Past meetings: February

We’ve fallen behind a bit with blogging about meetings recently – hoping to catch up over the next wee while…

19th February 2019

The meeting was held at Nottingham Hackspace and was advertised as “The Panel Show”, with all NDC members invited to “Bring along your favourite comics thing and let us know why you love it.” Here’s Dorothy’s report:

Many thanks to everyone who brought along their favourite comics pages for discussion. Here are snippets from the evening.    

cover of Scott McCloud's The Sculptor

Nat was looking at ways of showing feeling and intensity in The Sculptor by Scott McCloud

As the intensity of feeling increased, the picture expanded to fit the entire page, with the comic suddenly losing its margins. Do printers and publishers cope with this? Yes! It was a problem in the olden days, but not now. 

  • Nat: ‘the intensity is being turned up on the visual grammar until it is overwhelming’ 
  • Matt: ‘Comics representing states instead of simply things’ 

Further recommendations from the audience were: 

‘expressing a truth through fantastic means’ 

cover of Azuma's Yotsuba, collection volume 2
Kiyohiko Azuma’s Yotsuba

Ida said that the Manga comic Yotsuba by Kiyohiko Azuma ‘changed the way I read’. [Lots of info here if you read Japanese!]

Yotsuba is an adopted 5 year old who becomes slightly more cartoony when she is being mischievous. Azuma draws a cartoon Dad with a moustache scribbled onto him. The cartoon is ‘real’ and the moustache is clearly added. Clever! 

More ideas:  

Panel from Goscinny & Uderzo's Asterix In Spain
Asterix the bullfighter

Dan picked the spread from Goscinny and Uderzo’s Asterix in Spain where Asterix accidentally invents bullfighting. This was masterfully done with minimal colour, so that the red cloak that literally falls into the ring is the main splash of colour as it takes up different shapes. The background drops out as the action and movement take over in the repetitive scenes that are so hard to get right; and really do come to life here. Steff pointed out that, ‘This is more theatre than TV’ with big gestures.  

Other recommendations:

Lee showed us the panels from Scott McLeod’s Understanding Comics: the book that had blown his 12-year-old-mind and made him think for the first time about art.

two pages from Scott McCloud's Understanding Comics

His choice of page showed a drawing of a painting of a pipe (Magritte’s The Treachery of Images), but we were looking at a projected view of one of many copies of a drawing of that painting of a pipe.  

And so we moved on to the moments when art spoke directly to us: 

‘I’d really just like to write something that I’d like to read’, as the creator of The Fantastic Four said.  

Nottingham Does Comics is moving!!!

We’re moving both in space and time (months of the year and meeting start-time).

NDC meetings will in future be hosted by the Animation course at Nottingham Trent University – many, many thanks to the University and especially to the head of Animation, Jeremy Moorshead, for this opportunity to collaborate.

The new venue will be the Waverley Lecture Theatre, and we’re shifting to odd-numbered months of the year (January, March, May, July, September, November). So the next meeting will be MAY 21ST.

Nottingham Trent’s Waverley Building

The lecture theatre is in the Waverley Building, on the corner of Waverley Street and Peel Street (Google maps). It’s close to the Arboretum, and a very short walk from the NTU tram-stop. We’ll have to be out of the building by 9.00 p.m. so we’ll be starting meetings at 7.00 p.m. sharp (with doors opening at 6.45 p.m.), and we’ll be changing the format of meetings slightly.

For those who’ve got used to staying longer on Tuesday nights, at 9.00 p.m. we’ll be repairing to the pub round the corner, the Gooseberry Bush, for more informal socialising.

The lecture theatre is a lovely space – not too big, with pretty comfy chairs! It’s very well equipped for presentations, with a document camera as well as a networked computer, so speakers can – if they like – just bring some comics along and display pages as the basis for a talk, rather than having to put together a PowerPoint show.

We look forward to seeing you all at future meetings in this great new space!

The Committee

All change!

Two major upheavals in the NDC universe took place at the end of 2018. First, Brick announced in December that he would be stepping down as the principal organiser of NDC due to health issues and family commitments. Around the same time, the Nottingham Writers’ Studio, our home for meetings since the beginning in 2016, announced that they would not be able to renew their lease on the building at 25 Hockley due to a proposed rent increase. The building is now being run by Carousel as a DIY art space with space to rent either as studios (one of which has been taken by the Writers’ Studio) or for events. Unfortunately at present NDC, as an organisation run entirely by volunteers and dependent on donations, cannot afford their costs for event-space.

Regulars will have noticed that our meeting-locations have been dotting around a bit this year, with the next one in April taking place at City Arts, a few yards from Carousel (see Upcoming). We are currently in negotiations about a new regular home and hope to have news on this soon.


On the organisation front, a number of people have come forward to form a new organising committee to take some of the burden off Brick’s shoulders. If you’re interested in helping out, in however small a way, just let us know!

Hope to see as many as possible of you at City Arts on 16th April.