Eddy Paape was one of the classic artists of 20th century Belgian comics. After his studies in applied arts, he started out working in the C.B.A. animation studio with Jacques Eggermont in his birthtown Liège in 1942. There, he met André Franquin and Morris, who introduced him to Dupuis publishers. For this publisher, he began making some cover illustrations for Bonnes Soirées magazine, as well as assisting Jijé on the 'Emmanuel' comic.
His first large comics assigment was taking over the 'Valhardi' series from Jijé. Paape drew this detective series between 1946 and 1954 in Spirou, working with scenarists like Jean Doisy, Jean-Michel Charlier and Yvan Delporte. However Paape did a great job on this detective series, only a few of his stories have appeared in albums.
Paape was affiliated with Georges Troisfontaines's World Press syndicate, and through this agency, he illustrated the first stories in the educational 'Les Belles Histoires de l'Oncle Paul' series. He also assisted Hubinon on 'Buck Danny' and 'Surcouf', and provided the illustrations for sections llike 'Le Coin des Petits Curieux', 'Le Coin des Dégourdis' and 'Questionnez, le Fureteur vous répondra'.
Paape was additionally present in Risque-Tout with 'André Lefort' (scripts by Charlier) and he drew various stories for La Libre Belgique and Pistolin under the pseudonyms Mil Pat and Jo Legay. Together with Jean-Michel Charlier, Paape started his first personal series, 'Marc Dacier', in Spirou in 1958. At first he was still strongly influenced by Hubinon in his artwork, but along the way the acquired his own, personal style. In that same year, he made a comics biography of 'Winston Chuchill' with scriptwriter Octave Joly.
Jardin de la Peur
While active for Spirou, Paape also worked for Record and Pilote on the side. In Record, he made 'Ned Tiger' with Charlier and 'Pathos de Sétungac' with Hubinon in the period 1962-65. In Pilote he produced various short stories and game pages, using the signatures Péli and Jo Legay.
In 1966, Eddy Paape stopped his collaboration with Spirou and joined Tintin. There, he made short stories with Yves Duval and he started his most famous series, the science fiction comic 'Luc Oriënt', with the scenarist Greg. Other series he created for Tintin were 'Jeux de Toah' (in 1969 with André-Paul Duchâteau), 'Tommy Banco' (in 1970 with Greg), 'Yorik des Tempêtes' (in 1971 with Duchâteau) and 'Udolfo' (in 1978 with Andreas and Duchâteau).
In 1978, Paape was present in Deligne's Spatial magazine. Ten years later, he created the series 'Les Jardins de la Peur' with Jean Dufaux and Sohier for Dargaud (and later Les Humanoïdes Associés). He worked with Duchateau again on 'Carol Détective' for Hello Bédé in 1990, and in 1992 he refound Greg with 'Johnny Congo' for the publisher Lefrancq. Paape made a comics version of 'Les Misérables' with Michel Deligne for Ed. Le Droit d'Écrire' in 1995. Six years later, he produced 'Le Porte-Bonheur' with Beer for Éditions Salek.
Between 1969 and 1976, Paape was a teacher at the Saint-Luc institute in Brussels, where the taught several artists of new generation the finer points of the comics profession, such as Andreas, Wurm and Berthet. After his retirement, Paape continued to attend comics festivals and signing sessions. He passed away on 12 May 2012, at the age of 91.