Most Interesting People 2013: Len Peralta

Len Peralta

artist, 42

Origin story "Someone said, 'Hey, you should draw a different geek every week.' Then a friend of mine said, 'You should do trading cards,' and everything just fell together from there," says Peralta, who was a big fan of Star Wars and Wacky Packages trading cards in the 1970s. "It was one of these rare moments in a career where everything seemed to be firing on all pistons, and it was like I could do no wrong."

Ninety-seven and counting Geek A Week has grown beyond its original 52-week- 52-geek premise. "That last count was 97, ... 97 interviews," Peralta says, adding that he was just finishing up a batch of trading cards as the year drew to a close. "I allowed people to back it [via Kickstarter] and become part of the set. ... It's pretty neat."

Character study "I've always been a fan of advertising art," says Peralta, who started his career in the industry. "I'm a big fan of [Hostess'] Fruit Pie the Magician and Twinkie the Kid. ... When I grew up in the '70s there was so much stuff out there, like the General Mills cereal monsters. ... I always wanted to do those."

Home life Peralta and his wife are the parents to seven children, ages 6 months to 17 years old. Three of the kids formed a rock band called Lumpia. "They named themselves after a Filipino egg roll. They're actually really, really good."

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