A French journalist, artist and colorist work together to create a weekly comic “The Mister Wonderful.” The setting for the comic, however takes places miles away in Fort Collins, Colorado. The main character, Nate, is a Colorado State University undergraduate student.
Steeve Aubert and Daniel Jacob, writer and artist for the comic, have never been to Fort Collins, but Aubert found Fort Collins by doing research on the United States. The city appeared as one of the top 10 places to retire, and thus the setting for the comic was formed.
“Concerning the atmosphere and general feel of Fort Collins, being on the top 10 places to retire and it being the place that inspired Main Street U.S.A. in the Disneyland Parks, I picture it like quite a peaceful city,” Aubert said.
The two researched the University and the city online for accuracy.
“We want to be as accurate as possible, but neither Steeve or I have been to Fort Collins; we tried to find pictures of the important places, articles about the lifestyle, and the surrounding,” Jacob wrote in an email response. “I also use Google Street View to get the feel and look of the city.”
Aubert said the comic is written in English, but a French version is also coming in one or two months. A new section of the CSU undergraduate’s story released every Tuesday online.
“The dream is to walk into the comic industry,” Jacob said. “The United States is also home to many super heroes, so it would be best to have the setting in the United States.”
The colorist for the comic, Aline Thivone, enjoys creating things with her own two hands, so her only condition for doing the colors was to do them by hand.
“My only condition is to do all the coloring on paper, for real, because I’m a little sick of having my eyes stuck on a screen, so no Photoshop,” Thivone said.
The comic started after the writer and artist met to talk about story ideas. Jacob said Nate, a CSU student, is portrayed as lazy, but has superpowers that can only be used once a week.
“I sent Steeve an email because I knew he had contacts in the French comics community,” Jacob said in an email response. “We set up a meeting to talk about what we had in mind and ten minutes later, we had most of our story.”
Jacobs now lives in Spain, while Aubert and Thivone still live in Paris. According to Jacobs, the writer and artists send pages of the story and story ideas mostly by email.
“Steeve sends me Nate’s, overall story each week, and from there, every Sunday he sends me the script of the page to draw,” Jacob said.
According to Aubert, it is difficult to rely on the pictures and use less words, while it is cool for the comic to exist online.
“The best part is grabbing my brushes and my markers to make something I love,” Thivone said. “Like Daniel (the comic artist), I’m free to do everything I want when I get a page, so it’s nice.”
Aubert said writing was the one thing he wanted to do.
“I tried all sorts of things, and comic writing strikes me as the best way to express my creativity as a writer,” Aubert said in an email interview.
Collegian Reporter Megan Fischer can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @MegFischer04.