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Between the Panels: Artist: Salomée Luce-Antoinette on DIY Comics, ‘X-Men’ Love, and Always Having a Pen in Her Pocket

“Between the Panels” is a bi-weekly interview series focusing on comic book creators of all experience levels, seeking to examine not just what each individual creates, but how they go about creating it.

From the geographical challenge of trying to find reading material as a kid, to changing college study paths midstream, Saly Luce-Antoinette has had her eyes on one goal: making comics. Now, with credits from AHOY, Image, Band of Bards, and more on the way, this artist is poised to be wider known throughout the industry.

First off, the basics…

Your specialties (artist/writer/letterer/inker/etc.): Artist
Your home base: Toulouse, France
Social Media
: @saly.lock
Twitter: @LockheartSaly


Fanbase Press Contributor Kevin Sharp: We always start with the big question: Why comics? What is it about this medium that attracts you as a creator?

Saly Luce-Antoinette: I always liked to draw; it was and still is a form of expression that resonates with me. I like how universal the medium is. I think what made it appealing was/is learning from other comics creators. It is a medium in constant evolution. And getting to learn from people who drew or wrote my favorite comics is priceless knowledge.

KS: Please tell readers a bit about where you grew up and what kinds of material that appealed to you as a kid — movies, TV, books, whatever else.

SL-A: I grew up in the Caribbean, on an island called Martinique. As a kid I liked manga, anime, cartoons and TV shows. Power Rangers, Fullmetal Alchemist, and Gunnm to name a few. 


KS: Were there regular TV broadcasts you could watch or did you have to find them online?

SL-A: They were regular TV broadcasts. And later I watched some online, either on YouTube or other websites.

KS: What kind of access did you have comics during this time?

SL-A: There was only one specialized shop that sold comics and manga on the island, so it was never the most accessible hobby. But my mom always encouraged me to pursue it, and she liked that I was finally liking reading. My first encounter with comics I think was in a kids’ magazine, Picsou. There were games, comics strips, and, sometimes, a toy with the magazine.

KS: Once your reading expanded, did you gravitate toward favorite characters or titles?

SL-A: The X-Men and Peter Parker were my earliest favorite comics characters; I loved the cartoons as a kid. For my earliest favorite comics title, I would say either Titeuf by Zep or Kid Paddle by Midam. I don’t know if those are known comics in the US, but in Europe they were wildly popular among kids.

KS: Can you think of a particular comic book story that had a real impact on you when you were younger?

SL-A: The number one and obvious choice is X-Men Volume 1 (2013) by Brian Wood, Olivier Coipel, and David Lopez. I like the whole series and discovered some of my favorite artists —like Kris Anka for example— but the first volume is the one that changed things for me when I realized Olivier Coipel was French, like me. I wanted to be just like him and draw my favorite characters. I was 12 at that time I think. A year later I discovered Runaways Volume 1 by Brian K. Vaughan, Adrian Alphona, and Takeshi Miyazawa. The characters were amazing, they were very relatable because I was the same age. I loved reading their adventures. It became my favorite title, and I couldn’t even read the whole series until years later because they had stopped printing it in France.

Another one was the whole Captain Marvel run written by Kelly Sue DeConnick. It was the first comics I read completely in English. If you know me personally, it’s no secret that I love Carol Danvers, and it’s mostly because of this run. I loved a lot of things about it. And it’s also a comics run that made me discover my fave comics writers and artists: Christopher Sebela, Marcio Takara, Filipe Andrade, Jaime McKelvie, Pepe Larraz, and Kelly Sue herself. Funny to think I met some of them years later at cons, and I even got to work with one of them recently. There are a lot more — I could do this all day — but those are the most important.

BTP SLA Dreams

KS: Talk a little about your creative life back then. What kinds of art did you used to make?

SL-A: My oldest memory about making art is attached to Art Attack. I used to draw while watching it, and then I drew Dragon Ball characters a lot. Either at home or at school during recess, and later during class in high school. Then, I discovered more anime, so I drew characters from Soul Eater or Naruto. My favorite tools were mechanical pens and markers; I was never comfortable with paint, but I always had a pen in my pockets.

KS: Roughly when did the idea of art as a career come to you? When did you start thinking of this as something more than a hobby?

SL-A: I kept it as a hobby until I was 19. I didn’t know it was a career I could pursue. And then I met Paul Renaud at a con once and something clicked. The desire, the passion I had as a kid reading X-Men comics came back. I was studying to become a psychologist at that time but it wasn’t working, so I looked into going to an art school instead. And I also slowly started to do commissions on the side while I was studying.

KS: Which school did you ultimately end up attending?

SL-A: I went to a school called École de Condé [in France].

KS: When you were enrolled, did you have a vision in mind for the kind of art career you wanted? Was it always making comics?

SL-A: Making comics was always the goal. And I worked every day during my time in art school toward that goal.

KS: When you think back on the version of you who entered art school vs. the version of you who came out of art school, what’s something that was different between the two of them?

SL-A: My case was a bit different from the other students; I was the only one who wanted to work in the US market. First, I wanted to be an inker, because I didn’t think my art style would be good enough and I didn’t like to use colors. Not every teacher was supportive and the program was not what we were promised, but art school gave me the confidence and the knowledge I needed to grow as an artist. Learning from different people with different points of view on storytelling was what I needed. 

BTP SLA Origins

KS: Was there one piece you were especially proud of?

SL-A: For my last year in art school, we had to make a pitchable project. We had the liberty to choose between animation, illustration, sequential art… so, of course, I chose to make a comics pitch. I even printed a physical copy for the exam. That was my first time doing a whole comics issue on my own, from character design to lettering all the pages. I learnt a lot from it.

KS: What was your comic about? 

SL-A: [It] was about an artist trying to keep his creativity going, in a city corrupted and full of conflicts.

KS: From there, how did your first pro comics job arise?

SL-A: My first pro job was Silver Coin #9 with Michael Walsh and Vita Ayala, published by Image Comics. Vita already knew my work from Twitter, which is the main platform where I share my work and they recommended me to Michael Walsh. 

KS: If art had never worked out, would that field of study been an acceptable Plan B where you could have been happy?

SL-A: Plan B would have been going back to psychology or the army. Neither would have made me happy I think. I’m not made for a job without creativity. I don’t see any other fields where I would have been happy.

KS: Please give a shout-out to someone who’s been helpful to you on your comics journey. This can be someone who gave you encouragement, made an introduction, gave you an opportunity, whatever else…

SL-A: I want to give a shout-out to Henry Barajas. He’s a fantastic writer, and we have worked together a few times already. He always tries to get me into projects, and I’m very thankful for that.

KS: Imagine a Comic Book Hall of Fame and you get to induct one comic that you think represents this medium at its very best.  What title gets your plaque?

SL-A: That’s a tough choice. I would say Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow by Tom King, Bilquis Evely, and Matheus Lopes. It’s a very special book for me.

BTP SLA Cryptid

KS: And to close out, please let readers know of anything you have out now or coming up this year they should be on the lookout for.

SL-A: I drew a short story for Project Cryptid #4 for AHOY comics [out now]. I have a one shot coming in May 2024 with Scout Comics; it’s called The Thirteen Origin: Gila Girl, written by Henry Barajas and art by me.

Kevin Sharp, Fanbase Press Contributor



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