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by Royston

Cartoonists conquer new festival

October 20, 2016 in Events, General, News

The festival was officially opened at the Martin Honeysett exhibition and Hastings Museum and Art Gallery

The Hasting & 1066 Country Cartoon Festival was officially opened at the  Honeysett exhibition held at the Museum and Art Gallery

The first Hastings & 1066 Country Cartoon Festival took place on the weekend of October 15 and 16, to coincide with the 950th anniversary of the battle that changed the course of English history.

The cartoonists, mostly Professional Cartoonists Organisation members, expected to do battle with the elements, as it’s unusual to have an outdoor cartoon festival in October, but in fact the sun shone brightly on the Big Festival Day — 11am-5pm on the Sunday — and there was quite a buzz around the event.

Big board cartoons were drawn in a marquee on The Stade, on Hastings seafront. There were also two “community boards” for members of the public, both children and adults, to draw on, as live music and magic was performed throughout the day.

Bill Stott at work

Bill Stott, the PCO chairleg, at work on his big board

The Marquee on The Stade, where big board cartoons were drawn

The Marquee on The Stade, where big board cartoons were drawn

Opposite the marquee, in the slightly warmer Stade Hall, the main festival exhibition could be viewed and there were workshops, much drawing of caricatures and festival merchandise for sale.

Glenn Marshall attempted a recreation of the Bayeux Tapestry — but with funnnier gags — on a roll of wallpaper. But he hadn’t realised that the Tapestry is 70 metres long so he didn’t even make it to the battle. He has pledged to finish it by the 1,000th anniversary in 2066.

Passers-by and other artists helped Glenn Marshall recreate the Bayeux Tapestry (up to a point ...)

The public and other artists helped Glenn Marshall to recreate the story of the Bayeux Tapestry (up to a point …)

Workshops in The Stade Hall

Thinking and inking: workshops in The Stade Hall

The workshops for all ages were very well attended

The workshops for all ages were very well attended

It was one in the eye for Harold in this workshop

It was one in the eye for Harold in this workshop

On the Saturday there was a reception for an exhibition by the late Martin Honeysett, who lived in Hastings, at the town’s Museum and Art Gallery.

At this event, the festival was officially opened with a speech by Bill Stott, the PCO chairleg, and was followed by a cartoonists’ panel discussion and Q&A, including a slideshow of cartoons, with Royston Robertson, The Surreal McCoy, and the aforementioned Glenn Marshall.

The Surreal McCoy, centre, refused to take part in an eyebrow-raising contest with Royston, left, and Marshall

The Surreal McCoy, centre, refused to take part in an eyebrow-raising competition  with Royston Robertson, left, and Glenn Marshall

The other cartoonists taking part in the festival were Nathan Ariss, Jeremy Banx, Rupert Besley, Andrew Birch, Chris Burke, Denis Dowland, Clive Goddard and Cathy Simpson. They were joined by the French cartoonists Robert Rousso and Emmanuel Cerisier.

French cartoonist Robert Rousso, centre, in red, draws in The Stade Hall

French cartoonist Robert Rousso, centre, in red, draws in The Stade Hall

Also taking part in the event, and in workshops in the weeks leading up to the Big Festival Day, were the local artists James Brandow, Loulou Cousin, Scott Garrett, Ottilie Hainsworth, Julian Hanshaw, Jon Higham, Christopher Hoggins, Rachael House, Emily Johns, John Knowles, Robin Knowles and Andy Willard.

Many thanks must go to the organisers of the event: Penny Precious, Erica Smith and Pete Donohue. They hope to do it all again next year — and, who knows, maybe it will last until the 1,000th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings.

Visit the website: 1066cartoonfestival.co.uk

Photos: Denis Dowland, Royston Robertson and Mika Schick.

Fun in the sunshine at Herne Bay

August 10, 2015 in Events, General, News

Board by Rob Murray. Photo © Gerard Whyman

Board by Rob Murray. Photo © Gerard Whyman

The sun shone on the Herne Bay Cartoon Festival yet again this year. Here’s a selection of photos of the live-drawing day, 2 August, by Kasia Kowalski and Gerard Wyman.

Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Cartoonists at ease, at easels. Click image to enlarge. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Surreal McCoy and Cathy Simpson with the essential tools of the trade: pens. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Surreal McCoy and Cathy Simpson with the essential tools of the trade: pens. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Jeremy Banx at work. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Jeremy Banx at work. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

... and his finished board. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

… and his finished board. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Several flags by Banx, all with different seaside designs, were flown from the turrets of the Bandstand. Pic © Jeremy Banx

Several flags by Jeremy Banx, all with different seaside designs, were flown from the turrets of the Bandstand. Pic © Jeremy Banx

Here's another of the flags from a few days earlier, the festival launch, with Royston Robertson, Nathan Ariss and Be a Francis, 8. Photo © Brian Green for the Herne Bay Times

Here’s another of the flags from a few days earlier, the festival launch, with Royston Robertson, Nathan Ariss and Bea Francis, 6. Photo © Brian Green for the Herne Bay Times

Simon Ellinas draws caricatures. Photo © Gerard Whyman

Simon Ellinas draws caricatures. Alex Hughes also tirelessly drew festival-goers throughout the day. Photo © Gerard Whyman

The weather allowed cartoonists to display a range of silly hats. Left to right: Ger Wyman, Royston Robertson, Matt Buck. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

The weather allowed cartoonists to display a range of silly hats. Left to right: Gerard Wyman, Royston Robertson, Matt Buck. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Tim Harries hosted a cartoon workshop. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Tim Harries hosted a cartoon workshop. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

The illustrated man: Glen Marshall's board was more performance art than cartoon. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

The illustrated man: Glen Marshall’s board was more performance art than cartoon. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Bill Stott's board tackled a favourite current obsession of the media: seagulls. Perfect for Herne Bay! Photo © Gerard Whyman

Bill Stott’s board tackled a favourite current obsession of the media: seagulls. Click to enlarge and read. Perfect for Herne Bay! Photo © Gerard Whyman

More seagulls by Royston Robertson. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

More seagulls by Royston Robertson. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Cartoonist Rob Murray does like to be beside the seaside. Photo © Gerard Whyman

Cartoonist Rob Murray does like to be beside the seaside. Photo © Gerard Whyman

One of the communal boards, with cartoons by Ger Wyman, Matt "Hack" Buck, Royston Robertson, Des Buckley, Tim Sanders and Nathan Ariss. Photo © Gerard Wyman

One of the communal boards, with cartoons by Ger Wyman, Matt “Hack” Buck, Royston Robertson, Des Buckley, Tim Sanders, Steve Way and Nathan Ariss. Click image to enlarge and read. Photo © Gerard Wyman

Herne Bay Cartoon Festival wouldn't be complete without a great seaside cartoon by The Independent's Dave Brown. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Herne Bay Cartoon Festival wouldn’t be complete without a great seaside cartoon by The Independent’s Dave Brown. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

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by Royston

Herne Bay Cartoon Festival approaches

July 1, 2015 in Events, General, News

Herne Bay Cartoon Festival poster by Jeremy Banx

With the scorching hot weather we’re having, it’s a good time to think about planning a trip to the seaside. And Herne Bay in Kent is just the place to go.

The third Herne Bay Cartoon Festival begins later this month with an exhibition called Lines in the Sand opening at the Beach Creative gallery on 28 July. As you can see from the excellent poster above, by Procartoonists.org member Jeremy Banx, there will also be a live cartooning day in the Bandstand on the sea front once again, with big board cartoons, caricatures, and a few surprises. That takes place on Sunday 2 August.

This year there will also be an exhibition of cartoons from the British Cartoon Archive, on the history of cartoons and people taking offence at them, as well as a show in tribute to the late Martin Honeysett, who exhibited and appeared at the first two Herne Bay cartoon events.

This year’s event builds on the success of the first one, when it was part of a Marcel Duchamp celebration, and last year’s standalone Cartoonists Beside the Surrealside. It sponsored by the PCO and supported using public funding by Arts Council England.

We’ll have more on the festival nearer the time. Meanwhile, you can seen lots more PCO coverage of the previous two events, including great videos by David Good, in the Herne Bay archive.

St Just for laughs

October 22, 2014 in Events, General, News

St Just poster © Daryl Cagle

St Just poster © Daryl Cagle

Simon Ellinas writes:

I was lucky enough to be able to visit the Salon International Du Dessins de Presse et d’Humor at St Just-le-Martel in France. Impressively installed in a brand new building on the outskirts of this small satellite of the city of Limoges, this cartoon festival has been running for 33 years.

The permanent display of cartoons and caricatures from around the world makes this the largest public museum of cartoon art in Europe. The last time I was there, five years ago, the events took place inside a series of marquees, while the first bricks for the centre were being laid.

My cartoonist friend John Landers and I travelled by Eurostar to Paris where we met other cartoonists. The travel is laid on by the festival organisers and local residents put visitors up in their own homes. I was delighted to find that we had been handed over to my previous hosts, who live in a very spacious and comfortable house 12km away in Boisseuils.

Cartoonists Simon Ellinas, left, and John landers, second right, with new friends at the St Just festival

Cartoonists Simon Ellinas, left, and John landers, second right, with their hosts at the St Just festival

The whole weekend is taken up with a huge exhibition of cartoons and caricatures from around the world and a grand hall full of cartoonists drawing for the public. And the public really do appreciate this event, arriving in many hundreds on both days. The festival is actually spread out over ten or so days, with the first and second weekends being peaks of activity.

Various awards are handed out by the charismatic mayor and chief initiator of the whole thing, Gerard Vandenbroucke, the main award of the festival going to the Venezuelan cartoonist Rayma Suprani.

stjust_doc

We were treated to a French cabaret evening on the Friday and a superb visit to an old cinema in nearby St Leonard. This was to see the Cartooning for Peace documentary Caricaturistes: Fantassins de la Democratie (poster above). This featured 12 cartoonists from around the world who have been working, many under great restrictions from their governments, to uphold their rights to democracy and to free speech.

Featuring Suprana as well as the Cartooning for Peace organiser Jean Plantu, the film also revealed the difficulties faced by cartoonists as far afield as China, Palestine and Israel. A very moving film which I would urge you to see.

Daryl Cagle, left, with a caricature drawn by Philippe Moine, right

Daryl Cagle, left, with a caricature drawn by Philippe Moine, right

There was a contingent of political cartoonists from America, led by Daryl Cagle and including Monte Wolverton, Rick McKee, Steve Sack, Nate Beeler and Adam Zygler. The differences between US and UK political cartooning are interesting to compare. My impression is that the UK style is more predominantly “painterly” while the US cartoons are heavily populated with a very cartoony comic-strip style.

Jean Gouders, in the striped  shirt, and John Landers, in the traditional "defacing" of tablecloths

Jean Gouders, in the striped shirt, and John Landers, demonstrate the traditional “defacing” of tablecloths

Of course, part of the celebration and festivity are the meals with fellow cartoonists and friends. These take place at long tables in a huge marquee with the paper tablecloths becoming the centre of attention for all the artists and their arsenals of pens and markers.

All in all, a very inspiring if ultimately exhausting experience. I’ll be back.

Video: Cartoonists in Herne Bay

September 23, 2014 in Events, General, News

This short video covering the exhibition and live cartooning in Herne Bay last month has been posted online by David Good Videos.

Former PCO chairman Nathan Ariss is our host, taking us through the background to the event and the live drawing that took place. Sue Austen of Beach Creative in Herne Bay and cartoonist Tim Harries talk about the workshops.

Our thanks go to David Good who also made a film on last year’s Marcel Duchamp festival in Herne Bay, which included a cartooning element.

UPDATE, 30 September: Rather than let all the footage he filmed go unseen, David Good has made another short film on the Herne Bay event. See below.

This time he talks to cartoonists Matt Buck, Royston Robertson and Steve Way.

See also:
David Good Videography
Procartoonists.org portfolios

Thinking big at mini cartoon festival

September 2, 2014 in Events, General, News

Rog Bowles caricatures the public at the Southport Mini Cartoon Festival

Rog Bowles caricatures the public at the Southport Mini Cartoon Festival

Paul Hardman reports on the first Southport Mini Cartoon Festival, which took place on the August bank holiday weekend and was arranged at the very last moment, with little or no budget or publicity

I have for many years thought that my now-hometown of Southport in the North West of England would be an ideal location for a cartoon festival.

I was approached by Brendan Riley, a comedian and friend, and he put me in contact with Tony Wynne, our local arts project manager, who had been asked by the council to put on the Southport Festival of Art as part of an event to promote a regeneration funding bid.

Tony wanted to know if I could come up with something at very short notice and with a very limited budget. My response was to call on some of my old friends and a tried-and-tested formula. A hasty budget and plan was arrived at and it was decided to have a big-board event in the centre of town.

Pete Dredge works on a big board cartoon at Southport. You can see Bill Stott and Rich Skipworth hard at work too

Pete Dredge draws a big board cartoon. You can see Bill Stott and Rich Skipworth hard at work too

I was delighted when Noel Ford, Bill Stott, Pete Dredge and Rich Skipworth immediately jumped at the chance to come up and draw a big board here in Southport. I then asked Rog Bowles and Tim Leatherbarrow to assist with the arduous task of caricaturing the public.

The two-day event proved to be a success and the lads delighted the crowds, who stopped in their hundreds to enjoy the skill on show. Bill, Peter, Noel and Rich produced eight magnificent boards, which were all on display by the second day.

There was also an impromptu gallery of A3 gag cartoons, which hung alongside brief biographies of the cartoonists.

Southport Mini Cartoon Festival

Sunny weather ensured a great turnout for the Southport Mini Cartoon Festival

The weather was very kind to us and the visual impact in the town centre was nothing short of spectacular. Far more successful than I could ever have hoped for and I know each of the team was delighted with their stay.

This is hopefully a foot in the door and the beginning of a regular event for our cartoonists’ community. Here’s to the next successful year.

Many thanks to Paul and we echo that last thought.

A surreally great weekend

August 5, 2014 in Events, General, News

Happy caricature subjects, we assume, drawn by Alex Hughes. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Happy caricature subjects, we assume, drawn by Alex Hughes. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Cartoonists Beside the Surrealside in Herne Bay at the weekend was a scorching success. Here’s co-organiser Nathan Ariss with his post-event analysis:

I have only just recently discovered the true meaning of some of those well-worn platitudes, such as “Build it and they will come” and “We really couldn’t have done it without you” etc.

The Herne Bay cartoon festival has grown organically in fits and starts, borne late from the Duchamp Festival last August. I’ve been privileged to have midwived it into being, along with many of the town’s inspirational “can-do” types.

The Procartoonists undoubtedly owe a huge debt of gratitude to Beach Creative this year, run by Mandy Broughton and Mandy Troughton; the exceptional exhibition template provided for us by David Cross; and the organisation powerhouse and savviness of Sue Austen and Steve Coombes, who opened their home and list of contacts to greet, feed and publicise a multitude of cartoonists.

They also ensured that all the ridiculous ideas and things I threw at them to produce actually came into being. Thanks must also go to Arts Council England.

A collaborative effort. Insert "drawing a crowd" picture caption here. © Kasia Kowalska

A collaborative effort on a big board. Insert regulation “drawing a crowd” picture caption here. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

But, of course, a Bandstand full of cartoonists, ready with boards and tables, workshops and games, and paper and pens and paints and ideas, is only part of the picture. Thankfully, the informative and intelligent press and TV coverage we managed to garner ensured eager and expectant waves of audience for us to entertain and amuse.

BBC News preview of the event
ITV News report on the day

The event was a hit with the public, left, as well as cartoonists such as Cathy Simpson and The Surreal McCoy © Mika Schick

The event was a hit with the public, left, as well as cartoonists such as Cathy Simpson and The Surreal McCoy. Photos © Mika Schick

Thanks to Nathan. The big boards drawn at the event will be on display at the town’s Clocktower this summer. Here are some more photos (click any image to enlarge) then we will shut up about the festival … until next year.

An ilustrated man takes part. Photo © The Surreal McCoy

An illustrated man takes part. Photo © The Surreal McCoy

The public very very willing to chat and discuss the drawings Matt Buck talks cartoons. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

The public was very keen to engage with the work and discuss the drawings. Matt Buck talks cartoons. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

The comic strip workshop run by Tim Harries was packed throughout the day. There was also one on Saturday. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

The comic-strip workshop run by Tim Harries was packed throughout the day.  He also hosted one on Saturday at Beach Creative. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Glenn Marshall finds a unique way to display his cartoon of Dali's iLobster. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Glenn Marshall finds a unique way to display his cartoon of Dali’s iLobster. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Finished work: Dave Brown channels seaside postcard maestro Donald McGill and Chris Burke serves up Dali with melted ice-creams. Delicious. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Finished work: Dave Brown channels seaside postcard maestro Donald McGill and Chris Burke serves up Dali with melted ice-creams. Delicious. Photo © Kasia Kowalska

Many thanks to Kasia Kowalska and Mika Schick and The Surreal McCoy for the photographs.

For more photos and cartoons from the event, see the Beach Creative photo gallery, and you can see more on Twitter at the #CartoonistsLive hashtag.