Good morning everyone! How's your sunburn? I sincerely hope you're having fantastic holidays, and if you're not, well, you still have today's illustrated FML to make you feel better. The artist of the day is one of those people who works so fast, you don't have time to imagine what she could draw because she's already finished the comic. And you don't have to ask her to change a thing. And it makes you laugh. Really hard. So hard that everyone is looking at you on the subway, and makes you look like the crazy lady that haunts the trains. Ladies and gentleman, please welcome ...
-Hello everyone, I'm Hanne Dewachter, and though I've used a couple nicknames on the internet, I try not to get any of them too directly attached to my comics, so Hanne it is. I sometimes use HanDew or simply Han to sign my drawings with.
-How old are you?
-I'm 23 years old.
-Where do you live?
-Antwerp, Belgium. For those of you that have no idea where on the map Belgium lies, it's kind of France's toupée and The Netherlands' bottom. We have shitty weather, three official languages and generally think nobody across the water has ever heard of us.
-What's your job?
-I'm quite jobless at the moment. I'm an animator by education and the thing with jobs in that line of work is that they tend to last until the production is done (which often is after a couple of months, unless you do a series) and then you're jobless again. I'm looking for work right now and in-between I fill my time with drawing for my comic and doing commission-y things.
-What's your journey?
-Man, I don't know. I studied animation, got a Bachelor's degree, tried to go for a Master's but quit because I wasn't inspired and wanted to start actually working. About a year and a half ago I started my webcomic Dork Toes and it's going surprisingly well. At the moment I just want to draw and animate and make comics and hopefully move out of the house sometime soon. Also learn taxidermy.
-What are your inspirations?
-When I was I kid I fawned over Rubens and Da Vinci. I still fawn over them, really, but at the moment my inspirations are a little more reachable and often in the form of other webcomic artists. As a kid I read a lot of Franco-Belgian comics, and Franquin and Willy Vandersteen were extremely big influences. And don't forget Disney, of course. My webcomic is obviously inspired by real life. Putting daily stuff into comics is just a reflex to me. If I do write stories psychological disorders and moral duality are uh, often recurring themes for some reason, although I like adventure-y fantasy things a lot too.
-Do you read webcomics? If so, which ones?
-Sure do. Girls With Slingshots, Questionable Content, Gunnerkrigg Court, Subnormality, The Bouletcorp, Nimona and Hark! A Vagrant to name a few. Reading webcomics is pretty much part of my daily routine. I especially look up to Boulet from Bouletcorp (he's a professional French comic artist and he makes the kind of comics I'd like to make someday). Erika Moen from DAR and Oh Joy Sex Toy was one of my biggest inspirations to start my own comic though.
-Tell us more about your website.
-I had been drawing journal comics on a pretty steady basis for about three years prior to starting Dork Toes, but I wasn't very sure of myself so I didn't start a website right away. Eventually I took the leap, found a dude to slap together a website for me (thanks Rob) and just went with it. I'm thinking of selling some original comic pages but I don't really know how yet.
-How do you work?
-That greatly depends on what I'm making. With my comics I often sketch and ink on paper, scan them and add greytones digitally, but depending on for instance the time I have I sometimes do it all in Photoshop or use watercolour or something else. As a rule I do need to make a sketch on paper first.
-Why did you choose this FML story?
-Well, there were other, funnier stories, but those worked so well on their own I kind of felt I would ruin it if I just translated them into a comic. With this one I could invent a bit of a background and an extra dimension. It's funnier if you think this was actually an attempt to be more of an adult.
If you want to be the next published artist, send an email to alice [at] fmylife.com including a link to your website/blog/DeviantArt. But DON'T send your illustration right away! You need first to get in touch with me, and I'll tell you what you have to do!
It's Friday, so a bold font is required. I was sitting in my caravan by the side of busy road cooking cocktail sausages over a gas stove when I realised it was time to start writing something about this…