Let’s kickstart some Eurocomics goodness!
Regular readers of this blog will doubtlessly be aware of Pieter De Poortere’s Dickie. Born as Boerke in his native Flanders and something of a favourite of ours, this strip tells the continuing story of a loser, an everyman, who thinks himself quite cunning but is constantly betrayed by his own shortcomings, desires and naivety. Dickie is the perennial butt of every story, drawing each and every short straw , crushed by the indifference of the world. That may sound heavy, but Pieter’s sweet and stylised artwork ( a little like Miffy on a bad trip) keeps everything light and humorous, albeit with a pitch black undertone.
So far five collections have been published of Dickie’s adventures, with a total of 560 full-page strips. And even though most of the strips are silent, his popularity has been limited so far to Dutch and French-speaking countries. To change that, and finally conquer the world, Pieter and his crew at Whippering publishing have launched a Kickstarter campaign for the publication of an international collection of 160 of the best Dickie strips. The book will be published as a large-sized paperback and hardcover, and will sport an all new, exclusive cover. Rewards range from early-bird copies to the original cover art and a guest appearance in a comic. Go there!
Quite by coincidence, another Flemish cartoonist that we wrote about earlier, launched his own crowdfunding campaign over the weekend. Lukas Verstraete and fine publisher Bries are preparing for the publication of A Book That You Make Friends With, Verstraete’s debut graphic novel. As the book’s artwork deserves a larger format, they are reaching out to interested parties via the Dutch Voor De Kunst platform for assistance.
A Book That You Make Friends With is about a man who loses his identity in a robbery. It’s a story about good and evil, a few skirmishes, a cat who is in love, a philosophical conversation with a pigeon, a car chase, metamorphoses, a trek through the desert and even a deus-ex-machina. And even though the book is in Dutch, Verstraete’s art-brut, with its broad strokes and expressive colours, is a joy to behold, deserving of a very wide audience (English language publishers, yes that is a hint you should be looking at this).
Earlier crowdfunding projects with Bries resulted in beautiful books, and this one will certainly be a little (or big) gem as well. Awards include signed copies, exclusive silk-screened prints and original artwork from the book. Some European comics works well worthy of your support