Artists Visconde Carlo Vergara, Carljoe Javier and Manix Abrera lead this year's USTingan. Photo by Jenzine Inah M. Alcantara

04 September 2013, 12:01 a. m. – COMICS fans — students and faculty members alike — exchanged ideas in a roundtable discussion on graphic fiction during the third installment of USTingan held at the Benavides Building Tuesday afternoon.

The speakers, who are prominent figures in contemporary graphic fiction, highlighted the importance of support from comics enthusiasts to ensure the continuity of a “struggling medium.”

“Kailangan nating i-recognize ‘yung efforts ng mga comics artists locally, and if you love these comics, you must support them, and to support them, you must buy them. It’s a struggling industry already, it’s a struggling medium,” said Carljoe Javier, writer and illustrator of the well-known prose collection “And the Geek Shall Inherit the Earth.”

Visconde Carlo Vergara, creator of “Zsazsa Zaturnnah,” echoed Javier and urged the eager audience to keep on reading graphic fiction and participate in upcoming book fairs, such as Aklatan 2013 and the Manila International Book Fair.

“I’d just like to invite people to at least try it out, just try it out and you might find something worth reading. If you can’t buy, borrow. Every little thing counts,” Vergara said.

Meanwhile, Kiko Machine Komiks creator Manix Abrera spoke about the importance of being observant to aspiring illustrators.

“Du’n sa mga gustong mag-comics, sobrang importante ang maging observant kayo sa paligid ni’yo kasi du’n kayo makakakuha ng material ninyo. I-practice ninyo ‘yung pagkuha ng kahit [anong topic] at subukan ninyong tingnan sa iba’t ibang angle. Iwasan ni’yo ‘yung mga angle na sanay tayo. Subukan ninyong gumawa ng kwento sa ibang perspective,” Abrera said.

USTingan, now on its third installment, is a forum organized by the recently revived UST Center for Creative Writing and Literary Studies. It aims to address topics that are both interesting and relevant to modern Philippine literature. Sarah Mae Jenna A. Ramos


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