It has been a long time between drinks, YSC Crew!! The team have been working quietly in the background and have kicked off 2022 with a BANG! For our first 555 of the year, I had the pleasure of having a chat with one of the true pillars of the Malaysian comic book community, the incomparable, Mr Alan Quah!
So normally these would be 5 questions, for 5 photos, in about 5 minutes. Not going to lie, I am quite the Quah fan so I went a bit overboard. Then Tommy wanted to add some stuff, I was meant to take some questions out, but didn’t know which ones, and then Tommy wanted me to meet with HR… it became a bit of a thing. Anyways, Alan was gracious enough to answer all of them so sit back, put your feet up, and enjoy!!
Please introduce yourself!
I am Alan Quah. I am learning to draw funny books and strive to be a good comic artist one day.
What is your earliest memory of drawing, or seeing some artwork and being impacted by it?
My first memory of comic art is a Burne Hogarth Tarzan and closer to home are watercolor paintings by my late father.
I believe you used to collect comics when you were younger? What were your favorite titles, and do you still collect now?
I love those early Savage Sword of Conan, Eerie, Creepy and Vampirella, these are black and white magazine sized publications which I still collect today. Yes, I still collect a lot of comics!
You have a degree in Advertising, and had a design studio for awhile. Any memorable clients or campaigns?
My advertising experience was limited to local content in Malaysia, mainly product campaigns ranging from consumer goods to Property Campaigns which include graphic design to full fledged campaigns that involved TV commercials. There were too many to single out a memorable campaign during those 18 years in the industry.
Still on advertising - advertising posters/art etc are quite different to illustration, would you agree? That said, have you ever wanted to do more of an advertising/graphic style for a comic cover?
Actually there are some similarities. The process of creating a concept and marrying it with typography that speaks the idea as a unit. Balance and contrast. These are all the basic fundamentals of creating comics too. I apply a lot of what I learn in advertising on my comic covers all the time.
Tommy made you read We Live, and in turn, you became a fan. What did you enjoy about the series?
The human aspect. I love a series that focuses on character development that has the reader invested in the individuals. The pacing is fantastic, honestly there is not much to hate about this series. Love it!
Who are your favorite characters to draw? (Although I saw somewhere that you enjoy drawing backgrounds the most haha)
Batman and Wolverine forever. Hahaha
Who do you think would win in an arm wrestle, Nelson or Tommy?
Hahaha. I think even if Tommy could, he would let Nelson win. Nelson is a dear friend who helped us a lot during the early part of our career/business and we have to show our respect.
A lot of your chaos covers have easter eggs in them. Any favorites or is there anything we should know about on your We Live Age of Palladions exclusive?
A lot of chaos indeed but I am always careful with the "easter eggs", nothing radical or offensive. Sometimes I will add my friends into my backgrounds. In this case, Tommy is somewhere in there as one of the civilians.
How big is your studio? We see a ton of studio finds all the time!
Big enough to tease folks with my studio finds for years. :P
Any final thoughts, or anything you would like to say to anyone reading this?
I want to say thank you to all of you who supported my art over the years and I really appreciate them very much. I hope to see you guys at a Comicon soon!
Myself and the rest of the team can not thank Alan enough for being so gracious with his time! Not just with this interview, but for the incredible efforts he put into his latest cover, well covers, for our We Live: Age of the Palladions exclusive! Metals are sold out, but there are still some raw, as well as CGC 9.8, sets available.
Thank you as always for the support crew! Check out Alan on his social media accounts, and be sure to follow him to be in the know about all of his upcoming projects!