This Saturday sees a day-long gathering of W.I.P. Comics (aka Work In Progress Comics) at London’s Royal Festival Hall, a gathering of comic creators that aims to offer collaborative feedback on each other’s work.
Originally known as Graphic Novels and Comics, Critique and Collaboration Meetup was established by Michal Ingram in July 2011, who came up with the idea of bringing comic creators together for the purpose of collaborating and giving each other feedback.
The aim of the workshops is to help artists and writers with improving their skills in order to achieve their set target.
The group’s intentions for those attending on the day include offering the opportunity to discuss an idea for a Graphic Novel/ Comic story, whether from an artist or a writer’s perspective (or if you are doing both). The overall aim is for you to be able to get help, and not feel like you are on your own (which is what stops you making any progress).
If you ‘re an artist, you can also provide sketches to show the general style. Others can critique this, give an initial reaction, and recommend changes.
You can also get into pairs or small groups and work together, either during the Meetup or longterm; talk about illustrators/ writers that are influential/ points of reference, and see what everyone can learn from work done.
Writers can post links to blogs with outlines of ideas they might have, so that the illustrators can have a look and see what appeals as a possible project.
There’s also the chance to discuss creative methods in general. For example, is it best to draw panels and stick them onto a larger page? Or is it better to sketch out an entire page in one go? Can scanning and Photoshop help?
The focus is for those attending to outline something that they plan to have done, ready for feedback by the next MeetUp (for example “to have a two-page A3 design sketched out”). This gives creators attending, and the Meetup, a bit of structure, and helps projects move forward – one of the central aims of this group.
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.