroes.
02: How much do you feel your style has evolved since you broke into the industry?
Sonia: When I first broke in, color tended towards a more splashy look with a lot of grad/cuts. I've always been a fan of classical painting, so I tried to incorporate some of those elements into my work. I've also tried to learn from other mediums such as film and animation and how they use color and light to tell a story.
03: Who are YOUR favorite colorists?
Sonia: I'd love to call out some of the colorists who inspired me getting into the business - Christina Strain, Laura Martin, Peter Steigarwald... They all had such a wonderful grasp of color and creatively pushed the boundaries of what you could do with every page.
04: What issue or run on a title are you most proud of and why?
Sonia: My Han Solo run was pretty amazing to be a part of. The little kid inside of me still can't believe I was a part of Star Wars history.
05: How did you come to join the VANISH team?
Sonia: Ryan reached out to ask me if I would join up and after having such a blast with him working at Marvel, it was a no brainer!
06: You’re still early into working on VANISH. Has anything in Donny’s script or Ryan and JP’s art been challenging so far, or required you to do anything differently than you normally do?
Sonia: With all the magical energy, I've been enjoying the challenge of keeping those effects both something you can tell apart with each character, while still keeping an overall harmonious tone to the book.
07: How would you describe the color “tone” of VANISH?
Sonia: Something totally different than I've done before - ha ha! I hope everyone enjoys it!
08: We’re big fans of your work at the big two, particularly your previous team-up with Mr. Stegman on the Spidey series Renew Your Vows. What’s the difference in your initial approach to a book at the big two vs. an indie book like VANISH?
Sonia: With the big two, you can't be quite as creative since everything like hair color and outfit design is usually pre-established. You also can't go too gory or crazy with what's on the page. And that's still awesome because working on books like Spidey is such an honor - and Ryan did such a fantastic job bringing him to life. But with an indie book, we can try more things creatively since there is no format to follow.
09: As a colorist, what excites you the most about a new project going into it?
Sonia: Getting to know the characters and creating palettes for each new location.
10: Have you found any color influences for Vanish from OTHER media involving magic and chosen ones and schools for children with powers? Like… X-Men?
Sonia: Ha ha! I grew up on X-Men and I 100% have them in the back of my mind at all times.
BONUS: Ryan DEFINITELY didn’t make us ask this next one: Why is Ryan the best artist in the world and how is it possible for your colors to make him look even better?
Sonia: Honestly, I don't think he needs anyone to make him look better since he's already killing it! I'm just happy to be along for the ride!
Kids Love Chains. And we love you.