|A Judge Dredd sketch I was commissioned to draw, and I wasn't going to argue with a Judge!|
Oldham Comic Con is a family run event by Dennis Whittle, his wife Sarah, daughter Amy, and a team of volunteers. (Big shout out to Michael Chandler for guest liaison.) They all looked after the guests very well, sending people to meet us at the station to take us to our hotel, then providing transport on Saturday to take us to the convention (and back to the hotel in the evening). Then, on the Saturday night, free entertainment courtesy of the band Blues Harvest and a nice buffet. Everything ran smoothly and we all had a great time.
The convention itself was very busy. As a free event it attracted seasoned comics fans as well as newcomers curious to see what it was all about. Speaking as someone who's been attending comic cons for 40 years I've noticed the change from the shows only appealing to male comic fans of 15 to 30 years old, to today's wider demographic that brings in lots of families and a more balanced ratio of male and female attendees of all ages. That can only be a good thing!
In case you were wondering, yes, Oldham Comic Con focuses entirely on comics, not actors, not wrestlers, just comics; a traditional comic con in other words. It's good that there are still shows like this, and it's not alone in that regard, with cons such as ICE, Macc-Pow!, NICE, Manchester Comic Fest, Comics Salopia, Worcester Comics Festival, Enniskillen Comic Fest and others also proudly flying the flag for the comics industry, along with multi-media shows such as LFCC and Preston Comic Con that have a good balance of comics and film/TV guests. (So when you hear people claiming "Comic cons ain't about comics any more" you can nip that myth in the bud.)
Back to Oldham Comic Con, and the whole show had a very nice friendly atmosphere to it with lots of happy attendees. Dennis had invited a good range of guests from the world of comics, and there were exhibitors selling their own self-published comics too. It was great to catch up with lots of people in the industry and hang out with good friends Mike Collins, Aneke Murillenem, Laura Howell, David Leach, Phil Winslade, Ian Richardson, Martin Griffiths, Lee Townsend, Jenika Iolfreda, GM Jordan, Tim Perkins, Nigel Dobbyn, Dan Whitehead, Steve Tanner, Dan and Becky Cornwell, Michael Carroll, Al Ewing, Dave Millgate, Paul McCaffrey, Alan Cowsill, John Jackson, Brian Clarke, Joe Matthews, and to meet Amy Chu, Kevin Enhart, Ellen Stubbings, Keith Williams, Steve Austin, Baden James Mellonie and more!
As often the case as shows these days I didn't take many photos but here's the handful I did take...
|All set up and ready for the doors to open!|
|Lord Snooty sketch at the pencil stage.|
|Writer/publisher Dan Whitehead and his son.|
|John Jackson and Brian Clarke with their new comic, The Mancunian!|
|With my good friend and artist Aneke from Madrid at the evening party.|
|Artist/colourist Kevin Enhart all the way from France.|
|Saturday night entertainment from the band Blues Harvest.|