Last week Lorenzo and I joined a gaggle of fellow creators on a trip to London town. Yippee!
We were appearing at the Imagine Children's Festival at the Southbank centre ... actually, correction, we were TAKING OVER the Imagine Children's Festival. Yep, in true comic fashion we kidnapped the entire festival audience for a whole day and demanded a fat ransom in the form of uncontrollable belly laughs and endless creativity.
And we did not leave empty handed!
Now, if you're unfamiliar with what a large expectant crowd looks like, here's a couple of snaps of us working the stage (between the pillars) and heading out into the audience of the Clore Ballroom foyer. And yes, it is a pretty amazing space.
Hundreds and hundreds of children and parents had braved the foul weather to join us in the warmth, and they were in for treats galore. After our first show, our good friend and ace illustrator, Gary Northfield (Gary's Garden, Teenytinysaurs) hosted a live comic making show from the main stage, bringing his fantastic sense of humour to life through words and pics. Here he is in action...
And if you've ever wondered what a hand drawing a dancing ladybird looks like when projected on a MASSIVE screen, then this is your lucky day...
Upstairs, and the wondrously talented Neill Cameron (Mega Robo Bros, Pirates of Pangaea) was hard at work alongside fellow Phoenix creator, Laura Anderson (Evil Emperor Penguin) bringing the art of MAKING to life in a series of hands-on workshops. These two know what they're talking about, and copies of Neill's superb graphic novel instruction manual, How to Make Awesome Comics, were literally flying off the shelves.
Children, as we're always known, love comics, and we love to celebrate and share that enthusiasm.
So let's finish on a couple of happy fans (and us two chumps) with their new purchases.
The whole day was a roaring success. Thanks to the Imagine Festival for allowing us to run riot, and a much, much bigger thanks to real heroes of the day. Events such as these simply aren't possible without the hard work, enthusiasm and brainpower of the mighty Phoenix comic team so a huge shout out to Lizzie Payton, Joe Brady, Charlie Rashid and Helen Boyle. You are all legends!