David Finch, the artist who drew Batman’s proposal

  • Books
  • Tuesday, 18 Sep 2018

David Finch

Vicki Vale, Vesper Fairchild, Jezebel Jet, Kathy Kane and Julie Madison have all tried and failed.

Trust Selina Kyle (a.k.a Catwoman) to be the one to steal Batman’s heart, get him to go down on bended nee to propose to Selina (Batman #24).

The eventual wedding itself may not have turned out as we hoped (long story short: she left him at the altar), but it’s hard to argue that that proposal scene by superstar artist David Finch was arguably the most significant moment in present day Batman-mythos.

Finch, who was one of the guests at the recent 2018 Singapore Toys and Games Comic Convention (STGCC), has worked for Top Cow (Ascension, Cyberforce), Marvel (Avengers, Moon Knight) and DC Comics (Wonder Woman, Batman) and is renowned for his trademark kinetic-laced art.

His love for comics came early – having hit rock bottom after dropping out of high school, he discovered his calling through his sister’s stash of Uncanny X-Men comics!

And that’s not all – his sister also happens to be a huge fan of (then X-Men artist) Marc Silvestri, who later turned out to be Finch’s first boss, as well as the man who gave him that career breakthrough during his Top Cow stint.

We met up with Finch during STGCC for a lowdown on his career and future plans.

Finch was one of the guests at the recent Singapore Toys and Games Comic Convention (STGCC).

How did your sister react when she first found out you work for Marc Silvestri?

Initially she was very upset, because she was the big comic fan while I never read comics nor gave them a chance! I came into comics late, but then made it my whole life. Anyway, she is cool with how things turned out now and she has kids who are great comic fans. I just bring them back autographed stuff from conventions!

She is a big Marc fan but she is an even bigger fan of Alan Davis and so I managed to get her a piece of his original art, which I gave to her as a birthday present. I would love to say that I am her favourite artist but that is certainly not true!

After Top Cow, Marvel and now DC – how has your artistic style evolved?

I started off trying to draw like Marc (he served as an art assistant in those early days). Then, I did backgrounds and gradually moved into my own world.

Eventually, I moved on by looking at other influences such as Simon Bisley, Mike Mignola, Travis Charest and the Kubert Brothers. I slowly learned from them, and in places, I fell short of what they were doing, I created my own style.

Now, I spend a good half-an-hour everyday brushing up, relearning fundamentals, and making sure that I will be drawing for a long time. I am only 46 and I want to keep on contributing.

Finch says he would love to go back to the character of Moon Knight in the future.

What past projects are you the most proud of?

Moon Knight (which Finch pencilled nine issues for in 2006) is one of my favourite artistic projects and I consider it the height of my Marvel stint.

On the other hand, Cyberforce is one of the most humbling books I worked on, and it was very emotional for me (as it was my first work) but fortunately I came out of it stronger.

Ascension was the first time I wrote a bit and had a little bit of following and I had to kind of separate myself a bit. With DC, I am proud of the Wonder Woman I did with my wife, Meredith.

And of course Batman, where I had the chance to draw and write (on The Dark Knight series), as well as collaborate with great writers.

David Finch worked on Wonder Woman with his wife Meredith a few years ago.
David Finch worked on Wonder Woman with his wife Meredith a few years ago.

What else can we expect from you?

I’ve done a (recent) variant cover for Moon Knight ... and yes, there is a possibility that I will be doing the interiors. We are not directly talking about it right now BUT I would love to do (Moon Knight again) and would not pass the opportunity.

I am also doing a creator-owned work for Image Comics now and it’s gonna be my best work ever. I can’t talk much about it now, so stay tuned.

What would you do to boost the comics industry, if you were in that position?

I would start promoting artists. It’s not something that is happening now and sales are driven by art.

Look, this is not me downing writers but I think the thing that has made the difference between the comic industry today and 20 years ago is we didn’t have great writing then.

That means you might get people to buy an issue #1 and then they wouldn’t stick with it and there is nothing there for them. Ultimately it is a dead end. The fact that we have such great writers, it’s what made it possible for us to have the movies and a respectable industry.

Finch calls Cyberforce one of the most humbling books he has worked on.
Finch calls Cyberforce one of the most humbling books he has worked on.

I think the writers deserve all the attention they are getting, but artists have not been given their dues for a little while. If you want to drive sales, you have to do it with something obvious to the reader that they can just see instantly, like the Punisher’s T-shirt. I can see that, I love it and it’s awesome and that drives sales!

It’s a proven marketing (tactic) and that is something that is missing right now.

What’s your take on Batman #50? Should the Bat and the Cat have wed?

I provided a page (for that issue), but frankly I haven’t read it yet. I heard about the backlash towards Tom King. I think people would be very happy if they got married and disappointed that they didn’t.

But I have been doing this job for a long time and I have learned that ... sometimes if you give fans what they want, its not necessarily what they actually wanted. We need the drama, the unexpected, which I think Tom certainly gave them. He’s taking a lot of heat for that but I’m sure he knows what he is doing.

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