After two years, he attains his diploma and starts work with Dino Attanasio, the illustrator of “M. Spaghetti”. He refines his skills working on backgrounds and inking for “Modeste et Pompon” before introducing himself to the Peyo studio in 1966. There, he illustrates the “Schtroumpfs”, contributes to a “Benoît Brisefer” and works on the backgrounds of “Lady d’Olphine” for the same hero. In 1972, he illustrates “La Poussyclopédie” in SPIROU, based on a script by Yvan Delporte and a character created by Peyo.
In 1971, TINTIN accepts his “Bob Moon et Titania”, two humorous SF characters, and the very poetic “Monsieur Bonhomme”. In these early personal works, he begins to develop a particular style and choice of subject matter, a mix of fantasy and humour, consciously writing for a very young public. His “Lapomme” will be published in the short-lived ACHILLE TALON MAGAZINE.
It is in 1975 that he creates the likeable “Docteur Poche” for SPIROU with a few bold strokes of the pen. A mix of poetry, fantasy and magic, this character’s adventures, where the wildest of dreams intrude on reality, will soon be published in album form by Dupuis. Moving from the weirdly poetic to pure gags, from fantasy adventures to human problems, from unbridled, animalistic SF to settings in the Middle Ages, the series demonstrates the wide personal interests of the artist, but will come to an end in 1990. Wasterlain will give the series a new lease of life from 1995 for Casterman, turning more to the realm of the fairies by using characters from childhood mythology.
In the meantime, he writes songs, plays the piano and in 1982 launches the character “Jeannette Pointu”, a journalist composed in a more realist style, who figures in particularly well-developed intrigues. Today, this is the work in which he is best able to master his temperament and comes the closest to adhering to the traditional decrees of the standard comic book genre. Likeable rather than sexy, placed in the present day or in a credible SF setting, Jeannette is a flesh and blood character, surrounded by friends and recurrent enemies, always getting involved in inextricable adventures from which she miraculously manages to escape using her powers of improvisation.
The vigorous and rapid graphic style of Wasterlain is greatly admired by his colleagues, and many have already started to imitate him. He has been able to escape from the straightjacket of the studios, even though he has never refused to help Peyo out whenever necessary. But his Schtroumpfs are still immediately recognisable !
Wasterlain has also written scripts for Walthéry (in the “Natacha” series, where he also helped with the backgrounds), Piroton (“Jess Long”) and MiTacq (“La Patrouille des Castors”). He published the humorous series “Gill et Georges” in OKAPI in 1985 and produced three albums of gags featuring “Ratapoil”, the dog with human traits, for Marsu-Productions from 1990 on.
A creative spirit of many talents, he is always game to work on special projects that break up the routine and monotony of series.
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