A young girl rides a pure-blood launched at a gallop. The image is sharp and marks instantly the spirits. The great cartoonist Michel Faure, and has always been fascinated by horses, are means to make sensitive the emotion, the speed and power of evocation which emerges from such a box. With his accomplice and the scriptwriter Rodolphe (they previously worked together on the album The mad Baron ), they have decided to recount the adventures of a pure-blood exception named Red Bird.

It is mainly thanks to Camille Vercken, rider from a young age, that is born this series, of which the second volume, titled Snow , will be released on July 10, Glénat. Breeder of thoroughbreds and ponies of Connemara, in Normandy, it is she who has brought his enthusiasm, his security technique and culture show to the whole series.

The love of horseback riding

“I remember that one day, there are roughly three years, Camille has telephoned me,” says the artist, Michel Faure. She started by telling me she had read my first COMIC The black Stallion, and that she wanted me to draw horses in picture books for children. I told him that for the children, my drawings might sometimes be scary. Gradually, we have agreed that what she told me, the stories, his memories, all of this could very well be staged in a comic strip. I knew that we would do beautiful things in the relationship with the love of riding.”

It is in this way that the eminent scriptwriter Rodolphe (which has over 200 albums to the meter, including the serial Kenya, The Centaur mechanical , or The Graveyard of fools ) is entered in the dance. “We all know that the love of Michel Faure does not date from yesterday, he smiles. But it is thanks to Camille Vercken that we were able to build our tandem. She had no experience in the field of scenario of BD. It is thus that I prepared with it and Michel the history of this album. She was very precious to everything that had to do with the terminology of the riding and the specific lexicon of the horse…”

The history of Pure-blood is part of the great tradition of stories such as My friend Flicka, Black Beauty, The Ranch, The black Stallion (of course) or The Man that whispered to the ear of a horse with Robert Redford and a young Scarlett Johansson.

Here, the story is set near lake Kariba to the border of Zimbabwe and Zambia. At the heart of a farm of over 400 hectares specialized in the breeding of pure-blood, Claire attends the birth of a young filly and decided to name the Red Bird. As for the assumption of power of president Mugabe calls into question the presence of the Whites in the country, the area is experiencing a number of financial problems. Claire accompanies Red Bird in its growth. The hypothesis of a deportation gets closer, as well as a notice of expropriation for the family of Claire. But there is still hope with the extraordinary qualities of Red Bird to the race…



“I was often told that my drawings of horses making noise,” smiles Michel Faure. Pure-blood Michel Faure Rodolphe Camille Vercken Glénat

“In this board, says Michel Faure, I wanted to show the power of a galloping horse. As it is a board of dreams, I am allowed to draw the horse of my dreams. For me, they are powerful, heavy, and similar to lipizzan, a breed of horses traditionally tied to the school of Vienna. But seeing my drawings, Camille Vercken pointed out to me that my frames were a little too heavy, and that it should perhaps be put a little to the diet.”

The famous “galop volant”

This page showcases a galloping horse ridden by a little girl to the angels. “I wanted the reader to have the impression that the horse and the little girl who clings to him, crossing the space of the board as if it was in the cinema, noted by Faure. I wanted to symbolize a sort of osmosis between the girl and the pure-blood. I love to draw horses. I don’t need to inspire me a photo, I know it by heart because I live next to horses since my childhood. My father was breeding horses in Ireland. The work of muscles, the movements, all of this, I’m doing it from memory. But as I have spent my life watching horses, to every new drawing, I find myself learning small new things.”

The drawing at the center of the plate, in profile, is, of course, think of the horses put in scene by the painter Géricault, including The Derby Epsom , where he shows the famous “galop volant” (“flying gallop”), this way if particular to suggest the race horses before the invention of photography comes in to explain scientifically how to place the legs of horses when they gallop.

“I was often told that my drawings of horses making noise, smiles Michel Faure. I remember a cartoonist who had said to me: “Even when you draw a horse to stop, I seem to hear the hoof that is “clop!”

It is true that the drawings of Michel Faure representing horses, live, vibrant energy, elegance. Horses that race in the boxes like rockets, and that it was fun to see swimming over the album…

On 10 July, readers will have the opportunity to read the continued adventures of Red Bird in volume 2, entitled Snow.

Pure-blood 1 -Red Bird , of Rudolph, Camille Vercken and Michel Faure, 48 p., éditions Glénat, 13,90 €.