EDITORIAL What’s THIS? Well, in all my 50+ years I have always loved books, comics, movies and any pop-culture form of art. From a young age onwards I have made my own booklets, worked for school newspapers and later in life for actual real world publications. In recent years I have been dealing with some bad cases of social anxiety and the above forms of media have helped me through some tough times and dark days. Especially 2020 has been a tough year for many people and I thought it would be fun to share some of the pop-culture things that helped me bring some joy in a surreal world that sometimes seems to swallow us up like a giant monster. This year is also the year I finally took the plunge and started writing novels. In the past I had written poetry, short stories, the occasional screenplay and several comic book scripts. It was quite a process, but a rewarding one. For years it hasn’t just been the anxiety holding me back but also what’s called ‘The Imposter Syndrome’. Impostor syndrome (also known as impostor phenomenon, impostorism, fraud syndrome or the impostor experience) is a psychological pattern in which an individual doubts their accomplishments or talents and has a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as a “fraud”. Some experts believe it has to do with personality traits—like anxiety or neuroticism—while others focus on family or behavioural causes. Sometimes childhood memories, such as feeling that your grades were never good enough for your parents or that your siblings outshone you in certain areas, can leave a lasting impact. People often internalize these ideas: that in order to be loved or be lovable, ‘I need to achieve.’ It can become a self-perpetuating cycle. Through writing my books and starting blogs again I am working on breaking the cycle. I hope this magazine will help other people feel better in these uncertain times and at least put a (mysterious) smile on their face, like our good friend Lisa! With warm regards,
RONA LISA Since an early teenager I have been intrigued by the Mona Lisa painting and have collected many variations over time...
ESCHER2 My grandfather had a book of M.C. Escher that captivated my imagination from a very young age. It’s amazing how influential his work has been to many people over the years...
The Franka Friendship Part 1 The first in a series that follows the friendship of myself and a comic book character called Franka. A therapeutic journey through the times of my life that life imitated art...
Books have always played a big part in my life. Because my grandmother, on my father’s side, worked at a book company a lot of books ended up at our house and we had an impressive collection in our living room, including a decent variety of art books. One of them was part of a series of art books by Dutch publisher Gaade called: LEONARDO DA VINCI. Leonardo really needs no introduction, he is easily considered one of the greatest painters of all time (despite his few surviving works). People would also know his name from the Dan Brown The da Vinci Code book (and movie) or even as one of the Mutant Turtles! The book had the infamous mirrored autograph in shiny gold on the cover and it was filled with amazing sketches and full colour images of his work. On page 82 was my first introduction to the lady with the smile. Some say that the Mona Lisa, is the most famous of Leonardo’s works , it might be most famous portrait ever made. My fascination with this enigmatic piece of art only increased when I started high school and in the school library I found a copy of ‘ART AFTER PIECES’ by Ward Kimball. Ward was one of Walt Disney’s main team of animators, known collectively as Disney’s Nine Old Men. I have been a Disney fan since the dawn of time.
“Where the spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art.”
Leonardo da Vinci
This little paperback had numerous works of art that had parody versions next to the original. Kimballâ€™s parodies included Gainsboroughâ€™s Blue Boy as a bearded Beatnik in dark sunglasses, and Vincent Van Goghâ€™s iconic sunflowers stuck into a vase that happened to be an empty VAT 69 Whisky bottle. But even better, on the cover it had Mona Lisa with hair curlers! I have since then collected many versions of the Mona Lisa, cut from magazines (mostly used in advertising as the basis for some newspaper cartoon).
Over time I collected several Mona Lisa related clippings from publications.
Later in life I managed to get a copy of the Kimball book, one that made it out to New Zealand with my collection. Another great book that I bought second hand for $10 was MONA LISA, ‘The pictures & the myth’ by Roy McMullen. A hardcover volume that even though originally published in 1975, is a thorough investigation of the Mona Lisa.
The book asks questions, like ‘What is the explanation of the elusive Gioconda smile?’ Or what about the strangely devastated landscape in the background, with its intimations of a flood having recently passed through?” and more. For me the 15th chapter of this book GIOCONDOCLASTS AND GIOCONDOPHILES, was the most interesting one as it
talked about the different versions by well-known artists like Andy Warhol, Marcel Duchamp and Fernand Leger. The internet over time has made it easier to satisfy my hunger for cool images, including finding many versions of The Mona Lisa. Even in Asterix, the Mona Lisa pops up (out of time)...
Star Wars, Lego and the usual pop culture examples...
The Mona Lisa, to me, is the greatest emotional painting ever done. The way the smile flickers makes it a work of both art and science, because Leonardo understood optics, and the muscles of the lips, and how light strikes the eye - all of it goes into making the Mona Lisaâ€™s smile so mysterious and elusive. - Walter Isaacson ...even many magazine covers have used the painting!
Even the Mona Lisa couldnâ€™t escape 2020!
What pop culture figurines have YOU got on your desk?
eRiQ came to New Zealand in 1992 and calls himself a DUTCH KIWI. He married a Kiwi in 2001 and fills his days in South Taranaki with design, photos, doodles, words and rocks.You can read his blog at eriqsbloq.blogspot.com or follow his images on Instagram: eRiQ_Quaadgras and his author account: eRiQ_NZ_author
THE BOOKCASE OF eRiQ This is just one of my bookcases and only one segment filled with comic books. In my collection I have mainly Dutch comics, series I have continued to follow over the years although many I have stopped buying. With the exception of Franka, my favourite comic book series; the reason why I started a series of articles just about this comic. The first one kicks off in this issue. If I had to pick only three books from my comic collection, it would have to include a Franka one. Then if I had to choose only one, I would go for THE THIRTEENTH LETTER (1995). I have been lucky that since I emigrated to NZ in 1992, one of my best friends has been kind enough to organise and send me the special edition hardcover books. Each hardcover is numbered and signed. I also have a unique digital version of the book.
Another series that I have loved since I was ten years old is STORM - the Don Lawrence versions that appeared in the EPPO comic magazine. I have quite a few of the books still in my bookcase, even though I read most of the originals as weekly stories in that magazine. The Pandarve Chronicles, written by the great Martin Lodewijk, are especially worthwhile reading. I have bought a couple of English versions as well. ‘The Pirates of Pandarve (The Chronicles of Pandarve: Volume 1) is one of my fav reads. Don’s artwork is sublime and I am surprised that someone like Netflix hasn’t picked up the rights yet to this series.
For my third pick I have chosen something more recent and equally awesome. Andy: The Life and Times of Andy Warhol by Typex. I was excited to find an English copy of this beautiful biography, that shows the life of Warhol in a popcultural comic-strip fashion. Utterly impressive and a must for anyone who is even slightly interested in his art or pop-culture in general. In later issues I will showcase some more of my favourite books.
M.C. ESCHER - not to be confused with MC Hammer (You canâ€™t touch this), was a Dutch graphic artist (the MC stands for Maurits Cornelis). He made mathematically inspired woodcuts, lithographs, and mezzotints. Despite worldwide popular interest, Escher was sadly neglected in the art world for a long time, even in his home country of the Netherlands.
My grandfather had a book with a large selection of his artwork and each time we would visit I would delve into the pages as they were full of visual riddles and exciting SciFi worlds. Back when I was young the post office, a massive building in The Hague (where I was born). featured a large 48 metre long painting on linen, called Metamorphosis III. I believe it was moved to Schiphol, Amsterdam Airport in 2008.
On many occasions, M.C. Escherâ€™s work inspired some of the modern film makers. Movies like Labyrinth, Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb and even Inception are just a few examples. Even in cartoons and comic strips the fantastical upside-down staircase worlds come back time and time again.
This has become one of those pop-culture images that I have been collecting for many years. From Superman and Batman to Obama and anything in between, this ‘Hand With Reflecting Sphere’ image has lead to many great parodies and YES - even one with the Mona Lisa!
For me the most inspiring Escher graphic is the one with the spherical glass ball that he holds in one hand. He used it to create a selfie of the artist.
“I don’t think in a box. I think in a sphere.”
Brandon Victor Dixon
From SpongeBob, to Star Wars and Lego -Always the great classics to work into an art parody --
“He who wonders discovers that this in itself is wonder.”
“We adore chaos because we love to produce order.”
Often when I am out and about I will bring my glass sphere along to take photos mostly on the beach. I love the reflection of the blue ocean and the sky. I have also used a sphere for my eRiQ creations logo in the past. I like experimenting with selfies in spherical surfaces, whether it’s a Christmas ornament or a simple doorknob.
“I like stepping into the future. Therefore, I look for doorknobs.” - Mark Rosen.
A Franka Friendship by eRiQ The author would like to thank: Debra Quaadgras, Michael Minneboo, and of course Henk Kuijpers.
A FRANKA Friendship
All Franka images are copyright to Henk Kuijpers, all other images (other than the author’s own photos and or illustrations) are copyrighted to whomever they belong to. They have been added for illustrative reasons. All parts of this book may be used and shared without written permission, but it would be kind to email the author if you do. firstname.lastname@example.org Publication design: eRiQ Proofreading: Debra Quaadgras
Back in August 2018, coping with anxiety and inspired by Youtube vloggers Michael Minneboo and Marcel Haster, I decided to write some articles about how the comic book Franka has influenced me throughout my life. Dedicated to Hans Koelemij, we have always had ‘a Franka Friendship’ eRiQ
is a popular Dutch comic book series drawn and written since the mid-1970s by the graphic artist Henk Kuijpers. The principal character is a strong female Dutch sleuth who solves mysteries in exotic locales. Franka has been translated into a variety of languages, including Danish, German, French and Spanish. - Wikipedia
Most of the images in these articles are of course copyrighted by Henk Kuijpers. This is the first of a collection of articles that have been a therapeutic way of dealing with a severe form of anxiety. It was always supposed to be a personal document not intended for sale, but I decided to have it distributed online for fellow Franka fans and lovers of comic books.
tell the story and I am the first to admit it will be incomplete and there might be parts that are based on my own opinions, so please donâ€™t sue me.
It was never intended to be a catalogue of all things Franka, the images I have chosen are just illustrations to
If more people get to know about the adventures of Franka, it will make me happy, as her adventures deserve the
My love and passion for Franka has been a great support throughout my life and if somehow I can share these experiences with other people it has done its job more than you can know.
same amount of love and respect as Tintin or any super hero comic. In my eyes, Henk Kuijpers, creator of Franka, is the true hero for giving so many passionate Franka fans this amazing body of work and I am honoured and priviliged to share just a fraction of the amazing work by this truly talented illustrator / cartoonist. With respect, eRiQ Quaadgras
Ahhhh... Baby Q!!! #1967
1974 - 2020
Who am I ... I was born in The Hague, The Netherlands in 1967. The same year the Tina was founded. This was a weekly comic magazine for girls, my only interaction with it was when I was visiting cousins or sometimes it was part of “the lees-map” (an initiative that had a variety of dutch magazines delivered to your door in a large folder. It ranged from women’s magazines to family magazines and often included a few comic ones. Like the Tina, Robbedoes and Donald Duck.) The Donald Duck magazine was probably my first introduction into the world of comics, soon followed by comic book series like Tintin, Asterix and Lucky Luke. I have some great memories of sitting on the bedroom floor at my aunt’s house going through piles of old PEP magazines. I loved the covers and going through all the amazing pages. It would have been 1974, when I was still 6 years old, that I first came in contact with the work of Henk Kuijpers. From the blue cover with the vivid red balloon, to page 44, where the
story of George Longfellow (1907) was printed, it made a long lasting impression on me. Since that day this magazine has been part of my Henk Kuijpers collection. In one of the frames you can see how the characters of Franka and her friend Jarko came to life. I later found out that this story was based on two pages that were originally drawn back in 1971 as part of an amateur comic strip contest for the 25th birthday of the Tintin magazine (Kuifje) for many YEARS that was one of the first magazines I got every week. The other magazine that I bought for more than 10 years was the EPPO. This magazine started in 1975, but I didn’t get it until number one of 1976. As you can see on the left, Franka was already on the cover.
A friendship was born.
My left leg plastered, comics plastered to the left of me, I left the real world plastered to the TV.
Back in 1976, when I first started reading the EPPO magazine, “Het Meesterwerk” (The Masterpiece), the offical 2nd story of Franka had already been going for a few issues. I never got the actual first 13 copies of this new publication, created in 1975 as a fusion of two Dutch comic magazines, the Pep and the Sjors. Ger Apeldoorn wrote an amazing book about the history of the EPPO and I was lucky enough to have one of my best friends send me a copy. Comic books have always helped me over the years. When I was in the hospital as a young boy, family would come and bring a comic book. When I was stuck at home, with a broken leg, my parents put my bed in the living room so I could watch TV and read lots of comics back in 1972.
In the 80’s when my parents were getting divorced, I had my weekly comic magazines to hide in and when I was forced out of my dad’s home and temporarily lived in an cold attic room above the apartment of my mum’s partner’s sister - comics helped me through it all.It was during the first years of the 80’s that my own character, the Slumper, was born and eventually popped up in a lot of different variations over the years. While attending high school I joined the school newspaper, which pushed my cartooning and the passion for putting together publications.
In high school (1984) we experimented with different formats of the school newspaper.
FRANKA You have given me joy through many years You were there after anger and tears Reading the pages of your books Your strength, your passion and your looks Your posters on my walls inspired your adventures were desired After the 45 years we’ve spent I see you as a special friend. eRiQ 2020
1987, Soldier Q
Each week I would go to a local tabacco shop, the place where magazines were sold, to get my dose of Kuifje and Eppo. Always looking forward to the new adventures of Franka throughout this decade. In the early 80’s my dad bound a lot of them into nice hardcover books. I loved these volumes. Once I went into the dutch army in 1987 and eventually met my first wife to be, I eventually stopped buying the magazines. When we emigrated to New Zealand I had to make the hard decision to leave these precious volumes of 10 years of comics behind, taking only a few copies with me that were Franka related. Over the years I was often reminded of these great comics and luckily through the wonders of the internet I have found a lot of the older copies of EPPO back in digital format.
Still - especially with my father passing away in 1999, it would have been nice to have some of these volumes as a keepsake. Because of family issues I had lost touch with the people whom I believed to be in possession of these books. As far as I knew, they could have sold them or thrown them out. Then early in 2018, I spotted two volumes being offered for sale online, via the Facebook page of the brother of my first wife. I contacted him and he offered to bring them to NZ, coming to support his sister due to the sad loss of their mum. We managed to catch up and after a great walk through the Redwood forest of Rotorua he presented me with the two first volumes of the Eppo series, bound by my dad. They mean SO much to me.
Now, combined with the awesome “Years of Eppo” book from Ger Apeldoorn and watching some great dutch comicbook vlogs on Youtube, they have inspired me to write about my experiences with Franka something that is helping me deal with my increased levels of anxiety. Comics and music have been the pillars that helped me stay up through some of the tough times in my life.
“Comics and music have been the pillars that helped me stay up through some of the tough times in my life.”
One of my favourite b/w prints of Franka has hung on many walls over the years.
Part of my Franka collection proudly residing in my bookcase! Most of the hardcovers, the special card sets and a cd.
My dad left handwritten instructions on how to bind magazines into a book. One day I will have to translate it and actually test it out, maybe I can create some books myself like the two awesome volumes below. A happy reunion with my ex-brother in-law, Marcel Zenden, who brought back the legendary Eppo volumes to my world!
After helping my good friend Renske with some design work, I was rewarded with this excellent historical book about the Eppo years.
Shifting to Taranaki in 2019 helped me enormously with coping with my anxiety, having the many parks and beaches available for me to escape to and ground myself without having to seek solace in books and spending too much time online. Then I was motivated to actually write a novel, something I had always wanted to do, but it was shelved for a long time. When the Corona virus started to create its own drama and with no possibilities of visting the beach during lockdown in New Zealand I turned to more writing; a second novel, a bundle of poetry and started a few other projects on top of already running a national Outdoor magazine and a newly created art publication called QUBE.
This Franka Friendship project came back into the spotlight again during level 3, a passion project that I really wanted to complete and get onto ISSUU, a free platform that also hosts a few other photo and poetry books I have created. Originally I had more chapters, but my future plan is to do a follow up book at some stage.
It has been a pleasure to revisit the books of Franka and my own related history during these times of isolation and it has helped me get through some dark times. I guess thatâ€™s what friends are for! Thanks, Franka... for being a great friend.
Who is Franka How did it all start... Cover of PEP 48, 1974 that introduced Franka.
Cover of Eppo 11, 1977 that introduced me to Storm.
Franka (Francesca Victoria) is a young, attractive and adventurous female private investigator. At first she lived in a fictionalised version of the Netherlands, her home was in the town of Groterdam. But since 1993’s “Flight of the Atlantis” she has been known as a resident of Amsterdam. The cases she solves often take place in the worlds of art, fashion and film in a world of exotic places full of cons, crooks and crazies. Once I started reading her adventures in the new Eppo magazine in 1976, it soon became my favourite comic.
Only to be paralleled by the adventures of “STORM” created by Don Lawrence in 1977. It was going to be an interesting ride...
In PEP Nr.46 (1974 was the first announcement of the new comic,then in the next issue (47) they not published an interview with Henk Kuijpers and announced that the first adventure “The Coup” of what was to be called “ The Criminology Museum” was coming the next week. We see a movie poster being hung up that features the THREE main characters; Arend, Jarko AND FRANKA!
This one, the actual cover looked slightly different than advertised... BETTER! The â€œinside coverâ€? page for the German version had some extra tree action (below).
In 1977 the first adventure of Franka in book form was advertised with a special deal of ONE guilder off the cover price for Eppo readers I knew I needed that book! For a long time this adventure was the first and only Franka book I owned, because all other stories were published in the EPPO magazine - and why double up. It has become a precious item in my collection and is zip-locked in a plastic bag, protected from the elements.
“THE CRIMINOLOGY MUSEUM” It all began in 1973, when Henk Kuijpers first started to work on his comic adventure series. His test pages about a TV company got him work at Pep magazine and after some short stories, these test pages evolved after six weeks into “The Criminology Museum”. Its first episode “The Coup” (which I believed could also be a cool nickname for Kuijpers, “the Kuijp”) was published in the 48th issue of PEP magazine, 29th of November 1974.
Franka was just part of a team of five and was in it for only 14 pages. In a different reality it might have just been called Jarko! One of the main reasons why it was changed to FRANKA was because when the Pep and Sjors magazines fused into EPPO the stories had to be streamlined aiming for a more younger audience. Thus, in the second book Franka became the lead
character, living on her own in the big city, just like Henk - who was still a student of sociology at that time. I was still a little boy, reading comics in my small room in the Hague, the Netherlands who would have thought I would end up in New Zealand with a large Franka collection!
Over the last 45 years, Franka has changed a lot. But then... haven’t we all. I still look forward to each book and admire every line that Henk Kuijpers has ever drawn!
The first frame that introduced Franka in the first book, dressed in purple clothes (purple was THE colour of the seventies, also associated with feminism... well I guess Prince brought it back in the 80â€™s, not to mention the Color Purple movie!)
Years later I did double up on the first album by adding the special hardcover version, with some great behind the scenes info from Henk Kuijpers himself. The vignette on the cover shows Franka in similar coloured clothing but in the newer style of drawing. The great thing about the special hardcover version was the fact that Henk
Kuijpers gave the fans of his work a peek behind the curtains. An insight to what it takes to create a comic book, with all the research and the sketches. A treasure trove of information for the readers of Franka. From the moment that the first adventure in the series was finally released in this fomat, it came with a wealth of information.
From insights into Henkâ€™s earlier drawings as a kid to some initial artwork that would eventually lead to the creation of my beloved comic book hero.
The LIST Here’s a list of all of Franka’s adventures:
Jarko actually made the cover of the PEP. They might still have considered that Jarko would become the star of the series. A larger version of this frame from page 25, but with the newspaper ad coloured in!)
1. Criminology Museum(1978) 2. The Masterpiece (1978) 3. The Return of the Noorderzon (1978) 4. The Revenge of the Freighter (1979) 5. Circus Santekraam (1981) 6. The Swamp Monster (1982) 7. The Dragon’s Teeth (1984) 8. The Dragon’s Downfall (1986) 9. Murderous Competition (1990) 10. Gangsterfilm (1992) 11. Flight of the Atlantis (1993) 12. The Blue Venus(1994) 13. The Thirteenth Letter) (1995) 14. The Portuguese Gold Ship (1996) 15. The Eyes of the Oarsman (1997) 16. Success Guaranteed (1999) 17. At Your Own Risk (2001) 18. Kidnap (2004) 19. The Sword of Iskander (2006) 20. The White Goddess (2009) 21. The Silver Fire (2010) 22. Underworld (2012) 23. Secret 1948 (2016) 24.Operation Robbery and Murder (2019)
For 45 years Henk has given his fans pages filled with amazing stories and details. However, I think for many of his fans, Franka’s ability to show off her body within these adventures would be high up on the list for liking his awesome comic books! NEXT ISSUE we will explore ‘the naked truth’!
If Franka hadn’t become the main character these guys could have replaced the iconic Franka head on the covers!
Also available from eRiQ: Cul-de-Shock The first in the SHOCK trilogy Shock-TEA – The second in the SHOCK trilogy Snack Faces: A fun photo book (Freely available on ISSUU) Published by eQuBe Publishing Copyright ©2020 eRiQ Cover and logo design by eQuBe Publishing All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means including information storage and retrieval systems, without permission in writing from the author. The only exception is by a reviewer,who may quote short excerpts in a review. Visit www.eqube.co.nz
POETree: A poetic photo book about NZ trees Capital Q: A poetic photo book about Wellington 2019 A&P Show: A photobook showcasing the Hawera A&P show (Freely available on ISSUU) COMING SOON: Rock Faces: A fun photo book The Grand Old Dame: 1980 Novella More adventures of Tarquin and Maddy.
eRiQ’s first novel ‘CUL-DE-SHOCK’ has been getting positive reviews on Amazon.
The author has told a wonderful story “This book is a wonderful read. The author has told a wonderful story, set in small town New Zealand.I would highly recommend this book especially if you like a good thriller.” - Julie A.
A riddle that keeps you suspensed “Cul-de-Shock has all the elements - suspense, well defined characters, great observations of people and places, riddles, some science, great quotes and then the two seemingly separate stories (cul-de-sac murders and Bowie twins) linked together in a very clever way.” - Lyn O. ---Leading to unexpected paths “A fun read, well worth your time. I often find thrillers to be a little predictable but this was cleverly leading me to false conclusions again and again. Despite the intense happenings, it’s written in a more lighthearted way, a nice change of pace. If you’re looking for a mystery thriller, I’d highly recommend it.” - Michael D.
It’s available in both the print version plus as an eBook.
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