The vibrant life of a couple who created comics

MAGAZINE. They have been a couple since high school graduation. For six years, they teamed up and created characters, one blow at a time. Welcome to the bright and whimsical world of cartoonist Félix Laflamme and screenwriter Claude DesRosiers.

Living in Drummondville for many years, Félix Laflamme and Claude DesRosiers combined their talents in 2016 to create Flaflam Studio, a young and imaginative company dedicated to the creation of comic books. In their home, which invites a good mood, they created a workspace where, side by side, they give life to dazzling characters, the fruit of their limitless imagination.

If life fills you today, your journey to get straight to your “X” turned out to be winding, by your own admission. Félix notably had to set aside his passion for comics early in his career to focus on illustration and tattooing, a matter of putting bread on the table and milk in the fridge.

“In the years 1998 to 2000, there were very few comic book authors in Quebec. I would like to start doing this from the beginning, but it was impossible to think about making a living out of it, expressed Félix Laflamme, 41. So I turned to illustration. I was drawing all the time and posting my drawings on the website My space. Music groups started writing for me. I started snowballing and I started illustrating album covers for Quebec artists like Mononc’Serge, but also Gun’s & Roses, Michael Jackson and The Ramones. I got contracts for tour t-shirts through that. There were tour dates written on the back; on the front, my drawings. It was gratifying.” In turn, his wife studied accounting and worked in that field for ten years before joining him and writing the screenplays.

(Photo Ghyslain Bergeron)

The son of an accomplished artist, but claiming to have learned his art self-taught, Félix Laflamme “returned to his essence” in 2006. Admittedly, he had to brush up on his style and say goodbye to the dark images of the medium. heavy metalbut he did this, and brilliantly, moreover.

“I wanted to create my own characters and make them live many adventures. At that time, our children were young and we often went to the library to buy comics. We quickly realized that there were more and more breeders from Quebec. We thought that now there could be an opening. We took the ball calmly. We went to several book fairs to meet authors. And finally, we made contact with a publisher. And we got the green light quickly”, says the cartoonist, who agreed with Presses Aventure.

It was then that they created their first comic book. At the same time, the couple started a collaboration with the youth magazines Les Explorateurs, Les Débrouillards and Curium, in addition to offering online training in the art of comics to groups of students throughout the province. If the pages of your diary are already well filled, your creativity does not lack impetus. It explodes day after day.

“Initially, we gave ourselves two years to see if it would work. Finally, six months later, we already had a project in hand and he didn’t stop”, says Claude DesRosiers, who is also in charge of coloring the works and then managing the business.

maddox and company

Highlighting Quebec comics month in May, Flaflam Studio created in 2018 its main character, Maddox, a little boy like all the others who lacks self-confidence. Throughout his adventures, he makes many encounters in a constantly renewed fantasy world. Two volumes of comics Maddox Mega Adventures, aimed at children aged 9 and up, were released around the same time that year. Shortly after, the Maddox and Aurore collection was launched.

(Illustration: Studio Flaflam)

“We did a lot of book fairs to make ourselves known. We liked it a lot, because we met young people and received feedback. This makes for great conversations. I am happy to see that young people are marked by our stories”, says Laflamme, informing that the 6thand volume was published last November.

In 2020, the couple rejuvenated their audience and published a series of booklets, Maddox and Aurore, for preschoolers. A new one was also published earlier in the year. In total, the Laflamme-Desrosiers couple have published ten books since 2018.

Regardless of the target audience, each page designed requires at least one day of work. “Our creative process is special because we are always together. We talk about it all the time. Once we have the initial idea, Claude writes the bare bones of the story. Then we discuss and then the production begins, starting with the cut”, explains Mr. Laflamme, which indicates that it does everything on the computer. A very stimulating job.

In the coming months, Félix Laflamme and Claude DesRosier intend to bring Maddox’s adventures to life one last time to work on new characters that will bring new emotions to young Quebecers. “We hope that our stories create a beautiful nostalgia among young people. That’s what we work for: marking childhood”, concludes Drummondvilloise.

some cartoonists

Comics are booming in Quebec. There is something for everyone’s taste. In addition to Tristan Demers, who has been drawing for a long time, others have stood out in these years, such as Alex A who notably offers the popular series, Maxim Cyr who created the DragouillesAlain Bergeron, prolific author of Victoriaville in partnership with Sampar, which notably offers the collection Did you know?as well as Freg and Makina who offer The Smoke Band. “Demand still exists despite cell phones and tablets. Unlike when I was young, schools do a lot of reading-related promotion. Comics are a great way to convince people to enjoy reading,” said Félix Laflamme.

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