WC: What inspires your work of art?
MS: Well, first of all I”m inspired by the authors that make comics thinking at the most important part of the comics: the storytelling. The second thing that inspire me is the movies. I really love the ones that can give to you the feeling that you are watching a movie, when you read a comic.
WC: How would you describe your style?
MS: It”s hard describe your own style but I”d say that my style in full evolution , trying to be quite synthetic in the chiaroscuro, realistic but not too much and dynamic. At least, it”s what I try to do!
WC: You”ve started working as a comic artist from a very young age and your first break was at the age of 20. How would you describe your working career until now? Can you mention some ups and downs you”ve had over the years?
MS: Honestly? I can just say that my career it has been always an “ups”, in my way to see the things. I made a lot of things, characters and publishers. I”m really proud that my work is shared by three different publishers until now ( Bonelli, Marvel and Soleil). Every time I had make a change of direction, or most of the time, it was for my choose and at the end I”m exactly where I want to be now. Even if I got some difficult moments in some periods, at the end, I think that those moments took me to a new evolution of my style and to new works. And expecially in the last three years I got the greatest satisfations of my life, working on Spider-man for Marvel comics and creating a my own character with Soleil.
WC: What would you suggest to young artists who are searching for their own big break into the comic industry?
MS: I suggest to be strong, focused on what they want to get. This work is beautyfull but before arriving at the satisfactions, you have to deal with a long path of refuses and critics. And they should always remember that the skills in drawing is not the only important thing. In this field, just like in the nature, there is a natural selection and whoever stops at the first “no” is not adapt to make this work. Instead, if you use the critics like a way to improve you skills… you hit the jackpot!
WC: With Sergio Bonelli Publishing house, you”ve worked on a variety of titles starting from the series “Mister No” to “Tex”. The latter is a popular title, especially in Italy, and is found in all bookshops across the peninsula. How much does it mean to you to have worked on such a character?
MS: Doing Tex have been a strong experience. It”s a character with a reeeaally long story and with a huge audience. So when you work on it you have to respect the tradition of this character and you can”t make whatever you want. It have been hard, but at the end I think it has given to me a “push” to improve more and more my skills and make the final jump I needed. Make my inks by myself and try other kind of works
WC: You”ve also recently worked with Marvel Comics. Do you think that there is a particular difference when you work with local publishing houses compared to an international label such as Marvel?
MS: Well, the strange thing of working with Marvel comics ( fantastic experience) is that I never met the people I worked with… and neither heard their voices until I”ve been in NY on 2009. It was weird. Quite unpersonal. But working on characters like Spider-man and Captain America it”s always incredible!
WC: Your latest work is on the project called “La Mandragore” for the French publishing house “Soleil”. What enticed you to work on such a series? What can you tell us about it?
MS: Working on La Mandragore it”s the newest experience in my work: working on French comics! Like working for Bonelli is different from Marvel approach, working on Bds it”s a totally new and exciting experience. The attention about all the steps they have, from the layout to the pencils, to the inking it”s incredible. But I can say without doubt that “La Mandragore” is the most complex project I worked on, graphically speaking.
WC: Besides creating comics you also teach at the International School of Comics in Florence. What made you venture into teaching?
MS: I”d say the strong experience of communicate what you know to another person. The most of the times it doesn”t happen but when you find someone really interested in doing this work it”s a great experience see the evolution of this young authors. So, in the latest period I prefer use the small free time I got , to teach to less people but just to the ones that have a really great desire in making this work!
WC: You visit a lot of conventions during the year, especially in Italy. Is the Malta Comic Con the first convention you”re visiting outside Italy? What attracted you to this convention and what are your expectations?
MS: Yeah, I made a lot of convention in Italy. It”s a great moment meeting the readers and speaking with them. It”s something that usually you can”t have when you work alone in your studio! Malta is the first ( and I hope not the last!!! :D ) convention that invite me outside Italy. And I couldn”t be more grateful of your invite. Because, for an author, I think this is one of the biggest way to say to him: “Hey, we really like your work”. So I”m really happy and proud to be there with you. I expect and hope to meet many people and speak with them. I think it will be a great experience, really!
WC: What projects are you working on at the moment and what can you tell us about them?
MS: Well, in this period I”m working “only” on Dampyr for Sergio Bonelli Publishings. I”m going to finish this story around January. After that, I should work on the second volume of “La Mandragore”!!!
WC: Would you like to add something else?
MC: I”m looking forward to meet you all in Malta!