Armando: Please breakdown the creative process of your Comic Book series “Samurai Shin”. How long did it take to complete and do you guys have any plans to release more?
Ivan Aguilar: We have tried several approaches to get our creative juices flowing, There would be days where Mikel would sent me a list of movies,mostly animation for me to watch and just try to get the feel or essence of these films, and somehow incorporate that into my illustrations or in the way I do the panelling and stuff. I would also spend some time reading a bit of japanese history as well,and try to get the costumes and the look of the era as real as I can portray them in drawing. But mostly, Me and Mikel would just be shooting out ideas and try to mold into this world and give it more depth and shape. It is still evolving and growing, and the spontaneity of our interactions is the key that would make this one unique and really out there.
Armando: Who are your Hip Hop influences?
Mikel Miles: Well, Armando, this soundtrack was heavily influenced by the “samurai champloo” soundtrack, which was produced by nujabes — rest in peace — , fat jon & force of nature with a little hint of afro samurai was produced by wu-tang clan member “RZA,” and i love both of those soundtracks a lot, so I wanted to match the sound as closely as possible.
But my influences are 50 Cent, Biggie Smalls & Nas, but i also listen to Lloyd Banks, The Game, Kendrick Lamar, J.Cole, Torae, Skyzoo & Slaughterhouse, Everyday. I would give new artist “WHO CAN SPIT” a chance to listen to. Also listening to this new kid called “A-F-R-O” dope lyricist by the way alright enough of me lol what about you Ivan
Ivan Aguilar: My main hip hop influences would naturally be the old school, like Run DMC, Bone Thugs and Harmony, and most especially Tupac, he was such a strong character, and deceptively smart and had a lot of heart,.He was quite a complex and poetic character and you can feel it in his music.
Armando: Any possible music videos/animations for the series?, or are you guys just sticking with the online/physical prints?
Mikel Miles: There will be a short animation — we’re hoping it will be been posted on undergroundhiphopblog — but yeah, the trailer has already been created by Sheep Ninja, and he’s been working on that for the last 3 months. It will feature a song from the samurai shin soundtrack; the trailer will release on the comic book release date. two more animation trailers that will be coming in the upcoming months created by kynan justis and heymann kaydoe. I thank these three guys for putting their time effort into their animations. I’m really grateful for their work. there will be physical prints and it will be available on the samurai shin website coming soon.
Armando: Lastly, and shout out?
Ivan Aguilar: I would like to give a shoutout to my friends and family, and to the guys out their that are saying positive things about the comic, Thank you.
Mikel Miles: Man! im shouting out everybody.
Shoutout to my family & friends, also the people who helped me put the soundtrack together so that’s Kuro silence, P.Soul, Chill $quad, G-Ammo, Jaymin Warren, Xia-Dawn, LeQuan Bennett & Daman Mills.
I’d also like to thank the guys who didn’t make the soundtrack but worked hard on their craft: AJB4, Woet Beats & AceisBack .
Also shoutout to the bloggers and upcoming entrepreneurs: NikkiSiixx, QuakeDHH & Derrick Crow.
Also, once again, shoutout to the animators that put their time into this project: Sheep Ninja, aka Matt, Kynan Justis and Heymann Kaydoe.
This is my last shoutout I swear: shoutout to Undergroundhiphopblog fans and samurai shin fans that support this project and supporting us! Damn, its like i brought a list, lol! But if I didn’t shout you, call me out and make a diss record.
Here a Sneak Peek of the “Samurai Shin Issue #1” Comic Book which will release September 23rd
For more of the interview go on to UGHHBlog