Sunday, November 21, 2010

#16 - Pieter de Poortere

Your comic books are full of very harsh and cruel jokes. You are joking about many things. Don’t you have any taboos?

I don’t know, I have never had complaints so far so I just carry on... I think we live in a world, where there are far more extreme things than my comics, I consider myself not as extremely harsh. Truth is stranger then fiction.

Very cartoonish, innocent looking drawings (mixed with these cruel jokes) are your way to surprise the reader?

Indeed, I like the contrast between the innocence and the cruelty. It is also about skipping everything, that is not important and only drawing the essential things. That is necessary because I don’t use text.

After doing “Boerke” series for a few years, you made your first – that long – full lenght story, “De zoon van”. Making long stories is harder for you or you just like the form of short stories?

No, it’s easier. In the short stories, I have to create a new universe every page, because Boerke is almost always a different character (a farmer, an astronaut, a terrorist, etc.). In a long story you can build on the previous pages. I have the story ready for my next long book. I hope to start drawing in april. The next book will be Boerke at the cinema. With on every page a joke based on a famous movie.

Besides doing comics, you are also the author of few commercials (you won Bronze Cannes Lion for Oogmerk campaign). You think, that commercial work – for you as an artist – is just a way for earning money or also a way of artistic expression?

That is for the money. But sometimes it’s challenging too, it depends on the subject. It’s sometimes a nice way to experiment and try new things.

Cinema has movement and music has sound. And what – for you – distinguish and make comic books a different medium?

The reader can decide its own speed of reading. You can pause, look back. In movies and music you have to follow the tempo. In my work it often happens you have to look twice to get the joke. Or sometimes, there are things hidden in the background...

Many critics say, that everything in art had already been said and done. If that’s true, what are the new solutions and horizons for comic books?

I don’t think everything is done. I think every generation ads new things to it. There is also a lot of crossover at the moment between illustration, comics, photography, animation, music...

Instant photography, like Polaroid, captures the evanescent moment. And what is evanescent for you?

Euh... I am just a simple comic book artist... I even had to look that word up in the dictionary.

If you could take only one picture, what would you photograph?

I don’t know, I am really bad at photography. At the moment, I only take pictures of my children, so I guess that would be it.

You can also find Pieter de Poortere here:
- Bries 

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