Ronald Martin “All-Star Protect and Serve” Comic Book

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By Brionna McCall, Intern

A native of Montgomery, Alabama, Ronald Martin has much in store with his superhero comic book project.

Martin is a sophomore fine arts student at Alabama State University. He serves as an award-winning cartoonist for the student newspaper, The Hornet Tribune.
He was exposed to comic book characters as a kid, and his first character was Spider-Man.

“Art has been a part of my life since I was four years old,” he said. “I remember as a kid growing up watching the movies, and it branched out from there. I got interested in other characters, and it introduced me to the arts.”

According to Martin, All-Star Book 1: Protect And Serve focuses on injustice in the community. The son of All-Star, the main character, fell victim to what many African Americans face today, police brutality. His connection to All-Star is that they are both fed up with how society treats their people.

Martin was a senior in high school when he created All-Star in 2020. When George Floyd was killed in police custody on May 25, 2020, it weighed on him heavily, and he began to use his artwork as a way to talk about social commentary.

“Superheroes have always been a comfort for me, and I wanted to make one that was relevant to the times. It was also a way for me to bridge the gap between social justice and superheroes,” he said. “All-Star Protect And Serve is about a father, who’s a retired marine, and he loses his son to police violence. His son was racially profiled, so he prayed to God for justice. Once he prayed for that justice, it came in the form of superpowers. He uses his powers to protect his community.”

When working on his first comic book, the writing aspect was easy for Martin, but the amount of time he put into creating his artwork was the most challenging. It took him three years to complete his artwork. It was physically taxing but very rewarding.

“Marvel, DC, and all of the big companies that produce comic book characters are my main influences. The superhero’s archetype comes from Marvel and DC,” he said. “The way that I would introduce my work to the readers is to sum it up by saying it’s a story about a man who wants justice. I feel like most people can relate to wanting justice or being treated fairly. This man loses someone important to him, and I feel like a lot of people can relate to losing a loved one.”

According to Martin, art is ultimately one of the greatest forms of self-expression. With art, a person can express many things about themselves through painting, singing, movement, and much more.

Since January, Martin has been getting a great deal of support from his pre-launch on Kickstarter. Kickstarter is a crowdfunding platform for creators to set goals for their projects. Creators set monetary goals and deadlines for their projects, and people can pledge money toward them. If the project reaches its goal by the deadline, the funds will be charged from everyone’s card. If the project does not reach its goal, all funds will be refunded.

“For the most part, I am proud of my run with the launch. It was not successful, but I did manage to garner a small audience. People were able to put in money, and I managed to raise $2,000,” he said. “It shows that people are interested in the book and the story, so I’m very proud of that. Some lessons were learned, but overall, I think it’s been a good experience for me.”

Once All-Star gets published to the public, Martin’s next step is to continue to make more stories with his main character. He wants to introduce more characters and their stories and grow his publishing company, Radical Komics.

Martin wants others to know to never give up. “If you have a passion, pursue it, and don’t let people around you discourage you from pushing forward because, at the end of the day, it’s about you being happy.”

For anyone who wants to support All-Star Book 1: Protect And Serve, Martin’s comic book Instagram handle is Ronny Creates, and his publishing company’s Instagram handle is Radical Komics.

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