Lakes International Comic Art Festival Virtual Comics Clock Tower Launches

Lakes International Comic Art Festival 2020 -LICAF LIVE Virtual Comics Clock Tower

The Lakes International Comic Art Festival has announced the launch of its Virtual Comics Clock Tower ahead of LICAF LIVE, the virtual comics event taking place 9th – 11th October 2020 that replaces the usual annual Lakes International Comic Art Festival this year.

Now online at licafclocktower.com, it’s a place to discovers the work of creators, most who’d signed up to be part of the planned physical 2020 Festival, sample their work and then, if you like it, buy some comics, prints and other merchandise.

“Each year, we invite applications from creators to take part in our version of a marketplace and this year is no exception,” says Festival Director Julie Tait, “except it’s not in a physical space this time around.

“We have, as always, curated our Comics Clock Tower so that it represents the exciting range of independent comic art in the UK with a sprinkling of international creators, publishers and our ever-supportive retailer, Page 45.

“A big thanks to Joe and Luke McGarry, based in Los Angeles but true Brits at heart, for devising and building this fantastic website, and to Carole Tait for managing the content and taking care of our talented cohort of exhibitors.”

The launch of the Virtual Comics Clock Tower, designed by Joe and Luke McGarry, comes ahead of the free virtual LICAF LIVE Festival in October – an event that aims to enthral, inspire and entertain you, bursting with ready-made content, plus a special live strand throughout the weekend.

LICAF LIVE's virtual line up includes Mark Millar, another a "Desert Island Comics" guest - the New York Times best-selling author of Wanted, Kick-Ass, Prodigy, and Kingsman: The Secret Service
LICAF LIVE’s virtual line up includes Mark Millar, another a “Desert Island Comics” guest – the New York Times best-selling author of Wanted, Kick-Ass, Prodigy, and Kingsman: The Secret Service

Guests include Charlie AdlardYomi AyeniSayra BegumHannah BerryPaul CornellGemma CorrellRobert DeasElyon’sHugleikur DagssonDave GibbonsDave McKeanKen NiimuraPaul GravettMarc JacksonNicola JenningsBobby JosephChie KutsuwadaSarah McIntyreMark MillarJunko MizunoSean PhillipsTanya RobertsJulie RocheleauMartin RowsonPosy Simmonds – and many more.
 
LICAF LIVE will open with a live launch from a top secret location with special announcements and an all-star band on Friday evening followed by on-the-hour, every hour live events (cartoon challenges, book launches and its very own shopping channel, courtesy of VIZ comic) and a special live feed from creators’ desks.
 
The Festival’s web site has been revamped to promote the virtual event, with guest details and programming already live, alongside the now open Virtual Comics Clock Tower.
 
The physical Festival will return in October 2021, but the ongoing uncertainty caused by the Coronavirus Pandemic necessitated LICAF’s first major foray into the digital world, following quickly on the heels of its initial web projects such as supporting artist Marc Jackson’Marc Makes Comics YouTube Channel for aspiring young comic artists and its recently-launched Digital Colouring Project.
 
For full programming plans, which also include LITTLE LICAF LIVE, designed especially for kids (12 and under) and families – a wonderland of workshops, downloadable resources, readings and more – visit the Festival web site now.
 
• For the latest news about Lakes International Comic Art Festival Live 2020 visit: www.comicartfestival.com | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | Podcast

• The Virtual Comics Clock Tower is online at licafclocktower.com

 
• Check out the first of the LICAF virtual projects –  LICAF Colouring Sheets – here on the Festival web site | Have fun with the LICAF online Animated Colouring Book | Check out the colouring entries on Instagram so far at #licafcolouringcomp2020

LICAF LIVE Sheep by Luke McGarry
Junko Mizuno
Junko Mizuno

LICAF LIVE Events will include…

• Showing Off – a range of live draws and challenges including creators from locations as far-flung as Japan, Finland and the United States

• Drawing on Japan – Both live and pre-recorded, celebrate some of our best live draws from LICAF 2013-2019 with Junko Mizuno (USA/Japan), Ken Niimura (Spain/Japan), Emma Vieceli (UK) and Petteri Tikannen (Finland), who will draw on their inspirations from Japan to create an original piece of art for LICAF LIVE

• Pass the Panel – 16 artists are challenged to create a 16-panel story with the loosest of storylines. Taking turns, each of them will draw a panel of a new comic story, passing from one to the next until the story is complete. The finished strip could be tragic, silly, profound or hilarious. “The only thing we can safely predict,” enthuses Festival Director Julie Tait, “is that watching it take shape will be utterly mesmerising!”

• Live Cartoon Challenge with Luke McGarry – Live from Los Angeles and featuring special cartoonist guests, no challenge is too great for this award-winning, go-to designer and cartoonist

LICAF LIVE guest Bobby Joseph is the critically acclaimed comic book author of Skank Magazine, Black Eye and the Scotland Yardie graphic novel. He has written for The Guardian newspaper and Vice.com. His comic work was a prominent feature at the Anarchy in the UK comic exhibition at the British Library in 2015 and was seen by over 60,000 visitors. He is a vocal advocate for diversity and BAME representation in comic books and is credited on the BBC website as instrumental in featuring some of the '"first comics by black creators featuring black characters."
LICAF LIVE guest Bobby Joseph is the critically acclaimed comic book author of Skank Magazine, Black Eye and the Scotland Yardie graphic novel. He has written for The Guardian newspaper and Vice.com. His comic work was a prominent feature at the Anarchy in the UK comic exhibition at the British Library in 2015 and was seen by over 60,000 visitors. He is a vocal advocate for diversity and BAME representation in comic books and is credited on the BBC website as instrumental in featuring some of the ‘”first comics by black creators featuring black characters.”
Dave Gibbons is just one of the creators taking part in "Desert Island Comics" at LICAF LIVE
Dave Gibbons is just one of the creators taking part in “Desert Island Comics” at LICAF LIVE

• Comic Creator Interviews – live and recorded, including “Desert Island Comics” – five comics, a favourite snack and a luxury item – what would you take to a desert island?

• The Virtual Comics Clock Tower, promoting creators, publishers and retailers – specifically supporting independent creators. There will be no charge to those creators chosen to be included in the virtual marketplace

• LITTLE LICAF LIVE, designed especially for kids (12 and under) and families – a wonderland of workshops, downloadable resources, readings and more

• Special Announcements will include the new Comics Laureate for 2021/23 and the winner of the LICAF Space Comic Challenge

• The launching of key books such as LICAF’s own project, Breakthrough anthology – and announcing the winner of the Myriad First Graphic Novel Competition

• Interactivities – quizzes, personality tests, exhibitions, audience participation events

• The live “Big Comics Pub Quiz” – with virtual Festival goers able to compete by yourself or form a team. Suitable for comics fans of all ages, with rounds ranging from Disney characters to the history of comics, to Outer Space, there will be prizes for the winners, plus the immortal accolade: Comics Cleverclogs 2020!

• Daft as a Brush – five cartoonists from Denmark, Iceland, the UK and USA each tackle five crazy cartoon challenges live and pre-recorded for your delight and delectation!

• “Comics Up Close” featuring a huge range of international collaborations, special events featuring top creators from France, Quebec and Denmark in association with Lyon BD, Quebec BD festivals and Art-Bubble, Denmark

• Infinity and Beyond: from digital comics to Virtual Reality and beyond – a special section of LICAF LIVE devoted to how technology is pushing the boundaries of comics

• “Through the Comics Keyhole”, celebrity comics collectors take us into their homes and show us their prized possessions!

• “Comics, Clouds and Kendal Mint Cake”, examining why the Lake District is such a great place to inspire artists, and to read comics

• Free Creator Workshops to provide more support for aspiring creators and for existing creators to expand and refresh their practice. Join comics creators Steven Appleby, Jason Chatfield, Ben Cullis, Joe Kelly, Joe and Luke McGarry, Tom Richmond, Lucy Sullivan, Tom Ward and Emma Vieceli to discover the tricks of the comic creating trade  (Registration required)

• LICAF LIVE will also feature a number of exhibitions, two in collaboration with the Italian Institute and the Czech Literature Centre. Also planned are “Coronacartoon of the Year”, a virtual exhibition of cartoons about the pandemic, taken from newspapers and other sources worldwide, and “Weirdest Comic Image of All Time“, a collection of the most bizarre, disturbing, accidentally hilarious and just plain wrong comic panels that have ever appeared in print!

Posy Simmonds
LICAF LIVE guest Posy Simmonds, currently working on a new graphic novel, is best known for the strip cartoons and serials that were published in The Guardian, and the books that derive from them. These include Mrs Weber’s Diary (1979), True Love (1981),  Literary Life Revisited (2016) and the graphic novels, Gemma Bovery (1999), Tamara Drewe (2006) and Cassandra Darke (2018). Tamara Drewe won the Prix Des Critiques in 2009. Two books have been made made into feature films – Tamara Drewe,  directed by Stephen Frears in 2010 and Gemma Bovery, directed by Anne Fontaine, in 2014.

The full guest line-up announced is: Charlie Adlard, Steven Appleby, Yomi Ayeni, Sayra Begum, Hannah Berry, Charles Brownstein, Jason Chatfield, Paul Cornell, Gemma Correll , Ben Cullis, Robert Deas, Francis Desharnais, Hugleikur Dagsson, Elyon’s, Björk Matias Friis, Dave Gibbons, Stephen Holland, Igort, Inko, Bobby Joseph, Joe Kelly, Pavel Korinek, Dave McKean, Mark Millar, Bill Morrison, Ken Niimura, Paul Gravett, Marc Jackson, Pavel Korinek, Chie Kutsuwada, Vojtech Masek, Joe McGarry, Luke McGarry, Steve McGarry, Sarah McIntyre, Metaphrog, Junko Mizuno, Benoit Peeters, Sean Phillips, Eric Reynolds, Tom Richmond, Tanya Roberts, Julie Rocheleau, Martin Rowson, Posy Simmonds, Glen Southern, Lucy Sullivan, Bryan Talbot, Petteri Tikkanen, Emma Vieceli, VIZ, Tom Ward, Joe Wos and Zoom Rockman

• For the latest news about Lakes International Comic Art Festival Live 2020 visit: www.comicartfestival.com | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | Podcast

• The Virtual Comics Clock Tower is online at licafclocktower.com

 
• Check out the first of the LICAF virtual projects –  LICAF Colouring Sheets – here on the Festival web site | Have fun with the LICAF online Animated Colouring Book | Check out the colouring entries on Instagram so far at #licafcolouringcomp2020

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The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.



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