Another year gone, a new year up on the horizon. I’ll never get used to the idea that it’s 2020. Mind you, I never got used to the new century, so there’s that, I am doomed to live outside time. So… what happened last year?
The first thing that happened was Visual Playground 2019. For the first time I was part of the organizing team, and that was a great experience all on its own. I tend to be a lone freelancer and it feels so refreshing to share responsibilities with other people. And the actual festival was a blast. Looking forward to the 2020 edition!
Then, Prâslea got translated into French, by Les Aventuriers de L’Etrange. Yes, I am determined to milk my 2013 graphic novel until forever, but I got to revisit the book while inserting the translation and… I have a lot of sympathy for old-me. I worked really hard on that story, and yes, I was a bit naive but I had a lot of amazing support. Hey, some of the artistic choices I did are quite passable even today!
Afterwards, a short animated movie I have been working on and off for five years made it out of production and into the big screen. Directed by Anton and Damian Groves, Opinci is the story of the first Romanian globetrotter. I was in charge of 2D backgrounds and character design, but really, I was a small wheel in the whole process. It felt great to watch it in cinema!
Then, Știma Apelor comic book came out in both Romanian and Hungarian – I am only the script writer on that one, but God does it feel good to be part of a team! Shout out to Anna Benczédi who is a great illustrator and comic book artist, to our translator Vig Boglárka, hugs to Jazz in the Park who funded this madness and to all the people who knew us from back when we were just making a webcomic.
Then, Le Bal des Douze Princesses came out, toujours at Les Aventuriers de L’Etrange. This was a project with a long-long history, but, in fairness, quite a short comic-book. And I inked almost all the characters in INK, on PAPER, and it felt great! I still love digital art, but it was very nice to take a break. And the book was also picked up by MiniGrafic, so the Romanian edition came out in November.
Also, Fisksoppa, the amazing-funny-you-should-totally-drop-everything-and-read-it-right-now webcomic I’m doing with my sister has been in the works for the best part of 2019 – and we finally started publishing it in November. We only have about 20 pages up for now, but I am so proud it’s hilarious.
Meanwhile (am I good at planning or WHAT?), I was also working on Zestrea, the best board game in this corner of the world. Designed by Horațiu Roman and Alex Pațiu, published by Laura Bularca (I!Love!Teams!), it was successfully crowdfunded on Kickstarter and we’re preparing to go to print as we speak.
And since this seems to be the year of the comics, I ended it with a ten page short story about the Romanian Revolution of 89. Which forced me to read about the events in my city ( …I did know some facts, but I had always kinda skimmed the long read, fearing that it would make me really-really sad. It did.)
All in all it was a long, long year. It had ups and downs, but does the highlight-reel look good? Yes, yes it kinda does, so I’m going to close the curtain on that :). Thank you for coming along for the ride!