Indie Komiks Panel: Metro Comic Con 2009
To all future panel moderators, here’s a protip: know who the members of the panel are. I don’t know if Male Host #2 was joking when he asked whether Pol Medina was amongst the waiting panelists but it was more of an awkward moment than a humorous one.
Inauspicious beginnings aside (the announcement about the missing laptop was also made before the panel began) the Indie Komiks panel proved to be an insightful glimpse in to the prevailing attitudes of some of the most successful veterans in the field of Independent Local Comics. The panelists were Heubert Khan Michael (Unstoppable), Reno Maniquis (Maskarado), Gener “Ner P” Pedrina (Sanduguan), Elbert Or (Bakemono High), Gio Paredes (Kalayaan), Gilbert Monsanto (Bayan Knights), Budjette Tan (Trese), and, in an appearance that was a surprise even to him, Andrew Drilon (The Love Eaters).
What follows is a summary of some of the salient points raised during the panel. If I missed anything significant or interesting, please feel free to let me know in the comments.
Q1: Why do you still call yourselves “Indies”? There is no longer a local comics industry right?
Gilbert: Well, in essence that’s correct. What we mean by “Indie” however is that we produce our komiks with our own resources, without depending on external corporate backers.
[Can’t remember if it was Gilbert or Elbert who mentioned that Liwayway still published, though their komiks are a different format. Psicom also gets mentioned, but for its foreign licensed DC and Marvel titles.]
Elbert: Actually, there are still some publishers. There is also the book publishing industry. The komiks industry is mature enough that there is much less of a distinction between komiks and books.
Budjette: Many of the local book publishers we’ve worked with, such as Visiprint and Adarna, give us a lot of creative freedom. Also, we are “Indie” in the sense that, unlike creators who work with Marvel and DC, we own our characters.
[More Q and A after the break.]