Lancaster University announces free “Power of Graphic Novels” networking event

The Power of Graphic Novels Promotional Image - REOPEN
The Power of Graphic Novels Promotional Image – REOPEN

Lancaster University has announced “The Power of Graphic Novels/ Comics” – a free networking event in October for regional and UK schools (Heads/ Principals, Headmasters, Headteachers, Teachers, Trustees), libraries (librarians, event and education staff), and graphic novel and comic artists/authors/illustrators.

Dr Natasa Lackovic
Dr Natasa Lackovic

Working in partnership with the Lakes International Comic Art Festival, the event will be led by Comics Laureate Charlie Adlard and Dr Natasa Lackovic (Lancaster University, Co-Director of ReOPeN, Lancaster’s graphic novels and comics research, outreach and pedagogy network.

Launched earlier this year, ReOPeN aims to brings together scholars working in different disciplines and any interested party with a shared interest in comics, graphic novels and illustrated books.

Its ambition is to serve as a connective tissue among academia, authors working in those unique media, art organisations/ industry, teaching, learning and research at any educational level (higher education, schools) and community needs.

Comics Laureate Charlie Adlard
Comics Laureate Charlie Adlard

The network’s web page and social media will showcase related art and writing as well as news and engagements involving university and wider community via a frequently updated blog. Future plans include seminars, public lectures and joint research projects.

ReOPeN will promote relevant events, including those by the Comics Laureate, Charlie Adlard, sponsored by Lancaster University and Professor Benoît Peeters, working in collaboration with LICAF, which will be hosting the LICAF Academic Sessions 2017 on Friday 13th October, the first day of its three-day Festival Weekend, kindly supported by Lancaster University.

The aim of the Power of Graphic Novels/ Comics event in Lancaster at the Storey on Thursday 12th October 2017 is to bring together all the above-mentioned groups to network and get connected with Lancaster University and LICAF towards future collaborative initiatives and projects.

Benoît Peeters, the UK’s first Professor in Graphic Fiction and Comic Art
Benoît Peeters, the UK’s first Professor in Graphic Fiction and Comic Art

A “Comic Power” e-mailing list and a dedicated space or page on Reopen’s web site will be created after the event with all the provided contact details, to maintain the group and ignite future developments around graphic novels and comics.

• The Power of Graphic Novels/ Comics 1.30pm – 3.00pm Thursday 12th October 2017 The Storey, Meeting House Lane Auditorium, Lancaster LA1 1TH Free but booking essential – book here

• More about the ReOPeN Project at

LICAF Academic Sessions 2017 – more information and booking link | The ticket price of £35 includes lunch at the Brewery Arts Centre, evening drinks reception and ticket to the Gala Opening Night event “Quick on the Draw” with the legendary Sergio Aragones

John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John describes himself as is a “freelance comics operative”, currently working as a freelance editor for TITAN COMICS, as Creative Consultant on the new DAN DARE audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the LAKES INTERNATIONAL COMIC ART FESTIVAL and LANCASTER COMICS DAY.

John has worked in British comics publishing for over 30 years, starting out at Marvel UK, where he edited a number of the Genesis 1992 books with Paul Neary. His numerous credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine at Marvel and Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine at Titan Magazines, where he was Managing Editor.

He also edited STRIP Magazine and worked as an editor on several audio comics for ROK Comics, including TEAM M.O.B.I.L.E. and THE BEATLES STORY.

Most recently he is writing CRUCIBLE as a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and DEATH DUTY and SKOW DOGS with Dave Hailwood for the digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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