Hallowe’en Drink and Draw!

We’re holding a Hallowe’en* themed Drink and Draw session at The Mad Hatter bar in Edinburgh on the 30th of October!


(thanks to Stephen for designing the spine chillingly terrifying poster!)

We’ll have some horrifying activities on the go to resurrect your creativity, or you can feel free to work on your own blood curdling drawings. Bring materials and a sense of the macabre.

From 8pm we’ll be in the downstairs area of the bar. It’s at 8 Torphichen Place (near Haymarket Station): here’s a map.

Looking forward to seeing some of you there!

*costumes optional!

October Smörgåsbord: Sunshine

October’s Smörgåsbord topic was Sunshine! With a little side challenge – to put a depressing spin on the subject. Some excellent zines were swapped:

Craig Cunningham:




Stephen Goodall:


(the more I look at this one the more I love it)

Sonya Hallett:


(I didn’t get a copy of the zine version of this so these photos are of the original!)

Steven Ingram:


Aimee Lockwood:


Olly Paterson:


Ell J Walker:


Did I miss any? I don’t think so but let me know! Having these zines as a talking point last night was brilliant, especially as SO MANY new people came – it was great meeting you all! It seems like the Edinburgh comic scene is really thriving at the minute. And excitingly we had enough people come to… *drumroll* GET THE BODA SMORGASBORD! This is basically free cheese for everybody, conditional on having thirteen or more people attend. It tasted like VICTORY!

Because it seems like there are a lot of talented comic people about lately, we’ve been talking about the possibility of running a small pop-up comics mart in Edinburgh. If any of you ELC members (or other interested Scottish comic people) would like to get involved please get in touch! It’d be good to get an idea of how many people are interested. Also if you have any suggestions for good places in Edinburgh to run this kind of thing I’d like to hear them! Email: edinburghleagueofcomics@gmail.com.

The topic for next month’s Smörgåsbord zine-swap is: SUITCASE. Looking forward to seeing you all (and your zines) in November!

September Smörgåsbord: Error

It’s been nearly a month since September’s ELC meet-up, so this is a slightly belated first Smörgåsbord entry! The brief was to create a mini-zine from a folded A4 sheet of paper, and the first ever topic was Error. We had a grand total of two zines entered for September:

Janet McLauchlin:

Error 1

Stephen Goodall:

error 2eroor 3

I’m expecting us to have more entries for October’s topic, Sunshine! If you want to take part but you can’t make it to the meet-up (Tuesday 14th November, at Boda) you can still email a comic to edinburghleagueofcomics@gmail.com and I’ll put it on the blog. I’m looking forward to seeing them all on Tuesday!


Smörgåsbord: introduction

This is a new monthly challenge started by Stephen. Here’s what it’s about in his own words (shamelessly copied from old mailout ;))

The challenge:

-Create a black and white comic/zine out of a folded piece of A4 paper in response to a random(ish)ly generated theme.
-Print/photocopy 10-15 copies and bring them along to the meet
-Swap with the other participants, so you leave with a varied collection of great miniature publications!

(if you’re stuck for what I mean then a great starting point is to fold an A4 page in half twice, so that you have an A6 booklet with four sides that can be unfolded to have an A4 poster on the reverse.)

Other than that, anything goes: drawing, collage, etc. etc. It should be a really interesting to see the different approaches that people take.  I thought it would be good to do it monthly at first so that there isn’t enough time to agonise over what you make.  Also, once we’ve got a fair collection together we can apply to get them put in The National Library.

There has been much deliberation about the name, but I think ‘Smörgåsbord’ is pretty apt, given the nature of the project and the the mythical snack platter much discussed in previous meets.

BBC Drop in and Draw at the Edinburgh Fringe

This August we had the fantastic opportunity to run a ‘Drop in and Draw’ event in the BBC’s Pink Tent at Potterow. As part of their Storytelling Fun Weekend (aimed at families) we turned up with coloured pencils, a giant speech bubble and several activities for children to complete.


We had six activities in total, aimed at children aged 5+. Easily the most popular activity was ‘Create a Character’ –  participants were presented with three bowls of words, from which they drew a name, an occupation and an adjective. They then used these to create an original character! And we ended up with some very original characters from all age groups:

Other activities included an Expressions sheet, for people to practise drawing the same character in different moods:


And ‘Create a Superhero’ (though lots of people chose to draw a supervillain instead):


Also popular with all age groups was our giant wall comic – Zuzanna started us off with the first panel and people (including the ELC team!) seemed to have a lot of fun adding to it over the weekend. It was definitely my favourite of the activities we used, and I hope we’ll get the chance to do it again somewhere!


We ended up with kind of a ‘choose your own adventure’ comic, sprawling into several different (slightly eccentric) storylines:

elcgiant wall comic2

The predictably miserable festival weather seemed to go in our favour on the Sunday, when people sheltering from the downpour meant our tent was kept very busy! Overall the event seemed to go over well with the crowds of children coming and going from the CBBC events in the Big Blue Tent – the age group was maybe a bit younger than we’d anticipated, but enthusiasm was high and several children spent a long time in the tent working to complete all the activities! Thanks to the BBC for the opportunity, and to all the families there over the weekend who made it a fun event for everyone involved!


Pub Meetups

We’ve actually started meeting up again in earnest!  The group is currently meeting once a month on the second Tuesday, always around 7.30pm, but the venue changes from time to time.  If you’re interested in comics and live in or around Edinburgh, send us an email to get added to our mailing list which will update you about coming events!

The Thought Bubble 2012


Hi comic folks.It’s been so long but it’s time to rock again. Fumio and Eddie made a pilgrimage to Leeds’ Thought Bubble’ festival during 16-18 November, with a stall waiting for us (Of course!) It was a great pleasure to meet all the people in the comic scene but also see many people take a look at our works and leave comments, and sometimes buy too! The sales were better all round than the last year, this means the readership in the UK is growing…?

Introducing ‘Parecomic’ – Help to get it Kickstarted!

Scottish comics writer Sean Michael Wilson has started work on an exciting new project, but for it to become a reality he’s looking for Kickstarter funding.

PARECOMIC is a graphic novel about something that affects us all: the system we live in – what’s wrong with it, and how we might be able change it for the better!

Written by Sean Michael Wilson, and drawn by Carl Thompson, PARECOMIC is about Michael Albert and his life’s struggle as a US left wing activist, reaching right back to the heady days of 1960’s student demos and lifestyle rebellions. From the development of the anti war movement, civil rights, the woman’s movement, and the black panthers to the establishment of alternative media like South End Press and Znet. PARECOMIC shows us Michael’s story, and at the same time the ideas and issues that influence both our society and the better alternative that we can build via the anarchist influenced system of participatory economics. Or PARECON for short – hence the title for our book, which rather started out as a joke – but has stuck: PARECOMIC.

You can find out more and help to fund it here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/471898784/parecomic-a-documentary-graphic-novel

Public Entertainment Resolution Will Kill ELC.

I can only apologise for blogging about a political matter, but this does concern everyone who enjoys the vibrant free arts scene in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh City Council are proposing a change to licencing laws that will force community events such as visual arts exhibitions, music, dance and theatre events to apply and pay for a licence, even if those events are put on for free. Such a change would severely damage what ELC does, and possibly even ruin chances of us putting on future events.

I urge everyone to raise a stink about this. Write to your councillor, tweet about it, and tell people you know that this is happening.

As such there is a public meeting at Out of the Blue in Dalmeny Street tonight, tonight (Thurs 1st March), to discuss and oppose this. I urge you to attend and sign the petition and/or contact your councillor to express your opposition. In Glasgow 14,000 signed the petition and the council scrapped its plans to impose these measures.

Write to your councillor here: http://www.writetothem.com/

Sign the petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/scottish-councils-scrap-public-entertainment-licence-fees

Thanks for your time. Hopefully we’ll get some more events organised soon!