Sunday, May 9, 2010

Kablooey II (follow-up)

Isaac Paris animates his art

What a great time at yesterday's Kablooey II - even with the fantastic weather and many competing events going on around town, turnout was excellent with over a couple dozen young folks hanging out and drawing, and ten participating cartoonists doing demos. The crowd was perfect for the classroom we were stationed in, after adding more and more tables and chairs to accommodate the overflow. All the stacks of free comic books were out in the main lobby area, plus the Forget-Me-Not Bookstore had a sale on manga and other comics. They also gave out a lot of coupons good for a free comic so as to encourage revisiting sometime later on after the event, and many in attendance hadn't yet experienced the Literacy Council or knew about how much goes on with all the different community programs offered.

Lucas "TRex" Elliott RRRAAAARRRSSS the crowd

 There'll be an upcoming handful of separate posts here on Ink & Snow featuring a few favorite doodles that came outta the assembled creative minds. I got to constantly circulate around the room during the event, and coach a little here and there, offer encouragement (not to mention laugh my head off at some of the pieces) while showing off random works by these talented artists and their respective takes on each topic. It was absolutely amazing to see how good so many of these kids were, and here's hoping seeds were planted if not watered - there's some serious up & coming talents in this town. Aside from all the other reasons to attend for a good cause, these kinds of events are just a blast to be a part of. Probably like a few other people I went right home and did some more drawing, and fell asleep reading a comic later that night.

Compared to the inaugural Kablooey this was a lot more successful in terms of direct, hands-on interaction with participants. While some folks elected to just do their own thing with their own works-in-progress, many of us followed along with different artists as they took turns drawing out animals up on the dry-erase board. Sharpies, pencils and paper were made available (along with coffee + pastries and then lunchtime sandwiches + soda, and, oh-yeah... rice-crispy treats!) and people could watch how each character or scene was drawn, and either copy along or make up their own.

After the critter was drawn, we then had fun coming up with some noises and sound effects that each character might be making. This was a good opportunity to play around with how drawing letters bigger, bolder and in a range of styles would make them "read" differently. Wordplay is an important aspect of comics and cartooning, and lettering is an often overlooked detail in drawing them.
A veritable menagerie was created: the zoo produced a dog, a fish, a monkey, dinosaurs, a bear, an amoeba (now THAT was a challenge), robots, a pirate squirrel, a woolly mammoth, a miffed moose and even a farting duck.

A Big Ol' Kablooey to all the participating artists who did demonstrations: James Kelly, Lucas Elliott, Isaac Paris, Dan "Quack" Darrow, Andrew Paris, Chris Green and Heidi Atkinson (plus Jen & Layla for dropping by!). Special thanks to Hanna and Leah Hill for helping set up the gig; and for Kevin Collins and Greg Hill for the donations; and extra special thanks especially to all the folks & families that dropped in to hang out!

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