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Kendal Calling: Swedish comic artist and illustrator Mattias Adolfsson

Mattias Adolfsson

Mattias Adolfsson

Last year, in partnership with the Lakes International Comic Art Festival, downthetubes brought you a number of interviews with creators attending the event – and we’re delighted to be able to run a series in the run up to their eagerly anticipated 2015 event in October, continuing the series with an interview with award-winning Swedish comic artist and illustrator Mattias Adolfsson.

Mattias Adolfsson describes himself as a “freelance compulsory drawer” who lives in Sigtuna, just outside of Stockholm, Sweden.

He has worked on, everything from computer games to children’s books. The Second in Line, featuring work from his sketchbooks and published by Sanatorium won “most beautiful Swedish book” in 2014 and has won several other awards.

Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

downthetubes: What are you working on, comics-wise, right now, and when will it be published?

Mattias Adolfsson: We (my publisher, Jens Andersson, and I) are just starting working on The Third in Line,  the third in a series of books of my drawings. At the same time we are re-printing (and re designing) the two first volumes in the series.

First in Line by Mattias Adolfsson. Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

First in Line by Mattias Adolfsson. Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

downthetubes: Which comic project you’ve worked on are you most proud of and where can people see it or buy it?

Mattias: I’m very happy with the “In line” books and they are available through my blog at (mattiasa.blogspot.com). We hope to have all the books back in print and for ready by early Autumn, and certainly for the Lakes Festival.

downthetubes: How do you plan your day as a creator? (Do you plan your day?)

Mattias: It depends on how much commission work invades my life, if I have little commissions there is little to no planning I just let my inspiration lead me. If I have a lot of commission work I tend start the day by procrastinating a little to long and then I try to work. I always try to make some personal stuff even though my schedule is full.

Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

downthetubes: What’s the best thing about being a comics creator?

Mattias: World fame and eating biscuits for second breakfast.

downthetubes: And the worst?

Mattias: Constant anxiety about the quality of your work and that the ideas will ebb out. Uneven income is also a drawback.

downthetubes: What most distracts you from getting your work done?

Mattias: The internet is a great invention for keeping you away from work, I tend to produce my best work when I’m as far away from the grid as possible. Having too many projects ongoing at the same time also tends to bring me to a halt as well.

Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

downthetubes: Do you think it’s easier or harder for young comic creators to get published today?

Mattias: I can’t tell really, but you always have the option of self publication now. The problem isn’t making the books, it’s selling the books!

downthetubes: Have you ever been to the Lake District before and if so what did you think of it? If you haven’t, what are you expecting?

Mattias: No, but I’m really looking forward to it, as most Swedes I have a great love for the great outdoors.

I expect the Lake to be like Harry Potter – but without the Dementors…

downthetubes: Which one comic creator would you most like to meet, and why?

Mattias: I have met quite a few and I am a bit reluctant meeting my heroes, but I would have liked to have met Charles Schulz.

downthetubes: How do Festivals and other comics events help creators most, do you think?

Mattias: By giving an opportunity to meet fans and readers. Being a creator is a lonely endeavour, it’s always blows my mind going to festivals and getting to meet people from all over the world.

downthetubes: What one piece of advice do you offer people looking to work in the comics industry?

Mattias: Find your own voice and keep drawing.

downthetubes: What’s your favourite comic right now?

Mattias: I just discovered Sammy Harkham. I love his comics.

downthetubes: Thank you for your time and we look forward to meeting you in Kendal!

Find out more about Mattias Adolfsson: Web: | Blog

Events featuring Mattias Adolfsson at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival 2015

Weird and Wonderful Worlds: Mattias Adolfsson (Workshop)
Saturday 17  1.00-3.30 pm  Brewery Arts Centre Art Room One  Tickets £10 Age 12+
FIND OUT MORE AND BOOK TICKETS

European Giants: Mattias Adolfsson & Boulet
Sunday 18  10.30-11.30 am  Brewery Arts Centre Screen One  Tickets £8
FIND OUT MORE AND BOOK TICKETS

All art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

Art © 2015 Mattias Adolfsson. Used with kind permission.

About John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John describes himself as is a "freelance comics operative" who is currently working as a freelance editor for TITAN COMICS, as Creative Consultant on the new DAN DARE audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the LAKES INTERNATIONAL COMIC ART FESTIVAL and LANCASTER COMICS DAY. John has worked in British comics publishing for over 25 years, starting out at Marvel UK, where he edited a number of the Genesis 1992 books with Paul Neary, including DEATH'S HEAD II and WARHEADS. At Marvel he wrote strips for THE REAL GHOSTBUSTERS, THUNDERCATS, DOCTOR WHO and co-created SHADOW RIDERS with Brian Williamson and Ross Dearsley. His numerous credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine at Marvel and Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine at Titan Magazines, where he was Managing Editor. He also edited STRIP Magazine and worked as an editor on several audio comics for ROK Comics, including TEAM M.O.B.I.L.E. and THE BEATLES STORY. He has written comics for Marvel UK, Judge Dredd Megazine, Lucky Bag Comic, CGL (an Italian publisher), STRIP Magazine and ROK Comics; and edited some of Titan's British comics collections including Dan Dare and Charley's War. Most recently he is writing CRUCIBLE as a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and DEATH DUTY and SKOW DOGS with Dave Hailwood for the digital comic 100% Biodegradable.
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