Saturday, November 19, 2011

Interview with Mico Suayan

Wendy Chew and Mico Suayan

Rogue and Magneto

Mico Suayan was in town again for the Popular Bookfest at Suntec City. I had a chat with him.

Mico grew up reading Superman and Batman, and later X-Men. So it was meaningful that his first professional work was for Marvel. He was working as a storyboard artist for an ad company in the Philippines when he decided to try out as a comic artist. He emailed Marvel editors with links to his work and attachments of samples. He did not expect a response, but a few days later, Marvel head honcho, Joe Quesada wrote back to say he liked Mico’s work. Mico resigned from his job and went freelance.

That was in 2006 and Mico has not looked back since.

His first job for Marvel was a 7-page Magneto story for Marvel Comics Presents. His breakout work was Moon Knight, taking over the title from David Finch. Mico revealed that he was hired for the job because his artwork looked like Finch’s.

But if Mico is just an imitator of others, then he would not have progressed to where he is today. Mico is known for his realistic style, which has won him many fans. His style is not just influenced by American comics, but also the classic Filipino comic artists like Alfredo Alcala with his shading and darkness of composition. His art had won him praises from old timers like Tony DeZuniga (the first Filipino artist to draw the X-Men, The Uncanny X-Men #110 in 1978). Mico was very flattered when DeZuniga told him that a few months ago over coffee.

So what’s next for Mico? His exclusive with Marvel just ended a few weeks ago. He is now talking with DC. He is working on a cover for the Uncharted comic book (based on the hit video game) published by DC, after Adam Hughes backed out.

Mico will still be in Singapore at the Bookfest on 20 November, Sunday. So if you read this in time, do go down and check out his sketchbook and prints

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