Warning: subliminal advertising included, reading this could be costly.
I am always amazed at the diverse styles of work available for all ages in the sequential art field, attending the BD & Comics Passion event in South Kensington once again proved no exception to the veritable melting pot of art styles. This was the third event of its kind organised by Helene Fiamma and the staff at the beautiful building which is the Institut Francais.
BD & Comics Passion is a four day event, covering a multitude of genres, media and formats, from pop-up comics to figurines, absolutely every aspect of this great hobby is covered. The main draw for me, if you pardon the pun, was the opportunity to meet bd legends REGIS LOISEL and FRANCOIS BOUCQ. There was a cosmopolitan array of creators on hand, to chat and sketch throughout the weekend, including Posy Simmonds, Hunt Emerson, Glen Baxter, Penelope Bagieu, Ian Culbard, Pascal Garray, Mark Stafford and many more.
On Saturday's agenda was the big launch of Loisel's PETER PAN - collected in one lovely-looking volume, in English, for the first time, published by John Anderson's SOARING PENGUIN. This really is a beautiful book, and one that should be on everyone's bookshelf. If you dont have room... throw something out :) I had seen a couple of the individual albums previously (this book is comprised of all six vols) when they were released in europe, and I remember thinking at the time 'if only this would be translated at some point', well, now I have my wish, not only is it translated, but it's deluxe too. Most folk reading this would be already aware of Loisel's prolific graphic novel output, his work at Disney (Mulan)... but this creator's Peter Pan is no sugar-coated tale. It is rooted firmly in the grim underbelly of old London Town, make no mistake, this tale is right up my cobbled-stoned alley BUY.
Regis is a gentlemen and despite the language barrier, I got the impression he liked my work too, which is always cool to know. We exchanged sketches, and when I saw what he had done for me I had to take mine back and elaborate on it a few more minutes. I was also lucky enough to get some sketches from the genial Francois Boucq--- well, I say sketches, but they were 'drawings' all done using a brush pen, which was handled with consumate skill. I have been a Boucq fan since I first saw his work in Heavy Metal magazine way back in the mid-eighties. This weekend was certainly one to remember. Although the attendance was not the same as that of a 'normal' comic show, the passion for the medium was there in fans and creators alike.
Saturday evening was the inaugaral Drink and Draw event, a bizarre mix of wine tasting, and artists sketching projected onto the big screen. I'm not a wine buff, but nontheless it was an interesting and fun event. My hotel was great, situated just a few doors away from the venue, thanks to my wife for finding that one on the net;)
Sunday, was spearheaded by a Francois Boucq workshop, which sadly, I could not attend as it overlapped the Loisel Peter Pan talk, this was the only downside of the whole event (the bad timing of events, not Loisel's actual talk you understand) hosted by Alex Fitch. The interpreter did a fantastic job of reiterating comments and questions from Loisel and Fitch and it made for an entertaining hour plus. Going behind the scenes of the artists's thinking process during this During the couple of days I managed to have a chat with Mark Stafford who has just illustrated a Victor Hugo story for Self Made Hero. THE MAN WHO LAUGHS is a real tour-de-force, evoking all sorts of emotions whilst reading. David Hine has done a superb job transforming Hugo's original words into an easily- accessible masterpeice for today's readers. Mark's signature style is is very much suited to this book and is enhanced even further by his own textured colours. The Man Who Laughs is not funny at all and yet another must read gn BUY.
I guess you all must have Boucq and Jodowsky's BOUNCER? If not, why not BUY. In fact any book by Boucq BUY.