Describe yourself, your background and what you do today.
I’m a Brussels-based illustrator and comic book artist. I’m currently working on my first big comic book that will be published by Ballon Media in the spring of 2019. Besides drawing, I love going to the movies – especially in the magnificent arthouse cinemas we have in Brussels –, cycling, working on my bike and going to local football games.
How has Brussels shaped you as an individual as well as your professional activities?
Whether you’re talking about architecture, neighbourhoods, art, people or even mindsets, Brussels is a complex city, with lots of different layers, each moving at a different speed and in a different direction. It’s incredibly diverse. Every time I think I knew Brussels I discover a new layer; a new community hiding somewhere. And it’s precisely this diverse palette that makes me feel so at home here, because no matter what your background or interests are, you’ll find a place where you belong, meeting companions along the road. Bottom line, Brussels has taught me to be openminded and to actively search for whatever attracts me, because in the end this will be rewarded. That’s how I found my current atelier: a coworking space well hidden behind train tracks in Schaerbeek, filled with Brussels’ finest comic artists from top to bottom. Similarly, I steered my illustration career in the direction of my personal interests. Nowadays I’m mostly commissioned to make illustrations about Brussels, and more specifically the way it could develop into a city dominated by soft mobility. I even got to draw on a bicycle frame for my last job!
Nowadays I’m mostly commissioned to make illustrations about Brussels, and more specifically the way it could develop into a city dominated by soft mobility.
List three things you like the most about Brussels, bike-related or not.
- I love the fact that you can travel in your own city. I try to spend my summers in Brussels whenever I can. I’d try out a new Portuguese restaurant in Saint-Gilles or get a drink on an undiscovered small square in Schaerbeek with the same gusto of a foreign tourist.
- Although it’s the cause of everything I don’t like about this city, I adore the je m’en fou-tisme of the people of Brussels.
- Brussels’ level of cultural entertainment is extraordinary. We’ve got eight beautiful arthouse cinemas, gorgeous museums, and the choice to see any band you like.
List three deciding factors that converted you to bicycle use.
Ever since learning how to cycle as a kid, I’ve simply never stopped biking to get around.
- It’s fast – it’s easily the fastest means of mobility in Brussels – and you know exactly how long it’ll take you to arrive at your destination.
- It’s easy to find a parking spot in front of your go-to point.
- You don’t pollute the air while driving a bicycle.
List three favourite bike routes in Brussels.
- The canal: whenever I have 10 minutes to spare, I take a detour by the cycling path next to the canal. The path is smooth as hell, and the section in Anderlecht – where the houseboats are – is magnificent.
- Bois de la Cambre / Ter Kamerenbos on weekends. If I want to inject myself with some feel-good vibes, I take my bicycle for a spin there. I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that this park is only car-free during the weekends.
- The lack of cycling infrastructure makes it hard to find a third bicycle route in Brussels. I wish that I could think of twenty now, but I’m confident that I will be able to one day.