The book is at the printers, it should be done by the beginning of August :).

So I thought this might be a good time to do a short recap of how it came to be.

Legend has it, every book starts with a story, every comic-book starts with a script. There are even older legends that talk about the ”artist who has something to say”. While all this is true, I find that the real germination point is to be found many years before, and its almost always related to passion and curiosity.

All of that to say that I blame Măscărici for Le Bal. It started with me investigating traditional costumes of the neighboring countries. The Vecini Project followed – and so I stumbled upon the Bulgarian costumes of Rhodope. Next was The Imaginary Costume Museum, which was an exercise in style as well as one in ethnography. Then I got a commission for a live drawing event, for which I chose to illustrate The twelve dancing princesses aka Le bal des douze princesses aka Cele douăsprezece prințeșe și castelul fermecat.

See? The story came later. And I didn’t even use that many traditional costumes (the main character wears the Rhodope costume, the princesses are all in 1930 attire – because in my head that is the last time modern and traditional costumes could be seen together on the streets). But I did ink almost everything by hand, because I had grown quite font of the Kuretake brush.

And while doing that, I gathered a lot of sketches which, with a little bit of effort, could be assembled into a (small) comic. A zine, black and white with one colour – I posted it online, somebody found it and inquired about turning it into a real comic book. Which meant rethinking stuff and colouring all the pages and being a ResponsibleAdultTM – translation: printing deadlines 🙂 .

All that is done now. The book comes out middle of August, at Les Aventuries de l’Etrange. I’ll make a proper post when that happens. In the meantime, you can see me inking, colouring and preparing the book for print on Twitch.