With my traveling companions Laura Howell, Hunt Emerson, Steve Yeowel, Matt Brooker, and Phil Winslade we arrived at Belfast International airport on Thursday evening to be greeted by festival organizer Paul Trimble and his daughter Laura. Then we met up with other guests Jenika Ioffreda, Alan and Sue Grant, Clint Langley, and Pete Doherty, and were transported to Enniskillen in a hen night party bus. Which was a first for me I must say. Thankfully we all resisted any urge to do any pole dancing.
The Comic Fest was very much an event for the community and on Friday Laura Howell, Davy Francis, and myself were taken to a local primary school to give a talk and presentation about the basics of creating a comic page. Afterwards we did some fast sketching various Beano characters for the children. The class was very attentive and well behaved; a credit to their school. On Friday night all the guests were taken out for a slap-up feed and a few drinks at the nearby Wetherspoons.
Saturday was the day of the festival and there was a busy number of attendees. My thanks to all who stopped by my table for a sketch, comic, or just to chat. It was great to finally meet Andy Boal (one of the admins of the Comics UK forum) and meet many others I'd only previously 'met' online. Nice to meet new friends too, including cosplayers who are genuine comics fans and homegrown creators such as Katie O'Kane. It was brilliant to meet up again with my old Oink! pal Davy Francis. A perfect way to end Oink's 30th anniversary week. (Yes, it's been 30 years since Oink! was launched. See my tribute here:
On Saturday night, with the successful festival over, we were again all taken out for a meal, and ended the evening at a nearby hotel to relax with a few drinks.
On mid-day on Sunday it was back aboard the party bus for the trip to the airport and an early night when I arrived home. All in all, a truly memorable and enjoyable weekend. Thanks again to the organizers, fans, and fellow guests for making it such a blast.
My only regret is I didn't take more photos, but here are the few I did. You'll find other pics online by other guests, which I'll link to later.
It's Davy Francis!
Beano / Regular Show comic artist Laura Howell!
Movie blockbusters collide! Iron Man v Batman!
Cosplayer Joanne Alexander as Marshal Law!
...and a few more pics courtesy of Davy Francis...
|Beano night out with Hunt Emerson and Laura Howell.|