When people ask professionals how to break into comics, the most oft-given answer is that you shouldn’t wait for someone to give you ‘approval’ to do comics; you should just do it. Artist Tradd Moore is doing just that with The Strange Talent of Luther Strode (with writer Justin Jordan). Now as he preps for a second Luther Strode series and possibly other big time gigs on the horizon, we’re deeming him the newest iFanboy Upstart.
Artist Tradd Moore comes from a Georgia town called Snellville whose motto is “Everybody’s somebody in Snellville.” In Moore’s case, he would find his calling in the world of comics — after putting in the time and earning a degree from the nearby Savannah College of Art and Design. After graduating in 2010, Moore set about joining fellow SCAD alums like Ross Campbell and M. Alice LeGrow in comics and started it off drawing a short for the small press anthology Bizarre New World. After doing that short, Tradd hooked up with fellow young comics talent Justin Jordan, who had spent years working in the fringes of comics. Together, they honed the thing that would break them both through the glass ceiling and into mainstream comics: The Strange Talent of Luther Stode.
The duo finished the first miniseries earlier in 2012 and are already planning a sequel to debut this December. Jordan has become a hot talent for other publishers, with Valiant bringing him in for Shadowman and DC for Team 7, and iFanboy has confirmed that Tradd Moore has been in talks with Marvel to do some work with them in the future. Moore’s style gives me the feathered-ness of Walter Simonson’s work during the original Thor run, but combined with a much deeper emphasis on detail and patterns. Readers of Luther Strode can see his heroes don’t pull any punches and are all about the knock-down, drag-out blood-soaked fighting similar to Cory Walker and Ryan Ottley’s work on Invincible. It continually shocks me when I realize Tradd’s only done six issues of professionally-done comics in his life; his skills on the page seem like someone who is several years into the field, and comparing his first issue of Luther Strode to the last you can see him evolving even then.
Here is a sampling of Moore’s work, including a set of X-Men pages Moore did as a test for Marvel.