The Rotterdam-based comics zine Zone 5300 has dedicated its last issue of the year to comics from Finland.
Pretty much all of the larger comics in the issue are by Finnish authors. Tiitu Takalo (illustration) wrote and drew It’s a Wonderful Life, a feel good tale about an aspiring writer who is down in the dumps and who gets her spirits lifted by a friend.
Other comics are Microkosmos by Jenni Janatuinen and Petteri Tikkanen (illustration), Tea and Beer by Jarno Latva-Nikkola, Post Mortem by Emmi Valve and Toivo by Tommi Musturi. Terhi Ekebom produced a beautiful story called What If, in which every panel takes up an entire page.
Interestingly, it felt like I knew these artists. I have the feeling that Finnish and Dutch comics artists perhaps use a similar visual language or have a similar sense of humour, it’s hard to determine exactly what the likenesses are.
There are also interviews with painter Elina Merenmies and regular Zone 5300 contributor Maria Björklund.
Ville Pirinen tells the story of high school gym teacher (illustration) who seems to suffer from short circuits that lead to regular injuries for himself and the occasional injury of others.
Fool’s Gold tells the story of black Amsterdam-based singer Big John Russell and his 1960’s band The Clan, which featured instrumentalists in Ku Klux Klan outfits.