“I think the comics industry is full of people who’ve tried it, and then never done it again because what’s the point really if no one seems to care?” questions Ghost Comics Festival’s founder, João Sobral. But, thankfully, João isn’t one of those people. Instead he happens “to be obsessed with comics in such a way that seeing talented people give it up makes me sad.” In the spirit of not giving up, João is hosting a one-day festival takes place this Saturday at Glasgow’s The Space, bringing together an eclectic array of innovative local talent celebrating the art of comic books.
The festival features three workshops and a comics fair exhibiting around 30 creatives in a collective exhibition. This is the first comics festival in Scotland, co-founded by O Panda Gordo’s João, and illustratora Jessica Taylor and Julia Scheele. The comics-fanatics are bringing together like-minded creatives in their “dream scenario” becoming a reality this weekend. Jessica adds, “I only like reading comics,” explains Jessica, “I haven’t read a novel in years and years so the more I can find and encourage people to make, the more I have to read!”
Featuring some of Scotland’s most exciting creatives such as Mari Campistron, Suds McKenna, Isobel Neviazsky, Aki and Inès Gradot, the free festival is hoping to reinvigorate the production of comics in Glasgow, a city famed for its hub of artistic talent. “We want to showcase a diversified use of the medium which includes works that may not be so clearly comics but still deal with sequential art and graphic narratives”, João tells It’s Nice That.
Illustrator Suds Mckenna will be showing Bunged, a collection of urban crowd studies produced in Glasgow over the past year. “The book travels between dense high-street scenes and loose (often unfinished) compositions”, merging observational cityscapes with the illustator’s characteristic cartoon-like drawing style. The comic retains the original physicality of the sketchbook page and act as an “archival-narrative” series which documents the lively presence of the scenes.
Another publication taking part in the comics fair is Isobel Neviazsky’s ankle mush chronicling drawings from a time when the artist broke her ankle. “On the 8th of May I broke my ankle… I began to run for the bus and I had only made a few steps before I fell over and couldn’t get back up". The playful pencil drawings embody the artist’s humorous take on the unfortunate situation and charmingly capture Isobel’s daily experiences through her joyful style.
Ghost Comics Festival is free entry and will be taking place tomorrow from 27 October from 12 to 5pm at The Space.
About the Author
Jyni joined It’s Nice That as an editorial assistant in August 2018 after graduating from The Glasgow School of Art’s Communication Design degree. In March 2019 she became a staff writer and in June 2021, she was made associate editor. Feel free to drop Jyni a note if you have an exciting story for the site.