TFAW Interviews: MASK’s Jae Lee

by Jeff

via The Blog From Another World

Masks01CovLee TFAW Interviews: MASK's Jae LeeDynamite’s Masks brings classic pulp fiction characters — like Green Hornet, Zorro, and The Shadow — together, but it’s also bringing some excellent cover artists together as well: Masks #1 ships randomly with four different covers by Alex Ross, Francesco Francavilla, Ardian Syaf, and Jae Lee!

As part of Behind the Masks, we chatted with superstar artist Jae Lee, who has dazzled fans with his work on the Dark Tower and Before Watchmen: Ozymandias series, about the secrets behind his Masks cover, how he approaches his work, and more! What is your personal history with the characters of Masks? Were you a fan?

Jae Lee: Aside from the Shadow and Green Hornet, I wasn’t familiar with the others. It’s great that Dynamite can bring awareness of these great characters that had long been buried in the sands of time and give new life to them. They deserve it. Your cover for Masks is eerie–it really emphasizes the masks themselves over the individuality of the characters. What was your thought process behind this piece?

JL: I wanted to create a nightmare vision of them. What criminals dream of when they sleep their unjust sleep. Imagine these guys bearing down on you. Do you have a favorite pulp fiction character?

JL: The Shadow. Without him, I doubt the long flowing cape would ever have come into play. He’s left an incredible visual legacy that we all follow to this day.

sep120970 TFAW Interviews: MASK's Jae Who were your favorite artists, growing up?

JL: Growing up, it would be John Byrne and Mike Zeck. Those were the best times. What are some of the major milestones of your career?

JL: Any time I can land a new project, I consider that a milestone. Who or what haven’t you drawn yet that you’d love to tackle?

JL: Superman would be up there. It goes against my style, but I’d like the challenge and it would inspire me to draw in a way I’ve never drawn before. What do you think is the hallmark of a successful cover?

JL: It has to stand out against the sea of hundreds of other covers trying to do the same thing. It has to be interesting and appealing enough that it would make someone want to pick it up and take a look inside. How do you approach covers? What elements do you focus on?

JL: I try to create a self contained image that conveys as of the story as possible, and yet will look good enough on its own out of context. And then I want it to be as pretty as possible. What comics are you reading right now?

JL: Right now, I’m a happy passenger on the Snyder bandwagon. I love what he’s doing with Batman. Jeff Lemire’s Animal Man is also wonderful. What’s next for you?

JL: Nothing concrete yet. I’m still wrapping up [Before Watchmen:] Ozymandias.

Our thanks to Jae Lee for the interview! Remember to pre-order Masks #1 now and save 20%. Plus, make sure to check out our special Masks #1 Retailer Exclusive Variant, a steal at $1.99, a 50% discount!

arrow_right_sm TFAW Interviews: MASK's Jae Lee PRE-ORDER MASKS AND SAVE 20%


Are you excited for Masks? What classic pulp heroes are you hoping to see?

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