Thought Bubble 2008 – convention report

Published On November 17, 2008 | By Richard Bruton | Conventions and events, General, News

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Leeds second annual Thought Bubble sequential arts festival took place last weekend. It included the one day Thought Bubble comics convention on Saturday 15th.

Personally I thought it was an absolutely excellent convention. It had far fewer comic dealers and a much higher proportion of comic people there which helped to give it a fantastic buzz. Everyone I spoke to commented on how well laid out it was and how pleased they were with it. The layout was excellent, with wide aisles that more than coped with the crowds in attendance. The signings area was situated away from the main area which meant that the large queues never interfered with either the artist’s tables or the flow around the sizeable room. Interesting to speak to people and confirm what I thought – the crowd was younger at Leeds than usual. No idea why – maybe it’s got a less traditional comic convention feel? Certainly more young cosplayers in attendance than at Birmingham, where the costumed folk were mostly superhero types. More young people at a convention can only be a good thing.

It was great to see so many people there and to say hello to so many of you. For those I missed, apologies. As usual I completely failed to see any of the panels or events as it was far too much fun browsing around the tables which were all absolutely awash with some really great stuff. This was also my daughter’s first comic convention and she had a fantastic time as well. I’d like to say a big thank you to all of you who made her feel particularly welcome and put some more sketches in her growing sketchbook. Particular mention must go to Oliver East and Kenny Penman of Blank Slate, who helped her overcome her reluctance at asking for sketches, Simone Lia (Fluffy, Sausage & Carrot for the DFC) for the lovely chat, Matthew Craig for yet another picture of Hondle and Emma Vieceli (Violet at the DFC) for finding the time at the very end of a long and tiring day to sketch for her. (Update – especially after reading her live journal and seeing this post – she was too nice to refuse, despite the golfer’s elbow.) But everyone there was very welcoming and as usual, the standard of the books being published and shown at the show was absolutely amazing.

I’m very hopeful that there will be a Thought Bubble in 2009 and I’d recommend that it’s the first thing you pencil into those comic show diaries for next year. It’s certainly raised the bar for everyone else. Thanks to Tamsin and all those involved in making it a great success.

Sadly I didn’t make it to the aftershow party (9 year olds and a room full of partying comic people just don’t go) but from what I’ve been hearing it was rather spectacular. Lots of very sore heads on Sunday morning though.

As usual, I took far fewer photos than I should, so I’ve borrowed a few from here and there and credited when I have:


(Thought Bubble took place at the Saville Hall in Leeds. Pic courtesy of D’Israeli.)



(Photos of a very busy convention floor. Busy but never overcrowded – brilliant layout and room.)


(Howard and Robin of Cute But Sad Comics whose Badger is much adored by myself and Molly. And, not surprisingly, Molly ended up getting one of the adorable crocheted Badgers.)


(Ben Powis & Julia. Ben’s first time at a comic show. His comics are very, very good indeed. See here and here)


(Matthew Craig busy sketching Hondle for Molly)


(Phil Spence of Ninja Bunny fame)


(Dan Lester and Oliver Lambden, Monkeys Might Puke and Modern Monstrosity respectively. Shameless pimping of Dan Lester Mysteries going on.)


(Accent UK & Jenika Iofredda of Vampire Free Style. Photo borrowed from Accent UK)


(And what would any self-respecting convention be without a great collection of young people dressing up?)

Blog reports, photos and other stuff:
we’ll update this for a week or so as the latest write-ups come in, so if you are writing an account up yourself or adding a bunch of photos from Thought Bubble let us know.

Accent UK write up from their blog. (Go through the main page and onto Events)

Ben Powis

Cy Dethan

Darth Mongoose Live Journal posting.

David Goodman Of Zip Gun Comics – Picassa photo album

D’Israeli – As usual Matt Brooker is one of the first online with pics from the event.

Emma Vieceli

Emma Vieceli– again!

Fictions Thought Bubble Report – my own, rather long and rambling report.

Fictions Thought Bubble Sketches – commentary and sketches that Molly, my 9 year old gathered through the day

Flying Monkey Comics

Francesca Cassavetti

The Girly Comic’s Selina Locke – You Tube video report

Gronk Comics’ Claude – one of the few negative posts I’ve seen about it. But I can see why. I thought he was weird as well.

Insomnia Publications

John Scrivens – Little Terrors

Julia Scheele

Kieron Gillen

Leigh Gallagher

Marc Ellerby

Matthew Badham at Down The Tubes

Oliver East (Trains Are … Mint)

Hugh of Reet Comics

Phil Spence – creator of the great Ninja Bunny – with a very nice new website.

Rob Jackson

Tim Perkins

Timebomb Comics write up.

We Are Words & Pictures

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About The Author

Richard Bruton
- Started in comics retail aged 16 at Nostalgia & Comics, Birmingham. Now located in Yorkshire, he's written for the Forbidden Planet International Blog since 2007. Specialising in UK Comics and All-Ages comics, Richard's day job in a primary school allowed him to build the best children's graphic novel library in the country.

5 Responses to Thought Bubble 2008 – convention report

  1. oliver east says:

    it was a pleasure meeting you and Molly is a mini the minx shaped delight

  2. Thanks for the link Richard, all comments spot on – what a brilliant con!

  3. Richard says:

    Molly loved the sketch. And just in case you were wondering, the little minx did coax money out of me for that bloody cuddly toy she was after. That was me following her on a mission to get it later in the day.
    Sorry I didn’t call back before the end – the day just seemed to fly by.

  4. Ben Powis says:

    Was great to meet you Richard – See you next year, if not before!