Jasper Rietman, Site 2
Thumbtack Press’s newest artist Jasper Rietman is an emerging illustrator from the Netherlands. Although his witty, beautifully drawn illustrations and comics are gaining a groundswell of recognition around the world, his approach still surprises people with its hilarity, inventiveness, and style. We chatted over GChat for a bit last week and talked about his personal comic project TRI/P, some of the challenges of editorial illustration, what he most likes to draw, and how to tell a story in pictures without words. Part 2 is here.
You can see Jasper’s TTP collection – with pieces starting at $19.99 – here.
Thumbtack Press: Hey Jasper is that you?
Jasper Rietman: Hi Ben!
JR: Yes, it’s me. Cool, everything works fine.
TTP: Great. I think the chat is easier than video, plus then I don’t have to shower. (Kidding kidding.)
TTP: Ha I was doing my research!
TTP: So yeah TRI/P was the first thing I wanted to talk to you about because it was the first thing I saw of yours. I think I first saw it in the It’s Nice That article. Where did it all come from? How long has it been going?
JR: I think I’ve been making them since 2009, while I was still a student. I’ve studied illustration and was always interested in telling a story with images, kind of using cinematic techniques, so one of my teachers asked, “Why not try to use multiple images instead of one?”
Jasper Rietman, Site 1
TTP: I think this is really interesting – the traditional use of 3 shots vs. the idea of the storyboard because storyboards can go on forever, but 3 is a definite limit. Sort of like satisfying the demands of a fugue, or a sonnet.
JR: Yes, but to me it doesn’t really feel like a limitation. The idea behind those illustrations was to make the viewer think about what had happened “before” and what was going to happen “after” the illustration was made – does that make sense?
TTP: Do you mean outside of the 3 panels? Or “beyond” them?
TTP: I remember the pigeon one – sort of on top of a city.
JR: Yes, that’s right.
TTP: But also with this really textural sky. Reminds me of Jerusalem. When I think of Jerusalem and looking out from the city I think of those colors.
JR: Oh really? That’s cool. Gives it a whole other meaning and context.
TTP: Yeah I mean the sort of gray, the browns, the whites. And yes, even the pigeons. But anyway so you were in school till ’09? where did you go?
JR: I graduated in 2010, ArtEZ academy for the visual arts. It’s in a city called Zwolle.
TTP: You studied illustration?
JR: Yes, especially editorial illustration, even though our illustration department is renowned for children’s book illustration as well.
TTP: Are you still in Zwolle today?
JR: No, I moved to another city called Deventer when I met my girlfriend, who was already living here. But it’s really close, less than half an hour by train.
Jasper Rietman, No Title (1)
Part 2 of the chat is here, with more on what makes a comic funny vs. interesting, choosing illustration clients and topics, professional life, and more from Jasper.
In the meantime you can peruse his TTP collection here.