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Potential of Vietnamese comics

The second Vietnam Comics Day, which was held in Hanoi recently, gathered numerous young artists and attracted a large number of readers of various ages.

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Vietnam Comics Day, a project that was nurtured by the domestic comic community, was co-organised by the Comicola Comic Company and several publishing houses and book distributors in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

Visitors to the festival, particularly younger readers, had a chance to gain useful information on as well as listen to interesting stories related to comic books and their writers.

In fact, comics are an art form combining literature with animation, conveying messages to all readers. 

In numerous countries that have a strong comic culture, including Japan, the Republic of Korea, the United States and Germany, comic books cover extremely diverse topics and attract mature readers (from 18 to 25 years old). 

Furthermore, comics are an abundant material source for animation and cinema industries.

In recent years, with the appearance of very young comic writers and artists, Vietnamese comic books have been carefully invested in artwork and their content has been connected with Vietnamese culture. 

Numerous names such as Thanh Phong, Can Tieu Hy, Duong Thach Thao, Vu Dinh Lan, Duong Minh Duc, BRO group and Phong Duong Comics group have left deep impressions in the hearts of comic lovers.

Compared to 2015, there have not been too many Vietnamese comic books produced over this year; however, Vietnamese painters won numerous prestigious prizes such as the ‘Truyen Thuyet Long Than Tuong’ (Legend of General Dragon) comic with a Silver prize at the 9th International Comics Competition in Japan, painter Dinh Lan with second prize of the Silent Manga Contest in Japan.

At the 2016 Vietnam Comics Day, numerous comics were released for the first time including ‘Oanh giam can’ (Oanh loses weight) by BRO team, Episode 3 of ‘Long Than Tuong’ (Legend of General Dragon) by Phong Duong Comics and Episode 2 of ‘Nhom mau O’ (Blood Type O) by Duong Minh Duc. 

In addition, at a seminar on training for comic creation in Vietnam, the majority of delegates addressed common concerns about the position of Vietnamese comics on the international arena and how to make ‘pure Vietnamese’ comics imbued with Vietnamese styles and cultural identities.

Towards depth

Vietnamese comics should be developed in-depth, said the founder of the Comicola Company Khanh Duong. 

Currently, Comicola is a system introducing and publishing comics as well as the most professional forum for the Vietnamese comic community.

The Vietnamese Comic Industry can promote its potentials if publishing houses and relevant agencies apply reasonable models such as online publishing and raising community funds. 

A series of comics have been released thanks to raising community funds, proving the pre-eminence of this model compared to the traditional publishing form. 

Through community funds, writers and painters will work in a high sense of responsibility and the interaction between writers, painters and community will be raised.

Understanding readers’ tastes, Vietnamese comics are becoming increasingly rich in content and diverse in genres. In 2015 and 2016, around 20 sets of new Vietnamese comics were published, a significant advance compared to ten years ago in Vietnam. 

Vietnamese comics have many opportunities to develop as the imported comic market is facing numerous pressing issues, such as that foreign comic content is sometimes inappropriate with Vietnamese habits and customs, as well as contraband and piracy.

However, there have not yet been any formal schools to train comic artists and the production of comics and animation has not been closely connected with each other.

Comic festivals like Vietnam Comics Day are expected to actively contribute to encouraging the creativity of writers and comic artists.

Source VOV

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Sen 1992