SPECIAL GUEST PROFILE:
Name: Aileen P. Casis
Course & School: AB Mass Communication / Trinity University of Asia
List of Works:
- Luvstruck; Potpourri comic strips (The Manila Bulletin comics section)
- Scenes we’d like to see… (Mwahaha! humor magazine)
- Con N’ Vic (Boink! comics)
- Cartoon illustrations (Sports Digest magazine)
1) When did you start making comics?
I have a pretty wild imagination when I was a kid and I’ve always been interested in reading books w/ lots of pictures. I never really attempted on making comics when I was young, although I remember reading stacks of comic books and drawing Garfield cartoons as early as 6 or 7.
In 2002, Manila Bulletin editorial cartoonist Norman Isaac saw my drawing skills and gave me an article to sketch. When my first cartoon came out in the front page of the lifestyle section, I was ecstatic. Since then, I started drawing cartoons/comic illustrations to supplement articles for the lifestyle section.
I work mainly as a graphic/layout artist and I consider cartooning as a hobby. My interest in reading, being highly observant, and creating funny scenarios in my head perhaps got me into the cartoon world. The ability to draw was secondary.
2) How did you begin making comics as a profession?
In 2005, Manila Bulletin added a second page to its comic section. Cartoon editor Roni Santiago offered me a slot to do spot cartoons. I thought it was ok because I will only be contributing once a week, so I gave it a shot. My first comic panel was called ‘Luvstruck,’ where animate objects would fall in love with inanimate ones. I got tired of the whole concept so I created another comic strip called ‘Potpourri.’ It’s also a one-panel cartoon, w/o dialogues and w/ no main characters.
3) If you weren’t an artist, what would you be doing now?
I’d probably be a gag writer or a curator.
4) Is it a big deal being a female artist?
Women cartoonists are not different from men in terms of creativity, sense of humor. Signe Wilkinson won the Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning, also for Lynn Johnston, who was the first woman to win the Reuben Award. Women artists may be discriminated in terms of employment, but not in producing excellent materials.
5) Any advice to female cartoonists, or aspiring young artists?
Follow your humorous bent. Read a lot. Draw inspiration from other artists. Stand on your head for ideas and don’t let your ovaries be a hindrance in making prize-winning cartoons.