Thursday, September 5, 2013

Interview with portuguese author Derradé over his first works until now

Derradé is part of a portuguese duo that makes comics for fun on a DIY atitude..

Há Piores

Há piores - 2

HL - Comix


Here's an interview with him:

1. First things first; your pseudonym comes from your name, right? And how about the one of the writer that makes the duo with you (Geral)?

- I Think Geral has to do with something that happened to him in school, but you would have to ask him about it. As for my pseudonym, you are right: it derivates from the initials of my name.

2. On your work, it seems that you're clearly influenced by Angeli and Laerte, were you a big fan of 'chiclete com banana'?
Chiclete com banana by Angeli

- Chiclete com Banana changed my life!... And I don't say it lightly. I had stopped doing comics because what i saw being done, didn't stimulate me. The humor books I had access were from the french-belgium connection, with the 1 gag page, the traditional american comic strip didn't appeal to me, and I was more into the super-hero genre as almost any teenager. But it stopped being fun. At that point I had done in terms of my work, sci-fy in the tradition of Star-wars and a post-apocaliptic story inspired by MadMax. When I read the first number of Chiclete com Banana that reached my hands something changed inside my head. It was another way of doing comics. It openned the world of underground comics, with Crumb, Shelton, then another magazine appeared: Animal, that was more avan-garde, and I bougth the whole collection. And Animal presented me the new european comics that were being made at the time: Peter Punk, by Max, Cowboy Henk, Rank Xerox, the works of Andrea Pazienza. I think It was around this time (1988-1989) that RTP exibited the documentary Comic Book Confidential that presented to me the Hernandez Bros, Charles Burns, Robert Crumb, Shelton,...

Animal magazine with Peter Punk by Max
Cowboy Henk by Herr Seele

Terry Zwigoff and David Lynch's "Crumb"

  All of this made wanna do comics again. Inspired by my group of friends I created the BadSummerBoys, made the first comic strips about them and that is when Geral, one of my friends, cames along and start scripting some jokes for what was to became our first work together: As Piadas do Geral. Then an invitation by the local Newspaper Notícias de Alverca led us into publishing a regular page of comics every month. The next logical step was made: we created "The BadSummerBoys Fanzine".

Bad Summer Boys - Page

3. On your works appears the character 'tracy', was she inspired on Tracy Lords?

Tracy Lords

- On the name yes. By then she had already retired from Porn, and it was a name that allways rings a bell for people of my age, that identifies her as a pornstar. The character of Tracy came out of a necessity to introduce a strong female character in my stories. This happenned long after the end of the Fanzines and when I started publishing with Polvo. Geral was only collaborating now and then in the newspaper page. So I needed a girl in the badsummerboys stories, that by then they were already a rock band. So I decided that she was to be a Pornstar.

4. You did lots of zines and books for a market like the portuguese one, do you feel that your work was rewarded? (not on an economical pace but a spiritual one).

- Yes. Absolutely. Numerous times. I really enjoy to give autographs, and in those moments we contact we people who enjoy our work, and that feels just great. A couple of weeks ago, someone who I gave an autograph in the firsts sessions I did at FIBDA, when the second polvo book (Fava!...) came out, published that autograph in facebook. Now this was 13 years ago!.. it turns out it was his first autograph. It really is something. I may not get many awards given by the "authorities", but that kind of satisfaction is very rewarding. By the way, the only award I have ever recieved (Central Comics Award for best humour publication in 2012) was by vote openned to the public. So it means that at least those who bought, and voted, were pleased.

Fava by Geral et Derradé

5. Music, television and movies influenced your works aswell, could you please let us know which are your favourite genres? (If you have any)

- I like them all really. Maybe I'm more on the adventure/horror/sci-fy kind of movies. But I enjoy a good comedy (the british kind of comedy) and the Tarantino genre ;-)

Blade Runner's picture

Michael Madsen at Reservoir Dogs by Tarantino
6. Living on Portugal and creating funny comic books for a small audience, how can you manage to fight the system?

- By not making profit from what I do. I have a profession in the real world, in order to survive, and to raise a familly. I manage not going insane by doing comics. It works as therapy, really. If there is someone willing to bet on me, by publishing what I do, then fine. But I would feel really bad if I was responsable for someone going bankrupt. That nearlly happened to me in 2006 when I launched my magazine: HL Comix. It was a one man show, I did everything on that magazine, except printing and distribution. I made a vow of only publishing other people work if i could afford to pay them. It never happened and I had to close the magazine after two published numbers and a 3rd already made but never printed. So they may not aknowledge our existince, but we don't give up. Because our goal is to break even. If it turns profit: great, but the goal is to break even in order to be able to do another one.

7. In your stories I see a bit of punk rock mixed with a chaotic atmosphere, where have you found that 'raw power".

- The spirit of Punk is really the DIY: do it yourself. If you like it, it's fine. You don't owe nothing to anyone, so: go for it. Create. It was this kind of thinking: I really love the work of Angeli, laerte, Glauco, Crumb... But there is nothing quite like in Portugal... So I'll do it. Even if it sucks, I'll do it. And We did. And it sucked lol.

Page by Robert Crumb

8. How do you see the movies scene today and all the movies that come from comics?

- Boy, what I've waited for this to happen. When an art despised at school and by the powers that be, at least in my country, is the creative force behind the powerful multibillion dollar industry that is hollywood... But the movies based in comics that I like best aren't even the ones everybody talks. The one I like best is GhostWorld. Dan cLowes rules!... And I really enjoyed Scott Pilgrim, what a feast for your senses... ok,ok,... and the Batman trilogy by Christopher Nolan

Chris Nolan - Batman

Terry Zwigoff and Daniel Clowes - Ghost World

9. What kind of tools do you use on creating your works?

- Regular paper( A4 Cavalinho), blue crayon in order not to be scanned - which spares me the awful work of erasing the crayon lines, papermate nylon black pen, Mitsubishi Uni-ball pen, indian ink for the large black areas, and post production in computer(lettering, filling even bigger areas of black, and the occasional color).

10. If you could choose an art that you do prefer, which one would you choose?

- I have already choosen the Comics art.

11. Portugal's a tiny country, what are the diferences that you see on the North and South of our country?

- Apart from the weather, that influencies a lot of the temper of the natives, It's hard to find Sagres Beer in the North.

Sagres beer ad

12. You and your partner are doing comics for several years, do you think that you still have that 'raw power' on you?

- I think we now have another kind of Raw Power. A more quiet one. A more heavier, baldder kind of power ;-). I don't think the flame has died, but the fact is I was 18 when I created the BadSummerBoys. Now I have almost 42. So, Life goes on...

13. You mention on your Comics several times: Johnny Rotten, Sid Vicious, The Clash, Quentin Tarantino among many performers, how do they fit on your art and mind altogether?

Sid Vicious

- Because they all are the living proof (well not Sid, he died many years ago, and he is not a very goog example...) of the Punk Ethos: DIY. Now he is dead, and he was not perfect to say the least, but if I had to define someone as my mentor in words and acts throught is life, it was Joe Strummer. He helped me to define my actitude before life and politics.

Joe Strummer

14. We portuguese like to eat and drink, do you think that we're a bit nonsense and we should be concerned over other stuff aswell?

- I think that the main thing that we portuguese can be accused of is not being abble to choose right the people who govern our country. For at least the last 150 years...

We choose not to care, we elect people who are codemned by the justice, we treat politics like we treat football, instead of choosing people and ideas we choose political parties like football clubs. The food and the drink, and the weather are the things that make this country bearable.

15. Your books dwell with the portuguese tradition and culture, do you think that you portray us good on your comics?

- I portray us good by showing how bad we are, lol. I think that's it.

16. What are your favourite Authors in comics,movies and music and do they influence you more on your books than you would wanted it?

- I would prefer they influenced me more, because the final work would be so much better... So here goes the list:

Comics: Angeli, Laerte, Adão, Glauco, Maurício de Souza, Alan Moore, Bill Waterson, Carl Barks, Don Rosa, Franquin, Joann Sfar, Robert Crumb, Gilbert Shelton, Hunt Emerson, Alvarez Rabo, Mauro Entralgo, Daniel Clowes, Peter Bagge, Roberta Gregory, Álvaro Santos, Vuillemin, Reiser, Tardi, Serge Clerc, Yves Chaland, ...

Bill Waterson

Gilbert Shelton


Peter Bagge and Daniel Clowes

Movies: Tarantino, Edgar Wright, Kevin Smith, Kubrick, Peter Jackson, Steven Spielberg, Cronenberg, Carpenter, Terry Gilliam, Christopher Nolan,...

Kubrick - Dr. Strangelove
Crash - David Cronenberg
Chris Nolan - The Prestige

Music: The Clash, Joe Strummer, Big Audio Dinamyte, Joy Division, New Order, Pixies, Nirvana, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Mick Harvey, Serge Gainsbourg, Mão Morta, Pink Floyd, Roger Waters,  EEls, Muse, einstürzende neubauten, The Pogues, Vinícius de Morais, Ena Pá 2000, Irmãos Catita, sex pistols, stranglers,...

Halber Mensch by Einstuerzende Neubauten

Gainsbourg by Johann Sfar

Mão Morta - First album

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