Erica Henderson talks THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL at New York Comic Con 2017. Henderson discusses her interest in Squirrel Girl before the series began and her favorite Squirrel Girl moments.

This transcript has been edited for clarity.


ComicsVerse: So, Erica, thank you so much for taking the time to speak with us again. We interviewed you last year and we had a really great time. So, we really appreciate that you’re taking the time again to speak with us. How are you liking the con so far?

Ericka Henderson: I love New York. I’m back every year, always here.

CV: We’re loving the vibe here. Tell us a little bit about your background.

EH: I actually went to school for film and animation. Then, when I graduated, I worked at some video game companies. First, I was doing video editing. Then, just art for games. Then, I actually went freelance and did more illustration and comics.

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CV: Awesome. Were you a fan of Squirrel Girl before you were asked to do the art for her series?

EH: I knew who the character was but there wasn’t that much out there about her. There were only a few little things. I wasn’t a huge fan because there wasn’t a lot for me to look at.

CV: I think that’s why it’s great that she has her own series now. It’s also giving others the opportunity to get to know more about who she is as a person.

EH: That made it more fun for us because there was a little bit to work off of, but also we got to decide a lot of what she was and who she is. We had almost a blank slate, just a little bit, and then we could build on that.

CV: Absolutely. What are your favorite Squirrel Girl moments that you really enjoyed illustrating?

EH: I’m not going to say exactly what it is because people haven’t read it, but the conclusion of the graphic novel. That was something that I think I’ve been arguing should happen for a long time, and it happened. I was like, “Yes!” Also, there are just a few times where I have fun with it. Early on, Ryan and I talked about how I could change stuff in the script as long as the story’s intact. As long as I didn’t mess anything with how the story plays out, it was fine.

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EH: So, I knew action stuff [they] put in; it could be changed. I feel like I always change it. Those are always fun to figure out, how it should look, and what it should be. There are times when I get caught up with really silly technical things like he keeps writing and people should at a three-point landing, but it’s really bad for your knees. So, I would figure out how things work. Those are always really fun to do.

CV: Do you prefer doing art the old-school way or do you prefer doing it digitally, or do you do both?

EH: When I first started, I was drawing SQUIRREL GIRL completely digitally. That was the first three issues. But even starting with the covers, I was inking them traditionally. After that, I was drawing them digitally, printing it out, and then inking it. Now, I’m just all traditional. I’m slowly moving away and doing more.

EH: I think a lot of it just has to do with confidence. Part of it’s just — we get a lot of practice drawing a full comic every single month. You get better at it because you’re doing it so much. The confidence comes with the practice. It comes hand-in-hand. I like working traditionally. I think it works better for me. I actually feel like I work better when I use traditional tools.

CV: That’s really interesting to know. If you had to describe what makes your art different from others in three words, what would those three words be?

EH: Expression, energy, and simplicity.

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CV: Great. I like that answer. Are there any upcoming projects that you’re working on? Or maybe you can also talk about past projects that you’re extremely proud of.

EH: I was really happy to work on the JUGHEAD book with Chip. That was great. It was such a bucket list thing for me, this thing for Archie. Jughead was my favorite character. Jughead was also Chip’s favorite character. I was excited to work with Chip, even. That was great. I loved doing that.

EH: As for upcoming, the year before I did JUGHEAD, I did graphic novels and SQUIRREL GIRL. For the past year, I’ve been taking a break by only doing SQUIRREL GIRL. I’m talking to a lot of people and I have a few things that I’m building up, but nothing’s quite at a place where I can talk about it, yet. But, they’re coming up.

CV: Sounds really exciting. Thank you so much for taking the time to speak with us. We really hope that you enjoy the rest of the time.

EH: Thank you. I’ve had a great time.

CV: Thank you.

Want More New York Comic Con News? Be sure to subscribe to ComicsVerse.com. I’m Anika Hossain, that was THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL, and we’ll see you next time.

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