Two UK comic creators who previously used their artistic talents to raise awareness of bowel cancer have convinced some of the comic industry’s biggest names to donate items to a fundraising raffle for Beating Bowel Cancer and Breast Cancer Care.
Writer Gordon Robertson and the comic artist known as Cuttlefish are both cancer survivors. The pair met after Gordon went looking for an artist for his critically-acclaimed webcomic A***Cancer, “I had spoken to a couple of artists before but they weren’t really comfortable with the subject matter,” says Gordon.
“Someone suggested I speak to Cuttlefish and as soon I saw his work I knew he was my guy. Luckily he had no qualms about sticking a finger up to cancer on the page, which is exactly what I wanted to achieve.”
Despite A***Cancer’s great success, Gordon and Newcastle-based small press comic creator, writer, artist, cartoonist and dedicated comic fan Cuttlefish know that the irreverent approach which worked for them is not for everyone, and that whilst their stories both had a happy ending there are too many men and women battling cancer today whose stories will not.
With that in mind the pair set up Comics Versus Cancer (not to be confused with Comics vs Cancer, a US cancer charity drive involving stand-up comedians).
“It’s a cliché, but we wanted to give something back,” says Gordon, “we asked our friends in the comic industry to donate items to a raffle. I had bowel cancer, and my first wife died of breast cancer, so we’re splitting all proceeds between Beating Bowel Cancer and Breast Cancer Care.
“Cancer doesn’t discriminate,” Girdon, who is also founder and Director of the 9th Art Award for the Best Graphic Novel, and Director at Graphic Scotland, continues. “It doesn’t care how rich or poor you are, so we decided on a raffle rather than an auction to give everyone a level playing field. Not everyone can afford to bid large sums of money in an auction for one thing, but most folk can afford a few raffle tickets at £1 a pop.”
Some of the items to be raffled include original artwork, signed limited edition prints and books, and unique one off memorabilia. Donations have come in from creators Kate Brown, Laurence Campbell, Stephen Collins, Martin Conaghan, Robert Davis, Rufus Dayglo, Robert Deas, Andy Diggle, Glyn Dillon, Kelly Sue DuConnick, Duncan Fegrado, Neil Gaiman, Tom Gauld, Iain Laurie, Gary Kelly, Jamie McKelvie, Leah Moore, Olly Moss, Ramon K Perez, John Reppion, Stephen Sutherland, Maris Wicks, Andrew Wildman, Rob Williams, Ben Willsher, and there are more arriving each day.
• You can buy tickets by visiting Comics Versus Cancer at the Thought Bubble convention on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th November, or visit www.comicsversuscancer.com and follow the links to Paypal to have tickets emailed to you
● Facebook page: www.facebook.com/comicsversuscancer
• Twitter: https://twitter.com/comicsvcancer
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. 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 “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.