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Saturday, May 16, 2009

Conventions of the Past - Part 2

Concluding the retrospective of bygone conventions here's a few more pics from the past starting with a visit to the Angouleme comics festival in France, in January 1990. Each year the festival paid tribute to a guest country and 1990 was Britain's turn. Around 50 or more various UK comics creators jetted over to Angouleme for the three day event. Here's me trying to look a bit French and sophisticated, standing beside one of the intricate exhibits based on the work of Schuiten and Peeters... Marvel UK were among the exhibitors at Angouleme 1990. From left to right here's John Freeman, Amanda from marketing (sorry, forgot her surname), Helen Carter, Steve White, and Dan Abnett... I seem to recall it was raining most of the time during the French visit but to prove there were some brighter times here's Brad Brooks drying out in the sun in downtown Angouleme... With comics being highly respected in France, every shop window in Angouleme was promoting the festival and various comic albums. Even the boutiques... ...and the Lucky Luke burger bar was giving away free burgers to comic professionals! Here's David Hine and wife Vicky back in 1990 enjoying a drink in a bar at Angouleme... Moving through the years, and further North, it's been a pleasure to have been a guest at several conventions in Norway. Here's a great shot of some of the other guests who were there for Raptus 1999 in Bergen. No, it's not a publicity shot from Lost, but a photo taken on a trip around the fijords that the Raptus organiser kindly provided for us. From left to right, the legendary John Buscema, Stan Sakai (creator of Usagi Yojimbo), Patrik Norrman (creator of Swedish strip Bacon & Egg), Arild Wearnes (festival organiser), Jonas Darnell (creator of Swedish strip Herman Hedning), Jim Toomey (creator of Sherman's Lagoon), and, squatting, cartoonist supreme Sergio Aragon├ęs (Groo the Wanderer, Mad magazine). Two years later, again in Norway, here's Raptus 2001 kicking off with fans in costume parading around the streets of Bergen... That same day, Too Much Coffee Man creator Shannon Wheeler was scheduled to sketch in the town centre sponsored by a coffee company, but Shannon couldn't make it to Norway so Mike Collins and I stepped in to provide numerous coffee-related cartoons. The crazy world of comics eh? In 2001 Bergen's Avalon comic book store had the inspired idea to ask visiting artists to provide an illustration on a wall inside the shop. Here's Jeff Smith (creator of Bone) and Mike Collins (artist of numerous strips including Judge Dredd) sketching out their work. A partially completed head shot of Nemi by Lise Myhre is already on the wall... A while later, and here's Mike and I adding colour to our illustrations. My contribution is Benny from my Suburban Satanists strip... Later still, our work is done. Jeff Smith's Bone alongside a Lee Townsend Hellblazer illo, with Mike's completed Batman and a Dave Windett bat cartoon rounding it off... A year later (2002) Don Rosa added an Uncle Scrooge in an appropriate position behind Bone... Here's Don Rosa at Raptus 2002 illustrating Donald Duck, projected onto the screen as he draws. (The Disney characters are immensely popular in Norway.) Some of the crowds who attended Raptus 2002... Another year later, and at Raptus 2003 Arild Waernes (right) presents an award to top cartoonist Arild Midthun. (Don't worry. Not everyone in Norway is called Arild.) At the same 2003 convention here's Nemi creator Lise Myhre and myself chilling out at the post-event evening get-together. The inimitable Kev F Sutherland (UT, Beano, lots of stuff) is in the background... Back to Blighty for this 2006 shot of a very busy Bristol Comics Expo. There's more images from this convention at this website: And finally... later that same year, in December 2006, the very first Birmingham International Comic Show saw Shane Oakley, with John Reppion, and Leah Moore promoting their Albion comic... I hope you've enjoyed these images from previous conventions. 


Lotus666 said...

Great pics of conventions past, Lew. I adore "Nemi", and it was cool to see her creator's pic. :)


King Viswa said...


Noce to see all those wonderful Photo's and get drenched in a Bit of Nostalgia.

In India, Such events are very rare and Die Hard ComiRades can console themselves only by seeing at Posts such as yours.


P.S: The Photo's are Nice. Can i Use them in the near future for My Blog Post, with Due Credits to you?

Lew Stringer said...

Yes if you wish, as long as you give credit and a link to my blog.

King Viswa said...


Count Me on that - Will always Give the Due Credit and the Links. In Fact, in My Blog I've already given Ur Blog's Link in the Sidebar.

On the Part why i've asked for the Photo's was, In Tamil Comics (South India), there is Absolutely No Culture for a Comics Convention.

When We Launched a Comics Of our own, we arranged a Comi-Con and that was Not so successful with very little participation, eventhough the entry and Food Was Free. Planning to Blog about that in the near future and at that time, will use your photo's as reference.

King Viswa
Carpe Diem.
Tamil Comics Ulagam

Mike said...

I know it's stupid, but I still get a buzz out of Sergio Aragones looking exactly like a drawing of himself. If you know what I mean.

Brad Brooks said...

Great blog, Lew. Although it was quite the surprise to see a photo of my younger self staring back at me. That was a great Angouleme, though. Happy memories!

ex wikkid reader said...

What a blast from the past! I've never been to a Comic Convention but it looks like you all had fun Lew.

Lew Stringer said...

Yes they're always enjoyable. I think the Norwegain ones surprised me the most. Very warm reception, very friendly people, and they like a good variety of comics, treating adventure and humour comics in equal regard. I hope to return again one day.

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