Over the next month Belfast will see a mini comics event boom, with creators appearing at three different festivals and conventions.
Andy Luke and Stephen Downey will be hosting a comics workshop in The Shakespeare Room at Belfast’s Grand Opera House on Saturday 31st August 2013 from 1-4pm.
The event is part of Bounce! – a festival organised by support agency the Arts and Disability Forum (ADF). Andy and Stephen have enjoyed a good relationship with the group since completing Absence: a comic about epilepsy, in 2011.
Bounce! offers a selection of punk folk, rock, theatre and cabaret but also workshops on filmmaking and creative writing. Previous workshops had participants working on the quirky Beneath The Tide, and Bacon Sammich of Doom, both available at Andy’s website, andy-luke.com. It’s a free event, although participants must register before-hand with the ADF by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 02890 241919.
The following weekend, 6-8 September 2013, Andy will again be hosting a workshop, this time at TitanCon – Northern Ireland’s premier Game of Thrones, media and literary festival, in Belfast’s Wellington Park Hotel. Participants will be joined by Paddy Brown (The Cattle Raid of Cooley) and Richmond Clements (Hi-Ex Comic Convention, FutureQuake Press). Of course TitanCon has a Game of Thrones theme because the filming for the TV series is based in Belfast.
The event features a number of local SF & fantasy authors such as Ian MacDonald and Peadar O’Guilin. There’s also gaming, workshops (such as make your own dothraki jewelry), and the big draw, plus ten high-profile cast members from Game of Thrones as well as behind the scenes crew members. The event in its third year will be hosting its first comics panel. Paddy and Rich will be joining Will Simpson (Games of Thrones concept artist) and cartoonist/animator Paul Bolger (The Land Before Time, The Hound) to discuss visual adaptation and representation of Irish mythology.
TitanCon, which takes place in Belfast’s Wellington Park Hotel, costs £25 for the main event on Saturday 7th September, with special £10 memberships for just the gaming events or the evening ball. The Literature event on Friday 6th is free.
And finally – there are also details trickling out of a comics contingent involvement in the Belfast Bellylaughs Comedy Festival which kicks off at the end of September. This will take the form of a talk centering around Paddy Brown and local veteran Davy Francis (Ximoc, Oink, Fantagraphics, Sancho Comics) in a retrospective discussion covering forty years. And who knows who else will pop in for that? More salacious details here.
• There are details of the Bounce! festival here
• There are details of TitanCon here
• There are details fo the Belfast Belly Laughs Comedy Festival here
Andy Luke is a writer who draws. He has made comics, notably: Bottomley: Brand of Britain (with Ruairi Coleman) for the double Eisner-nominated To End All Wars anthology; Absence: a comic about epilepsy, (with Stephen Downey), winner of an UnLtd Millennium Award; and the critically acclaimed Gran: a 24 hour comic.
He’s also written widely on the form as well as co-producing NVTV’s The Invisible Artist documentary (with Carl Boyle), on Belfast’s underground comix scene. Andy has also contributed short prose tales to the anthologies 12 and Tense Situations.