FIC 2015 – EL VIUDO AWARDED AS BEST CHILEAN COMIC OF 2014
“Can’t believe that soon, and that category”. Those were my first thoughts.
Besides all my screaming mimics and gestures of joy, after a very long and quite stressful two day before Chile’s finest comic convention, FIC SANTIAGO, my tiredness was so excruciating that when I saw that El Viudo, was awarded as best comic book of 2014, my eyes filled up with some tears.
El Viudo, as some of you are aware of, had been a chilean project by Futuro Esplendor, (the collective formed by Gonzalo Oyanedel, as series creator and chief writer, Oscar Salas as a coordinator, Juan Nitrox Marquez as an artist and art director, Rodrigo Campos Ponce, as El Viudo penciler, me as the inker and Maycols Alfaro as the letterer). I was involved with for the last 5 years. We did first a 12 page short story, printed as a fanzine; then a 56 pg Graphic Novel; and then the same 12 page story as a reboot (which originals are on sale here), several pin ups, promo images and many other things. The 56 page book, named “La Cueca Del Manco” was nominated for the Fic Awards (Chile’s only comic book awards, but unofficial) and on friday Apr 10th, at the Fic Awards Ceremony, we won.
FIC Awards are a mixture of Eagle Awards and International Professional Artist selection process. People are invited to nominate their best chilean comic published, besides some other categories, then the selected ones are listed in a survey which everyone can vote. Then the international guests selects their own picks. Winners are selected in a 70% (readers vote) / 30% (FIC Guests) rate.
“El Viudo: La Cueca Del Manco” took blood, sweat and tears to make it. It’s true, despite that sentence is mostly overrated. I know that every awarded book are part of huge producing efforts. and it always takes more than time on the drawing board, to fulfill it. We took unbelievably long 4+ years in the process. My inks on page 01 are completely different from the ones at the end of the book and that is because between 01 to 56 there are more than 3 and a half years. It took long waiting days to get pages and several long and bitter discussions about the orientation of the project. It took several coffees with the rest of the creative team to encourage and keep up the flame… It also took one embarrassing moment due bad mix of stress and rum. Heh… well, those weren’t good days.
But it also offered an unique view of Santiago, an in-depth and a very detailed and consciously documented art view and most important, a brilliant script that captures magically the vibe of the old pulps. Everything you see on the book, from clothing to city skylines, vehicles and products were used on 1950’s in Chile because Gonzalo Oyanedel, the creator and writer, did an insane research job.
We won. I never thought to win an award with my first publishing effort. I swear it. I also look the previous years winning books as “my next step in comics, but not yet”. Maybe I don’t see my full potential, but this past weekend helped me a lot to realize where I am aiming.
I would like to thanks the readers and fans who suggested the book to be nominated. Those who actually voted for the book and the FIC SANTIAGO International guests who’s vote also helped make us won.
Pics: Fic Santiago Production staff