02 February 2012

My first babysteps in Japan's Manga industry

Time have flewn by and I have, thanks to by fellow artist friend Åsa Ekström recieved some early photos from Ribbons February issue.

Åsa is in Tokyo studying Japanese and working on the third book of her manga Sayonara September that will be published in Sweden next year (so looking forward to it!!). Check out her blog! (it's in my bloglist)

Here's the pictures:

Oh My God!!! This is so unbelivable!!
Wow, I'm amazed over the fact that I made it to these pages. I have had a subscription for Ribbon since 2010 and checking these pages in every issue. To reach one of the spots in the magazine with about 250 000 copies in print is crazy!
Ok, I have (with help from a newfound friend at Deviantart) translated the text:

Circus Romantique, 32 pages
By Natalia Batista from Sweden, 25 years old

Story: Karin works at a cirkus. Every year when the summer arrives, she brings her pet Monki-chan and travels around the country and performs. There's also a lot of acrobats, magicians and beautiful entertainers [at the cirkus], but Karin is always the clown. Is that all that she is...? Is it because she can't do anything else? Karin doesn't have much self esteem. One day during show, the lighting breaks and Karin needs to climp up hight, but falls...?!

Critique: This is a work from Sweden. We can't believe that this is a work from outside of Japan, both the images and the content looks like Japanese Manga! The level is so high, the Editors were surprised. The pictures were cutely drawn but the story was a bit dull. The last scene where Karin confesses her feelings to her friends is very less dramatic and lacking. We wanted to see more of Karins own evolution and growing. Next time we want to see a story that only you can make, Natalia, because of you living in Sweden.
Art: 15
Story: 11
Overall feeling: 29
Total: 55 (out of 100)

The critique is fair and teaching, I love that! This is the kind of critique you want, it's honest and fair and also nice without being soft-soap or anything. I feel like making more and more manga for them, showing them that I can learn and improve and that I have something to give!

I have allready started inking the mermaid manga Hooked On You that will be my next entry to them (Japanese title is 友達バブル). Here's a little sneak peek:

I have taken their comments into account, by making the main character's personality stronger and more refined, and also to make the story make place for her own developement an inner growing. Also, I think the art is getting better and I already can say that this will probably be my best work EVER (art wise).

Well, back to work, see you later!


  1. Häftigt att få bli publicerad i Japan! :-D Riktigt fina bilder!

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