Posted November 8, 2013 by Alvin Minon in Comics

KOMIKS INTERVIEW with Jann Galino on his beginnings, the Iloilo comic scene and 2nd Iloilo Comic Con

I’ve interviewed quite a number of artists and geeks already. But it’s a rare chance for me to interview one that not only has ties to Flipgeek’s humble beginnings but also hails from a province far away that I have no idea how the comic scene works, or even the geek community in general. Vicente Galino III, or Jann as people know him, is not only an artist that’s known for his works on titles such as The-Gutters comics, Part-time Gods 1 & 2 RPG Game and Demon Codex: Spectrals, but is also one of the people behind the upcoming 2nd Iloilo Comic Con. Here’s how my interview with him went.

Alvin: I’m new in Flipgeeks. Tony told me matagal na daw kayong magkakilala and you even helped him out in the early stages of FG. And he told me that you were staying in Manila to learn more about the comic industry. Baka po pwede nyo mashare how you started out?

Jann: Yes, I was part of Flipgeeks’ humble beginning. Mula sa pagbrainstorm kung ano ang best na name for the website hanggang sa pagstart setup neto.

Nagsimula ako sa comics when a former boss hired me and brought me to Manila from Iloilo to work for him as an art director for his company Cindo Studios. I was a professor in a maritime university then and a fresh graduate of an animation training course. My former boss and I started a komiks called Jack, Ann, Poy: Power Force which didn’t made it to publication. Then we made a graphic novel entitled Majarlica: Bayan Ng Agimat, which was beautifully drawn by legendary komiks artist and my mentor, Danny Acuña, I did the digital paint/colors of it. The book also showcased brilliant artworks from komiks legends Rico Rival, Jun Lofamia, Ernie Patricio, Gerry Alanguilan, and Hannibal. The book was created by Mr. Rod Rodriguez. That’s how I started getting in the industry. (*nosebleed*)

A: Sino o saan po kayo humuhugot ng inspiration? How bout idols, veteran Pinoy artists or other people you look up to?

J: Naku, marami! Mahilig kasi talaga ako mag-appreciate ng artworks kaya halos di ko mabilang kung ilan lahat ang mga idols ko pero ilan sa mga iniidolo kong Pinoy artists ay sina Leinil Yu, Carlo Pagulayan, Stephen Segovia, Harvey Tolibao, Jerome Opeña, Philip Tan, Rey Macutay, Raymund Bermudez, Rico Rival, Nestor Redondo, Alfredo Alacala, Francisco Coching, Alex Niño at marami pa. Sa mga foreign artists naman sina Frank Frazetta, Ivan Reis, Bryan Hitch, Eddy Barrows, Olivier Coipel, Joe Madureira, Adam Hughes, Mike Mignola, Sean Murphy, Alex Ross at sobrang dami pa. Inspirasyon ko sila at syempre humuhugot din ako ng inspirasyon sa mga taong mahal ko at mahalaga sa akin.

A: You’ve done work for The-Gutters, Demon Codex: Spectrals, and others. Kamusta naman po kayo ngayon? What’re you busy with recently?

J: I just finished designing characters for Part-time Gods 2, Days of Vengeance comics and other stuff. Now I’m back with commissions and finishing my samples for publishers. Katatapos ko pa lang din magawa ang website ko, visit nyo hah? Yey!

A: Currently, you’re based in Iloilo. Kamusta naman po ang comic scene jan? Ano po yung similarities or differences with the comic scene here in Manila?

J: That’s a very good question. When I came back in Iloilo 2 years ago (after more than 4 years working in Manila) medyo hindi ko talaga dama ang comics industry dito compare sa Manila na sobrang buhay at malaki na. Walang comic book shops at kakaunti lang ang comics/graphic novels na naka display sa mga bookstores (lagi pang sold out). Medyo nakakapanghina ng loob talaga pero nung may makilala ako na mahilig sa comics dun ko nalaman na marami pala sila, ika nga tawag ng kaibigan ko eh “closet geeks”! Umoorder sila sa Manila for single issues and hardbounds. Minsan nga sa kamag-anak pa nila sa US sila nagpapabili.

Then came a bookstore which started selling marked-down prices for hardbounds and TPB’s, mostly Marvel comics. At dun na rin naglabasan ang mga comic book followers and collectors na nakilala ko. Andami pala namin dito sa Iloilo! Yun din ang naging reason ko to initiate a comic con here in Iloilo and the event was very successful kasi andaming comic book enthusiasts na umattend and I was so overwhelmed! Of course, maraming salamat sa mga guests, sponsors, exhibitors at mga dumalo. Yung iba pumunta pa galing Bacolod at Maynila. Ang saya!

A: Iloilo Comic Con‘s coming up. Could you tell us more about the event?

J: The 2nd Iloilo Comic Con has been moved to summer of 2014. It will be 2-days na kasi andaming nagsabi na bitin daw yung una. At syempre mas maraming gimmicks and surprises at stake! We will announce the final details soon sa website namin at sa Facebook page.

A: San o pano po kayo mahahagilap ng mga fans or yung mga nais magpa-commission?

J: Fans? Meron ba ako nun? Hahaha! Pero sa mga gusto magpacommision locally pwede nila ako macontact sa Facebook page ko or sa aking website: www.janngalino.com. For outside the Philippines they can contact my art rep, Kirk Dilbeck through this link: http://www.comicartfans.com/gallerydetail.asp?gcat=14545.

A: Any future work or plans that we should look forward to?

J: For now I’m still working on my portfolio, the plan is to level up and improve my work. I can’t tell what’s in store for me in the future but I’ll just keep on drawing.

A: Any message for the people? Invitations?

J: Keep supporting the local komiks industry, keep buying Filipino Komiks and attend comics conventions regularly! For those who are asking for the 2nd Iloilo Comic Con, it will be on the summer of 2014. Stay posted and updated by regularly visiting our Facebook page and our website, www.iloilocomiccon.com. Ciao!

Alvin Minon