Posted October 22, 2013 by Alvin Minon in Comics

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW with BUDJETTE TAN on TRESE Night Gallery and Book of Murders

This October, Kajo Baldisimo will be having his first one-man art show at the Crucible Gallery where Trese Night Gallery will be unveiled, featuring 13 limited-edition digital prints of Trese. Also on display will be the original artwork from Stories from the Diabolical. Plus there’ll be an official launch of Trese: Book of Murders, a special collector’s edition compiling the first 13 cases with digitally-updated artwork.

So, we took this chance to interview Budjette Tan, the mind behind the creatures and characters of the award-winning graphic novel:

Alvin: Could you tell us more about the event? What should people expect to see in the Trese Night Gallery exhibit?

Budjette: Since it’s 2013, me and Kajo really wanted this year to be The Year of Trese and we wanted to surprise our readers with some new projects. The first surprise was the sudden release of TRESE: STORIES FROM THE DIABOLICAL during the AKLATAN event. And because it was launched all too quickly, I must apologize for all the typos!

The second surprise is this exhibit and book launch.

When Kajo started drawing the first Trese Night Gallery print of Maliksi, he already had in mind doing an exhibit of all 13 prints when he finally finished it. Looking for a venue, I asked Jay Tablante, who did that fantastic cosplay shoot of Bianca King as Trese, and he referred me to the Crucible Gallery. Me and Kajo met with Mr. Sari Ortiga of Crucible, showed him Kajo’s artwork and he liked it. Thank God, he liked it!

So, on display at the exhibit will be the first three Trese Night Gallery prints that you’ve been seeing at the Komikons, along with ten other new prints. These will be digital prints measure 20” x 31.5”. They are printed on Platinum Velvet: Cotton Rag Paper for Archival Print. Meaning, they are printed on acid-free paper with acid-free ink, making them last longer than your typical printed poster.

Also on display will be the original art that was used for the STORIES FROM THE DIABLOCAL book.

A: About Trese: Book of Murders, it says there’s digitally-updated artwork in the special collector’s edition. How different will the art be from previous Trese books?

B: When we were contact by Flipreads and Buqo to release Trese in ebook form, Kajo decided to redraw most of the pages from the first two books. And when we started to work on “The Book of Murders” he decided to add another extra touch on the artwork and add a layer of greytones and greywash. I think it adds a certain grit and grime to the world of Trese.

A: About the HC book that will be released, when did you first decide to make this kind of edition?

B: I guess you can say, we planned this all long. We just didn’t know when we could ever do it this way.

Back in 2006, when me and Kajo were still photocopying Trese, he surprised me with a Christmas gift and had the first six Trese cases hardbound. He said, if we ever get Trese published, we should do in this format. In 2007, we were picked up by Visprint to be part of their publication line up. We were happy, of course, but we couldn’t demand for our book to be printed with hardcover cover. That would’ve been too expensive.

So, cut-to, six years later, me and Kajo lunch with our publisher Nida and we showed her that hardbound Trese book and we pitch to her this idea of doing a special edition Trese book for 2013. We’re just all too happy that she agreed to our crazy idea!

A: What other details could you share about your new book? Size? Pages?

B: TRESE: BOOK OF MURDERS will be hardcover, 6.7” x 10.23” (which means it’s as big as  typical American comic book) and will have 360 pages. The new bonus material are short stories, written as excerpts from Prof. Alexander Trese aka Lolo Trese.

A: How much should we prepare to get a copy?

B: P950.00

A: It’s a special collector’s edition. Does this mean it’ll have limited number of prints? If so, how many will there be?
 There will be an initial print run. But if there’s a demand for it, then we hope we can do another run when  possible.

A: Other than getting a copy from the event, where else can readers order for their very own Trese special collector’s edition?

B: We haven’t really discussed this detail. The book will be available at the launch. Afterwards, it should be available in the usual bookstores and comic book shops.

A: What’s next for Trese? Anything that readers should look forward to in the upcoming sequel?

B: We’re still rushing Book 6. We hope to finish it in time for the November 16 Komikon.

A: With this special edition, will there be a change in the way you release the next sequels story-wise?

B: Nope. We’ll keep releasing it as fast as we can make it.

A: As for the visuals, should we expect more digital work and less pencils in the future?

B: Every since Book 3, Kajo has always drawn the books digitally. There have been times when he’d sketch out the lay-out of the book with pencil and paper, but otherwise everything is drawn digitally.

A: Is there any message/announcement you’d like to shout out to your readers?

B: I just hope to see all of them on October 26 for the launch. Again, the details are:

Crucible Gallery, 4th F, SM Megamall, Ortigas. 5pm.

The exhibit will be open from October 22 until November 3. So, if they can’t make it on the 26th, I hope they can still drop by and check out the exhibit.

A: Aside from the event, where could people catch more news regarding Trese, you and Kajo?

B: On the morning of the 26th, we will be part of the Comic Odyssey & Fully Booked HALLOWEEN Comicfest. We’ll be there from 10am until 3pm.

A: Who among the characters in Trese would you prefer to dress as this Halloween?

B: I can be Random Diabolical Customer #13.

A: Who do you think Kajo could dress as this Halloween?

B: Optimus Prime

Here are some exclusive previews sent to Flipgeeks by no other than the author himself! Thank you Sir Budjette!


Alvin Minon