Barcamp Jeopardy Day 2: Fantasy Football League

In order to secure the future of Comics Barcamp< I posted yesterday details of emergency chat sessions using LINK DELETED new chat room.

Today’s times are Saturday 2:30 – 4:30pm, 6:30pm – 8pm, or for any two people who want to take the initiative, whenever they like.

In this thread, Stephen Downey picked up on a suggestion made earlier,

If you really want to to make a final push Andy I would suggest making a list of what you think people would be good at and send them a personal email asking if they’d like to do a talk on it. A personal phone call would probably be even bette as people are less likely to say ‘no’ in person ;P

I’ve already done this in some cases. But it does miss the point a little: that this is the responsibility of everyone who wants to come. That aside, I have been going more mental than usual lately. As the comments don’t allow pictures yet, here is Part 1 of a non-comprehensive speculative barcamp.

barcamp main new page 1 barcamp main page 2 barcamp main page 3 barcamp main page 4

I know a number of you creatively. Some quite well, some in passing. Many of you I don’t know personally. I don’t know what else you studied, what your day job is, what your life outside of comics takes in. Among these skills are additions to Barcamp.

barcamp main page 5 barcamp main page 6

 
At this point I think it’s begun to get too empathic. I’m going to follow this today with another set of visuals. Hopefully, a system overview of Barcamp answering the other questions raised here and a recap.

Emergency Planning Chats: Fri, Sat. Comics Barcamp in Jeopardy

Announcing the go-ahead of Comics Barcamp at 2d I felt we could have an event to build a solid representative Irish publishing community built on professionalism, knowledge sharing and stripped of accusations of vanity. A platform of organisation for groups and beneficial to individuals. Where everyone is a guest and pitches in.

It failed. I secured a sponsor for technical equipment and refreshments, set up websites, did a lot of promotion. A few folk (eg. Paddy Brown, David Lloyd) have mentioned it, but few are saying anything new or participating.

Friday afternoon 4:30 – 6pm
Saturday 2:30 – 4:30pm, 6:30pm – 8pm

I’ll be in the ICN chat room at these times. By Monday, we should be able to ascertain whether Barcamp is on. At present the most pressing role holes are securing funding for the venue and a logo. Please spread the word. It would be a shame if the first venture of this type failed. A nuisance if my head is on the block.

On the small Google Groups site last night, Paddy Brown wrote,

“I don’t see a great upswelling of communal enthusiasm for it, and I’d have to include myself in that. I can see the merits of the barcamp format, but it seems to me that a successful barcamp would have to have a more specific objective, and an already existing group of people who shared that objective. Without a specific objective it’s just a talking shop. Unless there’s a major upsurge in participation, I think we probably need to step back and rethink. What is it for, what can it do that people want or need but existing events aren’t doing?”

I responded,
“All the evidence points to your conclusions. You know through your experiences with the Wiki and Black Panel, that a lot of people are happy to default to the lone voice setting. A good meta-objective would be the publication of a comic representative of Irish creators run at a profit and available as accessibly as possible.”

The thread continues to describe how this aim might break down to ten or more sessions.

September 3rd for UK and Ireland’s first comics barcamp

Barcamp-combo-by-video-300x225

The date has been confirmed for the second Comics Barcamp in the English speaking world. The venue is Blick Studios in Belfast, who are also co-sponsoring the event. Announced in the week following 2d, Christine James of Blick and Andy Luke confirmed the date yesterday.

A barcamp is essentially an “unconference”, a creative business brainstorming seminar, run along communal lines. The communal element is essential, because if a set number of people don’t take part, barcamp doesn’t happen. It relies on advance planning, but has an improvisational element that keeps the energy fresh. It also generally has reverberating effects after the event such as a web-streamed presentations and blogging.

While employing a plethora of talented imagineers, the comics industry is known to produce mostly bland generic vanity work; rarely sensually relevant, often linked with class trappings. Much like most other media industries. Until recently. the format of comics conventions has remained much the same as it has for over thirty years. Creators are largely used to invites with guest focus promotion, more often being told what to speak on.

Can Comics Barcamp really change that?

With around six weeks to go and little discussion, it remains to be seen if this barcamp will work. Irish comic industry expansion in recent years indicates the gain from events like this could be considerable.

Confirmed attendee, Andy Luke, refused to be drawn into a lone voice mentality, and has invited his imaginary friend to speak on his behalf.

“The possibilities of what Barcamp could achieve are incredible, for humans, autobots and decepticons alike. We must work TOGETHER to raise the credits for this event..to TALK among ourselves and construct fantastical presentations only existent in our imaginations. This is a new day for Cybertron, and for Earth. A FREE BARCAMP. The Living Matrix only knows. Or the AllSpark. Whatever.”

It is unknown if Optimus Prime will attend Comics Barcamp. His enemy Starscream, also lives in some people’s heads, and also supports the idea.

“The universe is ours, rich for the plunder! Now… WHERE IS MY FANTASY FOOTBALL LEAGUE TABLE OF COMICS CREATORS TALKS?”

Barcamp starts now.

Wiki-Website
Register for the event
Discussion Group (as well as ICN’s forum)

Ballymena Waterstones hosts Comic Book

Waterstones-image1-300x132

 

The evening of Wednesday 10th August involves a display of comic books and graphic novels, with a local bent, and a panel talk followed by Q & A. The event takes place between 7-9pm.

Among the guests are the Absence team of Andy Luke and Stephen Downey, and the similarly acclaimed Paddy Brown, author of The Cattle Raid of Cooley.

Luke will be appearing on a panel at Oxford’s Caption Austerity festival earlier that week, and following it with a Black Market Belfast appearance. The author denied concerns that he will be taking a seizure.

“I feel it won’t really benefit the book.”

He’ll also be in the final planning stages of the communally run Comics Barcamp, an innovative event which challenges the standard convention approach, and has been applauded by IT pioneers globally.

It’s an exciting time too for Stephen Downey, co-author of Jennifer Wilde. My moneys on the mini-series being a hot topic of talk around the web, and his growing recognition as eligible for a raised page rate. His famous April Fools announcement that he had been hired to work on X-Men looks less and less a fiction.

And Paddy Brown. Is there anyone better qualified to converse on Northern Irish comics? Rumours have reached me that he’s been in talks with Navan Fort about funding and distribution on Cattle Raid of Cooley. It may be that we see both his and Downey’s work in Waterstones, as organiser Emma Graham explains,

“Waterstones has recently been bought over and the new owner is trying to take a new approach to the company.  They are trying to have each store run as an independent bookstore so then we are focusing on what our customers are interested in.  My main section that I have to work on is graphic novels and this is why I am wanting to hold the event.  We have had a huge interest in graphic novel section so I wanted to try and promote it more locally now the concept of graphic novels is catching on more.  Plus my manager loves promoting local work.“

The event takes place at Waterstones, Unit 20/21 of Fairhill Shopping Centre, Ballymena, County Antrim.

McCloud in Belfast, Misfits Mouth, Colin Batman, Absencion

mccloud

Not yet on his website, but a glance to the Build Design event reveals Scott McCloud, is to come to Belfast.
http://2011.buildconf.com/fringe

Many  attendees of the 9th November lecture already have their places at Conor Hall. Hosts, Build design conference, have sold out of tickets which include passes to the Fringe events.

Andy McMillan, organiser of Build, had this to say:

I’ll be making a small amount of tickets available for non-conference pass holders in the next few weeks. I’d recommend signing up to the mailing list (in the footer of the Build website), or adding @buildconf on Twitter, to find out when these tickets will be released, as they’ll likely go quite quickly.

I wonder if he’ll be at Comics Barcamp.

MOUTH OUT

Misfits joins Who, Sherlock, South Park and other cool pop TV with a new series this winter, although we may not be in with such a long wait.

Ben Stoll, Channel 4 script editor, confirmed a ten-minute web-only episode linking Series 2 and 3. He revealed “it won’t appear on TV..and features the departure of one of the cast, who has got tired of the role and wants to move onto other things.”

Stoll didn’t say who, but interwebs gossip consensus reveals it to be Robert Sheehan, who plays Nathan. No word yet on a replacement, though it would seem that Ruth Negga, who plays heart-transplant patient Nikki, is already in position by narrative.

As to how Nathan departs, would he really be so dumb as to test whether his old power and his new power mix?

The conversation was part of a “Drama with the Networks” panel hosted by NI Screen yesterday. Stoll also spoke with pride about the Misfits website, and quite rightly too. It’s dolly mixtures.

COLIN BATEMAN’S COMIC BOOK

Also at the event was author of Divorcing Jack, Colin Bateman. During our brief chat, Colin told me he’s always loved comic books and would love to write a graphic novel. On his bio, Colin says,

“Then it was on to Bangor Grammar School where I managed to shine in no subjects at all, but read a lot of Marvel Comics and Science Fiction.”

titanic2020-195x300

Bateman’s work, is to my mind, a globally certifiable reason to be proud of Northern Ireland. A safety net in the crap abyss a bad day. His novels have a dark humour and life-affirming humanity commonly found in the better work of Garth Ennis.

So to see his work in comics would be great. If he survives the experience.

Lap him up.

ABSENCES ALL OVER THE SHOW

“It’s a pleasure to read a story that is a fine piece of comic art with a touching, personal aspect to it. Even more importantly, it’s a piece of work that can give comfort and insight to those who struggle with epilepsy.”  – Dan Jurgens on Absence

Jurgens was one of the first high profile comics creators to pick up on Absence, a comic by Stephen Downey and myself, currently enjoying distribution across Northern Ireland. Supported by the grassroots British and Irish scenes when first released last February, Downey’s art has helped it catch the eyes of Mike McMahon, Glenn Fabry and others, who have also had high praise for the work.

They’ve now been joined by Leonard Rifas (most famous for his championing of Barefoot Gen), and Professor Owen Barr of The University of Ulster. The Head of the School of Nursing has included the comic as a recommended resource for students.

You can read Absence in its entirety at http://absencecomic.com

Employers, I’m available for script-writing, and Stephen’s art skills also get better by the day.

 

Part 3: To The Point and Black Panel Tour

Comics are distributed in and out of Ireland by small pressers visiting different festival cities on tour. In Part 1 of this column I’ve recounted our experiences at the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival in Belfast and in Part 2, at the 2D Comics festival in Derry.

At the 2D Festival I’d picked up Phil Barrett’s BlackshapesGer Hankey’s Short Sharp Socks and three new Tommie Kelly titles for sell at our stall.

Also, probable liver damage.

tommie kelly is talented but also an arsehole

(Above: Tommie Kelly’s new book From Rags To Rockstars and a piece from the new Something Wonderful series. If you’re funds are low on the ground, Tommie has made Something Wonderful available as a legal torrent: see the second link above for details)

6th Juneben1
It’s a two hour scenic beauty ride to Belfast by Translink’s Bus service. I’d taken the insomnia ticket the night before. It had come in at a few seconds. The Black Box is a fifteen minute walk from the Europa Bus Station. Paddy’s mum had the car out, and dropped me off to set up our monthly stall. Paddy wisely went home to Doctor Who. While I performed the gargantuan feat-breaker two comics festivals in a row without a stop?

Nay. It was “dead”.

Not a single sale. Barely a look.

The market looked finer than it ever had. Stalls were front loaded with a variety of miscellany, a harem of printed papers, silks, badges, poi staffs and knitted wear. Ben Allen afforded me a few words of comfort. Ben is great like that. He’s a regular fixture at the market who plays around with pop art and printmaking. He takes his inspiration from artists who are fans of music, Peter Blake, Robert Crumb…
If you’re on Facebook, take a look at his profile or read an interview about his work on Northern Irish iconography.

Cara Cowan by Ben - drypoint etching

Above: Ben Allen’s drypoint etching of Cara Cowan, from his workings out of The Creative Exchange.

As it turned out, everyone in Belfast may have been recovering from festivals. The Hay Festival and Belfast Titanic Maritime Festival. Would it be too much to ask of my home city to get over flogging a dead ship?

June 9th

Alice Quigley, Black Market organiser mentions new creative academic and bursary opportunities in Belfast. She seems keen I give it a go, but it’s worth a mention for other interested parties.

The weekend has left me feeling spiritually drained so perhaps it’s time I started thinking seriously about this.

June 12th
Bloody Hell O’ Clock, Paddy might have said. Having slept for most of the last day, I’m a bit chirpier. I jump around sunlit fields looking for a laptop socket and the conductor informs me we have none. The sea outside Dublin looks the finest. I’d gotten a day return for £10 online, well worth it, and the tram to the dockside was 3 euros return. It was a smooth but unusual ride, as if Gene Roddenberry himself had returned to drive me by limo to the end of a street. We wander around for a while, looking into buildings still being completed. Sat outside on benches with cigarette and gourmet hotdog. More building fronts visited, with concrete and dust and hardhats coming and going. The front is laid out with tents offering ghee and cakes and paintings and prints and trinkets. Paddy spots a group of tents off to the side, four of them. And we set up stalls.

Point Village Comics Fest by Rob Curley

Point Village Comics Fest by Rob Curley

Point Village Comics Fest by Rob Curley

Point Village Comics Fest by Rob Curley

Above right: Barry Keegan, Gareth Gowarn, Robert Curley, Maura McHugh and Stephen Daly. Both photos made available via Rob Curley.

I was a bit nervous about selling comics outside but the sun never stopped and the wind was weak. English-based creators had come over for the day: Leonie O’Moore (There Goes Tokyo) and Jenika Ioffreda (Vampire Free Style) I’d my sales patter working fine and teamed up with Paddy to offer a special on our 24 hour comics which worked well.

Opposite, an attractive woman named Anna sat on the bench engaging the comic I’d written about my late grandmother, Eileen Lucas. Beside her, laid on the bench was her boyfriend taking in the sun. I watched them for a while and it was very pretty. The boyfriend exercised his legs and came over to the stall.
“My girlfriend says if I wish to know what your comic is about I should get to know you.”
Shyly, he retreated. I watched them for a few more minutes before joining them on the bench where we talked for ten about family, nationality, weather, comics and all sorts. Connecting with complete strangers are either side of the space between panels in a good comics festival.

(IMAGE MISSING)

Parts of the day went by like tumbleweed too. There were workshops for kids on creating comics and a pop-up book workshop by Maeve Clancy which I would have loved to see.
I suspect festival organisers part-agenda in workshops for kids is to prevent established creators from abandoning their stall-hosting responsibilities.
(Check out Maeve’s pop-up book created for Lisa Hannigan’s video to “Lillie”)

I did manage to abscond for a few hours though, checking out the spit-roast pig, sharing coffee with a lovely environmentalist and visiting other stallholders such as Damien O’Reilly, whose Pinback Magazine is a glossy follow-on from his 2000-era artzine, Paper Cuts. (And well it looks too) The evening ended with a few beers at Maeve Clancy’s home before the Roddenberry tram treated my weakened bladder most delicately.

(IMAGES MISSING)

The Point Village gig was organised by Hilary Lawler. This is the link to her weblog where there are a number of lovely drawings.

The Black Panel will be selling the works of Irish mini-comics creators at The Black Box, Hill Street, Belfast on Sunday 4th and 18th July. We’ll also be picking up new comics at Summer Edition 2010, Filmbase, Temple Bar, Dublin on 24th July for selling in Belfast on August 1st.

Part 2D: Derry Comics Festival

A re-blog from the archives of my regular column for (now extinct) Alltern8; Comicking.

Photos by Ciaran Flanagan
Following on from last week’s report, the indie comix tour picked up at Sandino’s Bar in Derry for the fourth annual 2D Festival in Derry, NI.

Or rather outside the bar. The pavement has some seating (and twenty kegs), and as 2D “raises the bar”, each year the street fills further.

2d by Ciaran Flanagan

Inside, I was missing the ‘Social Commentary in Comics’ panel where Pat Mills spoke about Crisis, and ‘Everyone’s a Critic’, (photo above) which didn’t seem to have much focus in the twenty minutes I sat in it. (Though Ron from the Sunnyside Podcast was throwing out some great comedy moments.) On top of the drink and the food I came down with a dose of professional jealousy. I’ve slogged away at comics criticism for a decade. Oh well, I groaned. I’d wanted to put more time into making comics anyhow. (Skeptical readers can look out for my appearance at the Breaking into Comics panel in 2017 folks.)

This was pretty much the end of my getting any more professional revenue from the 2D Festival 2010. The rest of the evening was spent having mystomach operated on watching Mark Stafford dance like a Baachanalite pro.Lew Stringer
Conversing with Phil Barrett, Paddy Brown, Ger Hankey and Aiden, the editor of Irish language comic, Ri-Ra.

I’d managed to drive all but Phil away, spreading my arms over the back of the dumpster, beckoning for a fight.

2000 AD ain’t shit! Come on, why should I should read 2000 AD? It’s not so feckin great. Who’s man enough? Give me five good reasons. Bring it!”

After Phil had calmed me down on the mob’s behalf, Ger and Aiden returned. The conversation led to the importance of the Transformers comic in our growing up. (Ger Hankey is the quintessential Transformers professional: his portfolio captures the height of it’s powers: sign up someone!) Every week, we were delivered a cultural injection of action adventure morality in original narrative and cosmic art.

Lew Stringer“, said Aiden.
Lew Stringer is the artist behind Brickman, The Suburban Satanists, Robo-Capers and Combat Colin. The latter two ran in Transformers, and Stringer’s pieces apppeared in most of the 332 issues of the series. So Aiden theorised that the comic’s success was due to him. Redeeming myself, I agreed that Lew’s work formed a central part of this generation’s cultural consciousness.

clint1I’ve long been convinced Mark Millar gets way more column inches than he deserves. In soliciting big name creatives Johnathan Ross and Frankie Boyle in his forthcoming CLint

comic through UK newsstands, he’d earn his current attention. But where was Lew Stringer in all of this?

How could we, one mankind, united brother to brother and sister by Lew’s good works, have a regular British comic without content from Lew Stringer? So, I staggered to the hostel, and created a petition, and fell asleep. I figured this was the kind of thing to do while drunk.

5th June
Saturday of 2D is sales and signings day. I had the misfortune to have my white and black comics in the corner beside the good chaps at Comics and Collectables, the Derry comics store.

My booklets seem to take on a blank space and serve as Coca-Cola bottle coasters for the under-14s. Sales were slow, though this was going around. New stock for the Belfast market was acquired including Tommie Kelly’s From Rags to Rockstars, and two new Something Wonderful mini-comics, which gave the chuckles.

In the evening, food at a fancy meat joint with Barrett, Brown, Maeve Clancy and a few others. We returned again to Sandino’s, as full as my stomach. I had a pleasant chat with Glenn Fabry about mutual acquaintances and locality. However, the rest of the evening was a blur and I left early for the comfort of the hostel.

2d again by flanagan verbal arts

(Above: A quiet moment in the dealers hall, tiny stormtrooper and a talented young artist trying to raise some money to fund his university education. Photos taken by Ciaran Flanagan, 2D assistant and reviewer of graphic novels for the (venue), Verbal Arts Centre magazine. Below: the pub again)

2d sandinos flanagan 2010

My 2D experience this year was a downer. Feelings of depression, inadequacy, missed opportunities and hangovers. By the end of it, I was shattered and giving serious thought to my future with comics. As it has been turning out, this was fundamentally a good thing. Everyone I spoke with about the event volunteered they had a fantastic time. The organisers, David, Ciaran and other creatives handled with a professional respect that should be the envy of many. (I’m told Chief runner David Campbell had become a father only weeks beforehand, which makes this ADDED WINS.) Our sincerest thanks to the team for a great weekend.

 

If you would like to read some more about the event, check out Aaron ‘Ron’ Abernathy’s report for Culture NI on “the most relaxed’ comic con festival around”. There’s also some great video footage from the event.

 

6th June
Ah, but I’ve over-run my word count. Look out for Part 3 over the next few days as the tour moves from Derry to Belfast to Dublin and back.

 

Part 1: Black Panel Tour

A re-blog from the archives of my regular column for (now extinct) Alltern8; Comicking.

Black Market CQAF

May 2:

Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival brings to Belfast a wealth of creative acts each year. Traders turn up to the fat gazebo at 10am, rather than 11:35, for the midday start. Big black tent. In retrospect, quarantine zone and reflection of the darkskies. The only lit area is a huge spotlight which spends the day trained on my retinal damage. Paddy says I’m being grumpy today, I think (later), that’s his expression of the same. A room-sized sound system scalps my ears, steals my notions away from the quality of talking with customers. I’m worried the cognitive connect will place us at the marquee, rather than the usual venue. Paddy and I make the same money as a usual day, but not so the artists we’re stocking. I have two days migraines.

Black Market Marquee

The event lasted for only four hours. I wish I’d noticed that before setting my alarm.

Good stuff: I liked the painting wall and peanut butter cupcakes. Ok, the music was okay.

Black Market Marquee 2

Lesson to event organisers: Think about what works. Don’t hit small markets with formed standards of big markets. It’s wanky and regressive.


May 5: We’re invited at short notice to be part of the Black Market for kids special but decline. Ri-Ra, two issues to date, is a great Irish language comic with great artists. Less than half our indy comics are suitable for kids, Ri-Ra and Hilary Lawler’s SuperHillbo are the only ones with an aim close to them. Paddy issued a call for more kids comics last year on his blog. The event was held in a marquee somewhere.

May 6: Belfast Comics Pub Meet is turned into a Drink n Draw. At the request of Stephen Downey I script a quick Batman comedy. Animator Ann Harrison of Celtic Dragon Studios is lashing down pencils and erasers of female characters. (The Pratchett visual opposite is from Ann’s blogspot) Paddy Brown speed-draws Iron Man and Stephen Downey is photographing everything in sight like a contortionist with part tricks.

Email comes through. Upcoming Black Books is our final one. By and large our comics stall has been successful, but we’re the exception. The event is cancelled as a regular bit, asides from a Trans July 18th event. (Trans aim to offer an alternative to Ulster July-festivals, away from the drumming and burning of stuff. They facilitate both the Black Books and Black Market events).

May 8: Interview with Phil Barrett, our best-selling cartoonist. You can read that here.

May 16: The final Black Books and again we draw in the crowds and the cash. I’ve begun to gather a fanbase and get a few sales of ‘Absence’, including off the back of my previous 24 hour comic. I don’t have any photos of this, so here’s one from a previous gig. (missing again)

Left to Right: Andrew Croskery (Kronos City), One satisfied punter with my comic. She also picked up a copy of Cancertown by Stephen Downey, and on the end next to him, beside the comics and handbags, my stall-mate, Patrick Brown.

June 2: Back from the pub meet where PJ Holden is seducing us with his “Ippad”. The printer on loan from a writer friend has been buzzing all week, replenishing stocks of the sold-out ‘Absence’. Map and bus ticket? Check.2D

June 3: The Derry Verbal Arts Centre for the 2D Comics Festival. Gary Erskine is looking over my thumbnails and generally being quite helpful and enthusiastic. Garry Leach comes over for a look too. The twenty other students making up are busy at their thumbnails.

Walking along the walls with organiser David Campbell I’m treated to a view of Phil Barrett‘s new collection which has been run through his printing and publishing service. Also joining us on this downhill trip are Pat Mills and the unexpectedly stable and attuned Glenn Fabry. I’d expected him to be drunk and cursing about women. A total pleasant gentleman.

Before I know it I’m in a sort of green room: softly lit comics celebrities across the skyline. I don’t know any faces to names and spying Barrett in the corner, make my way across before security turfs me out. At dinner, we’re joined by Colin MacNeil who is also pleasant. I don’t know where all these tortured artistic psychos are that I’ve heard so much about.

Then, it’s off to Sandino’s Bar. Glenn has heard it’s a socialist conspiracy venue full of rant and rage. I miss the first panel as I stop for a Guinness outside in the evening sun. It is to be a harbringer of things to come.

Look for Part 2 of The Black Panel Tour in a few days on Alltern8 as Andy tries to sell his work at three comics markets in a week. If you’re in Dublin on Saturday, you should join in. Details here.

Dublin’s New Cultural Venue Launches With Grassroots Comics Festival

A re-blog from the archives of my regular column for (now extinct) Alltern8; Comicking.

Point Village Comic Festival 2010 will be introduced in the Point Village Market on the 12th June. It has been created by Hilary Lawler (creator of Superhilbo!) & Kate Farnon (Events Manager) from VSC Events to help promote comic book creators in Ireland. The stalls at this event are free for comic creators, artists and illustrators and the promotion and organization has been widely supported by the small press community. Hilary hopes this event will highlight further to the Irish public, what talents and wonderful publications are available to them. Often at events relating to comics, the cost of a table or stall hire can have a negative impact on the independent publishers pocket, so she hopes this event gives people a chance to network, promote and sell their comics and art.point village official poster

I asked Hilary for a few more details on the event.

Andy Luke: How many creators have you lined up?

Hilary Lawler: At present there are 35 people who are confirmed for the Point Village Comic Festival event. These range from comic creators to illustrators, animators and artists. All are involved in publishing a range of artistic endeavours from stand alone pieces, webcomics to regular volumes of work.

AL: Who’s attending? I notice a few names not local…

HL: From the list (off the top of my head and in no particular order) there are familiar names in comics such as Longstone Comics, Sancho, Road Crew and Atomic Diner, but there are also some names that may be new for most people such as Neptune Factory and Pinback. Either way it is proving to be a healthy mix of the great range of talents in Ireland.

AL: What can you tell us about the venue at this point?

HL: As the Point Village Market will be opening on the 29th May, it is difficult to give an exact description of the venue. As such the venue can be described, based on the images used for its promotion so far, to be a modern, open plan market with the intention of developing the market into the same vibe as Covent Garden. The Point Village Comic Festival will be an event that runs alongside the market for Saturday 12th June.

AL: Will comics creators be accompanied by other arts stallholders, eg. Camden, Belfast Black Market or Dublin Co-Op Independent’s Day?

HL: To the best of my knowledge the stalls in the market for each weekend will range from food to arts & crafts. The Point Village Comic Festival event is specifically aimed at those in the small press that can’t avail of a regular stall. This opportunity to sell your creations without having the cost of stall hire, is directly aimed at supporting the Irish small press. A creative expression in the form of a comic can be a costly affair, so at least anything sold remains a profit in this instance. It is aimed as a comic event but it is open to artists and illustrators in all areas.

AL: When is the event open from and to?

HL: It runs on the Saturday, 12th June – opening times are to be confirmed and stall holders will be notified closer to the time. The market opening times are advertised as 8.30am -5.30pm. However, the Point Village Comic Festival event time will open a little later in the morning to allow for setting up.

Hilary: It is a free event and some details are still being confirmed regarding workshops and panels. There is an exhibition on for the day so anyone is welcome to avail of the chance to exhibit their work. We welcome anyone who wants to take a free stall still, just email me at:
longstonecomics (at) gmail.com to register your details (blogspot, contact/mobile, website).
It is something I really hope will positively impact comic creators as it is an artistic path that I’m passionate about and love to promote. Seeing how many fantastic Irish creators there are out there, just persevering through the highs and lows of creating, really makes me want to ensure events like this help elevate them further. I know from my own experience that it takes a lot of dedication, commitment and perseverance to keep going in this industry. What does help is having the chance to see the public respond positively to your work, and that can only happen if we encourage and support events like this one.

Ger Hankey Point Village

The Venue: Point Village Centre, North Wall Quay, Dublin 1, Ireland
The Where: Saturday 12th June 2010, 11am-5pm (Stallholders from 10am)
How to get there: Luas Red Line (straight to venue), The Dart, Buses are Regular (esp. the 15)

Last bus: appears to be around 11pm. More info at Dublinbus.ie (also the name of a good comic by Paddy Lynch)
Driving: Look for the 02 Arena out by Dublin port.
If you’re lost: Phone for directions at 086 827 4839
Parking available at various spots nearby.
Entrance Cost: There is not such a thing.

Website: www.pointvillagecomicfestival.com

The accompanying flyer designed by Ger Hankey is shareware and is available from Ger, Hilary, myself or any stallholders involved with the event. Why not put a screen grab on your website? These are available at the Facebook Events page too.

Ger is premiering the print edition of the second issue of “Short Sharp Socks“. As revealed on Alltern8 last monthPhil Barrett may also be premiering a new comic. I’ll have a second edition of “Absence” ready. There’s also the welcome visit of guests such as the creator of Vampire Free Style, Jenika Ioffreda. Well, with a blow away roster like that, even by MS Paint challenged skills couldn’t resist tinkering with a poster design. My attempts are below, complete with graphics from creator’s websites and the venue brochure.

poster muckabout

poster muckabout 2

 

Related news: Readers may also be interested to learn of Edition Book Arts Summer Edition 2010: Artists’ Book, Comic and Zine Fair on Saturday 24th July from 11am – 5pm at Filmbase, Temple Bar, Dublin. Details on that at http://www.editionbookarts.com/

Comics and Cartooning: UK Election 2010

A re-blog from the archives of my regular column for (now extinct) Alltern8; Comicking.

With the UK general election happening this week, democracy gets opportunity to curtail the taint destructive politicians have left on the world stage. I thought it might be interesting to deliver a round-up of what some British cartoonists have been saying on the matter.

Labour or the Conservatives (or ‘Unionists’, as they used to be known, and sometimes are in Northern Ireland) have held power for 65 years. So, care of Sean Duffield, a four page look at the Labour leader, David Cameron,

Cameron Taxi Driver

Ah yes, Cameron’s friendship with Rupert Murdoch, Google-fearer and owner of the British registered Newscorp (BSkyB, The Sun, The Times), which avoids paying tax in Britain.

Might we be seeing this sort of thing in a Murdoch-Cameron Britain?

Dave Brown The Independent 2009

Um, sorry? Dave Brown, 2009

Marc Roberts of Throbgoblins,
“I’ve been playing around on PhotoShop (other image manipulation programmes are available) and have come up with the following. It’s mostly a tad sinister – UK politics and the pending ecological debacle”

Here’s his ApoCameron-lypse,

ApocalyptoCAMERON(web)

Crazy internet-fearing Murdoch, drawing threats on the BBC, a public service broadcaster funded by the public since 1933 with it’s aim to present fair impartial reporting.
Here’s a cartoon on favourite LibDem Clegg’s victory by Rich Johnston from the 26th April as originally posted to Guido Fawkes.

RichandMark 26 April

And of course, the always admirable Steve Bell in his work for The Guardian,

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So, really a televised leadership election debate should have taken place at the BBC rather than being relegated to third place after the commercially funded ITV and Murdoch’s private BSkyB.

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Above: Two more from Steve Bell and The Guardian.

Now the UK have a chance to lock Murdoch out of UK politics and cut the propaganda that has seen the nation’s Green Parties, the welsh Plaid Cymru, the Scottish National Party and others locked out of these debates.

Oh, and this guy too.

fascist guy_72dpi

Source: Duffield

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Source: Bell

The image above by Holocaust-denying racist Nick Griffin, parasite to re-opened multi-party politic talk. It’s another by Sean Duffield: Go and donate a few pounds towards War – The Human Cost, a brilliant BRILLIANT anthology he’s hoping to get out.

The BBC brought us the iconic kids show Bagpuss, and here’s Sean take on Gordon Brown.

sagpuss_page1_with_text_78 sagpuss_page2_mice_and_text_78dpi

Marc Roberts goes for high pitch animals too,

BROWNgorrilla(MINI)(web)

This will be the first UK election since Web 2.0 has fully worked it’s way into British culture. Hopefully we’ll not get any Votergate-type scandals and see elected tolerable agenda for the job.

Murdoch isn’t the only unelected dictator we need to get rid of, after all.

demonicolour468

Source: Mark and Rich, Guido Fawkes

And what of this man?

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By Steve Bell

He may very well be the UK’s new Prime Minister.

Modern politics is driven by who you can’t vote for, rather than who you’d like to. Still, being cooped up in Westminster talking only to other politicians is an uneconomical reality to face.

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The above cartoons are by Steve Bell. There are some more of them here.

Dave Brown, then Peter Schrank (The Independent) as to how they’re not really of the same thinking state as many of us,

(IMAGES FROM ORIGINAL ARTICLE MISSING)

Some things are just too prescient. Morland Moreton from The Times way back in 2006..

(ORIGINAL IMAGE MISSING)

Please vote on Thursday. Sure they’re all crap, but not voting helps keep them in power. Remember, ‘Hung parliament’ is code for greater democracy.

If you’re interested in similar, less conservative attitudes to British political cartooning try the works of BRICK (aka John Stuart Clark), Kate Evans,Polyp and Kate Charlesworth.