Tuesday, November 06, 2007

BICS Report part 2: Comic Artists Flip Out

Day 2 of our BICS coverage

Simple but brilliant recipe for a fun panel:

-Three huge A0 flipcharts of blank sketch paper

-Lots of marker pens

-A raffle book

-Three suckers -- eager experienced and friendly comic artists

A simple procedure: Every fan in the room gets a free raffle. The artists keep churning out giant A0 sketches, and each sketch is raffled out to a member of the audience until time runs out, or the artist's wrist starts bleeding on the sketch pad.

James A. Hodgkins (sexy and stylish) hosted the panel, with special guest artists: Alan Davis, Staz Johnson and Mark Buckingham. Two of them had prior experience in this panel last year, I thought they'd have reconsidered before signing up again for this slave labour (sic)

Some peeps went away with gorgeous artwork, but I lucked out and went home empty handed

[I wasn't as unlucky the year before that, in the first BICS, where the same panel was introduced but unfortunately scheduled as the penultimate event on the last day of the convention. Unlucky for them as the panel had a poor turnout, lucky for the 20 of us who did attend, as we all got to walk away with a giant sketch (they learnt their lesson well this year, as they made this the second event of the opening day, with great results).]

Here's my lucky sketch from last year: Giant-Size Naked Borat by Essad Ribic (Silver Surfer: Requiem, Loki, Children of the Atom), who is a big Kazakh fan.

The panel wasn't without its amusing moments, including Bucky drawing his version of Staz, and all three artists trying to field off questions from the audience while they're drawing (Survivor: Birmingham!).
Meanwhile, James Hodgkins was having his own technical difficulties trying to realise the how-to of pulling raffles out of a bowl, as he kept putting the winning raffles back in the bowl, shuffling, and then pulling out the same number. Multiply this by ten or so repeats, and you get a very amused audience! James took it all in good humour and was a great host overall.

Following is a gallery of the sketches the artists gave away this year, along with a special treat: a video of Alan Davis drawing a giant Phoenix sketch for a lucky winner. Watch a master at work!

ALAN DAVIS sketches the Batman, the Thing and Nightcrawler

toiling away on Rose Red, Flycatcher, Pinocchio Samurai (sweet!), and Bigby Wolf (all from his Eisner-winning FABLES series), Sandman, and Spiderman

and finally, STAZ JOHNSON on the Silver Surfer, the Joker and the Batman (looking very stylish)

Before we wrap up, the video as promised:

and the finished sketch:

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