I first met Viola when Nadine wrote to me about another project and sent me some links to her work. Nadine has been drawing Viola for years now, along with some characters from her universe, and it occurred to me that this wonderful art needed only a storyline to become an epic for our times.
Well, perhaps I’m getting a little ahead of myself.
Still, I loved Nadine’s art so much and saw so much potential in Viola that I reasoned if I could find stories to match the character we’d be able to put together an interest web comic.
You may have guessed from the Arabic in the image that Nadine comes from an Arabic country: Lebanon, in fact. And yet I saw an Oriental quality in her art, not least evidenced by the short, enigmatic phrases that accompanied her pictures. That, too, got me wondering.
Art, artists tell me, takes quite a long time to actually do and Nadine assures me that each comic takes at least a week of hard work to complete. So the stories that I would write would have to be rather short. That was fine with me as after writing 5 or 6 books I’ve come to dread pages of words – at least when they’re coming out of the end of my pen. So here was an opportunity to write some haiku-like stories for an enigmatic girl with red hair (Viola, not Nadine, though she does have red hair, too, and they’ve never been seen in the same place at the same time).
We’re launching the website now and it’s all very exciting. We’ve been working together for over 3 months already and the working-in-progress has been as illuminating as the work itself. So we’ve decided to make this blog to accompany the comic and share some of the process of inspiration and perspiration behind the scenes of putting Wandering Viola together.
May she wander in your hearts.