Yifan Ling, better known as her pseudonym Buddy, is one of China’s best-selling manga comic book artists. Her work has earned her an international reputation with millions of admirers worldwide. She has 20 books published and her online comic, Guarding, has been viewed 110 million times. One of her works is currently being turned into a film.
Buddy’s artist journey started in Birmingham. In fact, it began at Birmingham City University on the Visual Communications course, and her time there still influences her work: “My life in the UK inspired me to observe real people around me and bring them into my cartoon works, which I am still doing today.”
In this short film, we hear how it all started, what it was like working with her mentor Andrew Kulman, see her drawing techniques, and the moment she realised she could break convention and follow her own imagination.