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From the Lab to the Museum – Academy Student Anthony Wu Makes a Name for Himself in the Comic World

Anthony Wu went from biochemistry studies at the University of California, Berkeley to a rising comic book career at Academy of Art University. The BFA Illustration student has been selected to demonstrate his approach to creating comics at San Francisco’s Asian Art Museum in conjunction with the exciting exhibition Tezuka: The Marvel of Manga. Guests will have the opportunity to marvel at Anthony’s creative process and his quick sketching skills.

A love of comics motivated Anthony to study Illustration at Academy of Art University. He had friends who were students at the Academy and raved about the School of Illustration’s excellent reputation.

“They [My friends] tricked me into believing that art school was just about hanging out and drawing monsters and stuff. I was dead wrong! Here, you must hang out and draw monsters with intensity, the added pressure of grades and creating a competitive portfolio,” he said.

“Dude, Adventure”

Luckily, the excellent instructors at the Academy have helped him develop a strong portfolio and score some esteemed jobs. One instructor in particular, Henry Yan, influenced Anthony.

“It is very inspiring how quickly and beautifully he does his work,” he said.

Currently, he is working on a comic tentatively called Mondo for Tokyopop, a popular manga (Japanese comics) publisher. He started out just doing the art for the project and now has also taken on the role of concept development and writing – a little bit of everything.

“Battle for Beardom”
“Tokyopop is really the big thing that gets me anywhere,” he said about the renowned company.

Working for Tokyopop helped him land the job as a featured artist at the Asian Art Museum. Anthony will be participating in Blast Off!, a daylong event with speakers, musicians and other guest artists – all centered on the art of manga. Besides working on his current Tokyopop project during the event, he also plans to create a giant mural and write a story on the fly with a fellow artist.

For students wondering how to break into the comic scene, Anthony encourages using the Internet to get your work and name out there. No matter what kind of work you are doing at the Academy, he says, there is a way to present it online. He also emphasized the importance of networking, especially with fellow Academy students.

But most importantly, he advises, “Make sure you really enjoy it.”


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