Spotlight

The Axe of Giants Returns! – Where the Giants Roar


Siti is an Indo-Dutch from the Netherlands. She has been making stories ever since she was a little girl, but she seriously got into (web)comics since 2013. She dreams to earn at least a part-time income making comics. She is the creator of Where the Giants Roar.

Synopsis: The Guards are the police and peace keepers in a world where humans, giants and more creatures have to live together. But the peace comes in danger when the Axe of Giants returns, of which is told can destroy all worlds.

Koios Titan and his squad are put on the task to keep the Axe a secret, to prevent the wrong person finding out about it. It’s a difficult task while also dealing with your own destructive past and feelings.

Is your comic available in any other languages? If so, what language(s)?
Yes, in French and later, also in Dutch.

Did you go to school for either art or writing? If so, what school?
No, I’m self-taught.

What is the main genre of your comic? What appeals to you about that genre?
The main genre is fantasy. I’ve always loved fantasy. I have a huge interest in fairy tales and mythology. I love all the various creatures. Greek mythology was my biggest obsession when I was little.

Are there any other genres that apply to your comic?
Drama-comedy.

What was your inspiration for the story?
It all first started as some parody on the shounen genre of manga. But when I started to work more on it, the story started to get more serious.

I fell back into my old love for Ancient Rome and Greece to build the world and myths about giants worldwide to create the characters.

Do you have any favorite artists or writers who influenced your style?
The comic artists I keep coming back to find inspiration on how to make my comics are the Dutch artist Henk Kuijpers and the British artist Phillip M. Jackson. I love their style. It’s stylized and simple, but it has lovely details. I especially love their backgrounds and wish to become just as good.

How long does it take you to complete one page?
I believe it can take me around 6-8 hours, depending on the amount of detail, but sometimes longer if I want to use complex backgrounds.

What is your process like for creating comic pages from start to finish? What tools do you use?
The script is written in Google Docs. Recently, I’ve hired an editor to help me with the story. Atla Hrafney is a lovely person to work with and helps me a lot to make the story more understandable and give it a better flow.

Most of the comic is made in MediBang Paint: the sketch, ink, and coloring. Any last details, text, and panels are done in Photoshop.

Is your comic a finished work? If not, how long do you think it’s going to be when it’s complete? Is there a definitive ending or will you just keep going for as long as possible?
The story actually just started. I have a lot of plans and ideas I want to make happen. There is a definite ending, but it’ll take quite some time when I finally get there. ‘Til then, I want to try to work on it as often as possible and as long as possible.

How long did it take you to plan the comic before even beginning to physically create it?
I’ve always wanted to do a fantasy, but never had the right story to work on that would make me all motivated and inspired. I had some ideas for a fantasy, but one never really clicked.

Until, I think around a year before the real creation, I mixed some ideas and got the story I had been looking for. I started working on characters, main story line ideas, designs and then just started with scripts and storyboards.

What was the biggest hurdle you faced during the course of making your comic? 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?
I haven’t really experienced big hurdles since I started making Where The Giants Roar. I’ve been making comics since 2013. My biggest hurdle starting from back then was planning: not to make things too complicated and chop big things into small, manageable tasks.
My pep talk would be to keep it simple and fun for myself. Always remember that you make your comics for yourself first.

What is your favorite part about working on your comic?
Sketching has always been my favorite part. Sketching feels so free and easy to do. And I love doing shadows. Shadows can quickly bring the right mood.

What is the most difficult part about working on your comic? How do you overcome it?
I am still struggling with backgrounds, especially when it comes to buildings. Currently I have a love-hate relationship with it. It’s a lot of hard work, but I always end up loving the end result. I always need to give myself a kick to start on the backgrounds. I want to find a way of doing backgrounds that work for me and I find comfortable to do.

Do you have a favorite character to write for? If so, why? Tell us more about them!
Right now, I’m kinda hooked on the whole Titan family. I got a bit too deep into their family history and the drama that goes on in the family. Koios, his brother Menos, mother Gaia and other family members have loads of secrets and hardships they’ll have to go through.
Some things will happen in the main story, others are saved for short comics.

Which character gives you the most difficulty to write for?
At this moment it’s Myrina Amazonia, because I don’t have a set story line for her yet. Her role is very small at the moment, so I have time to write down her plot. I have ideas. I only need to put it together decently.

Do you have a favorite character to draw?
Just as they’re now my current favorite characters to write, the Titan family are also my favorites to draw.

Which character gives you the most difficulty to draw?
The most difficult characters are the Guards because of their uniform. It has some elements that are difficult or too tricky for me to draw at the moment. I’ve worked on a new version to make it simpler and easier to draw.

Where can we find you?
Main Site: http://appledragon.nl/
Comic Site: http://wtgrcomic.appledragon.nl
Twitter: http://twitter.com/MissMDutch
Instagram: http://instagram.com/missdutch_ad/

I also have a second webcomic, The Steps In Love, a fat- and sex positive romantic comedy. This comic updates irregularly because of other projects and because Where The Giants Roar is my current main comic. But, I still love working on it.
WebToon: https://www.webtoons.com/en/challenge/the-steps-in-love/list?title_no=48630
Tapas: https://tapas.io/series/The-Steps-in-Love

Anything else you want the people to know about yourself or your comic?
Where The Giants Roar is my biggest passion project right now. I love to work on it. I hope you’ll like it too and will stick around for more.

Shoutout to ShadowBestie for editing/formatting this interview <3