THE WEB JOURNAL OF JOHN RAY

Upcoming Attractions

Posted in Animation, Books, Comics, Events, History by J.R. Bumanglag on September 18, 2009

October 2009 will a be an exciting month for comics enthusiasts because of a lot of things. Almost two months after the Metro Comic Con, another comics-related event will be happening at the Megamall – The First Philippine International Cartoons, Comics and Animation Festival. PICCA will be held from October 15 to 19 all around Megamall, Poveda, Powerbooks, Megatrade Hall, Makati and Tagaytay. Visit PICCA’s Official Site to learn more about the schedules, contests and more.

PICCA

Interestingly, KOMIKON 2009 will also be held at the last day of the PICCA Festival. This year marks the second KOMIKON Awards that aims to give recognition to Filipino creators who continually give it their all to a young and promising comics industry. Visit Komikon’s Official Deviantart to learn more about the nominees and their creations.

Komikon

Among the numerous titles that are to be released this October, the following will probably burn the brightest:

First off is Francisco V. Coching’s El Indio. Published by the Vibal Foundation, this is the first ever collected edition of any serialized komiks title. El Indio was first serialized in the pages of Pilipino Komiks in 1953; a time when collecting serialized komiks was still out of the norm. Pain-stakingly restored by Gerry Alanguilan and Zara Macandili with the help of the Coching family, this 177 page graphic novel is a must-buy for komiks enthusiasts young and old. I already have a copy of the book bought from the Manila International Book Fair in SMX SM Mall of Asia and it is just stunning.

El-Indio-cover_final

The second is The Life and Art of Francisco V. Coching also published by the Vibal Foundation. It is a coffee-table book about Francisco V. Coching, a biographical recollection of the Dean of Komiks Illustrators by numerous writers. It is edited by art critic Patrick D. Flores and will be launched at the National Museum. I’m also planning to buy this book, a healthy addition to my knowledge on the history of Philippine Comics.

cochingcoverfinal

Another book about Filipino Komiks entitled The First One Hundred Years Of Philippine Komiks and Cartoons will be launched at the PICCA Festival on October 16, 2009. Published by Boboy Yonzon, it is written by comics historian Dr. John A. Lent and contributions by Beth Chionglo, Aileen Casis, Glady Gimena, Orvy Jundis, Joy Del Mundo and Boboy Yonzon. I’m very excited for this book too but the retail price really cringes my teeth. I don’t know if I will be able to purchase it. But I am very happy to know that finally, there is a movement to promote our rich komiks history that does not limit itself to online discussion.

Trese Book 3

The long-awaited TRESE Book 3: Mass Murders is finally coming to haunt us. Written by Budjette Tan and drawn by Kajo Baldisimo, this new volume will continue the midnight adventures of Alexandra Trese and the Kambal. It will also introduce new characters, one of which definitely shake the mythos – the entry of Anton Trese. If you want to receive a copy one week before the launch of the book, just go to the MIBF and proceed to the VisPrint booth.

All infos were collected from:

Gerry Alanguilan

Budjette Tan

Trese Komix

Manila International Book Fair

Philippine International Cartoons, Comics and Animation Festival

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The world is continually turning and changing that I really don’t want to get left behind! My thesis is slowly shaping into its form and am excited to finish it. Knowing that there are a lot of komiks titles out there finally reaching readers hands, I’m so stoked to write and illustrate my own.

A Lost Library and Some Machine

Posted in Books, History, Novels by J.R. Bumanglag on February 25, 2009

I recently went home to Baguio last weekend for my Dad’s PMA Homecoming. As usual it was very cold and and I was shivering all over. Although not as cold as I remembered, but still. It was about 45 days went I last went there, and so much has changed. On the way there, I saw a newly built SM Rosales, which is quite small for a mall. Some buildings have already gone down here, some new places there and I’m in a different place. I’ll blog about the PMA Homecoming later. Right now, I want to talk about some new books I bought, care of my mom. Thanks mom!

The Alexandria Link

The Alexandria Link by Steve Berry

So there  I was in National Bookstore, giddy and jittery about getting a new book. After I reread Angels and Demons, I was in for more mystery and historical novels. The first thing that came to my mind was Steve Berry. Weeks ago, I already saw his novels, scampered all over tables at Fully Booked SM North. I remember checking out The Venetian Betrayal, his latest book. I immediately took note of the writer, vowing to read any book by him if I ever get the chance. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get the Venetian because it wasn’t available. So I took the next best thing. It’s about the lost library of Alexandria. The last time I heard about this library was when I watched a McGuyver movie when I was a kid, an adventure ala Indiana Jones. Seemingly interested to learn more about it, I just had to pick up this book. Here’s the extract from the back page:

The Library of Alexandria was the most important collection of ancient knowledge ever assembled. The building stood for six hundred years and contained more than half a million manuscripts. Then suddenly it vanished. No trace of this literary treasure has ever been unearthed.

Fifteen hundred years after the library’s disappearance, Cotton Malone finds himself at the heart of the mystery. His son is kidnapped, and his bookshop is attacked-all because he’s the only man alive who knows the whereabouts of the Alexandria Link, the key to locating the missing library. Purposely hidden away for more than a millennium, a forgotten truth lies within that lost cache of knowledge – one that, if revealed, will have grave consequences not only for Malone but for the balance of world power.

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Extraordinary Engines

Extraordinary Machines by Various Writers

Yes, I’m a science fiction fan. Ever since I watched films such as Akira, Ghost  in the Shell, Steamboy, The Matrix, Star Wars and other flicks with the coolest machines, I became an advocate. After I picked up The Alexandria Link, I saw this book silently staring at me. It was begging me to pick him up and give him a chance. So I did. And one word made my mind. Steampunk. If Smoke and Mirrors was a collection of short stories about fantasy, this would be her counterpart, a sci-fi genre in all its glory. Here’s the extract from the back page:

Extraordinary Engines: The Definitive Steampunk Anthology assembles original stories by some of the genre’s foremost writers. Edited by Nick Gevers, this collection includes brand new stories by Stephen Baxter, Eric Brown, Paul Di Filippo, Hal Duncan, Jeffrey Ford, Jay Lake, Ian R. MacLeod, Michael Moorcock, Robert Reed, Lucius Shepard, Brian Stableford, Jeff VanderMeer and more.

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I will be blogging these two books right after I read them. In the meantime, summer vacation (a very long one) is slowly creeping up on my shoulders. There’s so much to do. Shrug.

Art Talk with Alex Niño and Hans Bacher

Posted in Comics, History, Movies, Photography, Seminars by J.R. Bumanglag on February 19, 2009

Check out more photos here!

It was a once in a lifetime chance and I just couldn’t let this moment pass. It was yesterday morning, when after I had arrived home from jogging, that I saw the date and long pondered what special event was supposed to take place. And then it just crashed over my head. This was the day of the Art Talk by Alex Niño and Hans Bacher at the College of St. Benilde SDA campus. I had to decide whether to go or not. Surely enough, I decided to go, since I had nothing better to do (except drawing practice of course).

I have long admired Alex Niño’s work, ever since I first saw his illustrations in the Philippine Comics Museum years ago. There have been no other artist like him, no art style would compare to his kind of vision. His art style completely changed my outlook as an artist, deftly picking off the kind of the one-sightedness in art that I once had. The principle in which he viewed art as a continuous change, an evolving organism, challenged the then standard mainstays of Alcala and Redondo. This time, I was going to see the living legend myself.

I left the house at about 4 pm, since the talk was going to begin at 5 pm. Luckily for me, it was only a 30 minute LRT ride to Vito Cruz, so I had ample time to get there. I also jumped at the chance of finally checking out the College of St. Benilde School of Design and Arts. It was sort of an opportunity to explore the high tech facilities they had for art students. So I arrived and was simply amused of the atmosphere in SDA. It was definitely a portal to another world, compared to Beato Angelico.

Alex and Hans

I entered the SDA Cinema and there he was, Alex Niño, seated beside Hans Bacher – who I had little knowledge about, but I would be interested later on. As I was waiting for the seminar to start, the hosts of the program invited the early birds to take autographs and sketches from the guests. Too bad for me though, I was too excited that I forgot to bring any pens or papers (which I really regret). Instead, I contented myself by observing how Alex drew. And he drew a lot of sketches, at least 10 before the talk began.

Alex Nino

The talk began as Alex and Hans introduced themselves. Hans Bacher is a production designer in the animation industry. He had met Alex in 1996, during the production of Mulan. Taking Alex in as a conceptual artist, along with another French artist (I think), this would culminate into collaboration for other various animation films. During this time, there was a presentation of conceptual artwork by Alex for Mulan in the background (of which I was definitely enjoying). You can check them out here and here (I wish I could post them here, but I can’t – copyright). Mang Alex also worked on Atlantis, Treasure Planet and The Emperor’s New Groove.

Sketch

Mang Alex, before he accepted the job at Disney, requested that he worked at 3am onwards. It was interesting and very relating actually, to know that he wanted to work alone, without distraction in the wee hours of the day. Hans would describe this as amazing because it only took him 9 hours to draw a conceptual board the size of about 2 x 3 feet. And that’s a feat! He would see Mang Alex start at the upper left corner of the board and arrive hours later, catch him finishing the piece at the bottom right corner.

Fans

Mang Alex also described his influences as an artist during the 60’s and 70’s. One of the most memorable moments he reminisced was him drawing on beach sand when he was 7 years old. He had grown up admiring Francisco Coching, Alfredo Alcala and Nestor Redondo. Wanting a piece of the action, he nurtured his art skills, dropping out of pre-med in FEU and pursuing a career in art. Accepting the fact that he couldn’t possibly reach the level of his influences, he created his own style, a whole new level.

Alex B/W

There was break, another sketch session and we moved on to the question and answer portion. I was jittery, trying to catch the write words. It was at this time that my heart beat rose significantly and I thought I was going to die. The first question I threw was about how Mang Alex dealt with rejection during his time showing his work to different editors. It was all about a challenge to him, a motivational factor which he used to drive him further as an artist. The second was about their artworks and projects, if we could see them somewhere online. Mang Alex had none, aside from some collections of his artwork by other artists. But he did give his email address. Thank you po!

It was at this time that the show was almost over. The last line of sketches was slowly cutting itself off. It was at this time that I noticed that Carlo Pagulayan was also there, along with his colleagues (of which would compose of the organizers of Komikon). I overheard some of them, talking about the Komikon, that it was to be held at SM Megamall. There were also urging Mang Alex to exhibit his works and have a grand reunion of his generation of Filipino artists. Mang Alex also brought samples of his artwork, a 14 page spread of his current project Dead Ahead. Yes, you didn’t read it wrong, FOURTEEN PAGE SPREAD! All of us were astounded to the level of composition and rendition that he gave to that work.

Alex and Carlo

Alex Nino and Carlo Pagulayan

All in all, it was a great experience having attended the seminar. I learned a lot of new things. I’m thankful that Liraya of CSB-SDA organized this event. I have no regrets now that I chose to go.

Check out more photos here!

Brush-up on your Comics History

Posted in Comics, History, Manga, Youtube by J.R. Bumanglag on January 7, 2009

Have you ever wondered how comic books and manga began? Well, ask no more. I recently found some interesting videos about the history of comic books and manga. They’re very informative and will give you an understanding and appreciation for comic books and its origins. Some of them have interviews with artists, writers and editors from the industry of whom includes Frank Miller, Stan Lee, Jim Lee, Joe Quesada, Osamu Tezuka, Katsuhiro Otomo and alot more.

Comic Book Super Heroes Unmasked

Part 2 – Part 3 – Part 4Part 5Part 6Part 7 Part 8 Part 9  – Part 10

This is a 10 part video series ripped-off from a TV channel. Credits to Salazax for uploading it.

Once Upon A Time The Super Heroes

Part 2Part 3Part 4Part 5Part 6Part 7Part 8Part 9 Part 10

Another 10 part video series. Uploaded by Batmitey.

Manga Mania

Part 2 Part 3Part 4 Part 5

This is a 5 part video series. Thanks to Khanbaliq for uploading it.

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