Le petit Nicolas illustrations
After 2022 animated film
Animated feature film “Le petit Nicolas: Qu'est-ce qu'on attend pour être heureux?” displays a good rendition to Sempe’s style, which, being quite personal and oriented to illustration on paper (the “broken” lines, the free, fluid color), is a challenging style to be used in animation.
The movie keeps two slightly different rendering approaches: the segments featuring the authors (Sempe and Goscinny) fill the whole picture frame; the sections corresponding to Nicolas stories imitate the classic illustration approach of “not filling the whole page” (“letting the illustration breathe”). In my opinion, it is a good artistic choice which allows the audience to realise this classic approach. Approach that, even when taken for granted, it is becoming harder to see — since the 24-hour exposure to images is creating a trend of approaching all images in the same “cinematic” way, be them illustration for children books or panels in a comic.
I also found interesting the facts about the careers of Sempé and Goscinny. Being a fan of Sempé, I already knew a lot about his life, but in the case of Goscinny it was all new to me. And I learned a quite interesting fact about him: he started his artistic career in New York, in Harvey Kurtzman’s studio. This is another example of the huge direct, personal influence that Kurtzman had on artists of 20th century (another key example would be Art Spiegelman)