Kramikske van de Bakker
Jean-Paul van den Broeck is a Flemish comic artist, best known for his comic series 'Kramikske van de Bakker', 'Annie en Peter', and his reprise of 'Sammy'.; Born in Louvain, he studied Decorative Arts at the Saint Luc in Brussels. He has mainly worked under his pen name Jean-Pol, but he has also signed his work Jipo, Jipo-Max and Jean-Paul. He made his debut with political cartoons and illustrations in Journal Demain, the paper of the Flemish liberal party P.V.V., and in election papers for the C.V.P. His first published comic story was 'Calypso is haantje de voorste', in the magazine Ohee in 1963. He learned the comics profession while working at the Real Presse comics agency, where he edited foreign comics and photo-comics. While working at the agency, Jean-Pol began illustrating for a variety of Flemish magazines under several pseudonyms.
Between 1964 and 1975, he worked with writer Jacques Acar on a variety of comics, including short stories for the magazines Tintin/Kuifje and Pilote, as well as the comic 'Le Mystère de Mornetour' for the French paper Sud-Ouest. In 1966, Jean-Pol also wrote and drew 'Bertje Kluizenaar' for Libelle.
From 1966 until 1975, Jean-Pol and Acar made promotional strips with 'Bibendum', the rotund mascot for Michelin, for folders and booklets. He additionally made a promotional comic for apples called 'De Appelclub', that was published in the magazines of Altoria Averbode, as well as the cartoon series 'De Sport-Pluspuntjes' for the Flemish sports agency Bloso. Other promotional art by Jean-Pol was in commission of Leunen & Partners in Antwerp, Liro Belgium in Mollem and Althouse Tertre in Brussels.
De Lustige Kapoentjes
In 1966, he became the assistant of Hurey, with whom he worked on 'Klus Karwei' for Kuifje, and whom he succeeded on the famous Flemish series 'De Lustige Kapoentjes' and 'Piet Fluwijn en Bolleke' in Pats magazine from 1967 until 1974. For this supplement of the daily newspaper De Standaard, Jean-Pol also drew 'Hey Djo' (1967), 'Autostop' (1968), 'Kleur en muziek' (1970), the silent gag strip 'Oskar' (1970) and 'Joske en Mieke' (1973). The latter series was a new rendition of the comic 'Hugo en Jozefien', starring two young workers, that ran in Akzie and WJ (1971-1974), the papers of the Catholic worker's youth movement K.A.J. In the same tradition, he drew 'Sander en Kamiel' (1969) and 'Nestor' (1967-1971) in K.A.J. and Echt.
For the agency I.F.S., he created 'Bi-bip', a daily strip about two alien creatures studying human behavior. It appeared in several European newspapers and magazines, including the Belgian papers Le Soir and Het Laatste Nieuws, and the Dutch comics magazine Sjors. It was the first comic to gain the author international fame - the comic additionally ran in Germany as 'Schlac & Co'.
Also from 1967 Jean-Pol created several comics and illustrations for the magazines and holiday books of the Catholic publishing house Altiora in Averbode. For Zonnestraal and Zonneland, he created comics like 'Jip' (1967), 'Willie Wervelwind' (with Carl Ley, 1969) and 'Pickelby' (with J. Boven, 1969). His most famous creation for this publisher was however 'Annie en Peter', which he created with scriptwriter K. Haerens in 1971. He later worked together with Eddy Ryssack on some of the scripts, and with assistance of Eric De Rop and Bédu for the artwork. 'Annie en Peter' was published in book format by Het Volk in 1976, then in ten books by Standaard between 1981 and 1985, and two by Den Gulden Engel in 1986-1987. It also made an appearance in Robbedoes during the mid 1980s. It was with this comic that Jean-Pol fully developed his fluent drawing style, that shows influences from Franquin and Berck.
From March 1970, he published the series 'Kramikske van de Bakker' (with scripts by Daniel Jansens) in newspaper De Volksmacht. This young baker apprentice became Jean-Pol's most famous character, and his adventures ran in De Volksmacht until 1989. Two longer stories were published in Het Volk in 1991 and 1992. The character also starred in several advertisements, and made appearances in Zonneland (1974), Passe-partout (1975), Pats, Publi-Pers, De Belleman, Jet, etc.
While working on his main series 'Kramikske' and 'Annie en Peter', Jean-Pol also created the candy advertisement comic 'Lutti-Kids' with Bédu in Zie-Magazine in 1979. In 1981, he won the Bronzen Adhemar, the official Flemish Community Cultural Prize for Comics. Together with Wim Swerts, he adapted the Flemish television series 'Samson' to comics from 1993 until 2005, and he succeeded Berck as the artist of the action-filled gangster series 'Sammy' in cooperation with Raoul Cauvin for Spirou between 1995 and 2009. Jean-Pol announced his own retirement from the series in 2010.