The City Comic Book: Dicky Siregar’s Journey from Student to Illustrator
When people think of comic books, many people first think of DC and Marvel. They are among the most popular comics today—and they were what initially inspired Dicky Siregar to enter into the world of illustration and animation.
Siregar’s Humble But Inspired Beginnings in Jakarta
As the illustrator for The City, Siregar was influenced by DC and Marvel growing up. “We did not have a lot of resources, but there were stores back in high school that actually sold Marvel comics and DC comics,” Siregar shares, reminiscing about his journey from Jakarta to Canada, one that completely changed the trajectory of his life.
Growing up in Indonesia, Dicky Siregar was a musician and an avid comic book lover, and was exposed to plenty of American influences that further fueled the love that he has for illustration and for art.
“Since I was a kid, I was always into music and comics,” Siregar shared in an interview. Part of his love for comics was fueled by his father’s travels. “He traveled a lot and a lot of the magazine stores in the airport for whatever reason, especially the one in Singapore, they sold a lot of Marvel and DC.”
The Decision That Launched His Career as an Illustrator
When the time came for him to choose his education, years after his first introduction to the world of illustration and animation, he had a choice: Australia or Canada. He chose Canada.
“Originally, I was gonna go to Australia, but my mom’s friend, who is a teacher in Australia told us not to,” Siregar explained. “She said Canada has better resources when it comes to illustration and animation.”
His love for animation and illustration ultimately made the choice for him, as Siregar wanted nothing more than to dive deeper into this creative world, the same that would develop his talents for years prior to his work on The City manga.
“That’s what I love. I love to draw,” Siregar said with a smile. “And I wanted to improve…And that’s the weird part: Canada was never part of the plan. And then like Canada, just a twist of faith. I discovered an animation course in Algonquin College.”
Dicky’s stroke of luck with choosing to pursue an education in Canada would ultimately unlock not only key opportunities, but also his true potential. He would develop his talents in Photoshop at the university, where he would begin to refine and specify his style of animation as an artist. As an illustrator, Dicky assures his audience that his technique is standard, but it’s been developed as a result of his unique educational opportunities in his adult life.
“I’m a pretty simple guy. I use Pigma Micron zero one,” Siregar continued. “I use a mechanical pencil for my drawings. I use a Pentel. I’ve been using this one for a good 15 years. I also use a China brush pen, sometimes a sharpie for background for black stuff. I’m still using the same thing over and over again since I was in college.”
It was in these years that the talents seen in The City graphic novel would become more pronounced. It was only a matter of time before he would be introduced to the series and become part of the illustration and design team.
How Siregar Became Involved in The City Graphic Novel
“I met David (writer of The City) through mutual friends,” Siregar told us. “David brought it up when we first met. I was trying to take a proper photo for my LinkedIn profile, and he said don’t worry about the cost. He said he got some sort of comic book project.”
The connection would have never been possible without Siregar’s fateful move to Canada, nor without his education in Canada. Meeting David would ultimately introduce him to the right people at the right time, and the right opportunity to be an influential part of creating The City. When the idea was shared, Dicky knew right away that he liked it and he wanted to join the project as the illustrator.
“That’s what I like about it, and that’s what I like about The City. It wasn’t a superhero comic book. When he brought it up to me the first time, I thought it was unique,” Siregar shared. “Then we ran into each other, like years back, he brought up the project again. And that was like our first meeting, and we started from there.”
The City is a unique project because it wasn’t about superheroes. With plenty of characters and a deeper storyline than other traditional comics, there was something about the story line that really captured the attention of Siregar, and it also captures the attention of the readers, too.
The Future of The City Manga and Siregar’s Career
The City has only released the first 2 chapters of the story, but Siregar promises that the team is working on something great, and something a lot deeper than the readers could ever imagine.
“We’re just sort of at the edge right now and we’re going deeper and deeper into the universe of The City. I think it’s gonna get bigger,” Siregar explained. With the first 2 chapters already including remarkable storylines—not to mention the amazing illustration talents from both Dicky Siregar and Dave Praetorius, the colourist of the book—their audiences can only expect The City to blossom into something much larger, and ultimately, more popular as a comic book in the coming years.
“I don’t wanna use the word famous. I’m just trying to be more established as an illustrator,” Siregar admitted. “When somebody contacts me on Instagram, or when I’m at a convention and they wanna do an interview…I don’t take it for granted.”
As an illustrator, Siregar is only at the start of his prosperous and exciting journey, just as The City graphic novel is only in its first 2 chapters. With all the success of the first 2 chapters of this manga, audiences can’t wait for what the team has in store next!
To check out The City manga and read it for yourself, click here to see this exciting new comic, and to catch up ahead of the next installment of this fantastic comic book!