Professor Mark Sparacio introduces a new brand of artistic proficiency to the Lynn community, all while spearheading the debut of a comic book strip for iPulse.
Originally from the greater New York area, Sparacio earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan. He knew this education would prepare him for the professionally rewarding road ahead.
“I always enjoyed reading comic books as a kid, and then I got into drawing them,” said Sparacio. “When I was applying to different colleges, I discovered that Will Eisner, considered by many to be the ‘grandfather of the graphic novel,’ was teaching at the School of Visual Arts. I had gotten accepted into numerous schools, but he was such an inspiration to me.”
In Sparacio’s last semester of college, Eisner offered him a job as his assistant. Instead, Sparacio opted for a job with United Artists to paint a movie poster for film writer and director Peter Greenaway called The Draughtsman’s Contract.
“Although I really wanted to work for [Eisner], he suggested becoming a freelance illustrator, and so I did,” said Sparacio.
Sparacio has produced advertising work for more than 150 companies. With a diverse resume, he has created a variety of work, including the packaging line for The Karate Kid, World Wrestling Federation, Coca Cola and Disney.
After 9/11, Sparacio’s career as a comic book artist skyrocketed. He began to branch off on his own, working for D.C. Comics to create the cover for Green Lantern #175.
“Back in 2001, 9/11 affected the advertising industry tremendously,” said Sparacio. “When the situation tightened, I contacted Will [Eisner] and I told him I wanted to get back into comics.”
After realizing his dreams in the comic world, Sparacio understood his next calling: to further the education of future design students. As he applied to schools in the South Florida area, Digital Media Arts College (DMAC) drew his attention. Once DMAC merged with Lynn, Sparacio knew he found the perfect fit.
Entering his ninth year of teaching, Sparacio was recently named a top-15 noteworthy art professor in the Miami area by The Art Career Project, a creative community for makers, creators, entrepreneurs and emerging artists.
“[Lynn and DMAC] should be thanking their lucky stars that Sparacio is so loyal, because occasionally teachers with his combination of skills and experience are working at the most elite and prestigious institutions. He is something of a comic book legend,” said Kathryn Pomroy, a contributor for The Art Career Project.
In the spring, Sparacio will add GVC 399 Comics and Sequential Art to his course offerings. This class will function as the first graphic storytelling workshop of its kind at Lynn, and students are encouraged to enroll as soon as class registration begins later this fall.
This sequential art course will coincide with iPulse’s new comic strip section as well. For those interested, please view the flyer on page five for more information.