Alumnus Tameem Alrababah left a graduate job to pursue his lifelong dream of creating a comic book
University is an incredible experience; the excitement of living in a different place, the chance to meet new people and the opportunity to develop and expand your skills. Many people also discover where passion lies and that was certainly the case for Tameem.
Tameem Alrababah, also known as Tamim, enjoyed drawing from a young age and had dreamt about creating a comic book. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth, he pursued a career relevant to his degree – BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering.
For months, he struggled with a busy schedule maintaining a full-time job and drawing in his spare time. Eventually, he decided to take his passion full-time and change his career path to one he had always aspired to. Now he has created his comic book Link of Ages.
We spoke with Tamim who shared his journey:
As a child, I always liked to draw and that passion has continued to adulthood. It took around five years to refine my art style, creating fan-made comics for famous Disney and Anime television shows and movies. When I felt like my artwork was refined enough, I decided it was time for my comic book idea ‘Link of Ages (LoA)’ to become a reality.
By the end of my second year at University, I had sketched out most of chapter 1 but I put this on hold to focus on my final year. I graduated in 2019 with a Civil Engineering degree and returned to Qatar where we resided at the time, I then was offered a trainee role with a Water Engineering company.
I would head to work an hour before and spend my lunch breaks drawing and planning Link of Ages. I had very little sleep and worked very long days which got in the way of my productivity – it was inefficient. Eventually, I decided to drop everything and fully focus on creating LoA full-time. Before this, I would make one chapter every three-four months and now I make two chapters a month! I owe a lot of credit to my mum’s infinite support.
Transferable skills I gained from university were those of acquiring information, knowing how to appreciate new knowledge, how deep to dig, where to look and ensuring the credibility of sources. Nevertheless, to learn new tools, big thanks to Dr. Brett Martinson, Senior Lecturer at the School of Civil Engineering and Surveying, for that one!
Link of Ages takes place in the late 17th century, early 18th century and 21st century. Being as accurate as possible to historic events has been so much simpler as a result of my degree and if I face any challenging events in the future, I’ll definitely make use of the skill of hard work!
I saw my grades increase because of my research skills. I also appreciated others and learnt from their cultures as well as sharing mine. I met lots of people and made friends from many different countries and backgrounds, and was introduced to many different amazing foods. I had some of the best times of my life in Portsmouth.
After four years of studying and living in the UK, then two years of working hard on Link of Ages, I realised that if everything didn’t happen as it did, LoA wouldn’t have come to be. If I hadn’t applied for animation, I wouldn’t have researched comic books; if I hadn’t applied for architecture, I wouldn’t have researched or learnt how to draw/create buildings and landscapes to build the world of LoA; and if I didn’t live in Portsmouth, the inspiration for LoA wouldn’t have led to what it is now. I am truly thankful for how everything turned out.
Since school, I wanted to be a creator of a piece of entertainment. And, here I am now making my comic book. I cannot wait for it to go worldwide and I’m hoping it’ll be turned into an animated series to be appreciated and enjoyed by fans.
View the first volume of Link of Ages for free.
Link of Ages synopsis
The Sleeping Sailor, alive but asleep since the Golden Age of Pirates, is the main museum attraction in a city within the south of England. He is met by Aya and Ania, two sisters visiting the attraction who disapprove of the methods of the exhibition and want to free him.
When the sailor shows signs of life, the father of the wealthy Richordsons is affected in Washington, D.C., leaving his family puzzled and wanting to find a cure. International organisations and officials are interested in this phenomenon.
Is the sailor friend or foe, what secrets does he hold and can his awakening be utilised? To Aya and Ania, the goal is to free a man behind glass while the Richordsons fight for the wellbeing of their father. But, no one is prepared for what's to come!