Harry Humus by Danny De Haes
'Harry Humus'.

Danny De Haes is a Flemish comic artist, who has been making comics and cartoons since the age of 12. He made his first work for Dutch amateur comics magazines under the name Tosti, and then the celebrity series 'Merlina' (1986) - based on the eponymous popular children's TV program. His signature series was the humorous newspaper comic 'Harry Humus' (1988-1994). De Haes additionally created the gag comic 'De Buren' (1984-1985) and scripted another gag comic: 'Komkommer en Kwel' (1994-1997). As a cartoonist he works under the pseudonym Quack.

Early life
Danny De Haes was born in 1962. While still a kid, De Haes and a friend went to the Flemish comics artist Pom to show him their drawings. The creator of 'Piet Pienter en Bert Bibber' remained a tutor and friend of De Haes in the following years. Pom and his characters Piet Pienter and Bert Bibber have regular guest appearances and cameos in nearly all of De Haes' comics. Pom in turn gave Tosti a cameo in the 'Piet Pienter' story 'Systeem Kleerkast' (1986). To De Haes these first-hand lessons were apparently sufficient enough to refrain from following any official art studies. Instead he studied economical sciences, while publishing his cartoons and comic strips in mostly Dutch-language magazines from 1982 on. At age 17 he managed to get two of his comics published in the weekly amateur section 'Plant 'n Knol' of comics magazine Robbedoes (the Dutch-language version of Spirou). They ran in issues #2126 (11 January 1979) and #2168 (1 November 1979).

De Buren by Tosti
'De Buren', De Waarheid, 6 November 1984.

Early comics career
Signing with Tosti, he was a contributor to amateur comics magazines like Barend Lammes' Fenomeen, Remco de Korte's Rats, Ernst van Veenendaal's TNT and Debuut. His work also appeared in Muziekparade, Blondie, Zozolala and Autokrant. He followed the TNT gang to the comics section of Dutch Communist newspaper De Waarheid.

De Buren
Between 6 November 1984 until 30 May 1985 his gag-a-day comic strip 'De Buren' ran in the Dutch Communist newspaper De Waarheid. It starred two neighbours and their frequent humorous interactions. Ernst van Veenendaal published a booklet of Tosti's 'De Buren' in 1984. 'De Buren' also ran in Autokrant, Muziekparade, Dag Allemaal and TV Expres. 

Merlina
For the newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws and the Antwerp newspaper De Nieuwe Gazet, De Haes drew a celebrity comic titled 'Merlina'. It was based on the eponymous children's TV series (1983-1988) broadcast on the public TV channel BRT (nowadays VRT). Four 'Merlina' stories ran in the paper, namely 'Marsmannen van Venus' (1985), 'Dubbelspel' (1986), 'V van Villa' (1986) and 'Chinese Goelasj' (1986). They were written by the TV series' scriptwriter Dick Durver (a pseudonym for singer and Vlaams Belang politician Jef Elbers). In 1986 the BRT published one story in album format: 'Marsmannen van Venus'. Due to low sales, the other stories were never released as albums. 

De Valse Basuras
'De Valse Basuras', starring Harry Humus, Piet Pienter and Bert Bibber (by De Haes and Pom).

Harry Humus
Eight adventures of his own character 'Harry Humus' appeared in Gazet van Antwerpen between 1988 and 1994. The detective 'Harry Humus' had already made a first appearance in the Dutch comics news magazine Zozolala in 1984 (issue #16). The episode 'De Valse Basuras' (1990) was meant as the third 'Harry Humus' albums and the 44th of Pom's 'Piet Pienter en Bert Bibber'. The cross-over was however aborted early in the story. Book collections of 'Harry Humus' were published by Brabant Strip in 2004, and then by 't Mannekesblad from 2005. A ninth story, 'Gelukkige Verjaardag!', remained unpublished. 

Komkommer en Kwel
De Haes wrote the gag comic 'Komkommer en Kwel' (1994-1997), illustrated by Mark Janssen. Much like 'De Buren', it starred two bumbling neighbours, the tall one named Komkommer and the short one Kwel. The title was a pun on the expression "kommer en kwel" (literally, "doom and gloom"), invented by Marten Toonder. The gag comic ran in Blik for four years. 

Cartoons
From 1996 on Danny De Haes became less of a comics artist and more of a one-panel pantomime gag cartoonist, under the name Quack. Several of his cartoons have entered national and international cartoon contests. Since then he works as a mailman. 

Graphic contributions
Naturally De Haes was one of many Flemish comics artists who made a graphic contribution to the collective tribute album 'Op het Spoor van Pom' (2011), which paid homage to Pom. The page in question, however, was lifted from the third 'Harry Humus' album by De Haes, namely 'De Valse Basura's'. 

Recognition
In 1996 he won the Internationale Kartoenale in Beringen. At the Eurokartoenale in Kruishoutem he won the 1997 award for 'Best Belgian Cartoon'. In 1998 he won the first prize at the Hürriyet International Cartoon Competition in Turkey. He additionally won the Cartiena Jeugdcartoonale Tienen (1999), the Silver Spur Prize Courage in Taiwan (2000), a Special Award at the Belgische Kartoen in Olen (2001) and a Special Mention at Free Cartoons Web in China (2002). 

Series and books by Danny De Haes in stock in the Lambiek Webshop:

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