This creator spotlight is a part of a series of interviews featuring artists from Cloudscape’s latest comic anthology, Fantastic Frights. Click here to check out the Kickstarter campaign for the book.
Lore Vicente is a Cartoonist and Illustrator from Argentina. Lore writes, illustrates, and publishes webcomics online, and is also a regular contributor of comic anthologies.
What were you scared of as a kid?
The Dark for sure. It’s a cliché, I know! But that was definitely something that always had me on edge. Maybe it’s because I never really had good eyesight and so the dark makes it even harder to distinguish figures, especially at a distance. So when it’s hard to see, any unexpected movement makes me want to run away at full speed. That tree branch swinging in the wind? It’s coming to kill me, I’m sure of it.
What’s your favourite aspect of the horror genre as it applies to comics?
So, there’s a few things I love to do in comics that lend themselves fairly well to the genre. I like working with silhouette and shadows in my art, and I also love working with suspense in mind while designing my pages. Extreme close-ups, shots of obscured faces, and so on. All of these are things I did before jumping into the horror genre, but I think my familiarity with those made the transition into it go surprisingly smooth.
Of the aspects of the genre that felt new to me, what I really like is the pay-off in the turning of the page, something that in my mind very few other mediums can pull off the way comics do. You have to do it yourself. In a movie, you can close your eyes when you feel the scary part coming, you can cover your ears before the jump scare, but in comics you have to keep going forwards into the horror yourself. It won’t keep going while you hide, it waits for you.
What was the most interesting/challenging thing you experienced when working with the book’s two-tone colour scheme?
Oh, this one is a very technical thing but, contrast was a challenge for me.
I’m used to working in black & white, so initially I worked on the pages using purely grayscale, preserving the workflow I was already accustomed to. But once the color scheme was decided I had some work cut out for me.
I converted my pages to that beautiful blue tone we ended up with, and immediately I felt like my art just wasn’t working as well on the slightly lower contrast. I was leaning way too much into the darker tones and that left me with some panels that just weren’t very readable at all.
Since I’m purely a digital artist, the difference in contrast was more severe on the screen than it was on the page, but that’s something I only learned later on. So it took a far bit of tweaking to end up with something I was happy with. All of it my fault, obviously, but you live and you learn, I guess! In the future I’m definitely going to keep this in mind and limit my contrast range from the start.
Besides that little challenge, I had a lot of fun figuring out how I was going to use the extra color tone. No spoilers, but in the end I figured out I would keep it to a minimum, using a very small amount of it throughout the comic, and only make it really explode at the climax of the story. I tried to make the best of it by using it to emphasize the magical aspects of the story and hopefully make its use relate back to the main themes. That’s the theory anyways, you’ll tell me if it worked or not!
What was the inspiration behind your story for this anthology?
When I was a kid I used to watch this horror show called “Are You Afraid of the Dark?”, the latin american dub.
In essence, there’s a lot this comic takes from that show. The structure of the story feels right at home there.
Obviously, on a surface level, they’re nothing alike: My story is about Oracles, Visions, and a Magic Mountain.
But the basic premise of a kid being left alone in a new environment, and having to deal with a stranger, often bigger and stronger than them, and whose intentions are not easy to read… That’s basically how the show goes, and it pretty much sums up the inspirations for the horror in my comic.
As for the fantasy twist, well… I was reading a lot of greco-roman history and literature at the time, so that’s how I ended up with a plot full of Oracles haha.
Where can people find out more about your work?
I have a crime Webcomic that’s on hiatus at the moment, but you can check it out towardsedencomic.com
At the moment I’m also working on more comics for a couple of anthologies, so please check those out when they come out!
The Kickstarter for Fantastic Frights is live Oct 19th – Nov 5th.