PLACES I BIN... 5
Now THIS is my kind of comics event - rarely have my eyes been greeted by so many large-format, supersaturated colours!
If only there was more space – we popped out to lunch about 2 o'clock and the queue to get back in looked about an hour long. So we decamped to the organisers' excellent Nobrow shop instead.
Hipsters and creators squeezed in to a room with zero fanboys and oodles of stalls selling more art-comix than I've ever seen in one place (including my groaning bookshelves) while an overflowing sideroom had talks, sketch-offs and Paul Gravett interviewing the excellent Blexbolex (something I was gutted to miss due to the queue).
I got to say hello to a number of friends behind their stalls (as well as congratulating the super-talented Joe Decie on his recent nuptials) and quite a few cartoonists I'd read without meeting previously. Without exception, every single creator or retailer I spoke to was engaged, passionate about their work and friendly - not something I can say about many of the non-comic festivals/conferences/conventions I've visited over the years.
Of course, I did my bit to spread the news about the Cartoon Museum here too. It's surprising how many cartoonists don't know of the museum and how many do come in after these casual mentions...
Naturally I spent more money than I would have liked (and a lot less than I wanted to!) here.
If it wasn't for this durn recession the following picture would have been much busier
and the list of links to recommended reads would take too long to type!
Left-to-right from the top, then:
- Island 3 - Lando
- The Yellow Zine - Roman Muradov
- L'ere des Poissons - Lionel Serre
- SF - Ryan Cecil Smith
- Mozart versus Beethoven - "Dick Clayderman"
- Bookcycle - Kieren Phelps
- Shore Leave - Warwick Johnson Cadwell
- 3 Beastly Tales - Iro Tsavala
- Cat Island and After We Shot The Grizzly - both by Dan Berry
- Radio As Paper - Awry Comics
There was more, but they aren't readily to hand.
Well done to Nobrow and all the creators who made this first ELCAF a much bigger event than I think anyone would have expected. Larger venue next time please!
And if you could put one on in Brighton....
Comics as a growing artform are looking exciting again and the increasing availability of cheap(ish) quality print options is really making a case for personal works taking centre stage as commercial properties move to digital distribution methods.