Sunday, 17 September 2017

Meanwhile at the London MCM Con...

The post about our attendance at the next London MCM was a mistake on my part.
Accent UK will be at the London MCM event as always.
Next weekend though we will have tables at both Thought Bubble and Glasgow MCM events. The A-team will be at the Glasgow MCM and Colin, Gary and Martin Flink (on his first UK appearance) will be at Thought Bubble.
And then the week after I will be representing Accent UK a the Meanwhile event, you can find details about this new event here.

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Another event at the Asylum.

This was our second visit to the UK's (and possibly the world's) largest festival celebrating all things Steampunk, set in and around Lincoln's Castle and Cathedral.
Unlike last year, where we spent the three days in the Cathedral Centre (rooms above the cafe) which weren't that well attended, being a little out of the way, the organisers had decided to try moving the literary folks (that's comics and books) around the event. Each day at a new venue.
Day 1 then saw us in the Castle itself.
Being out there amongst the event in this way allowed us to really appreciate what it was all about. It struck me that this wasn't so much an event but more a spectacle. You could see this in the faces of those people who weren't dressed up, and may not have actually been aware of what they were walking into. You could see in their faces however that they were stunned by what they saw.
All the costumes on display.
All the modifications made to everyday objects with such care and attention to detail.
Stall scattered around the castle grounds had all manner of stock, from material for you to use to make your own steampunk gear to items ready to wear.
And all the while beautifully garbed people wandered around, perusing.
It really did feel like I'd wandered into a steampunk dimension and that this was a normal market in such a world.
Now, I've never been one to dress up but even I've started to feel the vibe and bought a few items. I've an idea for where to take my character but it's very much a work in progress and I expected to add an item or two each year.
Colin however needs only the slightest excuse to get his kilt out...
with matching socks of course.
We saw many more visitors to the store than last year, with returning customers looking to pick up the latest issues of Stephenson's Robot and WesterNoir.
Steve Tanner and David Morris where there with Flintlock, although we didn't get to see them for much time during the day as they were in a different venue. I popped over to check on how things were going and bumped into Ian Ashton and his family, which was great as we were able to talk about Kia Wordsmith, our collaboration which will be out next year.
We did get together with the Timebomb crew for a meal after a busy day though, to swap stories and give some insight into each other's first day venues.
Accent UK and Timebomb Comics crossover event.
(not sure where Steve Tanner was though)
On the second day we were back in the Cathedral Centre and did find that the venue had started to feature in people's plans. A good showing in the programme, and some new signs we put up, saw more customer's than we had the year before.
One of the things I love about the whole Steampunk thing is the diversity of costumes, ranging from Victorian through Western to Science Fiction (futuristic but with a steam overtone), and there was also the disturbing...
Sunday night saw us go to a Steampunk Giraffe concert, a band I'd only become aware of following last year's event. Accent UK treated Steve Tanner to the event as it's a significant birthday for him this year. It's funny that as we stood there in the audience we had to position ourselves to avoid our view being obscured by large top hats and feathers. Not a problem in most concerts these days. A great night out and I'm a bit hooked on the band now I must admit. Thanks Colin for getting me that CD, I played it all the way back to London in the car on Monday night.
Monday then was quieter.
I think people were spent up and had pretty much seen all they wanted to see.
We were in the University venue and I feel a little too far out for the casual browsers to wander back to if they'd been there on a previous day. We did however meet some people in wonderful costumes..

Lovely people and such amazing costumes. You may well see these three in a future comic of ours...
And then it was over and driving back to London with Steampunk Giraffe CD in the player I couldn't help but smile at what had been a very enjoyable Bank Holiday weekend and start to think about a number of steampunk projects of my own.
Damn ... it's infectious.

London MCM - Ouch.

Well, we've failed to get a table at the MCM in London this October.
It'll be the first we've missed for a very long time and a shame but we just didn't manage to get our order in in time. The tables had gone in 5 minutes.
It's great that there is so much creativity out there, with so much interest in selling work at Conventions and I sure it'll be a great event.
Let's hope we're luckier next year.

We are at the Glasgow MCM in a couple of weeks though, so not all bad.

Playing with collages.

I've an idea to collage my A to Z of Super Zeroes, for the little hard cover book I've been working on in the background for a few years. I find making them quite relaxing and almost have 26, I just need to work out the story for each, their name and how to position the lettering (on the image itself or under the image on the surrounding page). I'll try both and see which I prefer.
Here's 'A' at any rate.
Alphabet Al.
That's all I've got for him at the moment 😐
Well, I have the beginnings of a rhyme but I need to work on it a little.
Get it to rhyme for a start.

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

An evening with Mr Benn.

So, it is probably common knowledge to those who know me that I'm a bit of a David McKee fan.
It will come as no surprise then that when I learned that the man himself would be appearing at The Illustration Cupboard in London's Bury Street (No. 22) I penned it straight into my diary.
I was reminded nearer the time, not that I needed it, by the cover of The Big Issue (and picked up two copies, one for me and one for Mr McKee should he want it).
When the day arrived, as it typical at the moment, my work day took me right up to 5.30pm, meaning I'd have to move it if I was to get there and enjoy the evening, without arriving in a big sweaty mess (it was another very hot and humid day in London). As luck would have it the last meeting of the day was cancelled and so with  some of my McKee collection in a bag I dashed out of the building as soon as the slow office clock reached 4pm.
And there he was.
The man who produced Mr Benn, amongst many other great characters from my childhood.
It was a healthy queue of people aged from about 6 to 60.
When my turn arrived I produced a Buttons comic, two of my old Mr Benn books (one from a library (how did that happen ?)), a Buttons comic annual and a Big Issue (or two).

By the time I'd reached the table I'd also picked up a couple of Melric The Magician books and an audio CD of the Mr Benn theme tune.
Whilst David signed, and more importantly sketched, each book I asked him the question that had been on my mind for too many years to count.
And as if by magic, David appeared.
Keeping my cool I asked David about Mr Benn.
'Why had it stopped so soon ? Why only the one TV series ?'
'The studio chiefs weren't interested in a second series of Mr Benn, believing that viewers would think the second series was a repeat airing of the first', he told me.
And with that David had moved onto other ideas he had.
A shame, but maybe that's part of what makes Mr Benn so special.
Condensing the magic down to so few books and a short series.
Anyway ... it was great speaking to the man who had inspired me so much, and still does.
I don't think I gushed.
I think I kept my cool.
ps. Nobody else had the cheek to sit next to him for a photo.
pps. He was thankful for the copy of The Big Issue.

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Martians and reviews.

Playing around with another doodle whilst also pulling together my From SuperZeroes to SuperHeroes little hardcover book.
Andy Bloor has produced a great pinup for Stephensons's Robot issue 4, which is now complete and will be going through the print process over the coming weeks.
And, we've had some great feedback on our books over at, they found Stephenson's Robot a little difficult to follow but really enjoyed Fastest Man and WesterNoir.

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Captain Ahab's earlier years.

Just playing around with the pencil and it developed into this...