An Interview with Kim DeMulder
In late 2004, I contacted Nick Fury Vs SHIELD and Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD (2) inker Kim DeMulder. What follows is short interview via email about his work on the series. Humberto M. Ferre'


How did you get your start in comics?

I always loved reading comics and also loved drawing, so I eventually enrolled at the Joe Kubert School of Comic Art. After spending two years there (way back in 1977-1979!), I started working as a comic book inker, first for DC comics and then for Marvel and several others.

Who are your artistic influences? Favorite artists?

Oh, the usual lot...Frank Frazetta, Alex Raymond, Hal Foster, Al Williamson, Stan Drake, Jeff Jones, Bernie Wrightson, Joe Kubert, Jim Steranko, Rowena, Alberto Vargas, Gil Elvgren, Sorayama, Heinrich Kley, Franklin Booth, Charles Dana Gibson, James Montgomery Flagg, Howard Pyle, N.C. Wyeth, Maxfield Parrish, Joseph Clement Coll, Virgil Finlay, the Pre-Raphaelites, Lawrence Alma Tadema, Alphonse Mucha, the Hudson River Painters. . . especially Frederick Church, Thomas Moran, Thomas Cole, Alfred Bierstadt, etc., etc. . . as I said, just the usual few!


Were you a Nick Fury/SHIELD fan before working on the series?

I first became aware of Nick Fury when Jim Steranko was penciling it, back in the late 60’s. I was swept up with all the secret agent craze (James Bond, The Flint movies, Matt Helm, Man From Uncle, even Get Smart!) at that time and just loved this new Marvel take on these guys! And I found that Steranko’s psychedelic look was just too cool…as we might have said back then, “it was uptight and outta sight!

She-Hulk Graphic Novel, featuring inks by Kim DeMulder

How did you come on board the Nick Fury Vs SHIELD mini?

I had just completed a run on the Defenders as inker and was looking for a new assignment. First, the She Hulk graphic novel was offered to me and then the Nick Fury series was also offered to me. Nick Fury picked up where the She Hulk Graphic Novel. left off, so I guess Marvel must have thought it a good idea to retain the same inker for continuity. The Nick Fury series was originally planned as a twelve issue maxi comic book series, but it was later changed to the 6 issue mini square-bound series.

Unused cover for Nick Fury Vs SHIELD #1

Was it always the plan to follow up the mini with the regular series and did you agree to do the both at the same time?

Actually, the decision to do the regular series only came after Marvel saw the sales figures for the mini! That was after the first few issues of the mini had come out and was selling quite well. At that time Marvel offered the regular book to me to ink and I jumped on it!


You worked with four different pencillers, Paul Neary, Bob Hall, Keith Pollard, and Michael Bair; any thoughts on working with them and adjusting to their different styles?

I enjoyed working with all of them! Each was quite different from one another and that provided some extra interest right there. Keith Pollard was doing breakdowns, so I had more leeway to do some of the things that I wanted to do. Michael Bair apparently didn’t like that I had made a couple of changes to some of the women. I’m very picky about rendering pretty women and will make a change, if I think I can make them better. But, I think I enjoyed working with Paul Neary the most. We seemed to mesh well together.


Any particular issue or issues that stands out in your memory; for better or worse?

Hmmm…let me see. I do remember a panel in the Nick Fury vs Shield series, where there were a number of guys standing around Nick (I think) in an overhead shot. They were blasting him with ray guns. So I spelled out a secret message in the guns’ blasts. If you read around the circle of blasts, you can make out “Thank you Jim Steranko” (see below). There were a bunch of other little comic “games” I hid in those issues, if you look for them!

Notice, from lower left to upper right "Thank You Jim Steranko"- Nick Fury Vs SHIELD #6

Among the roster of SHIELD agents listed on screen are, inkers Kim DeMulder, Gregory Wright, and Lee Weeks - Nick Fury Vs SHIELD #4

The coloring on some of the early issues seems to be somewhat off, were there any art problems that you recall from the time?

Let’s see if I can remember what was happening at that time. Marvel was experimenting with some other printing processes, but I don’t remember any problems with the Nick Fury books.

I do remember adding a number of color hold psychedelic effects. This was before the use of computers, so we had to do overlays if we wanted something printed with color only instead of black lines. There was one splash page in Nick Fury vs Shield where I had six different overlays for color effects!

There was also a delay in the scheduling after we had finished the first issue. That’s when the decision came to change the format to the mini series. But by the time we got back to work on it, a few changes had occurred in the Marvel universe. So we had to make a few changes to what we had already done. For example, we had to redo a sequence that involved the Avengers, because their membership had changed (as it always seems to!)

What are your current projects?

Lately, I have been creating and marketing my own images done in full painted color and in black and white. When I first started doing comics, it was never my intention to spend my whole life doing only comics. Although, I love them and always want to be involved in the art to some degree, I have always wanted to do full color paintings of my own. Not just illustrations, but my own stuff. I am marketing them from my website, and by going to numerous conventions all over the country. Check my website to see the all my latest art!


A big thanks to Kim DeMulder for taking time to do this interview!