The Comics Lab is an informal space from Stray Lines (collective of Irish and Ireland-based comics artists dedicated to incubating and promoting innovative approaches to comics in Ireland), aiming to explore storytelling through text and image, taking place once a month in Dublin, every second Tuesday – with their next get together on 9th August.
On hand, among others, will be comic artist Brian Burke whose recent work includes strip for Papercuts & Inkstains Issue 3b for Madius Comics and most recently, the Women In Horror Month Anthology for Acid Cane Comics (who by the way are already looking for submissions for their 2017 release); Dublin based comics creator, illustrator and motion designer Alan Dunne; and Stephen Maurice Graham, whose credits include work for the Sunday Times, GQ and ITV.
They’re interested in bringing people from all backgrounds (creative or otherwise) into their space to brainstorm, let loose, innovate and create. “We plan on throwing pre-conceived notions of ‘what a comic is’ to the wind,” the organisers explain, “and helping you to free up and find out what comics can mean to you.”
Each Comics Lab starts with a short workshop element, where a different creator each month will share their process. Then this part of the session will be used to focus on a particular topic, such as story-inspiration or character development.
“We’ll also organise a number of short exercises, aimed at loosening you up, and helping you to understand the ‘language’ of cartooning. The second half of the session will be a completely informal space to share your own work if you like, to start on new ideas and find people to collaborate with. Don’t worry, we’ll have gentle exercises to help you through this bit if you’re feeling a bit blank for the first couple of sessions!
“You don’t need to be able to draw to make comics,” the organisers insist. “Some of the strongest stories come from the wobbliest pens. There is no right or wrong here, just you, finding your storytelling voice.”
The Comics Lab takes place once a month in the cosy back-room of The Liquor Rooms (in the basement of The Clarence Hotel)on Wellington Quay, Dublin. You can get your own drinks from the bar (they serve tea, coffee and array of drinks – including delicious non-alcoholic cocktails). They bring biscuits, too!
• The Comics Lab, Tuesday 9th August 2016 7.00 – 9.00pm The Liquor Rooms, 5 Wellington Quay, Dublin, Ireland D2.