Art and story

A tiny biography of a tiny character...

"I was born on 11 August 1969 around 7.30 p.m. at Charleroi. My school career proceeded normally until nursery school - I was a terrible pupil and left school at 18. I spent my three final school years at the arts academy of Namur and ended up first in drawing and second in sculpture. That's enough about school.

As for the artistic career, things went slightly differently. Skipping a lot of classes and being alone a lot when my father was away (who had custody of me since my parents' divorce) I dispelled boredom by drawing comic strips at the age of twelve. My guide and reference was Philippe Vandooren's yellow booklet with interviews with Franquin and Jij.

At the age of 14 I ran away to stay with my mother, who enrolled me in Vittorio Leonardo's comic-book courses. I stayed on for 4 years. In the mean time, I also took sketching lessons at the academy of Charleroi as a free student. At 18 I enrolled in an engraving course at the Namur academy.

My days, evenings and weekends were divided between the academies of Chtelet, Charleroi and Namur from when I was 14 until I reached the age of 22 or thereabouts.

When I was 18 I started to work, in the hope of being employed by Batem to work on the merchandising of the Marsupilami. This experience did allow me to meet Batem who patiently taught me lots of things. I was also lucky enough to meet Franquin and to work with Yann on some plates for the Marsupilami and little Nol. I'm sorry to say that I was not "mature" enough yet, and that nothing specific resulted from all this. Still, the experience made my mouth water and I started to send my work to Dupuis. I managed to get an appointment with Patrick Pinchart who decided to publish my first illustrations in Spirou.

Then Philippe Vandooren put me in touch with Denis Lapire, and we created 37 pages of a western comic strip which appeared in the newspaper. Unfortunately, Denis and I didn't really get along, and I quit while we were working on the first pages of Ludo.

I then did some things just to make a living (animated illustrations, tourist guides and a small job in the studio of Tome and Janry), I created several comic books which never left my studio and I had a few painting exhibitions.

I then did computer graphics for a while for a company in Namur which makes computer games. I quit in 2000 to go to Latin America for 6 months. When I got back I found work in a Latin-American cultural centre and also got to work with Midam as a trainee. We have been working together for nearly two years now, and it is working out quite well."

His series : Game Over Marsupilami