Space Jam was on theaters. I went out with a bunch of friends to see it and like everyone else, I was caught in the Looney Tunes mania. The only difference was that I grew up watching these cartoons and knew each character like the palm of my hand, so seeing them on a movie screen was a big deal to me.
I was happy that I could finally share my knowledge for the Looney Tunes without looking geeky.
By that time I used to buy the Animation Magazine and I recall reading an article in which WB stated that they were looking to make new projects with the Looney Tunes.
That sounded fine..but, hey...They are in Burbank and you are down in this God forgotten island called Puerto Rico.
Months later I went out with my parents to the supermarket and as usual, I found a way to slip out and go to Walgreens to read the magazines. To my surprise there was a new Looney Tunes comic! I was happy! I bought it and brought it home.
Everything looked fine. New artwork, new stories.. and overall a new opportunity to artists.
On the first page there was an address. I thought about it and decided to write to them and ask them how could I be an artist for them. (The Internet was around but there was none at home since we were not in a financial position to have it.)
I send them a letter and they answered back! Inside the letter there was something called "submission guidelines". I read them and basically what it said was "show us what you can do with our characters".
So I did that. I drew like 10 to 12 pages of comics and lose drawings and send those to them.
A year later, at 8:30 pm my mom picks up a call. She hands the phone to me and said: "I don't know what's he saying but some gringo mentioned your name"
At first I thought it was a joke, but after 5 minutes of talk I realized that it was not.
It was Peter Tuminello from WB telling me if I was available to illustrate a story for their comic book.
Boy do I ever! I obvioulsy agreed and then he tells me that he was going to send me a story featuring the Animaniacs. I thought it was awesome. Then he asks me for a fax number. Damn! We didn’t owned a fax machine! So I took what little money I had, and my father completed it so I could buy a fax machine.
The first story arrived. I drew it and they liked it.
Later on they call me again and ask me if I wanted a steady title and if I do then which one would it be? Needless to say I chose Looney Tunes.
After that my professional life as an artist began. I went from comics to animation. I met and have worked with the most magnificent people in the industry. People who I never imagined that I could meet some day.
I've been drawing Bugs Bunny's long ears since my college days. I've seen and worked on his many incarnations ever since.
In my wildest dreams I never thought that I could make a living out of my favorite cartoon characters of all time.
I'm so glad that I went to Walgreens that day.
Happy 75, you wascally wabbit!