Guest of honor Jarkko Vehniäinen and Marja Lappalainen

Marja Lappalainen and Jarkko Vehniäinen. Picture: Tero Takalo-Eskola

Picture: Tero Takalo-Eskola

Jarkko Vehniäinen and Marja Lappalainen are comic making couple from Jyväskylä. Their comic strip Kamala Luonto is being published daily in a variety of newspapers. First Lappalainen comes up with the idea for the strip then together they do the script and lastly Vehniäinen draws the comic. Besides Kamala Luonto the couple does commercial illustrations and comics.

Kamala Luonto, which was created originally by Jarkko Vehniäinen in 2002, features wildlife animals who analyze ja think about life and its complex problems with a twist of black humour. Marja Lappalainen came along Vehniäinen in 2016. After that the comic gained more characters, evolved personalities and the themes involved were more diverse.

Besides their comic Lappalainen and Vehniäinen share common interest in old science fiction movies and of course, comics. They both started reading comics at early age and their favourite comic is Asterix. Vehniäinen has been drawing for living his whole life. Lappalainen got in to the creative business later after working other jobs. Both have been drawing through their whole lives though.

Kamala Luonto is known from the pages of Finnish newspapers like Helsingin Sanomat, Aamulehti and Hämeen Sanomat. The comic is also being published in Sweden, Norway and Denmark. Vehniäinen has also done some caricatures for monthly magazine Suosikki.

Guest of honor Miguel Francisco, Spain


Miguel Francisco (Barcelona 1968) has been working in comic books, animation, advertising and video games since the mid 80’s. Started his career publishing his own character comic books in children's magazines of different publishers. Later started working for some adult underground comic books and tired of the comics at the end of the 90’s, started collaborating with big advertising agencies, developing tv commercials and illustrations for different brands.

He has many years of experience in the animation industry where he worked as character designer and storyboard artist in animation studios in Barcelona and Copenhagen where he was living for a while. The animation crisis in the beginning of the 2000’s made him land in Holland to work as an art director for a PS title. Since then, he combines his work as character designer for different companies as Rovio or Seriously, storyboards for animation and, again, his return to comic books, this time in graphic novel format, publishing in France by Delcourt éditions “De Espaces Vides” (Empty Spaces) and the Spanish edition “Espacios en blanco” by Astiberri about his family memories during civil war and post war times in Spain.

Francisco continues character designing for animation and video games, storyboarding animation shows and finishing a new book for the French market “Chronique d’un spectacle vivant” by the hand of Delcourt and script of Marion Achard. Prepares a new book about sex tourism and pedophilia where he wants to mix comic book, journalism, travels and interviews. But that’s the future.