|Three visual artists
||[Oct. 15th, 2016|09:06 pm]
I think it's just luck of the draw that our selection of events at this year's festival has been weighted toward the visual artists.
First up, Duncan Fegredo, working on an image of Hellboy while conversing with Sean Phillips. Im always interested to hear artists talking about their process, and the ability to turn a camera on the drawing board so that I can see it happening at the same time - well, that's a great bonus for me. I'm a great admirer of Fegredo's work - I wasn't surprised when a closer examination revealed that this particularly eye-catching reinterpretation of Beatrix Potter was his - although (and I was already saying this when we came to the first Lakes Festival) Hellboy I can take or leave. Still, Fegredo seems to be enjoying working on it, and we take what we can get. And for once the format of two pals chatting actually worked: it doesn't always, but this time it paid off.
Lunch break, in the bar at the Brewery, because the restaurant area where we ate last year had been turned into a guests-only green room. But all the cool kids were in the bar, honest. The man at the table next to ours had a stylish hat, and a notebook in which he was both writing and sketching, and I was so curious. I recommend the Festival beer (dry and seriously hoppy) and the vegetarian pizza of the day (spinach,artichoke and blue cheese), but the timing failed, and durham_rambler was denied his dessert. He helped me out with my ice cream (liquorice good, 'thunder and lightning' a bit nondescript) but it's not the same. Over by the door, three young men with beards were discussing the his-and-hers matching tattoos of a couple of their acquantance (was one of them'him'? Don't know). I won't say what the image was, because evidently one of them had passed on information which was supposed to be secret, and another of them had been telling everyone, because he thought it was cool and didn't know it was supposed to be secret. Oh, dear...
Gilbert Shelton in conversation with Warren Bernard was a fun ramble through the life and high times of the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers: it wasn't long on introspection, but turned up some unexpected facts and connections. I would never have guessed that the Brothers started out in Texas, for example. I was tempted to title this post 'I sang with Janis Joplin', because Shelton did, apparently, back when she was a folk singer (he claims to have tried to turn her on to the blues, but she wasn't interested...). The session ended with Gilbert Shelton quoting T.S. Eliot (in answer, of course, to the question "Does Fat Freddy's cat have a name?")
A quick visit to Knockabout's kingdom in the Maltroom, just long enough to take Tony Bennet's aadvice about which edition of Jerusalem to buy (I went for the three slipcased volumes, which is allegedly easier to read), then on to the final session of the day, Martin Rowson ("in confrontation", it says here, with John McShane - but McShane's job was mostly to keep the slide show in sync while Rowson held forth). I don't think I had a mental image of Martin Rowson, but I hadn't expected him to be tall, urbane, suited: I thought of a young George Melly. Otherwise, much like his cartoons, only funnier (I find his cartoons angry rather than funny, and it's hard to find fault with that).
We had a short walk round town to look at the comics-themed shop windows, but we didn't really have the energy to do much more than come home for the evening.