Today Black Ship Books had the opportunity to pick the brain of Star Wars fan and creator of Fuerza 7, David Soto Brown! David is a teacher from Palma de Mallorca who doubles as a comic artist in his spare time. In addition to making comics, David also enjoys participating in the martial arts, painting, and playing RPGs.
Black Ship Books: Superheroes dominate the comic book industry, and most recently the movie industry. What sets the heroes of Fuerza 7 apart from other superhero teams?
David Soto Brown: The Fuerza 7 strike force works as a law enforcement metahuman group designed to catch metahuman criminals. It would be like a special police task force for metahumans and formed by metahumans. In the future, metahumans are obligated to put their supernatural abilities at the service of society or be condemned to have their powers neutralized by an inhibitor chip, in order as not to put society at an unnecessary risk, which raises a number of cumbersome questions about Fuerza 7, since on the one hand they are protecting people, but on the other hand they are “oppressors” who are hunting their own people.
BSB: How was Fuerza 7 conceived and who else helped inspire you and develop this series?
DSB: I have always loved science fiction stories such as Blade Runner, Total Recall, etc…and superhero comics, so my idea was to create a possible future where supernatural abilities could have been developed through technological advancements in order to create biological weapons for times of war, although once the conflict had finished they would have to be ceased, which would bring us to the “present” moment.
BSB: Some of the characters seem to share qualities of some popular Marvel superheroes. Was Marvel always a major influence to you as an artist?
DSB: With no shadow of a doubt. I believe it´s something pretty obvious. I grew up reading Marvel comics, so the influence is quite clear. I must admit that many of the characters are based on stereotyped popular superheroes, such as Superman, Iron Man, Storm, Batman, Wolverine, etc., but with certain differences. And many others are completely of my own creation. All of them shaped to fit in this sci-fi background.
BSB: You’ve recently completed the Fuerza 7 series, but are there any spinoffs planned for the future or do you think you may translate it into some other medium?
DSB: To make a long story short, I will just reveal that the Fuerza 7 comic is just a part of a larger story. It is a saga which is divided into five ongoing stories linked by a common character who is involved in all five stories. I have all the scripts written and the character designs done, I would love to continue with the story, but the fact is that I am not a professional artist, which is quite a drawback in this case, since this kind of project needs a lot of investment both personally and economically. So now that the job is done it is a matter of what happens next.
BSB: Do you plan on developing any other superhero series or do you plan on branching off into some other genres?
DSB: Well, as I previously said, it all depends on how Fuerza 7 works. But yes, if it continues, it will branch off into some other genres.
BSB: This is probably a common question in these types of interviews, but I will ask it anyway: what 3 superpowers would you want if you could have any and would you be a hero or villain?
DSB: Hmm, the Force, flying and weather control; and hero.
BSB: As mentioned before, the industry is dominated by superheroes, so how do you craft a story or character that hasn’t already been done before?
DSB: Well that´s a difficult one, because we always based our ideas on previous experiences and knowledge, so our creations are the result of an evolution of past experiences. In this case, there is a character who possesses a God-like ancient power within him which represents the balance of nature, the issue is that despite being one of the goodies he represents a threat to what humans consider “balance”, so this character becomes an unwilling prosecuted outlaw.
DSB: Anything that allows me to continue with my project will do. Working with the “Big Two” is a huge opportunity for any artist to become well-known and paid, nevertheless, I would rather continue with my project despite the fact that I actually need the support that these kinds of companies can provide to the artist in terms of distribution, promo, contacts, income, etc…
BSB: Since the completion of Fuerza 7, how do you think you’ve grown as an artist/creator?
DSB: Hmmm, I am completely satisfied with my progress as an artist. Carrying out a huge project like this with only the collaboration of Mike Rickaby and his son Benjamin as letterers, has proven to me that I can do it despite all the drawbacks of this art. If you have been able to see some of my previous art, you will probably be shocked by the difference in style. I spent many years drawing manga style, and it was only a few years ago that I changed my style into noir style to develop a more personal style. Fuerza 7 has given me the chance to develop a new set of tools.
BSB: When it comes to reading a new indy comic series, what are two things that influence your decision to give it a chance?
DSB: Graphic narrative and style. In my opinion, comics are far more than just cool drawings and bright colors, it is about storytelling. The artist provides a personal point of view of the story with his/her visual narrative and aesthetic, which turns the story into something more, it is an opinion, a way of being and understanding things. The more experienced the artist is, the easier it becomes for him/her to communicate and catch the reader´s attention.
Thank you so much David for all of your wisdom! For those of you who want more of David and Fuerza 7, you can find some of David’s work on the website: http://www.bubok.es/libros/196685/Sistema-D10-ZERO
David, who is a black belt in Aikido and karate, also has a professional book about Aikido written in Spanish that you can find here: