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Comic Creators Project UK

The Cartoon Museum

Comic Highlights: Watchmen

Introduction

The Comic Creators Project at the Cartoon Museum in London has the only page of original art on public display from one of the most iconic comics of all time: Watchmen. Written by Alan Moore, drawn by Dave Gibbons and coloured by John Higgins, it was published by DC Comics between 1986 and 1987 in a 12-issue comic book limited series before it was collected in a single volume in 1987. The Comic Creators Project was able to acquire one page of the original art and it can now be seen in the Comics gallery at the Cartoon Museum. This graphic novel is featured in the exhibition The Great British Graphic Novel (20th April – 24th July, 2016).

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Comic Creators MIND Exhibition

In November – December 2015, the Cartoon Museum’s Comics Creators Project partnered with Mind in Harrow to run a series of cartoon art workshops for adults experiencing stress, anxiety or low mood. Project curator Steve Marchant developed a series of workshops with cartoonist/tutor Richy K Chandler and Mind’s Emily Danby that Richy delivered every Wednesday for 8 weeks. The workshops were well-attended and we are proud to display some of the developmental and finished work that was produced by some of the participants.

The workshops were co-funded by the Cartoon Museum via its Heritage Lottery funding, and by MIND in Harrow.

We have every hope to work with MIND again in 2016.

 Comments from some of the participants:

“We are a group of creative people who, with the support of Mind in Harrow, have been exploring the power of cartoon art as a tool for self-expression. We all have lived experience of anxiety, depression and other related issues and we also all share a talent for art, which this course has helped us to use as an outlet to manage conflicting emotions.

The Comic Creators course has opened up our minds to a new perspective on comic art and graphic novels. We find ourselves to be more expressive and give other feeling through art, giving us an individual aspect of ourselves in our artwork. This helps break down the prejudice, stigma, and discrimination of people with mental health, taking away the conventional ideas that you cannot be creative or talented with mental health issues. It overcomes our self-doubt and fills us with the confidence to create art in our own style.

We came together and learned so much more that we expected to know about comics. Through the course, we also learned that we are not alone in our ideas of life, humour, and a good story narrative. This brings back our confidence and feelings of being connected to society.”

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“The Comic Creators course opened a new world for me. I used to love comics for their story and art, but now I see how it helps people express themselves, to relax and think about what we hear, see, feel on certain things.”

“The course helped me to tap into my creative energies.”

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“What did I think of the course? Wow! Loved it! Enlightening and cool.”

“I never had much interest in comics as a child, and I wondered if this course would be for me. I’m so glad I joined! An excellent course and tutor. It was exciting expressing the surge of images, ideas and comic concepts which came swirling in my mind, and putting them into visual form. I’ve really caught the comic bug!”

SMarchant

Credits

These workshops had been possible thanks to the support of the Comic Creators Project at the Cartoon Museum funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and by MIND in Harrow.

 

*All images and characters that appear in this site are copyright of their respective holders and are used for informational purposes only. No copyright infringement is intended.

 

Artist Highlights: Leo Baxendale

Introduction

To write about Leo Baxendale is to write about one of the most prolific, funny, subversive, and revolutionary comic artists in the UK. According to cartoonist Lew Stringer, “Leo is the most influential artist in British humour comics over the past 60 years. Even today, long after Leo retired from traditional children’s comics, his style is still evident in the pages of The Beano and other comics. His strips were certainly a big influence on my work and that of artists such as David Sutherland, Tom Paterson and Nigel Parkinson.” (Blimey!)

Several books could be written about his life and the impact that he has had on children and young artists throughout the decades. Alas! A simple blog post will not do him justice, but we are certainly going to try. Baxendale will be the first of our artist highlights for the Comic Creators Project at the Cartoon Museum.

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Comic Highlights: Danger Mouse

Introduction

The Comic Creators Project at the Cartoon Museum in London has original artwork from the Danger Mouse comic strip that appeared in Look-In magazine in 1982. The artwork was done by Arthur James Ranson (b. 1939) and the script was written by Angus P. Allan (1936-2007). It features two consecutive pages, but only one of them is usually on display at the Comics Gallery in the Cartoon Museum. This blog post offers additional information on the history of publication of this comic and on one of the greatest cartoon characters ever created in the UK: Danger Mouse!

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Comic Creators Day 2, Interviews

Back in October, 2015, the Cartoon Museum had its second Comic Creators Day with guests Jamie Smart (Moose Kids Comics), Rachael Ball (The Inflatable Woman), Dave Gibbons (Watchmen), John Higgins (Watchmen) and  comic editor Tim Pilcher. We wrote two blog posts regarding what transpired during the day (blog post part 1, blog post part 2), but now we have footage of two interviews that were conducted that day by Billy Barnell, a student of journalism. Billy sat down with Jamie Smart first and then with Dave Gibbons and John Higgins to ask them about their work. Check out the interviews in this youtube video.

MAWalker

Comic Highlights: The Daleks

Introduction

The Comic Creators Project at the Cartoon Museum in London has original artwork from a comic-strip devoted to the most ruthless villains in the Whovian Universe: The Daleks. Currently on display in the Comic Art Gallery is a page that featured in TV21, no. 37, 1965. The artwork was done by the talented Richard E. Jennings (1921-1997). This blog post offers additional information on the history of publication of this comic and on the Daleks themselves.

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Comic Highlights: The Steel Claw

Introduction

The Comic Creators Project at the Cartoon Museum in London has original artwork from one of the most popular heroes from the 60s and the 70s: The Steel Claw. Currently on display in the Comic Art Gallery is a page created by Jesús Blasco for Valiant & TV21 between 1971 and 1973. This blog post offers additional information on the history of publication and a biography of this comic strip character.

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Comic Highlights: The Trigan Empire

Introduction

The Comic Creators Project at the Cartoon Museum in London has original artwork from The Rise and Fall of the Trigan Empire, more commonly known as The Trigan Empire. Currently on display in the Comic Art Gallery, we have a page with the original artwork done by Ron Embleton (Look &Learn, 1969), as well as the Dutch weekly Eppo cover that was created in 1979 by Don Lawrence.  Continue reading “Comic Highlights: The Trigan Empire”

Comic Highlights: Janus Stark

Introduction

The Comic Creators Project at the Cartoon Museum in London has original artwork from one of the most fondly beloved heroes from the 70s: Janus Stark. Currently on display in the Comic Art Gallery, this blog post offers additional information on this comic character. Continue reading “Comic Highlights: Janus Stark”

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