Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Singapore Comic Con (SGCC) 2019 - Q&A With Thai Award-Winning Manga Artist Prema-Ja

Thai artist and animator Prema Jatukanyaprateep - more commonly known by her pen name Prema-Ja - will be coming to Red Dot Island this December as one of the guests of popculture convention, Singapore Comic Con (SGCC) 2019.

In 2014, BOKBIG, her manga about a boy and his mischievous pet dog, beat 256 entries and won the 2014 Gold Award at the International Manga Award in Japan.

Prema-Ja's cheerful, colourful and fun artwork has been featured in children's books as well. Go take a look at her her social media accounts, where she has posted an imaginative take on Inktober with a series of wonderful mermaid drawings, and you will see what Red Dot Diva is talking about!

Red Dot Diva: What got you interested and passionate about animation art?
Prema-Ja: I think it is about the storytelling. When start working on my art projects - beside beautiful pictures, I try to focus on the story in the work. And I love telling a story so the animation art and also comic art serves my intention.

Red Dot Diva: Who are your favourite artists, and why?
Prema-Ja: Amano Yoshitaka, a Japanese artist. His style is unique. The ambiance in his work, mysterious and brimming with fantasy, fascinates me. Another one is Beatrix Potter, an English artist. I love how she draws humanoid animals characters. They are so attractive.

Red Dot Diva: Which animation movies or shows made you go... "Wow!!"? Did you watch them over and over again to learn what made these shows special?
Prema-Ja: “Up” an animated feature film directed by Pete Docter (Pixar Animation). I remember the first time I watched it was French dubbed. Even though I was not able to understand the language, the animation made me cry a lot from the beginning until the end of the movie. The story is so touching, with a beautiful feeling.

Red Dot Diva: Where did you get your ideas for BokBig?
Prema-Ja: In the illustration class when I was at university. There was an assignment to make a comic about ourselves. So I picked up the story of me and my dog. His name was Bokbig.

Red Dot Diva: What were your first feelings and thoughts when you won the Gold Award at the 7th International MANGA Award for Bokbig?
Prema-Ja: It was unbelievable. I never thought I would win this international award. I felt I have achieved one goal of my dreams.

Red Dot Diva: Are there any projects which you wish you could do?
Prema-Ja: Yes, a comic about my cats. Now I am a mother of 3 cats.

Red Dot Diva: We are eager to meet you at Singapore Comic Con. Let us know what we can expect when we say hi to you at your booth.
Prema-Ja: It will be my first time as a guest artist in Singapore. Actually, the first time in foreign country. I am so excited. My English is not very good, but please feel free to stop by and say Hello. I will bring some prints and zines there. The details will be updated nearly the date of the event on my twitter account. See you there!



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