1. Manga Mondays ~ Gael Bertrand

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    Gael Bertrand is a self-taught illustrator and comic book artist from France. He has worked as a graphic artist for video games, as well as illustrating for comic companies DC, and Image.

    After a stint at a couple games companies, Bertrand moved to the New York office of French video game developer’s Gameloft. He worked as a 2D graphic artist on Cosmic Colony (2012) and Ice Age: Village (2012), and concept artist on Cars: Fast as Lightning (2014). Simultaneously, Bertrand was working for DC Vertigo as a Penciller and Inker on their titles, Hellblazer (issues #280, #284 and #291) and Time Warp #1.

    Currently, Bertrand is illustrating the story “A land called Tarot” for Island Magazine. Island is a comics anthology spearheaded by Brandon Graham and Emma Ríos, as a platform to explore the depth and breadth of what comics are capable of. Bertrand’s “A land called Tarot” first appeared in Island #4, and continued in the most recent January issue. The story has received an abundance of praise, making Island Magazine well worth picking up for Bertrand’s contrbution alone.

    Flicking through Bertrand’s portfolio, you will come across one of his own characters, Constance. Only three images at the moment, the steampunk, League-of-Extraordinary-Gentlemen-esqu illustrations looks very fleshed out and exciting, so I wonder if Bertrand has plans to create a comic of his own based on Constance Chesterton and the Cogs of Karma.

    An unmissable strength in Bertrand’s artwork is rich and detailed backgrounds. Details that bring his worlds to life, adding realism, and fittingly housing all manner of characters. In the past, Bertrand’s style certainly has varied project to project. Since directing his focus on comics, I feel a particular style of his has started to emerge. It is not strictly manga, nor is it typically western, it is a fusion of both. You can see elements of European artist, such as Hergé (owed to his use of Ligne claire) and Moebius, at the same time as some very obvious manga and anime traits and influences.

    You can find more of Gael Bertrand’s work on Tumblr and DeviantArt.