Manhua, the original Manga. The ladies of Taiwan-A Creative Force.

I thought we would go to Taiwan today. One of the great things about this project of around the world in Graphic Literature is discovering the terms used for the medium. I call it Graphic Literature and comic books at times. I use Graphic Literature to explain what comic books mean to me. They aren’t simply funny books or superhero books. With award winning authors scripting the books, there is more to them than many, most people think.

In Taiwan comics are called manhua, meaning impromptu sketches. The term began in 18th century China and later was called manga in early 19th century Japan.

One thing I’ve discovered while researching for this is that the art is not always the stereotypical art we in America think of as manga. To me, I think what makes manhua or manga or books that is, fit into those two words is the life the art takes on. You can look at a picture and see movement even in a person standing still. No, it’s not evident in every picture but that’s what I see in most.

Another thing is that unlike American comics, manhua and even manga isn’t all about superhero antics. Most are about life, about normal people put in extraordinary situations or even basically a TV show in Graphic Literature form.  If it happens in life, it happens in manhua. That’s one thing about manhua and manga and even many European countries, the comic is an art form, not a children’s entertainment. The adults realize the importance of creativity and art.

Today won’t have a lot of background content of the authors and creators as there is a language barrier that I don’t have the time at the moment to work on. But I do have plans for detailed articles around the world and a site to go with them. When that time comes, it will have more to share.

But let’s look at the industry itself now. Big problem. Japan. It’s easier to bring in Japanese manga. For years Manga was pirated in with language changed and some extra art over nude areas added. Then pirating was made illegal in Taiwan and enforced. There is still the problem of creating a strong local industry when it is so easy to import. This forced the king of pirating, Tongli Comics to go legit and create original work as well as obtaining legal rights to import and distribute Japanese manga.

I’ll give a quick list of some Tongli artists/creators.

Beginning with some female creators:

Lai Ann.

lai ann


Nicky Lee/Li Chung Ping

Nicky Lee is what one would call the Fashion Manhua queen I suppose. Her books tend toward that look and are done quite well. She has a huge following.


nicky lee The One
Nicky and a young fan.
The One. Or at least a panel of an issue.


Jo Chen

I’m putting a few more images here because, well, AWESOME. Why? American connections to some geekdom moments for me. You’ve got Buffy the Vampire Slayer cover art, Robotech, to me the best ever. Yes, I’ve got all threes series on DVD. Don’t hate me because I get my geek on. And Racer X of Speed Racer fame.

You really have to have the desire to be a storyteller to be a comic book artist. The desire to draw cartoons or superheroes isn’t enough. In fact, the skill to draw is almost secondary. You must first want to tell stories. Once I started down that path, there was no looking back. I was hooked.”~Jo Chen














Racer X
Racer X



Some of the artwork and titles.

Knight Princess
AKRU-Enchanted Tale of Formosa















I’ll leave it at that for today. I  have obviously missed out on the very important manhua in Taiwan’s history but like I said, I will be devoting more time to it.


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#Ireland from #Paddy to #Ennis this country has it all.

INot a whole lot of I countries in the world, and today, thanks to the folks at A to Z Challenge1, I decided to go with Ireland. Sorry, no Gaelic here today, folks. Perhaps some southern dialect. As in my use of y’all at times, but that’s about it.


I could not include Ireland in this series due to one specific writer that I’ll discuss later.

Except for the Paddy Brennan images, if you click an image you will be taken either to the publishers site or the creators site or Amazon Author Page. Although I only use images found in the public domain, I will be going to the policy if linking to the people who deserve the credit and perhaps you will find something you like from some great talent.

First let’s begin a little more back in the day.

Paddy Brennan2

He was born in Ireland in 193o. When did he die? No one knows, or even if he has. He was a very private man and didn’t give interviews. He wanted to work and that was it. I can’t blame him there. MagnoComicImagine being able to create and not deal with the headaches to go with it of publicity.

His first published work was Jeff Collins-Crime Reporter for Magno Comics3 in 1946.

Marsman Comics4 came in 1948. Marsman_cover

Then his big break. In 1949 when he joined up with  D. C. Thomson & Company, Limited5 to which he may or may not owe to his sister sending in samples of his work, depending on if the legends are true. He did Sir Walter Scott’s The Lady in the Lake for People’s Journal, Sir Solomon Snoozer, and  Rusty in The Dandy6.


Jumbo1957Brennan was also the first artist to draw General Jumbo7 for The Beano8. General Jumbo originally appeared in 1953 and has periodically shown up ever since, even after the end of its series run. The book was basically about a boy who controlled a mechanized army created by a scientist. Why do I go into detail for this one? The influence of the book has been greater than one would have expected. One name in particular should be recognizable, Alan Moore9 of Watchmen  and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen fame. Click for Comic Book Creators of England and Alan Moore

Now for new school but with an old idea, sort of.

Rob Curley10

A Dublin man with a busy life, Robert Curley not only is a creator but a comic book shop owner and comic book publisher with Atomic Diner11 as well. That’s a dream right there. I wanted to mention him for a number of reasons. One of course is is writing and creations such as Freakshow, The League of Volunteers12  and The Black Scorpion13, both set in 1940s WWII, as well as many others. All with different genres within comics.

Let me speak about The League of Volunteers for a moment. America has IrishLeague_of_Volunteers superheroes. They are called stereotypes, and sad ones at that. Rob Curley was tired of it all14. He draws inspiration for the characters from Irish mythology and history. Right up my alley. But why do I mention Curley? Through Atomic Diner he has brought the world great talents.

Part of the way he does this is he gives a plot for a book and hands it off to others to actually write the scripts for. When you have a growing company with success, you need all the talent you can get. Maura McHugh15, writer, and Malachy Coney16 writer and cartoonist are two such writers. Coney has worked on a book called The Darkness17 from Tow Cow/Image Comics18. McHugh works on Róisín Dubh19, another historical comic but with a twist.

How many of you reading this right now that know me can tell I would be subscribing to every book this company has right now if I could? I am truly getting my History teach and comic collector geek on.

I could stop here but I can’t. Why? Because of the next man.

Garth Ennis20

Garth Ennis is a writer from Northern Ireland who began his career in the British anthology Crisis21 by Fleetway22, which is now Egmont23. Crisis was a series that gave the UK audience more of a mature book to read with less of the need to appeal to the younger audience. This is not to ay mature as in sex, but as in intelligent and political.

Ennis wrote Troubled Souls, set in Northern Ireland, for Crisis which led to For a Few Troubles More, and True Faith. True Faith , a religious satire, was pulled from publishing but later found a home in America for Vertigo24.

Ennis’ success led to his being handed the flagship title of Judge Dredd25. Ennis then made the jump to American comics with preacherHellbazer26, the John Constantine27 book for DC Comics28. Some of you may know this character from the movie with Keanu Reeves called Constantine.

At DC Ennis’ creativity took off as he created Preacher29 and Hitman30. Then came another jump. This one to the competition, Marvel Comics31 and Punisher32. You will notice with Ennis’ title selections to work on, he isn’t much into the traditional superhero vein. He prefers the more realistic and gritty forms of characters. I can see the attraction in finding success through telling stories without gimmicks of powers. Although gimmicks of powers are great as well.


 This is one of those that could have gone on for much longer, not only Garth Ennis, but Ireland as well. Surprising? A little. But when you look at the literary history of this country, can we really be surprised?

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#Croatia brings us Chess and Comics. Who knew that first one? #AtoZChallenge

All links open in this page for the convenience of screen readers of the blind and the visually impaired.

If you are participating in the challenge, if you will put a link to your post for today in a comment below I will make sure to visit you. There are so many out there I know I am missing some of my friends. I’ll keep putting this message in each day just in case.

Click to Read In Croatian
We’re in CrImage of the Letter C for the A to Z Blogging Challengeoatia today. Was I surprised at what I found? You betcha. I had no idea the talent that and that I had actually seen and read the work of some of these men.


Map of the World

Andrija Maurović

Andrija-maurovicAndrija Maurović, the father of Croatian comic books. A writer and artist born in the village of Muo, part of Kotor, in 1901. He attended the Academy of Arts in Zagreb. But as creatives are known to do, he wasn’t exactly a model student. Although there were conflicts, he was the best illustrator and his work appeared in media everywhere.

I chose the below as the one image to show of his illustrating talent. Do you even need to understand the language of the text to know the story? There is a reason some are called the classics and the father’s of something. A talent unappreciated these days. But I believe slowly coming back into fashion. A master storyteller.


His work was mostly based on classic book by authors such as Alex Tolstoy, Zane Grey, August Šenoa, Jack London, B. Traven, Max Brand, and H. G. Wells. But today I wanted to point to something that shows how influential a creative person in comics can be.

Perhaps Maurović’s greatest contribution was his Dubrovnik chess set commissioned by the 9th Chess Olympiad for the following years tournament. You may recognize it. The below is not an original, as they are difficult to find. Bobby Fischer’s original set was stolen. This is how the pieces look and this is how my set look. At least one of them. I have several. Even my son plays chess.

1950-Dubrovnik-Chess-SetMaurović’s passed away in 1981 at the age of 80 in Zagreb and is buried in the Mirogoj cemetery one of the landmarks of Zagreb. A place established in 1876 that is the resting place of all faiths.


Edvin Biuković

Edvin-BiukovićEdvin Biuković was born in Zagreb in 1969. He was an artist who made his first appearance in the pages of the Croatian magazine Patak with his strip Dokaz. But what puts this man on the radar for me is his work on Grendel created by Matt Wagner for Dark Horse. You have to understand that Dark grendelHorse in the comics industry is the place to go to write and create work that is pure and true to the vision of the creator. Dark Horse is who brought us Sin City and Hell Boy. Both turned into successful movie franchises.

To have worked on Grendel says a lot for Edvin’s talent. Grendel was one of the hottest selling books and cult star-warsfavorites of it’s time. Not as in cult cult but as in pop culture cult. Edvin also worked on Star Wars comics for Dark Horse and Human Target for Vertigo. Sadly he passed away in 1999 only two weeks after being diagnosed with a brain tumor. Fellow Croatian artist Goran Sudžuka sites Edvin as an influence.

Edvin’s creative partner was Darko Macan.

Darko Macan

Darko-MacanDarko Macan is a writer and artist born in Zagreb in 1966. He’s a man after my own hear with degrees in History and Archaeology. As mentioned above he gained fame in the American comics industry along with Edvin Biuković on Grendel created by Matt Wagner for Dark Horse. He also worked on Star Wars, Hellblazer, Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, Cable (Marvel Comics)  Macan still lives in Zagreb where he has also received awards for children’s books. He’s the perfect example of it’s not what you do it’s that you love doing and just do it.

Stjepan Šejić

stjepan-sejicStjepan Šejić is an artist born in Vinkovci in 1981. Oddly a man starting out to be a lawyer who turned found what he really wanted to do and what he loved. He chose great examples to be inspired by in Marc Silvestri and Michael Turner. Were we lucky he found a copy of Witchblade from Top Cow or what? Amazingly he ended up being twitchbladehe longest running artist on Witchblade, the very book that influenced his own art style.

The man can go big and powerful, small and quiet and then he can draw women that make men wish they were comic book characters as well. His style is not stagnant.

Another Top Cow book he is noted for is The Darkness. I mention it for two Darknessreasons, it has a relationship to Witchblade but I also wanted to share an image and see if you might wonder who Šejić might use as a model. Makes me wonder if they chose him for the fact he looks like the character.

To list this young man’s accomplishments would take way too long. Battlestar Galactica, Red Sonja, Terminator, X-Men, as well as work for the companies Image, Arcana, and Dynamite Comics.

That’s it for today. Hope you enjoyed and be back tomorrow for D day. Check out my article on creators from Belgium by clicking the B image below.






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In Croatian.

Click To Return to Top/Kliknite za povratak na vrh.

Ako ništa ovdje je prevedeno u redu, ja kriv Google Translate.

Svi linkovi otvaraju u ovoj stranici za praktičnost čitatelja zaslonu slijepe i slabovidne osobe.

CMi smo danas u Hrvatskoj. Bio sam iznenađen što sam našao? Vi betcha. Nisam imao pojma da je talent da i da sam zapravo vidio i pročitao rad neke od tih ljudi.


Map of the World

Andrija Maurović

Andrija-maurovicAndrija Maurović, otac hrvatske stripova.Pisac i umjetnik rođen u selu MUO, dio Kotora, u 1901. Pohađao je Akademiju umjetnosti u Zagrebu. No, kao što su oglasi poznat učiniti, on nije bio baš uzoran student. Iako je bilo sukoba, on je bio najbolji ilustrator i pojavio se njegov rad u medijima svugdje.

Izabrao sam dolje kao jednu sliku iz pokazati svoje ilustriraju talenta. Imate li još morate razumjeti jezik teksta da znaju priču? Tu je razlog neki nazivaju klasicima i oca nečega.Talent nepriznatoj ovih dana. Ali ja vjerujem polako vraćaju u modu.Majstor pripovjedač.

maurovicNjegov rad se uglavnom temeljio na klasične knjige autora kao što su Alex Tolstoja, Zane Grey, Augusta Šenoe, Jack London, B. Traven, Max Brand, i HG Wellsa. No, danas sam htjela ukazati na nešto što pokazuje koliko je utjecajan kreativna osoba u stripu može biti.

Možda Maurović najveći doprinos bio je njegov Dubrovnik šah naručila 9. šahovske olimpijade za sljedeće godine turnir. Možete ga prepoznati.U nastavku nije izvorna, jer je teško naći. Bobby Fischer je izvorni skup bio ukraden. To je kako su komadi izgledaju i to je, kako mi je set izgleda. Barem jedan od njih. Imam nekoliko. Čak i moj sin igra šah.


1950-Dubrovnik-Chess-SetMaurović je preminuo 1981. u dobi od 80 u Zagrebu, a pokopan je u groblju Mirogoj jedno od znamenitosti grada Zagreba.Mjesto osnovana je 1876. godine da je odmorište svih vjera.


Edvin Biuković

Edvin-BiukovićEdvin Biuković rođen je u Zagrebu 1969. Bio je umjetnik koji je napravio svoj prvi nastup na stranicama Hrvatskog časopisa Patak s njegove trake Dokaz. No, ono što stavlja ovog čovjeka na radar za mene je njegov rad na Grendel stvorio Matt Wagner za tamno konj.

grendelMorate shvatiti da je tamno konj u strip industrije je mjesto za izlazak za pisanje i stvoriti djelo koje je čista i vjerna viziji tvorca. Tamna Konj je tko nam je donio Grad Grijeha i pakla Boy. Oba pretvorio u uspješne filmske franšize.

Da su radili na Grendel govori puno za Edvin talent. Grendel je bio jedan od najtoplijeg prodaja knjiga i kultustar-warsfavoriti to vrijeme. Ne kao u kultnoj kult, ali kako je u pop kulturi kulta. Edvin je također radio na Star Wars stripova za tamno konj i Human Target zbog vrtoglavice. Nažalost on je preminuo 1999. godine samo dva tjedna nakon što je s dijagnozom tumora na mozgu. Fellow hrvatski umjetnik Goran Sudžuka stranice Edvin kao utjecaj.

Edvin kreativni partner bio je Darko Macan.

Darko Macan

Darko-MacanDarko Macan je pisac i umjetnik rođen je u Zagrebu 1966. Bio je čovjek po svom čuju stupnjeva u povijesti i arheologije. Kao što je već spomenuto je stekao slavu u američkoj industriji stripa uz Edvin Biuković na Grendel stvorio Matt Wagner za tamno konj. On je također radio na Star Wars, Hellblazer, Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, kabel (Marvel Comics) Macan i dalje živi u Zagrebu, gdje je također dobio nagradu za dječju knjigu. On je savršen primjer za to nije ono što vam je činiti je da volimo raditi i samo to učiniti.

Stjepan Šejić


Stjepan Šejić je umjetnica rođena u Vinkovcima 1981. Neobično čovjek počinje da se odvjetnik koji je okrenuo pronašao ono što je stvarno želio učiniti, a što je on volio. On je izabrao velike primjere da se po uzoru na Marcwitchblade Silvestri i Michael Turner. Bili smo sretni što je pronašao kopiju Witchblade iz Top Cow ili što? Nevjerojatno je završio kao najdulji trčanje umjetnik na Witchblade, samoj knjizi koja je utjecala na njegov vlastiti umjetnički stil.
Čovjek može ići velik i moćan, mirno i onda on može privući žene koje čine muškarci žele da su strip likovi kao dobro. Njegov stil nije stagnira.

Još Top Cow Knjiga je poznata po je mrak. I to spominjem iz dva razloga, to je odnos prema Witchblade ali i ja sam htjela podijeliti sliku i vidjeti ako se zapitati tko Šejić mogao koristiti kao model. Pitam, ako su ga izabrali za činjenici da izgleda kao lik.


To je to za danas. Nadam se da ste uživali i vratiti se sutra za D dan. Pogledajte moj članak o stvarateljima iz Belgije klikom na sliku ispod B.

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How Argentina brought us Frank Miller’s Sin City and Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. #AtoZChallenge

All links open in this page for the convenience of screen readers of the blind and the visually impaired.

When agreeing to the A to Z Blogging Challenge I had no idea I would be rushed to the Emergency Room days before the beginning.

I thought about tossing the Challenge. But he words tossing lacks a certain appeal at the moment. Then I thought what more of a challenge is there when you are in recovery that may take several weeks to several months, than to do some extra blogging?

Challenge accepted. Bring it.

I decided I would blog for me in these particular articles. I wanted to write about something I enjoy and learn a little of its history and greater spread than just North America.

The Subject?

Comic Book Creators from Around the World from A to Z.

Today you will learn about creators from Argentina from as early as 1939 who have influences on movies from today.

Comic Book may leave some of you thinking of funny books. No, these range from yes, funny books, but also serial stories from magazines to Graphic Novels.

Alberto Breccia and José Antonio Muñoz of Argentina have an influence upon comic books, and even film unlike anyone would ever imagine.

Alberto Breccia

Alberto Breccia at work with a model.

Even though Alberto Breccia was born in Uruguay in 1919, he moved to Argentina at the age of three. Just like the diehard, true old style creators he didn’t start out with a commercial art degree. No, he moved to the slaughterhouse district of Buenos Aires where you had petty criminals mixed with the tango. Self taught he submitted his work to magazines for free while working with his father in tripe packing plant. Then in 1939 he turned pro drawing a-breccia-1everything asked of it.

Forced to create to the direction of bosses he would not breakout and show his true talent that would become an influence on others until 1957’s Sherlock Time on which he worked with fellow Argentinian, Héctor German Oesterheld.

Along with Hugo Pratt, he created the Pan-American School of Art.

Click here to see images of Breccia’s Dracula where he works in color.

Perramus won Breccia the Amnesty International award for best work for Human Rights in 1989. You can click here to see images. The work was done as partly a dedication to his friend Oesterheld who disappeared in late 1977 and probably murdered in 1978 under the oppression of dictators that had taken the country.

Alberto BrecciaWhy do I speak of him? A couple of reasons: Mort Cinder, and the art techniques Breccia used. Mort Cinder is one of the most important comic book to ever have been created in Argentina. Having read about it, wow.

The art: He plays with texture, mixing collage, acrylic and watercolor. We see the same style used by Bill Sienkiewicz (New Mutants, Elektra Assassin) and Dave McKean (Sandman) yes, as in partner to Neil Gaiman.

Alberto Breccia has a direct influence on our next creator, as a teacher.

José Antonio Muñoz

alacksinner-munozJosé Antonio Muñoz was born  in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1942 and studied under Alberto Breccia and Hugo Pratt at the Pan-American School of Art. While in Argentina he worked with such influences as Francisco Solano Lòpez and Héctor German Oesterheld.

Muñoz did not stay in Argentina. In 1972 he moved to Spain. While in Europe he formed partnership with Carlos Sampayo and they began the series Alack Sinner. His work has had a strong influence Dave McKean and Frank Miller for parts of Sin City. Yes, the comic the movie Sin City was based upon. Click here to view more of his art work.


Alberto Breccia

Alberto Brecciacheevitasherlock-time







José Antonio Muñoz








Bill Sienkiewicz Elektra Assassin
Dave McKean Sandman
Frank Miller Sin City







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