When Elias Chatzoudis first saw Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, and more specifically, the way Jessica Rabbit’s curves popped off the screen, he knew what he wanted to do with his life.
He had dabbled with drawing growing up, but it was that glimpse into the world of capturing the female form in a cartoon/ comic book way set forth by the 1988 cinematic classic that put him on a path to becoming quite well-known on the comic book cover scene.
But it took a move to the U.S. before his dream of drawing the likes of Snow White, Harley Quinn and Wonder Woman became a reality – at least one that can be considered a career.
You see, Chatzoudis was born and raised in Greece. He started his career as an advertising illustrator – doing his drawings on the side and posting them online.
Back in 2006, after someone over here caught a glimpse of what Chatzoudis was creating, he started working with some comic companies to create covers.
“When I was home, I did some pinup girls inspired by someone I saw on the internet,” he said.
Unfortunately for Chatzoudis, there isn’t a very big comic book industry in Greece, and all of his clients were on this side of the Atlantic.
“This industry is here,” he said. “The opportunities would be bigger for me.”
He first came to the U.S. in 2012 during a trip to New York Comic Con and knew he had to be closer to his work.
“That moment, I realized I had some fans over here,” Chatzoudis said. “I knew I had some fans, but it’s different when you can meet them.”
He again came to America in 2013 for San Diego Comic Con and found a similar response at his event table. That’s also where he met his agent.
So he decided to make a major move, first settling in Massachusetts, close to his agent and Boston, before making his way to Concord. At first, it was because the Granite State doesn’t have any income tax, but soon he realized that it’s a pretty great place to live.
“I’m very happy here because Concord is a beautiful city,” Chatzoudis said.
Now, if you’ve never been to Comic Con in Boston, New York or San Diego, it’s quite the destination, from what we hear. The conventions are for the biggest and most dedicated fans.
But don’t worry, there’s also a Granite State Comic Con, and it just so happens to be going on this weekend at the Radisson Center in Manchester. And Chatzoudis will be there as a featured guest.
Some may look at a portion of Chatzoudis’s work and think that it depicts women as sexual objects, but Chatzoudis has another way of looking at it.
“Sexy with a sense of class – to be elegant. That’s my style,” he said. “You can recognize my art.”
Sure, there is a sense of sex appeal with his work that he classifies as pinup, but it’s what he enjoys to draw. And judging by the fact that he sells quite a bit of his work, has a steady flow of jobs for comic book covers and is quite popular on social media, it shows there is a following for it.
And if you look at the detail in his work, you can see how much work he puts into one piece.
His clients will come to him with an idea for a cover, and then it’s up to Chatzoudis to portray the story.
“I know how I like it to go,” he said.
He just does covers, which is quite common in this line of work. It’s not too often that one artist will do the cover and all the inside drawings for a single comic.
Once Chatzoudis has the idea laid out, he sits down at his home drawing table and sketches it out in pencil. From there, he uses ink to create the final draft.
On some occasions, he uses markers to color his work, but mostly he will scan it into his computer and use a program to color it. To say the least, it’s quite a lengthy process, which is why he only takes on one project at a time.
If you like what you see on these pages, you should definitely check Chatzoudis out across many social media platforms. It will give you a much better look at his work.
He has also created books of his work, as well as stickers.
For more, visit eliaschatzoudis.com and facebook.com/EliasChatzoudisDesign.