Tintin came to me late in my life – when I was 10. I understand how ludicrous it may seem, when I write statements like that, but indeed, at the age of 10, I already had a decent comic book knowledge and collection – including the arguably very first comic book ever made. Having said that, Tintin is been part of my life for over two decades now, and what a ride it has been! It’s soft trace techniques have inspired me, in my teenage years, to write and draw my own comic books. Its plots ere great and the accuracy of details was surprising. Specially when travelling, Tintin and his friends made me feel every single thing I was reading could be true – and later I discovered that most of it really was. I travelled through Europe and Asia in my early life with Tintin and Milou – I was there!.

tintin_02 Unfortunately I haven’t yet been to the Cheverny castle, in France, near Orleans and Blois. It is the building Herge took inspiration for Moulinsart – where Haddock, Tintin, Milou and Tournesol live. But I’ve been to Belgium a few times, always purchasing a different Tintin character :)  Next time I make a Tintin related travel I’ll stop in Moldova!


Marshall McLuhan



Marshall McLuhan is the greatest prophet if all the things we’re experiencing today. I’ve read Jules Verne, Arthur C. Clark,  Orwell, Huxley and Asimov – no one comes close to the influence McLuhan is to my life and to this society. Of course, McLuhan was a theorist, not a fiction writer, but still, books like 1984 had a major impact in the way we foresaw life and society some decades ago, so I guess the comparison is valid. Global village, the medium is the message, the concepts of archetypes, and even the famous 15 minutes of fame, wrongly credited to Andy Warhol – it all came from him.

I discovered McLuhan relatively late in my life – I was 16, 17. It’s probably the only important author that the library my father left me was missing. And he was incredibly important to me, particularly this book, The Medium is the Massage (an invetory of effects). Not a typo, it’s Mass-age alright, see? It made me understand some disorganized feelings and theories I had about people and life, besides pointing me to several interests like Semiology and Media. Obviously, it has a magnificent typography composition, with blow-up images – some of them created with letters. I remember being so excited about this book that I started reading it again after finishing it for the first time.  McLuhan became an obsession for a few years, I was calling bookstores all over the planet to find second hand copies of the titles I haven’t read yet. Folks, there was no at that time ok? And then, one night, I was watching late movies on the telly when Annie Hall started. I’ve always been a fan of Woody Allen, I was excited. Halfway through the film he cites McLuhan and invites him into the story. Glorious moment that was – everything made sense. Viva McLuhan.

Alle Wunder dieser Welt




This is one of the many books I’ve spent my childhood reading – a very special one. It could be loosely translated as “Every Wonder of the World”, and it shows special places from all over the world, like The Big Hole, The Dead Sea, Chichen Itza and Christ, the Redeemer. It’s first chapter has illustrations of the orginal seven wonders of the world and information about them. Until this day I know them all because of this magnificent book. It also created in me this necessity I have to travel and see new things, this unstoppable wanderlust that my friends and family see in me.

But this book also belongs to another realm of inspiration, the typography. Being a child of the atomic age, with this strong Germanic background floating around in the house – and in the library, mainly – I was srrounded by book, art and objects with Swiss/German design. Alle Wunder dieser Welt had the same black thick grotesk graphic idea that a few years later influenced another refference of mine, the KLF.

I’ve always been interested in the places covered by this book and in september 2009, I might be visiting one of my favorities, The Atomium – made for the EXPO ’58.  And until this day I dream of visiting Canada just to see the Habitat :)

UPDATE: Since writing this entry I managed to visit both Atomium and Habitat ’67 – there are a few pictures of the latter here.


Howard Chaykin’s American Flagg

American Flagg

I wouldn’t be lying if I said that Howard Chaykin changed my life. Although I knew him from before, the splendid Black Kiss, it was on American Flagg that he opened my mind to a world of possibilities. Graphically, he was by far ahead of everybody else in the time – he uses a lot of newer graphic design concepts in his comics. Conceptually, also. He had a ‘cast’ of ‘actors’ which would re-appear in all his stories. So Reuben Flagg was played by the same ‘actor’ that appeared on ‘Black Kiss’. It’s a bit confusing, and it’s genius. And the stories were incredibly mature, even for a graphic novel. Sex wasn’t treat as a big deal, and every character had shades of grey. The future described in American Flagg is incredibly chaotic, corrupt and exciting! (more…)

Ian Fleming


No, not James Bond, Ian Fleming. It was 1987 and I had (almost) all his books in my father’s library, all binded with his initials – which, not really by coincidence, were the same as mine. So those books felt like they were mine and Ian Fleming was the first of many authors I discovered there. I knew James Bond, at that time, but the whole mythos wasn’t really built inside me. Ian Fleming’s prose is unmistakeable – classy and very erotic. Ian Fleming whispers in my ears when I write about Peter Zarustica’s adventures.

Max & Moritz

Max & Moritz

Max & Moritz are two characters created by Willhem Busch and they are considered by many the first comic strip ever. But its importance goes way beyond this fact, especially in my life. My father gave me all 8 volumes, every two or three months, each with a special dedicatory in the form of a quatrain poem. I remember buying one of them at the school book fair with his money, and having to bring it home so he could write his short verses. The stories are amazing but extremely cruel – and so is their destiny. Max & Moritz are well known in German-speaking countries but not as much outside Europe – I once corrected my History professor regarding them when I was in the university, and I had to lend my precious collection, translated and versed gracefully by Olavo Bilac. Following my tradition of treating my hardware as living creatures, I named my CDJs after them – and later used it as an alias when I released The Lycantropii Collection.

The Surprising Adventures of Baron Münchhausen

The Suprising Adventures of Baron Münchhausen

My father’s cousin, Eduardo, gave me this incredible book when I was six. It’s the big, complete edition, with all the adventures and formidable illustrations by Gustave Doré. The drawings were mesmerizing, bringing me closer to another great book, The Divine Comedy. And the stories were insanely funny, fantastic and incredible, becoming quickly the main inspiration on my pseudo-truths (stories I tell swearing they’re true, but any thinking monkey can tell they’re not). Plus the whole epic concept was one of the main ingredients of my character Peter Zarustica – along with Ian Fleming’s 007.

O Grande Livro do Maravilhoso e do Fantástico

O Grande Livro do Maravilhoso e do Fantástico

“Incredible but true stories, of men, nature, Earth and space” The Great Book of Wonder and (all things) Fantastic was the very first book I read. Firstly when I was 5, I used to browse through all its approx 600 pages reading bits here and there. One day I decided to read it all, beginning to end — and I did that a few dozen times in my life. It’s got short stories and reports about almost anything curious, eccentric, unknown, mysterious and, why not, bizarre. I can honestly say that my passion for the strange began in 1981 when I first got my hands on this gem. It was published by Readers’ Digest from Portugal, and its stilted vocabulary was fascinating. There I was, 5 years old reading words like ’embustes’, ‘charlatães’ and ‘reperspectivação’ – the latter never used by me, to this day. It’s my all time favourite book and it still amazes me, even now where I live in a time where people think all answers can be found on Google or Wikipedia — they don’t know that these are the places to you get the questions! On a side note, please mind the graphic accent on ‘Fanstático’, not above the letter but on its side…