Hello, everyone! Welcome to another fantastic interview on Creator Spotlight where we showcase the talented creators who bring amazing stories to life. Today, we’re excited to introduce you to Sushy, a comic artist and illustrator from the Netherlands. Since 2014, Sushy has been delighting readers with their charming slice-of-life comic. Join us as we dive into Sushy’s world, learn about their creative journey, and explore the heartwarming stories they’ve crafted. Let’s get started!

Note from the Creator

Hi there! My name is Sushy, I am a comic artist and illustrator from the Netherlands. I have been making a slice of life comic since 2014.

Comic: https://tapas.io/series/sushy/info

Website: https://www.sushy.nl/en/

What initially sparked your passion for creating comics, and how did that desire evolve into the work you produce today?

I have been drawing comics since elementary school. After learning writing and reading, I really liked reading comics so I wanted to make my own. I actually started out making a short comic and I still do that now!

Can you walk us through your journey as a comic creator, starting from the moment you first decided to explore this medium?

First I only made comics on paper. I would give them out to be read by classmates or family members.  It took a long time until I was able to get a scanner (I think I was around 12 or 13?). When I got the scanner I could scan my drawings to the computer. I would figure out how to make illustrations and comics in Photoshop Elements 2.0 (yeah that is a long time ago!) After a while I got Photoshop CS3 Extended for art school and worked with that. Nowadays I still work with Photoshop CS6.

Your work touches on various themes and subjects. How do you choose which stories to tell, and what do you hope your readers take away from them?

My slice of life comics are basically things that I experience in real life and then convert into a comic. 

What led you to choose Tapas as the platform for sharing your comics, and what aspects of the site do you find most appealing for your work?

I found out about Tapas through a forum post on DeviantART (when they were just starting out). I liked that they had this plan to share ad revenue with the comic artists. And I like that it has a comments feature so that people can comment properly. If you want that on your own website, things can get pretty complicated.  

Tapas has its own unique features and community. Are there any aspects of the platform that you feel could be improved, or perhaps have been challenging to navigate?

The “wall” of your profile where people can leave comments and such, is not available in the app (only on desktop). I think that is quite confusing for people.

In your opinion, what distinguishes independent comics from mainstream comics, and why do you think the indie scene is important for the overall comic industry?

There is more variety. In my country if you walk in a regular book store they only have a few comics: Donald Duck, Suske and Wiske and maybe some Marvel stuff. There is way more choice in the indie scene. I hope the comic industry will try to sell some unknown names too. 

As a comic creator, what are some unique storytelling techniques you’ve developed to set your work apart from others in the genre?

I don’t have any I think? I mostly use the yonkoma format, so I guess that is it? 

Apart from your comics, what other avenues do you explore to engage with your audience, such as social media, live events, or merchandise?

I also make illustrations and pixel art. 

Creating comics can be both rewarding and challenging. Can you share some of the struggles you’ve faced along the way, and how you’ve overcome them?

The biggest issues are motivation and finding the time to create. For motivation I just don’t wait for it anymore. If I wait until I have motivation for anythinhg, I could wait a century. If I have a plant to do something, I just try to do it as quickly as I can. For finding time, that is a struggle. Not having a steady job helps (in a way) but I don’t recommend it. 

Are there any comic creators, artists, or writers who have been particularly influential or inspiring to you? How have they shaped your creative journey?

Yes, for comics it has been Jen Jen Rose with her 4 panel life comics. I also really like reading hourly comic day comics, they really inspire me as well. I like seeing the every day life of people and that is something I share in my comics as well. 

For aspiring comic creators, what are some practical tips and advice you would give to help them find their own voice and style?

I recommend not worrying about style so much. And the best advice I ever picked up was, do what you can with what you have. 

Can you tell us about your creative process, from brainstorming ideas to the final execution of your comics? How do you stay motivated and consistent throughout?

When I get an idea, I write it down in the Notes app on my phone. Then I sketch the comic with pencil, ink it with fineliner. I scan it and I color it with Photoshop. 

How do you balance the creative and business aspects of being an independent comic creator, such as promoting your work and managing finances?

By running out of time all the time. I feel like there is never enough hours in the day. I assign hours to specific tasks.

Funding creative projects can be challenging for many artists. What strategies have you employed to fund your comics, and are there any resources you’d recommend to other creators?

Advertising a lot, and if it doesn’t work getting a parttime job. 

How do you stay updated on the latest trends and developments in the comic industry, and how do you integrate this knowledge into your work?

To be honest, I don’t think I stay very updated on the latest trends and developments. 

In what ways do you believe the comic industry is evolving, and what opportunities do you see for independent creators in the future?

It seems like most things are either online or through conventions. For the future of comics I think it is important that comics become more available locally (in a shop). This way more people can encounter it by accident.

Collaboration can be an essential part of the creative process. Have you worked with other creators or artists on projects, and if so, how have those experiences shaped your work?

Yes, most collaborations I have done have been paid collaborations. I learnt to view comics more as a job and actually learnt writing scripts properly. 

What are some personal or professional goals you have for your comic career, and how do you plan to achieve them in the coming years?

My goal has always been the same, earning a living through my art. I would love to just live on my comic but for that I would need a way bigger audience. My plan is to grow my audience more. 

As a creator, how do you measure success, and what achievements are you most proud of so far?

By making a spread sheet of my income through client work. I am most proud of receiving a Daily Deviation this year. It is not comic related, but I am also an illustrator. 

Lastly, could you share an anecdote or experience from your comic-creating journey that has had a profound impact on you, and what did you learn from it?

A reader messaged me that my comics about getting a root canal treatment helped them going through some dental surgery as well. That was really great to hear. It made me realize that I can make impact with this comic (even though it is small).

And that’s a wrap on our wonderful interview with Sushy, the talented comic artist and illustrator from the Netherlands. We hope you’ve enjoyed discovering their delightful slice-of-life comic and getting a glimpse into the creative mind behind it. Don’t forget to check out Sushy’s comic on Tapas and visit their website to learn more about their work. As always, stay tuned for more incredible creator spotlights, and until next time, keep supporting and celebrating the amazing talents in our community!

About Stec Studio, All Ages of Geek and “I Married a Monster on a Hill”

Stec Studio is a New Jersey-based company founded and run by by the Stec Sisters. We specialize in producing interactive comics and novels based on All Ages of Geek media, as well as creating a fully open world Boys Love Universe called BLU Media. This universe is being built from various media forms, including readable media, games, and animations.

Our main series, I Married a Monster on a Hill, is a popular WEBTOON that tells the story of a retired knight who falls in love with a half-monster. We are also developing an in-production visual novel called I Married a Monster on a Hill: Dates, along with an upcoming Wattpad Exclusive set in the same Universe. At Stec Studio, our goal is to create content that gives people hope and light, and we hope our stories can provide joy and entertainment to all who experience them.