Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tribute to Masters Series -- Alice Mak

McDull is like the Mickey Mouse of Hong Kong. He is an innocent little pig growing up in a grass-root environment, attending a pre-school on the roof-top of an urban commercial building. Many kids in Hong Kong did. I did.

There are two-folds to the success of the McDull series.

The stories, written by Brian Tse (謝立文), strike a chord with the locals. The city is diverse in culture, and growing up in mixed messages can be confusing, exciting, heart-warming and heart-breaking. The little pig McDull embraces all the love and absurd confusion the city brings. The journey from childhood to adulthood is a bag of bitter-sweetness.

The other fold on the success is contributed by the wonderful illustrator Alice Mak (麥家碧). The light outlines with the flow of watercolor bring together a powerful softness. This is not a hard-edge style; it's not screaming "Look at Me!"; it's asking politely for the audience to dwell in a soft blanket of love and memory.

This husband and wife team has sprinkled magic to the city. Every child who comes across McDull would want to be his friend -- who doesn't want an innocent little pig friend who is clueless half the time? Every adult who comes across McDull would give a hearty smile and whisper -- Ah, yes. I was once that little pig myself.

Alice Mak

Artwork by Alice Mak

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