Stephen Weese (a.k.a. Steve Racer) founded the group Fans for Christ thirteen years ago. He is the author of the book God Loves the Freaks, and participates in ministry to subcultures such as goths, punks, geeks and freaks. Stephen is an voice actor with notable roles in the anime Hellsing Ultimate and Kick-Heart, as well as audiobooks and video games. Also a film actor, he stars in the sci-fi/action Broken Spirits and does sword fighting in Legend of the Red Reaper. He is a LARPer, gamer, fan, musician, host, auto racer, and all around nerd. Stephen currently resides in Los Angeles where he teaches at a film school. He holds a master’s degree in Information Technology, and is a nutrition coach.
Archive for Guest Speaker
Mike S. Miller is a New York Times best selling illustrator whose career has spanned 22 years primarily in comics and video games. After a decade working for Marvel and DC on top titles such as X-Man, Wolverine, Adventures of Superman and JLA among others, Mike took a turn toward the independent, assuming the role of art director at start-up publisher, DBPro, and helmed titles such as George R.R. Martin’s prequel to A GAME OF THRONES: ‘The Hedge Knight’ and ‘The Sworn Sword’ as well as Robert Jordan’s WHEEL OF TIME prequel: ‘New Spring’, among others. In 2004, after developing several of his own properties, Mike joined with magazine publisher Brett Burner and formed Alias Comics; later optioning one of his titles, ‘Deal with the Devil’ to Lionsgate films. From Alias, Mike took the position of comic book representative for Wowio.com, bringing the fledgling site to an audience of over 200,000 daily unique users with his unique knowledge of the comics and webcomics audience. Mike recently returned to mainstream comics working regularly for DC comics on the popular DC UNIVERSE ONLINE: LEGENDS series, BATMAN: ARKHAM digital comics, and is the regular cover artist for Dynamite/Del Rey’s GEORGE R. R. MARTIN’s A GAME OF THRONES comic book adaptation, as well as being a regular ZENESCOPE cover artist. Mike is currently also a main interior artist on the #1 digital comic in the world: INJUSTICE GODS AMONG US and is working diligently on the third installment of ‘The Hedge Knight’ series, ‘THE MYSTERY KNIGHT’ for Random House Publishing.
Kevin Grevioux is a screenwriter, producer, actor and a graphic novel creator who has 20 years experience in the film industry. After graduating Howard University with a degree in microbiology, and studying genetic engineering in grad school, Grevioux came to Hollywood where he acted in several films including, Alien Nation, The Mask, Congo, Batman Forever, Tim Burton’s Planet of the Apes, The Hulk and Men In Black II. Kevin also co-created the successful Underworld franchise, which was his first produced writing credit. He was also a co-producer on the film series and played the character RAZE. Grevioux has just completed production on his latest film from his original screenplay and graphic novel I, Frankenstein produced by Lakeshore Entertainment. Grevioux was also the host of a short-lived Discovery Channel TV show called Real Monsters, and was a co-judge on the hit Syfy Channel series Face Off. In addition, Grevioux is a prolific writer in the comic book/graphic novel world. He has worked for both Marvel and DC Comics having written such characters as Spider-Man, Blade, Iron Man, Batman, Superman, the Phantom and the critically acclaimed Adam: Legend of the Blue Marvel for Marvel which he created. He has established an independent creator-owed comic book/graphic novel company called Darkstorm Studios. Under this imprint Kevin has created ZMD: Zombies of Mass Destruction, I, Frankenstein, Monstroids, Shurika, Skull & Guns, The Gray Men, Alius Rex and Battlesphere. As well as Astounding Comics, which produces all-ages titles such as Valkyries, Njuma, Cryptokids, Guardian Heroes, The Atoms Family, The Toy Box, Mighty Girls, The Vindicators and The Hammer Kid. Grevioux animation credits include The Atoms Family, an unproduced pilot for Starz and episodes of both Ben 10: Ultimate Alien and Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
In his spare time, he is an accomplished juggler, deep sea diver, astronaut, race car driver, gourmet chef, world class magician, pro football wide receiver, big wave surfer, and frequent storyteller.
Well . . . actually only the the storyteller part is true.
Something he’s done since he was a kid was write and draw stories. And with over 20 years experience in the Animation Industry, Mike Kunkel has continued to do what he loves by working on numerous Television and Film projects as a Director, Story and Development Artist, Character Designer, Screenwriter and Animator. Mike has worked for such studios as Warner Bros, Nickolodeon, Cartoon Network, Sony Entertainment, Universal Pictures and Walt Disney Studios.
As a published writer and artist, Mike has been nominated three times for the prestigious EISNER Awards and four Ignatz awards, and is the creator of the two-time EISNER Award-winning comic book series “Herobear and the kid.” His designs in television have also won the ANNIE AWARD for Best Character Design in an Animated Television Production.
But, he soon realized that to be truly happy he had to work on his own stories and characters. . . and he created the perfect place to do that here at Astonish.
So we’re glad you found The Astonish Factory, where you can find that we enjoy creating creations for kids and the kids at heart and where you are always welcomed and encouraged to . . .
“Remember your childhood . . . and pass it on.”
Mike lives in Southern California where he spends most of his time drawing cartoons, trying to learn new magic tricks and playing with his family.
Beginning in 1997, Eric Jansen has self-published a number of comic books and graphic novels under the imprint God And Country Graphics, including FREEDOM FIGHTER, STALKER, INFILTRATOR, and A CHRISTMAS TREASURY. Since 1999, he has worked with Christian tract publisher Foursquare Missions Press with his artwork and writing appearing in millions of tracts and books, including half a million 8-page comic books like PARAMAN and LONELY LADY and over 120,000 copies of the full-length comic book THE CHRIST OF PROPHECY—all in numerous languages and distributed all over the world. Eric has also served with the non-profit comic book ministry CCAS (Christian Comic Arts Society) for many years, including stints on its Board of Directors, and participating in various CCAS-related publications like PROVERBS AND PARABLES, NEW VISIONS, and RAGGED CAPES. Eric has served as a youth pastor and singles minister and had a number of freelance assignments for various comics publishers.
He outraged parents, ticked off networks, and delighted young fans with thought provoking classic episodes of G.I. Joe, Transformers, and Batman. Writer/editor/publisher Buzz Dixon, who created the Christian manga category in publishing when he launched the bestselling Serenity graphic novel series, continues to create new stories and concepts for Young Adult readers as well as blog at length on writing, comics, and Christianity at www.BuzzDixon.com.
Pastor Frederick K.C. Price Jr. shepherds Crenshaw Christian Center, with a congregation of over 10,000,it is one of the largest and most influential churches in United States. He is featured weekly on the internationally broadcast, “Ever Increasing Faith”. But not only is he a prominent minister, he is a comic book aficionado. He has a passion for the comic book medium and is looking to write several graphic novels in the near future.
Dr. Thomas Parham is chair and professor of the Department of Cinematic Arts at Azusa Pacific University. He is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and spent seven years on active duty. Thom then completed a doctorate in communication studies at Regent University. Thom is also a known Trekker and wrote his doctoral thesis on Star Trek: The Next Generation. He is a member of the Writers Guild of America and has written for the long-running CBS’ drama JAG and the Family Channel sitcom Big Brother Jake, and he also served as the on-location writers’ assistant for the thirdseason of Touched by an Angel.
Thom has contributed chapters to the American Chemical Society’s anthology Hollywood Chemistry: When Science Met Entertainment; Doing Good, Departing from Evil: Research Findings in the Twenty-First Century; The Gospel According to Super-Heroes: Religion and Popular Culture; and Behind the Screen: Hollywood Insiders on Faith, Film, and Culture. In its review of that book Publishers Weekly cited Thom’s essay “Why Do Heathens Make the Best Christian Films?” as a “standout.”
Dr. Parham has executive produced several award-winning student films and television shows including “American U,” “Giving Her Away,” “Jaded,” and “Sometime Today I’m Going to Kill Ben Stiller” and has directed acclaimed stage productions of Dinner with Friends, Dracula, A Few Good Men, Parade, Return to the Forbidden Planet, A Raisin in the Sun, and The Skin of Our Teeth. He also co-wrote the musical comedy Inside Out and the “dramedy” Steeple Chasers, plays that APU’s Drama Ministry Team performed throughout southern California
Clint DeRon Johnson is a blend of writer/ illustrator /designer. He earned a degree in Visual Communication from Los Angeles Trade Technical College. Clint is best known as the creator of the comic character Matthew Cross: Faith Walker and co-creator of Lil Rock and the Hi-ups. In addition to that, Johnson is a well-established poet /spoken word artist appearing under the stage name Saint Ice.
He has over 20 years of experience in illustration, design and print-related fields. Mr. Johnson’s art has graced covers, storyboards, children’s books and comics. His main areas of interest are publishing, intellectual property development and character creation. His creative passion gave birth to M25:20 Media, Inc. in 2013, a publishing company and content development entity, which employs multiple platforms to deliver a brand of fresh and powerful content. Under Johnson’s direction M2520 Media, Inc. supports and produces faith-based and family-friendly content in graphic novels, web-comics, digital comics/eBooks, and children’s books.
Johnson currently serves on the Board of Directors for The Christian Comic Arts Society. He’s also a licensed Elder of the Gospel at New Covenant Tabernacle in Palmdale, California. Clint’s community service over the years has helped him acquire recognition that includes The Urban League American Dream Program, Rockwell International Observance Honor, and the NAACP ACTSO Award.
Now witness the creativity of Clint D. Johnson Artist, Writer, Poet and More…Creative to the core. Visit www.faithwalkerhero.com to experience the adventures of Matthew Cross: Faith Walker.
Scott A. Shuford developed FrontGate Media, a company that has grown to become the #1 pop-culture media group and marketing service reaching the faith and family audience. Established in 2001, Scott & FrontGate (http://www.FrontGateMedia.com
Carmi Greene is an American film actress who has acted since the age of five. Since then, she has been a continual student of Acting and Biblical interpreta- tion. She uprooted herself to Southern California at the age of twenty-one to pursue her dream. Once there, Carmi worked on feature film, sitcoms, and short films, gaining experience acting, directing, producing, and editing. Carmi has a passion for film: specifically its ability to invoke emotion and its redemptive quality. She lives in Los Angeles where she continues acting, producing and directing.