Deadlines done and dusted, I escaped into the real world last night to go and see Comica Festival director Paul Gravett interview US comic artist Paul Pope, who had been visiting Europe for the Angoulême festival. I love the fluid and inky brush technique he uses (contrarily, I’ve drawn my fan-art of his character Battling Boy with a pen, but only because it’s new and I’m trying it out).
It was a fascinating talk, as Pope is a candid speaker with an uncompromising attitude to his art. He spoke of the his time working with a Japanese manga producer and their terrifyingly strict corporate approach to producing comics, and his rejection of working for the big mainstream US comic publishers in favour of book publishers who tend to be more experimental in the type of material they’ll publish. He also talked about his experiences of working with the film industry (a Battling Boy film is apparently in the works) and how writing the screenplay at the same time as writing the comic could potentially affected the course of the book. He did a bit of live-drawing too, which was fun to watch. He is obviously someone who loves what they do and it was a pretty inspirational evening – lots of thought-provoking stuff for the journey home.