Posted by: admin in: Comics
How did you decide to become a drawer/cartoonist?
I think I always wanted to become a cartoonist, illustrator and nature painter. I come from working class family, so the most important thing for my parents was to give their children a good education. So I didn’t dare to choose cartooning as a profession at the first place. I studied Forestry at the University and at the same time I studied arts. When I found out that it could be possible to live by drawing pictures, I quit the Forestry studies…
Was it a difficult choice to make? Why?
It was a difficult decision. Many people, including my parents (and myself) thought, I was lost my senses, when I choose cartooning.
I understood them well, I wasn’t sure if the decision is wise or not either. It was a leap in the dark. After all now I am very happy that I took the chance.
Did you go to a school for drawers or cartoonists?
I studied few years in the evenings at the Arts School, and it was very useful.
How do people consider comic strip in Finland?
The things has changed here. Comics strips have become more popular and also they have won more respect.
After all cartoonists are still kind of outsiders, when official Finland awards the artists.
Do you think the term “Graphical litterature” is better than “Cartoons”?
Story and content is a essential part of cartoon or cartoon strip, so I could admit that : )
What comic strip/artists did have a major influence on your work?
I think all good work I have seen has had some positive influence to me. The first good ones I saw (besides Calr Barks of course) was B.C. and Asterix. Asterix was the first albums I ever saw. It was modern, funny with sharp lines.
I also liked Yakari made by Derib & Job and of course Walt Kelly’s Pogo (“We have found the enemy, and he is US!”)
Freak Brothers is something absolutely grazy and wild, not to mention Fat Freddy’s Cat.
Tarmo Koivisto from Finland demonstrated, that it is possible to create a stunning realistic cartoon novels about everyday life.
Bill Watterson (excellent Calvin & Hobbes) proved that a non-commecial cartoonist can have a commercial success! ( He never agreed to proposals to merchandise Calvin & Hobbes!) So any Calvin & Hobbes T-shirt you see ta the market is stolen property and you can should immediately call police.
Matt Croenig splling his name is Hell): Homer Simpson. Inside every male there lives a tiny Homer Simpson…
Hayao Miyasaki from Japan has made some best animated movies I have seen. Everyone over 5 years or younger should see Totoro at least couple of times : )
And believe or not his “Kiki’s delivery service” is a story where you have not any baddies at all…
The list has no end, but I will stop here.
Do you still read comic strip? Which one?
The one’s mentioned above are still on my list. There are some good new Finns I follow, and then those European Albums. Via internet I visit regularly some editorial cartoonists sites.
How could you present your work to our readers?
I am not sure, if they can read finnish? Â : I
I have some cartoons in english at my website (which is as every other website, just about to be totally reorganized!)
Has your work been translated yet?
Some of my educational cartoons have been translated in swedish and english.
What are your current and future projects?
I draw political cartoons to some magazines, and there is a nature book for children coming.
Do you think that internet is the future medim for comic strip?
Absolutely is. Of course those paper versions will remain too.
When I was child, we didn’t have much money to buy books or comics. But in Finland we have an excellent public library system, so everyone, rich or pure can access information and culture there.
I see internet as a huge public library. And if you can’t afford computer and internet access home, you can go to public library and visit internet there!
Do you still work with a pencil and a paper or have you replaced them by
Now I work both ways. Depends my mood and the job. I think also computer is a good tool. The worst part with computer graphics is, that there is no original drawing, just bunch of bits somewhere…
Good thing about computer graphics is that you can find them at lightning speed just with command “find” My paper originals have been organized so, that it will take ages to find one…