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Hmoodle’s Exclusive Interview with Pete Hernandez III

Emblazoned as his avatar, from what looks like an archived photo from police evidence portraying a sanguinary murder scene where a bloodied dripped flurry of bullet holes stains a Guy Fawkes mask, as if it was left behind purposefully by the perpetrator. Many who aren’t familiar with this iconic mask can remember it synonymous to the movie V for Vendetta, as if he were saying:

“Beneath this mask there is more than flesh. Beneath this mask there is an idea, Mr. Creedy, and ideas are bulletproof.”

Reminiscence of a time where a huge influence on a child’s mind were for those Saturday morning cartoons: the only way to satiate a child’s enormous animation appetite. From the gritty streets of New York, Hmoodle had the opportunity to catch up with Mr. Imaginative Transhuman soothsayer, fictional or nonfictional here’s into the mind of a genius storyteller.

1.Give us a brief introduction of who you are, where you’re located, and what you specialize in.

I’m Pete Hernandez III, Brooklyn born freelance graphic artist / illustrator / writer now residing in Long Island. I specialize in comic pages, character design, logos, CD and Book covers, and cartoon style portraits.

As far as writing goes I prefer cyberpunk action, science fiction adventure, superheroes, and crime drama.

2. How long have you being doing this type of art? What would you classify it as terms of Art?

I’ve been working as a graphic artist for about 25 years so that’s the bulk of my work but I also have superheroic, sci fi, and fantasy styled pieces as well.

I suppose you’d call me a commercial freelance artist but I do have my Fine Artsy moments because not everything I create is done with money in mind.

Most serious artists are not fans of “labels”. Calling me an Artist is good enough.

3. What are some of your most memorable projects you’ve done in the past?

I did some internal art for the USA network for their Dracula mini series back in the early 2000s. Some children’s books I designed about 2006, some personal pieces I’ve done like The Crow and a tribute piece of Christopher Reeve as Superman when he passed that I managed to get to his wife, which she loved. I was very proud to get a letter from her about it. My comic series Company Man (www.compaanymancomic.net) which is still on going just on pause while I work on my War Dogs graphic novel. I have an Avengers piece I still really like and a group of other random pieces that still exist to this day. A lot of them can be seen on my FB page www.facebook.com/PeteHernandezThe3rd/

4. Growing up, what were some things you enjoyed that have changed over time?

I grew up loving comics, video games, and animation of all forms. Some have changed for the better and some have deteriorated into almost nothing. I loved Saturday morning cartoons, especially the superhero themed ones like Spider Man and His Amazing Friends and Batman and the Super 7 but I quickly veered toward anime back before there was an internet or even cable tv.

I went through hell tracking down VHS tapes of anime movies and shows like Vampire Hunter D, Gatchamon, Wind Ninja Chronicles and so on. Nowadays, you can take three seconds and find anime online. The artwork has improved dramatically but a lot of the stories are nonsense so I’ve become much pickier over the years as to what I’ll devote my time to. Have to say Death Note and One Punch Man are two of my recent favs.

Video games, while not as replayable as they were in my day, look amazing! They are little movies you can be sucked into for a few hours and serve as massive inspiration for my work, be it writing or artwork. Assassins Creed, Call of Duty, Spider Man, Batman, mystery and horror games, action FPS’ games, I try them all.

Comics I’ve read since I was about 12 and they are nothing like what I grew up with. Heroes are sullen, emo, and beat each other up each month in yet another crossover event that goes nowhere and can be retconned inside of 6 months thus making your purchases worthless. It’s a damn shame what the corporatization of comics has done to the industry as a whole.

And I have to mention Asian cinema. I have been watching martial arts movies and HK / Korean action dramas since I was about 6 and still do to this day. I can’t get enough of them and the production values have gone up in amazing ways, from the choreography to the film quality to the pacing and so on. I think Korean films are edging past HK films in terms of action and intensity.

5. Can you tell us more about War Dogs?

War Dogs is a love letter to Asian cinema in all its forms, as well as Anime. I was inspired by a video game Sleeping Dogs, basically Grand Theft Auto in Hong Kong and decided to do my own thing (finally).  To make my own HK / Korean action story the only way I know how, by writing and illustrating it all.

It’s a complex tale about an ex-triad member turned MI-5 agent who gets drawn back into conflict with his former gang (War Dogs) in an effort to help a friend escape the gang. There are numerous twists and turns, lots of violence and foul language but I made every effort not to write stereotypes. I wanted to show what I think is cool about Asian characters and put them in a light white Hollywood never will. Every character is based on a real person and most of the “cast” are from England. From martial arts stuntmen / screen fighters to bankers, rappers, music producers, and regular hard working 9 to 5 guys. I wanted to make every effort and draw Asians accurately and not the typical comic way which is just drawing a white guy with squinting eyes and throw yellowish – tan color over it. I wanted to show the differences between Chinese, Korean, Laotian, Hmong, Cambodian, Japanese, Vietnamese, and so on without being preachy and being as real as I can considering it’s a made up crime-action-drama.

War Dogs is full of strong character development and some pretty gritty dialogue (if I may say so) and is set in the UK which no one really does. I don’t think anyone has ever bothered to do something like this before, not even in Asia. In anime, sometimes, characters actually look Asian but very rarely from what I’ve seen. I set out to make this as pure Asian as I can without falling into too many clichés. A lot of my influences are in there without shame from Tarantino films to video games to Asian films like The Raid, Oldboy, The Five Venoms, and No Tears For The Dead (just to name a few).

I really don’t think anyone in America has ever done this before, at least that’s what many have told me, so I’m doing my best to really make this eye popping.

You can see plenty of promos and teasers at www.facebook.com/IamAWarDog

6. What’s one of your all time favorite movies, and what made it special?

I have WAY too many to list or boil down to just one. That’s impossible for me to answer. I can name some but not one single film.

The Breakfast Club, Superman, Star Wars, Pulp Fiction, Airplane, Big Trouble In Little China, the list is truly endless.

What made these films special are the characters and their respective journeys. Characterization is always the most important aspect of a film for me.

7. Living in New York, if I’ve never been there what are some useful tourist tips?

Don’t stop in the middle of the street to take a pic. Step to the side, take your shot, then merge back into sidewalk traffic. Contrary to popular belief, most New Yorkers are all too happy to tell you about their city. Ask directions or ask for cool places to visit. Some people will be assholes but that’s par for the course in any city. New Yorkers are not rude for the most part, as many think, we just always have some shit to do and very little time to get to it. Everyone always has five to fifteen minutes to get somewhere. Try a hotdog from a vendor but never pay more than 2 bucks. Don’t buy them in the touristy areas like Times Square or 34th street. Walk down a block or two and you’ll see the price drop from block to block.

Visit the statue of liberty, Times Square, The Village, Chinatown, see as much as you can. EVERY part of New York is totally different from the previous part. Everyone is here, every kind of food, every kind of music, clothing, etc. Try as much as you can. Bar Hop downtown, never uptown because it’s cheaper. Uptown is only good for pics. Shop downtown, eat downtown, party downtown. You can’t get lost in NY because Manhattan is built on a grid system. If you want to get to 42nd street are are on 41st, walk in one direction to the next street sign to see where you are. If it says 40th, turn around and walk the other way to 42nd. Same goes for the avenues which are all numbered. If you go to Brooklyn or Queens, take a New Yorker with you because it’s most named streets like Fulton, Lincoln, etc.

You don’t need maps anymore. Turn WAYS on your cell and you can get anywhere if you’re too shy to ask strangers.

We tend to talk with our hands and have strong accents. We’re not mad at you we just have passion and intensity and people not from New York take it as aggression. Don’t be weak minded. New York doesn’t like weaklings.

8. Where’s your favorite place to grab a good meal?

Cozy Soup and Burger in The Village, a few Korean spots in Flushing Queens, The Majestic Diner in Long Island near me.

9. Any upcoming projects you’re working on that you can share?

Well War Dogs is still on-going and won’t be done until mid-2017. I just worked on a music video for my friend ShoGunna, an OG Korean rapper, I’m writing another cyberpunk short story. You can find some of my other work at www.companymancomic.net or on Amazon at www.amazon.com/-/e/B00D5TGQ7Y

I’ve also recently connected with an indie director and hope to have some film shorts out in the very near future.

10. How can our viewers follow your work? (Social Media, YouTube, Website)

I’m on Twitter and IG @ companyman01

People are welcome to follow me on Facebook, where I’m most active at www.facebook.com/petehernandezIII

My YouTube channel is www.youtube.com/channel/UC3ZxCB19L4MTtX7Ctz56o4g

My online portfolio is at  www.goofeesnax.com/

We got some real good information here from Mr. Pete Hernandez III. Everyone please go out and support. There are plenty of links above, simply move your cursor to the link and click away. I’m excited to about his new venture in “War Dogs” and cannot wait to see this new installment that he has added to his repertoire.

Any questions or concerns, or have an idea to help us improve, please send your message through our contact page at the link above: CONTACT US. Thank you all once again and to Pete Hernandez III for lending us his valuable time!

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