Note: After an inbox full of submissions including some from professional comics artists, frequent P:R contributor Kris Anka stepped forward and claimed the title of First Place in our Invincible: Viltrumite Vogue Redesign Contest. Anka is a Los Angeles-baed artist who works for Sideshow Collectibles, but recently launched his comic career doing the final issue of Invincible spin-off Guardians of the Globe and currently does covers for Marvel’s New Mutants. I caught up with the artist after the winners were announced to try to get inside his head and see how he came to this remarkable design. – Chris A.
Chris Arrant: Everyone’s seen your name here at Project: Rooftop before, but why’d you decide to do an entry into Invincible: Viltrumite Vogue?
Anka: I spend a lot of time sketching out redesigns of characters, it has sort of become a therapeutic exercise for me at this point, but when the contest came up, it was just hard to pass it up. I am both a fan of the comic and having a contest to do a redesign just made too much sense not to do.
Arrant: How’d you go about deciding what to do with your redesign of Invincible?
Anka: The first and foremost principle I adhere to when approaching a redesign is to respect the original concept of the character. So when I approached Invincible, I first went the route of trying to see how i would approach the costume in the comic. I sat on a design for a few weeks, and when I went back to it I felt that I was still too close to the original. I decided to throw out any notions of taking from the elements from the original, and I just kept the idea of the design, and just tried to reinvent it my way.
Arrant: For the color palette, many of our judges noted you went with a darker tone and made the blue a small incidental part of the design. Can you tell us about your coloring choices?
Anka: The general idea for my design was based off the current route of the character, so I went the more maturing interpretation of him. I felt the current colour scheme reflected a much more naive-optimistic nature than I wanted. I also feel like going with a blue scheme for a darker character is a bit done to death, so I went with the yellow and tried to make it work. As it developed, not having any blue in there made the design feel very un-Invincible, so I tried to implement it in just enough to not throw off my original intent, but also add enough so that it says “Invincible”.
Arrant: Changing up the mask is something many of our entrants did, but yours stands out without making him look “un-Invincible” as you say. How’d you come to do the design in the way you did there?
Anka: Honestly, I don’t remember giving it much of a thought to the mask. [laughs]
I guess i just tried to slim down the mask design to simplify it, but honestly i don’t remember.
Arrant: Now that you’ve had some time to think about your design since you turned it in a few months back, is there anything you’d do different now?
Anka:If i went back to this, I’d definitely try to work some more blue into the chest. I’m not sure about making the “I” blue, but something like that, definitely. As well as the gloves. I kind of have a soft spot for low forearm gloves so I would keep that idea, but just merge it all together with the other design styles. But overall, not really. Granted, I like this design, so it’s hard for me to see doing a different design for him.