I love Thought Bubble, it’s quite possibly my favourite comic convention in the UK so I was glad to have exhibited here again, for what feels like one last time. I always seem to forget that the best part of these events is getting to talk to people, meeting up with old friends and new. Feeling the enthusiasm for this visual medium and the funny, clever people who read, write and draw comic books more often for love than for money.
I’m sentimental about my time in the small press scene. My first con was in London way back in 2003, and I went on to exhibit at events in Brighton, Bristol to Belfast and beyond. Over the years I’ve made many friends in this community, and it used to be easier to see them when I still lived in London. So please forgive me if this post is a shout out to all those who came by my stall to say hello. This year I was very happy to catch up with Accent Uk’s Dave and Colin who I’ve really missed, these guys are the best and make such a quality product! One of my independent heroes Strangehaven’s Gary Spencer Millidge is clearly loving being back in the comics saddle again featuring in Soaring Penguin‘s Meanwhile. It’s always great to see independent artist Baz Renshaw, comics journo Matt Badham, Elephant Words creator Nixsight and artist/editor extraordinaire Steve White, no matter how briefly. I had great chats with Jay & Selina of Factor Fiction Press, these 2 comic enthusiasts, publishers and writers have been very supportive of my crafty endeavors. Fleeting hellos, hugs and ‘how nice to finally meet you’s’ go to Sean Azzopardi, Martin Eden and the lovely Leah Moore. My favourite new comic was Hitsville UK for all its music and lyrical references. And the icing on the cake was an unexpected hug from Tula Lotay herself, TB founder Lisa Wood which totally made my day. I encourage you to click on any of the names above to visit their sites and see what they do. I want to say a big ‘Thank you!‘ to all my twitter friends and followers of my old blog who came by to say Hi and show their support too. I love you all, you’re brilliant!
I just realised I haven’t created any comics so far this decade. My comics output culminated in 2010 with an Northern Ireland Arts Council Funded project, and being published in Accent UK’s awesome anthologies (I have strips in Zombies, Robots and Western). I appeared at Last year’s Thought Bubble as an experiment with my embroidery illustration work, but as my small craft and design biz Cherry & Cinnamon is now over I won’t be exhibiting in that capacity again. I love comic cons but I’ve no idea what my future my participation in them might be. I am at a cross roads creatively. I don’t know what comes next, and maybe that’s just fine. But I know writing is key, and it may well be important in my future.
So in the meantime I’ll leave you with my personal project, a collection of flash fiction short stories with accompanying imagery, available here.