Please give a warm welcome to my fabulous friend, artist and author Dani Smith
Tell us a bit about yourself
I’m an illustrator and book cover designer focusing on fantasy, horror, and romance themes. I have been creating and publishing my own comics and novels through my boutique publishing and art business, QuickDraw Studios, since 2010. I have been on Top 100 Bestseller lists numerous times, outselling select issues of titles like Hellboy, The Walking Dead, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer in digital format.
I currently am at work with my husband and partner, Alex Julian, on numerous novel and comic projects that are projected for publication in the next year. We live in a little white cottage in San Diego, CA. with our boy Ryker, a terrier mix named Arrow, a fat guinea pig named Freckles, and a sassy black cat named Gabe the Prince of Darkness. Our house is full of murals, nude and pinup art, and rock n’ roll. We are the all-American family. 😉
Have you always wanted to become a designer/blogger?
I knew I was an artist from toddlerhood. I never questioned it, though that may not be the popular or “right” thing to do according to the society in which I live. Sometimes you are just born who you are meant to be in a straightforward fashion, no questions asked. I got into book cover illustration during my 2011 pregnancy with my son, and I have enjoyed it ever since.
My favorite book cover projects are illustrated, though I have also created covers using stock photos for authors, if this is requested. I also love doing interior illustration and character design for authors in the romance, fantasy, sci-fi, and horror genres.
What was your inspiration for your current work?
I have always been inspired by folklore, anthropology, fairy tales, film, and music. Lately I have been creating personal works for my Instagram, @daniquickdraw, that reflect my favorite popular characters or portray Instagram models that I find creatively alluring. These personal works have been immensely popular.
What are you working on now?
I am always working on the next comic book project, most recently the next issue of my bestselling Black Dog and Rebel Rose series, and two illustrated novels, ASYLUM and SHALE CITY. You can see examples of work done for these on my Instagram and Facebook pages fairly regularly.
Do you have any quirks while working?
I love to go “sideways”—that is, I drink strong coffee while also drinking a glass of wine or champagne. The alcohol relaxes me while the caffeine stimulates my creative brain and gets the juices flowing. It’s a really great combination. I love to listen to folklore, true crime, and anthropology podcasts while painting, as well as indie soundtracks on YouTube that fit whatever project I am working on at the moment.
What are your hopes for the future?
I currently have a live action film option on the table in Los Angeles for my most popular comic series, Black Dog and Rebel Rose. It has been a long time in the works, and we have had a few hurdles to jump over as time has gone by, which seems to be a fait accompli for indie films. But I remain hopeful that the project will pan out and be a success. Most recently, my producers are planning to film a teaser trailer featuring the five major characters that will be launched worldwide to promote the funding of the project.
Do you have any advice for new designers about the author world?
Make sure your work is top-notch in quality. Try to stand out from the crowd—discover what is unique about your work and focus on that. Let your light shine and the right folks will find you.
Do you have anything to say to your followers?
I love every single one of you. Without my fans and supporters, I would be nowhere.
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