By Marilyn Weiss
Babs Tarr opened up her spotlight panel by asking for paper to do sketches. After a few technical difficulties and a quick discussion about the best kind of BBQ, Tarr started drawing Batgirl sketches while answering questions about her journey into the comics industry.
Tarr broke into the industry in a big way, or as she would say “started from the top, now I’m here!” Before drawing comics Tarr worked in editorial illustration after studying at the Maryland Institute College of Art, alongside fellow comic artist Annie Wu. She never intended to become a comic artist, and instead planned on living off of her own creations instead of working on a team.
Then, out of blue, Tarr was approached by Cameron Stewart and DC Comics to become the artist for their reimagined Batgirl series. Stewart had seen some of Tarr’s artwork online, and despite her non-existent experience drawing sequential comics, he knew she was the right choice. Tarr asked for some sample scripts to prove she was up to the challenge and was selected as the new artist.
Tarr came prepared with a list of artistic demands. Brendan Fletcher still has the list of her demands, which she titled “What would Babs Like to Draw!? J” The list is as follows,
- Dessert/candy villains
- Roller Derby Batgirl
- Occult/Eyes Wide Shut Situation
- Bargirl vs Bounty Hunters
- Video game douches vs B-Girl
- Luchadore Batgirl…hahaha
- Villainess with beasts
Some of her list did end up making it into the series. Velvet Tiger got to strut her stuff, with a designs based off of Tarr’s sister’s fashion designs. And Tarr is no stranger to sneaking fun callbacks into her book. The Batgirl creative team can be found in a few issues, and Kris Anka can be spotted three times in her art. And Tarr even admitted to trying to get a penis drawing onto a bathroom wall. She was told to remove it, so she replaced it with Dick Grayson’s symbol.
Originally the team only thought they would get about six issues out of their run of Batgirl, so they began planning a new series, Motor Crush. And while their take on Batgirl became a hit, they never lost sight of Motor Crush.
Tarr offered up a brief summary of their upcoming series. Motor Crush will focus on tough as nails biker Domino Swift. A pro racer by day, at night she competes in biker fights racing for “crush” the pink liquid that enhances bikes to help racers win.
I don’t know about you guys, but I don’t want wait until December to get my hands on Motor Crush.
Marilyn Weiss is a contributor for Bleeding Cool and loves her job as a children’s librarian. You can find her on Twitter @marilynjweiss