The webcomics blog about webcomics

That Crazy Little Thing You Do

Comic conventions are always a good thing. They’re a great opportunity to meet and greet other artists, smell the fans, and get really really drunk (while still being able to deduct it as a business expense!).

In particular, conventions can go a long way towards helping a nascent collection of rabble gel into a full blown community – and the UK Web And Mini Comix Thing has been trying to help that process along for the last three years. Fleen has only ever heard good things from those who attended – that it’s a positive experience and a good thing in general for the UK indie comics scene.

But the thing about conventions that most people don’t know is… they can be an excruciating ordeal to actually run. They say you don’t have to be crazy to run a convention, but they also say it sure helps.

We received the following response from “Thing”, when we asked for a press release about the upcoming UK Web And Mini Comix Thing 2006. This is presented almost completely unedited (we corrected or at least Americanized spellings, and added links and removed some leading and trailing text that was not directly related – but otherwise this is verbatim what we received).

From: thing

The UK Web & Mini Comix Thing 2006 is the third show dedicated to the works of aspiring comic creators both on the internet and in print. The aim of the show is to provide the general public with an insight into the world of home grown comics as an art, hobby and even a business. The event allows people to meet the creators, and get an insight into how people go about making comics. Hopefully people will go home with lots of great stuff to read, but also with the seeds to start their own work. Comics have always been a great channel of communication but now with the internet they are a great platform for socializing, but not just in a simple way, socializing at a global level. Everyone wants a bit of web real estate and people can now create the candy that everyone wants, comics. Easy to read, and addictive, even school kids can entertain the whole world from the comfort of the own home. The thing is also a show for the creators. It’s a great platform for artists to greet the world they have been assailing with their brand of comicy goodness for so long and to get real world feed back. The internet revolution is just that, a revolution. The thing reflects the revolution. No longer is there only the option of being a creator or a ‘fan’, now we can all get out there, we now have RW access to our reality, (read write as opposed to just read) and that’s a crucial difference in the comics scene which essentially means freedom. And it’s a healthy freedom, it’s a feedom that for example means that girls can truly excel and be involved in the presentation of their own art in a way they never ould before. We are seeing more and more female artists producing outstanding art, and its not marginalised art, its real art, creators like Zoe Stead bringing us tales of action and adventure with Earth Bound, Gianna Masetti making us laugh our socks of with The Noob, UAMOU, The Neptune Factory, Bandit & Karyu, Leilani Coughlan, Caroline Clifford, Karen & Anna Rubins and many more not all of which are in the UK, but around the whole world, people like Dorothy Gambrell of Cat & Girl and so on and so forth. But this is not just a list of girls, it’s a list that reflects the liberation that the internet and comics as a platform offers us all, male and female. You don’t even have to be great at art, just as long as you can find a way to create entertaining content. The Thing is about supporting keenness. New creators tend to be highly motivated and traditionally they have been kept in the dark, only really being able to exhibit at shows when they were ‘good enough’, but the only real quality you need in order to get a place at the Thing is a desire to do so, a passion to stand in front of real people and show them your stuff, just like they are doing already in front of the world through their computer. But one thing I would like to add as a final comment on the thing, as a quote from someone else, and that is that when you’re there you realize for the first time that you’re in a room full of people that have exactly the same interest as you, sitting at home creating/reading comics. Everyone either creates or reads these comics, and you’re not going to be laughed at for wearing your Leisure Town t-shirt. Of course to experience that buzz you have to be there, and that’s pretty easy to do, tickets are on sale now through the site at £2.50 and event accommodation has been secured at a hotel on the London Docklands Airport making it really easy for people from all around the world to fly directly in. It couldn’t be easier to get on board.

I can totally vouch for this event – I went last year and it was excellent. I met a bunch of cool people and discovered a bunch of cool new comics. And this year I even bought myself a table! Good times ahead…

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