Arena Gunslinger – A Spaghetti Western With a Twist!?

The Strangerous is a trilingual fella, who juggles between native Polish, secondary English and recently Spanish.

In late 2019, he wrapped up his arena-shooter inspired comic called Arena Gunslinger, also known as El Arenero (yes, there is a Spanish version)! Clocking in at a whopping 194 pages, Arena Gunslinger  is full of action, gun tricks, camp, drama and billions of meticulously hatched lines.

Arena Gunslinger is a Spaghetti Western with a twist and that twist is spectacular arena gunfights!

But it goes even beyond the entertainment, it affects others around it.  Some hate it, some love it, some are big-headed gunslingin’ celebrities, others are honorable and modest. Some try hard seriously, some take it playfully. For such an obsession, you will have consequences.

I got to pick The Strangerous’s brain about Arena Gunslinger and this is what he had to say about it:

Did you go to school for either art or writing? If so, what school?
No, just a regular school. This art stuff is just a passionate hobby.

What appealed to you about the Western/cowboy genre?
The grittiness, the cool gun tricks and gunfights. It’s what you’d call nowadays boomer vibe and such. Fitting how I got into it right when entering adulthood. Sure helped me deal with the transition.

Do you have any particular shows/video games/comics that inspired you?
Quake and Unreal Tournament was the biggest inspiration, alongside other ones. Like early 00’s gun-fu stuff, like Matrix or Max Payne to modern day John Wick.

My style has also been shaped and influenced by directors, such as Genndy Tartakovsky, Sam Raimi, Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino. I love campy stuff.

You’ve got some really great linework and hatching going on in your art! How long did it take you to complete one page?
Probably around 10 hours or so.

Do you have any favorite artists who influenced your style?
Genndy Tartakovsky’s Samurai Jack, some Manime stuff like JoJo, Berserk, OPM, the guys behind Netflix Castlevania .

What is your process like for creating comic pages? What tools do you use?
Writing script down in Word, sketching new page but with improvised randomness kicking in. Then inking, coloring, background, the usual stuff in Photoshop.

How long did it take you to plan the comic before even beginning to physically create it?
There was a clueless prototype without rhyme or direction, constantly being redone, reshuffled for half a decade, before Arena Gunslinger. Until I planned a story ahead, where I did write a chapter taking place in arena. But then I completely rebooted it, from scratch.

How long is the comic and how long did it take you to finish it?
194 pages (2 covers), it took over 2000 hours or so. Over the span of 4 years.

What was the biggest hurdle you faced during the course of making Arena Gunslinger? If you could go back in time to the point where you just started making it and give yourself a pep talk, what would you say?
Surviving a downer.
All because the chain of devastating bubble bursting moments kicked my feelings real hard, back at the end of 2016. I almost thought of quitting cowboy stuff, but kept moving, cause I knew to expect the unexpected.

What was your favorite part about working on Arena Gunslinger?
Funny banter, moments, campy stuff.

What was your LEAST favorite part about working on Arena Gunslinger?
Backgrounds, lots of lots of backgrounds.

Do you have a favorite character to write for?
Probably that ol’ ram Vernoth. He has the “I’m too old for this shit!” attitude.

Concept art for Vernoth Visuroth

Do you have a LEAST favorite character to write for?
Big headed arena celebrities, acting like divine figures, thinking they can get away with anything.

Do you have a favorite character to draw?
Pacco Alvo, the simplistic design, not too complicated and smooth.

Concept art for Pacco Alvo

Do you have a LEAST favorite character to draw?
Charry O’Doo, orange black flannel shirt was painful to draw…

Concept art for Charry O'Doo

Where can we find you and more of your work?

Anything else you want the people to know about yourself or your comic?
Always keep going forward, you never know what pleasant surprise is up ahead.

Have you read Arena Gunslinger yet? Let us know what you think in the comments! Or, hey, go to the creator’s site and show some love 😀

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