“Living Graphic Novel” project announced for Lakes Festival weekend

 

Dave Crane's "Living Comic" Project

 

The Lakes International Comic Art Festival  has announced that comic artist Dave Crane, working with Kendal Community Theatre, will be inviting both locals and comics fans to become part of a “living graphic novel” during its fast-approaching Festival weekend (17th – 19th October 2014).

Dave, whose previous work includes “The Moon Bone Cycle“, a story based on Australian Aboriginal mythology, plans to interactively create a full-length comic starring Festival attendees, and the town of Kendal itself, and do a lot of the creation during the festival itself. The final work will be available in 2015, and the process will be blogged online as it unfolds.

All performers, and the festival, will be credited in the finished book.

Dave is a computer programmer, writer, artist and photographer with a lifelong burning interest in comics that just refuses to go away. He enjoys pushing the envelope, thinking out of the box, and taking the medium in new directions. Key influences are Scott McCloud, Lorenzo Mattotti and Dave McKean, as well as 20th and 21st Century film-makers and painters, and that vast uncontrolled melting pot of ideas known as the internet. He will be releasing his first anthology of work in time for the Lakes Festival, focused on re-telling traditional tales from around the world with a modern twist.

“I’m currently working with ways of getting a semi-“hand-drawn” look from photographs or video, using youtube and other resources for practice material,” Dave reveals (You can view examples here on Dave’s blog). “I’ve thought about interviewing attendees at a convention before, and recording the interview, to use as source material for a larger comic, either just using the interview as a way of getting them talking (and capturing their unique body language on film), or posing a structured set of questions and incorporating those into the story.

“I’m looking at creating a  sort of improvisational approach to drama,” he expands. “With suitable safeguards – I’ll be running any narrative past the “performers” before committing to the final script/graphics.

Now, support from the Lakes International Comic Art Festival and Kendal Community Theatre means Dave can bring this project to life, recording possible material for the final graphic novel, composing a story around the recordings.

“With Kendal being an interesting place in its own right, both visually and historically, I’m hoping to incorporate local history to some extent, as well as drawing upon a number of universal themes,” the artist expands.

A suitably "comic stripped" promotional image for Kendal Community Theatre's recent production "Oh What a Lovely War"
A suitably “comic stripped” promotional image for Kendal Community Theatre’s recent production “Oh What a Lovely War”

“We’re very keen to broaden the base of our work, and committed to forming creative partnerships with other organisations,” says Chris Taylor, the Artistic Director of Kendal Community Theatre. “A venture of this sort will offer new challenges and opportunities. The immediacy of Street performances, and the impact of Comic Art will prove a potent combination for creativity. We’re looking forward to it with everything bated.”

“I’m very excited to be working with Kendal Community theatre, and with the attendees of the Lakes International Comic Art Festival, on this truly collaborative creative venture,” says Dave. “Who knows what the day will bring, but it’s sure to be inspiring, surprising and a lot of fun, and a great stepping stone towards a unique and compelling story. If you’re coming to Kendal in October, do drop by, and we’ll look forward to working with you.”

• Anyone interested can find out more on the project’s web site: www.improvisedcomics.co.uk or follow Dave on Twitter: http://twitter.com/davethecrane

• Kendal Commity Theatre Site: www.kendalcommunitytheatre.org

• Blog: http://davecrane.blogspot.co.uk

• Myths of this World: http://dave.sunwheeltech.com/moonbone.html


 

• Tickets for all the events at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival (17th – 19th October) are on sale now. For the full guest list, details of events and exhibitions and bookings visit: www.comicartfestival.com

You can now view the full festival programme online here on Issuu

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John Freeman

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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