How do trolls find true love? How do you a draw a sexy female dwarf with a beard? Those are the kinds of questions artist and long-time fantasy fan Milos Slavkovic has found himself wondering over the past few months. Those idle thoughts have turned into plans for a full-blown graphic novel, and he’s reaching out from his Serbian home for help making it true.
Slavkovic has turned to Kickstarter to raise $10,000 to fund the publication of Enchanted Explorer, a graphic novel taking a sexy look at dating in a fantasy world. The cartoonist says Enchanted Explorer is “by no means an adult comic book,” but rather a satire of the fantasy genre and dating in general.
“Fantasy genre is always very high tone and epic, and the narrative seldom leaves space for mundane moments,” Slavkovic writes on Kickstarter. “Characters and their relationships are presented in an ideal fashion. Love is treated the same, romanticized without those fun awkward moments.This occurred to me, once a friend of mine asked me to sketch a dwarven woman. At first it seamed an easy task, but than I realized, that they are rarely portrayed or described since – well they have beards. So I was stuck with a task of drawing an attractive female with a beard. And that got me wondering, what is considered a quality catch in dwarven dating. The quality of the beards surely must come first.”
It all begins in a fantasy world where one of the dreaded Seven Lords of Apocalypse, a necromancer named Queen Uni Songa, is captured. After the authorities discover she’s immune to physical punishment and even death, they instead force her into what they deem is a menial task meant for another kind of punishment: documenting the sexual and mating habits of magical folk and creatures. Forced to act as a second to the leading scholar in the field, Juna Ogana Academica Magic, Uni Songa has to trade in her villainous ways to learn the ways of love by the various creatures that inhabit Enchanted Explorer‘s fantasy world.
Slavkovic is a new name to American comic book audiences, but the artist has worked in European comics for the past 10 years beginning with the comic adaptation of the video game Secret Agent Izzy. Since then he’s worked on the webcomic Paladin and the print series Contract, and has been published in a number of anthologies.
So far the Enchanted Explorer Kickstarter has raised 16 percent of its $10,000 goal, with 46 days to go. Slavkovic estimates the book will be complete by January 2015, but some commentors have brought up the valid question about shipping costs throwing a wrench into the delivery of the rewards for this, given it’s based in Serbia. But the artist, who works in tandem with his agent Maja Samardzija, states that shipping is calculated into the pledges and he’s shipping internationally before.