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.
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.
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.