Well if collecting comics has a bad rep, imagine the stigma associated with attending comic conventions!! Yet the other week, Mrs P and I attended the coolest comic convention I've ever been to... The UK Web and Mini Comix Thing is a yearly event held in Mile End, London. It's a chance for independent artists to get out there and ply their wares, and for once, not be overshadowed by the Marvels, DCs, Dark Horses etc etc, that dominate the comic world.
The event didn't have the feel of your usual comic convention, and you couldn't help but be impressed with the effort and passion that had gone into every single stall-holders products. This is truly a labour of love thing, many of the artists looked very bleary eyed, due to staying up all night putting the finishing touches to their comics... Of course, some had been able to obtain professional print runs for their titles, but many others had printed, bound, and on some occasions even 'coloured' their treasures all by hand... which I must say were the ones I was particularly interested in.
Amongst the large number of stall holders were a few of artists in attendance who produced strips for the much missed DFC, and it was particularly interesting to see what else these people had to offer... quite a bit as it turned out!
The person I was most keen to visit was Sarah McIntyre, who we first became aware of via her wonderful 'Vern and Lettuce' strip in The DFC. In recent months I've also become a regular reader of her very lively blog, where I have been able to get a glimpse of some of her other amazing work. Her style of drawing really appeals to me, and I was eager to pick up more of her handy work... and on finding her stall I picked up one of just about everything she had for sale! Sarah was an absolute pleasure to meet, and her enthusiasm was extremely infectious. She chatted away as though we were old friends, and she happily signed all the items I bought. She even personalised a beautiful art-print for our son, which is now framed and proudly hanging on his wall!
But that's not to say the other artists were not friendly, everyone we stopped and chatted to was very pleasant, and keen to talk about their work and how it came about. All of the titles I bought were signed by the artists, and some even did a sketch inside them too. Here are the little gems I came home with.
You can see more reviews of this years event (with photos too!), plus more photos of some of the goodies that were on offer at the following pages:
See what Sarah McIntyre made of the event on her blog post. She has some great photos too!
Artist Jim Tyson gives his verdict, plus more pics!
Shug gives an in depth review of his day behind a stall, plus loads of photos.
Stephen Betts wrote a great review over on Comix Influx
And yet another fab review and photos over on Mondoagogo