CALGARY – A Filipino-Canadian comic book artist is using his stunning artwork to push Pinoy culture's own heroes to the limelight.
Dario Carrasco Jr., got his break in the comic book business in 1991, back when he was still in the Philippines.
He sent his drawing samples to Marvel Comics and started working for them after a few months.
Ironically, the first drawings he did for Marvel was a famous team of Canadian superheroes called "Alpha Flight".
In 1994, he was then invited to pencil drawings for The Tale of the Jedi Series of Dark Horse Comics and got to work with famous American Star Wars author Kevin J. Anderson, who praised Carrasco for his superb talent.
Last year, Carrasco was approached to draw pages for a graphic novelization of a famous Hollywood movie
"Kevin Grievoux, he is the creator of the Underworld movie. He was doing this 'I, Frankenstein' last year in December so he asked me to help him and to do an eight pager. It's a framing sequence that will be included in the book, which will tie in with the movie. The book came out at the same time as the movie. It came out in January this year," Carrasco said.
Based in Calgary, Carrasco is now working hard to publish his own comic book of Filipino superheroes for other nationalities to appreciate Philippine culture.
"The Panday Studio came out when I started working on the comics, be it on my own or working for somebody else. My plan is to do comic books based in Tagalog. That's why I created the studio. It's a virtual studio called Panday Studio, which we are so fond of FPJ, you know, the movie the Panday. My plan is actually to do a comic book based on Filipino superheroes and also, adventurers," he said.
Carrasco's friend and fellow artist Gerald Garcia praised him not only for his passion for the arts, but also for his passion to help others with his talent.
"I think it's commendable. Being able to share his talent and expressing it with a lot of fellow artists and showing it--the cause-- like the flood relief and all that, it is really a positive thing for a lot of people. A lot of his friends and fellow artists volunteered and took the time. He spearheaded the whole thing. It's a good cause," Garcia said.
Carrasco's "Comics for a Cause" campaign, running for many years now, has helped raised funds for people with illnesses.
He also published a comic book last year with proceeds going to the victims of the flooding in southern Alberta.
By establishing his own online comic book company and with his other projects, Carrasco hopes to help fellow Filipino and Canadian artists have a venue for their own art.
"All I can say is keep trying and polish your work so that if you decide that if this is what you want to do, get your samples ready and send it in," he said.