despite of His background is in 3D animation, Abu Hudhayfah is a cartoonist at heart.
He grew up reading Malaysian comics, but a trip to Indonesia convinced him that a career in cartooning awaited him.
Abu said, “I went to a library and saw a wall of picture books.”
“Indonesian manga and comic books. While there were few titles, the quality of that Indonesian comics ignited a torch in my heart for cartoons.”
In 2015, he and Moore Abdul Munir Muir Muhammed won the 2015 Doodle Art Battle at PopConAsia in Jakarta.
Today Abu is the Creative Director and half of Cloud Comic Creative Solutions (SACO +).
Together with project manager Mayor Azhar, they support and grow local comedic talent through events and programs.
This year marks the sixth year in which they organize # Ramadan ink. The idea is similar to InkTober, the annual art promotion started by Jake Parker. However, #InkRamadan is during the holy month of Ramadan.
“Most of them are from Southeast Asia that is populated by Malay, such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei and Singapore. It extends to 35 days because a lot of people want to paint how they prepare for Ramadan and how they celebrate Eid as well,” Abu explained.
Some participants, like Abu, take a step further and turn their work into a book.
Last year, Abu worked with writer Khairy Qamaruddin – and with the help of Comicore INK – published a collection of one-piece Ramadan comics Iema & Ciko created during #InkRamadan
He wrote the best story while Abu was drawing. Each panel is based on a lesson and message from selected passages from the Qur’an.
“We chose a female main character because there are very few leading women in Malaysian cartoons. This was also based on the advice of Kheir who worked with school students and found that this idea would be more acceptable to them,” Abu said.
Today’s #Ink Ramadan is also a twice-weekly podcast that streamed live on Facebook. It features artists from all over the region.
Sako + is currently in the final stage of launching Directori Kartunis Perak in collaboration with People Of Remarkable Talents (PORT) and Perak Cartoon Fest (Pecaf).
The book contains information and works of 65 cartoonists from all over Perak and is intended to be an archive of cartoonists from the state and a contact list for these talents.
The guide idea emerged during the 2019 Perak Animation Festival.
It turns out that a lot of Malaysian cartoonists come from Perak.
They decided to create a Kartunis Perak guide.
Even with the introduction of 65, it is still not exhaustive. Some artists left in 2020, while others were unsure of the idea and did not participate in the project.
Abu said, “Maybe as soon as they see the paper book, they will join us.”
The PORT team admitted that it was a difficult process because some cartoonists were not tech-savvy and needed help presenting their work and information.
The Kartunis Perak Guide is tentatively scheduled for release on May 8th.
In 2020, Seko + was unable to organize events to promote local cartoonists. Instead, they have produced Docutoon, a 12-part documentary about Perakyan cartoonists, now available on YouTube.
Abu and Mior, under Seko + have a lot of programs and activities in mind – from conferences to competitions and shows at Kellie’s Castle.
Meanwhile, Abu is still making animations and taking commissions through Fiverr, the freelance marketplace.
“Most of the committees come from outside, like the United States,” Abu said.