Thought Bubble 2017 runs 18th – 24th September!


Thought Bubble Spring Round-Up

Hey gang!

We’re currently busy at work finalising this year’s floor plans for our convention, and cracking on with prepping our jam-packed festival programme ready for launch in the summer, so in the meantime we wanted to put together a handy-dandy summary of everything Bubbly we’ve announced so far this year…

 

Convention Tickets!

This year’s convention will be taking place on the 23rd and 24th September in the heart of Leeds City Centre, and tickets for our festival’s flagship event are on sale now!

This year we have free entry for under-12s and over-65s, and complimentary tickets available for carers attending with disabled visitors to the convention.

We also have discounts available for costumed attendees wishing to pre-book tickets, and have updated our cosplay guidelines for 2017, more information on which can be found below.

For full information on convention tickets, including prices and how to book, please click here.

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Cosplay at Thought Bubble 2017!

Our cosplay programme for 2017 is going to be bigger and better than ever, and we’re delighted to be welcoming special guests The 86th Floor to the show this year!

We’ve got some great discounts available for our cosplaying attendees for this year’s convention, and we’ll have full information on this year’s masquerade coming in the summer with the festival’s full programme.

We’ve updated our cosplay guidelines over on the website, so if you’ll be coming to our events in costume this year, please give them a read before September comes around, to make sure everyone’s visit with us runs as smoothly as possible.

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Friends of Thought Bubble!

The heart of Thought Bubble, and one of the most fun and rewarding aspects of the festival’s growth over the last decade, has been our community outreach programme.

As part of our work supporting the medium of comics each year, we run free schools workshops, give away hundreds of free comics to those who might not otherwise have access to them, work with Leeds Libraries on the Young People’s Book Awards, design quiet spaces like Bub’s Lounge at our convention for people with anxiety issues and autism, run our Rainbow Age LGBTQ* reading events, and work with local groups like the Bradford Action for Refugees centre and Leeds Specialist Autism Services.

Our work within the community lets us connect with young people and adults across Yorkshire, and as we head into our second decade, we’d like to expand that programme as much as possible. In order to help with this, we’ve launched our Friends of Thought Bubble initiative, which will part-fund the work we do in the community, and let us continue and grow our educational and outreach programme.

We’ve full information on the initiative, and what it entails, on our website, and there’s a number of great perks available for becoming a Friend of Thought Bubble, and supporting comics education, as well as the option to simply donate a small amount if it’s a cause that’s close to your heart without subscribing to the full programme.

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Thought Bubble Comic Art Competition 2017!

The 8th Thought Bubble Comic Art Competition, a prize open to artists and writers worldwide, taking place as part of the 11th Thought Bubble Sequential Arts Festival – and in association with Travelling Man and Diamond Comics – is now open to entries!

Split into two age groups with a category for young people aged 12 -17 and a second category for adults aged 18 and over, the competition seeks to discover new creative talent as well as new work from established writers and artists. Winners from each category will be showcased in 2018’s Thought Bubble anthology with Image Comics, as well as some excellent comics goodies.

This year’s competition closes 5pm on Friday 28th July 2017, and we’re looking for an A3, portrait aspect page, telling a single story using a minimum of 6 panels. Pages will need a 3mm bleed, with CMYK colours at 300dpi.

For full competition guidelines, and information on how to enter, including submission forms, please click here.

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Comics Forum 2017!

This year’s Comics Forum academic conference will be taking place on the 21st and 22nd September, at Leeds Central Library, as part of Thought Bubble.

2017’s Forum will be focused on the concept of space in comics, and the call for papers is now open, with proposals of 250 words invited for talks of up to 20 minutes in length.

The deadline for submissions is the 1st of July 2017, and you will receive notification of acceptance by the 14th of July. Please click here for the full call for papers, and information on how to submit your proposal for the conference.

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Thought Bubble 2017 hotel!

We are very pleased to once again have Leeds’ Radisson Blu as 2017’s official hotel partner for Thought Bubble.

The Radisson Blu is situated in The Light – a 6 minute walk from Leeds Railway Station, at 1 The Light, The Headrow, Leeds LS1 8TL, and is adjacent to this year’s convention site.

More information on the hotel can be found on our website.

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Thought Bubble 2016 panel videos!

If you’re as excited as we are for this year’s festival and want to get into the Bubble mood, then we’ve got some great Bubscast panel videos from 2016’s convention for your viewing pleasure!

If you missed out on these talks at last year’s convention, or just want to experience them again, we’ve got a selection of panels and Q&As up on our YouTube channel now (along with lots of archives from past Bubbles) for you to enjoy.

A special thank you to all our hosts, and panel speakers, and to Green Light Video for producing and editing the footage.

Also from last year’s convention – our recent art auction of original pieces created as part of our sketching spotlight events raised a whopping £967.99p for Barnardo’s!

We’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who bid and helped spread the word, and if you’d like to see some sketching spotlights from previous year’s festivals then we’ve got some video archives available on the links above.

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Guests at Thought Bubble 2017!

We’ve been updating the guest list diligently on a regular basis and currently have over 70 guest creators confirmed as attending this year’s festival!

The current roster is up online to view, and we’ll be continuing to update it as folks confirm their attendance with us, so be sure to check back regularly.

We’ll have full exhibitor lists for our (biggest ever) convention coming soon over on our website, along with floor plans and signing times for those attendees who have them, and we’ll announce on our social media (and this blog) once they’re available to view!

That’s it for now – we’ll be back soon with some more festival updates as we work towards September and our first festival in our new home in Leeds City Centre!

Don’t forget that we have a number of FAQs up on our website to help out those who haven’t visited us before, and you can find us online and posting regularly about what we’re working on at:

Facebook

Instagram

Twitter

So be sure to say hi, and let us know if you’ll be joining us for 2017’s Thought Bubble!



Thought Bubble Charity Art Auction 2017

Hey gang!

Last year, as part of Thought Bubble 2016′s convention, we ran our regular Sketching Spotlight event, where 8 brilliant artists came up on stage and discussed their approach to illustrating comics with Peter Doherty, while also drawing live for our excellent audience.

Because comic artists are a lovely bunch of human beans, they all agreed to let us auction off the sketches they produced, and donate all the proceeds to The Barnardo’s Charity.

We’d like to take this opportunity to say a massive thank you to all those wonderful people who took part for their time and generosity, and (with your help) we hope to be able to raise a lot of money for a great cause.

You can see a preview of all the pieces below (click to embiggen), with full details of the sketches underneath, as well as a link to the individual items’ listing pages.

For archival videos of previous years’ Sketching Spotlights, please visit our YouTube channel.

The auction will take place on eBay and will run for 10 days from 11am Friday 28th April, with bidding/delivery open to fans worldwide. We’d really appreciate it if as many as you could spread the word as possible, so we can raise a whole bunch of money for a good cause, and find some new homes for some amazin artwork!

(100% of proceeds from each auction (excluding P&P) will be donated to the Barnardo’s charity all artwork is A4 in size, full information available on individual item listing pages below, live from 11am – Friday 28th April 2017, or can be viewed at  http://myworld.ebay.co.uk/thoughtbubblefestival worldwide shipping is available)

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TB2016sketchpanel-Mahmud

Artwork by Mahmud Asrar, pencils and ink on paper, November 2016.

Please click here to visit item auction listing page.


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Artwork by Philip Bond, pencils and ink on paper, November 2016

Please click here to visit item auction listing page.


Click to enlarge.

Artwork by Warwick Johnson Cadwell, pencils and ink on paper, November 2016.

Auctioned as batch. Includes preliminary sketch for each piece – 4 pages A4 total.

Please click here to visit items’ auction listing page.


TB2016sketchpanel-JonathonEdwards

Artwork by Jonathan Edwards, pencils and ink on paper, November 2016.

Please click here to visit item auction listing page.


Click to enlarge.

Artwork by Stephanie Hans, pencil and inks on paper, November 2016.

Auctioned as a pair – 2 pages A4 total.

Please click here to visit items’ auction listing page.


Click to enlarge.

Artwork by Erica Henderson, pencils and inks on paper, November 2016.

Auctioned as a pair – 2 pages A4 total.

Please click here to visit items’ auction listing page.


TB2016sketchpanel-FaithErinHicks

Artwork by Faith Erin Hicks, pencil and ink on paper, November 2016.

Please click here to visit item auction listing page.


TB2016sketchpanel-MikeMignola

Artwork by Mike Mignola, pencils and ink on paper, November 2016.

Please click here to visit item auction listing page.

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Our special thanks to go out to Peter Doherty for all his help and for hosting the Sketching Spotlights, and to Jip and all our technical volunteers for making these sessions possible, as well as the wonderful audiences who attended on the day!



Convention Tickets 2017

Hey gang!

Following our launch post earlier this week for our Friends of Thought Bubble initiative, we’re very pleased to announce that tickets for our convention, which this year takes place on the 23rd and 24th September, in the heart of Leeds city centre, are now on sale!

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We have full information on the costs and types of passes available on our website, and have also updated our cosplay information and guidelines for 2017, for those wishing to attend the event in costume, and join in with our expanded cosplay programme!

As with previous years, we have free entry to the event for under-12s and over-65s, and complimentary tickets available for carers attending with disabled visitors to the convention. For full information on these, including how to book, please visit our website.

Convention tickets will grant full access to the various convention halls, signing events, and our programme of panels and live-events taking place across the weekend. We’ll have full venue and scheduling information coming as part of the full festival programme later this summer.

Tickets for this year’s mid-con party will be going on sale later in the year, and we’ll provide full details for this as soon as possible, via this blog, and our Twitter and Facebook feeds.

Thought Bubble remains a not-for-profit organisation, and your support of the festival through convention tickets, exhibitor tables, and now also becoming a Friend of Thought Bubble is invaluable to us. We’d like to say a massive thank you to everyone who attends every year, and if you’re going to be joining us for the first time in 2017 we look forward to welcoming you to Leeds, and will have an updated visitor’s guide going up online soon!

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Friends of Thought Bubble

Hey gang!

We’ll be coming at you later this week with a big post containing info on tickets for this year’s convention going on sale, but before that we just wanted to let you know about our new Friends of Thought Bubble programme, supporting our community outreach and educational events.

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For the past decade, we’ve been growing as an organisation, coming up from our humble roots as a one-day convention, through to a fully-fledged not-for-profit comics festival, and one of the most fun and rewarding aspects of this has been our community outreach programme.

As well as our centrepiece convention each year, and our wider programme of signings and exhibitions, we run a number of free schools workshops, our book crossing programme that gives away hundreds of free comics to those who might not otherwise have access to them, work with Leeds Libraries on the Young People’s Book Awards, design quiet spaces like Bub’s Lounge at our convention for people with anxiety issues and autism, run our Rainbow Age LGBTQ* reading events, and work with local groups like the Bradford Action for Refugees centre and Leeds Specialist Autism Services.

Our work within the community lets us connect with young people and adults across Yorkshire, and use comics as a force for good, as well as bringing the medium into schools as a learning tool. As we head into our second decade, we’d like to expand that programme as much as possible. In order to help with this, we’re launching our Friends of Thought Bubble initiative, which will part-fund the work we do in the community, and let us continue and grow our educational and outreach programme.

We’ve full information on the initiative, and what it entails, on our website, and there’s a number of great perks available for becoming a Friend of Thought Bubble, and supporting comics education, as well as the option to simply donate a small amount if it’s a cause that’s close to your heart without subscribing to the full programme.

We’d really appreciate your help spreading the word about this on social media, or to anyone you think would be interested, and we’d like to say a massive thank you to everyone who has helped support Thought Bubble in the past, and let us do some amazing work in our local community!

Thanks again, and we’ll be back soon with information on booking tickets for this year’s convention!



Thought Bubble 2016 – Panel Videos

Hey gang!

A little update here coming out of last year’s Festival, as we’ve got some great panel videos from 2016’s convention for your viewing pleasure. If you missed out on these talks, or just want to experience them again, we’ve got a selection of panels and Q&As up on our YouTube channel now (along with lots of archives from past Bubbles), with full details for each video below. Enjoy!

A special thank you to all our hosts, and panel speakers, and to Green Light Video for producing and editing the footage.

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CREATING WORLDS took place on Sunday 6th November – a fascinating panel talk on the reality of inventing worlds for creator owned projects, as well as inhabiting those of comics’ hottest licensed properties.

With speakers Cecil Castellucci, Becky Cloonan, Jeff Lemire, Simon Roy, and Cameron Stewart.

Hosted by Steve Morris.

 


 

COMICS IN CONVERSATION WITH MIKE MIGNOLA took place on Saturday 5th November – where Mike Mignola, the award-winning creator of Hellboy (and its spin-off titles BPRD, Lobster Johnson, Abe Sapien, and Witchfinder) and The Amazing Screw-On Head, discussed his career with journalist and PR-Coordinator for Rebellion Mike Molcher.

 


 

I IS FOR INNOVATION took place on Saturday 5th November – a wide-ranging discussion about creative freedom in the new age of comics independence and the panelists’ exciting new projects at Image Comics.

With speakers Brenden Fletcher, Kieron Gillen, Jeff Lemire, Emi Lenox, Declan Shalvey, Cameron Stewart, and Babs Tarr.

Hosted by Publisher of Image Comics, Eric Stephenson.

 


 

2000 AD WRITING COMPETITION 2016 took place on Saturday 5th November – writers were invited to pitch their ideas for a brand new Future Shock to a panel of top script droids – but they have just two minutes to make their case!

With judges Al Ewing, Leah Moore, and Matt Smith.

Hosted by PR-Coordinator for Rebellion Mike Molcher.

 


 

GOSH! COMICS PRESENTS THE BEST THING I’VE READ ALL YEAR took place on Saturday 5th November – helping to discover the hidden gems and best of the year’s comics that you should be reading.

With speakers Hannah Chapman, Sarah Graley, Claire Napier, and Andy Oliver.

Hosted by Tom Oldham of Gosh! Comics / Breakdown Press.

 


 

DECOMPRESSED: THE WICKED + THE DIVINE took place on Sunday 6th November – a panel featuring Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, Stephanie Hans, Kevin Wada and Dee Cunniffe talking about how they create really, really, really ridiculously good looking comics.


 

Thanks again to all our panelists, hosts, and to the audiences who attended the events – we’ll be adding to the YouTube playlist with videos from last year’s events, and updating this post, as they become available!



TB2017 – Exhibitor Registration

Hello!

Table registration for this year’s Thought Bubble convention is now open, and we wanted to put up some more information on the curation process, and how that will work for this year’s show, which takes place 23rd and 24th September.

2017’s convention will be taking place in Leeds City Centre, and a map of the area of the city we’ll be taking over to spread the good word of comics can be seen below, with convention exhibition spaces marked on it. We’ve also got a google map of this area of the city, which can be found here.

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A large version of this map can be found here.

This year’s Thought Bubble convention will have four exhibition spaces, as seen above: Leeds Town Hall’s Victoria Hall, and three custom-built venues on Victoria Square (in front of Leeds Town Hall), Millenium Square, and Cookridge Street (in front of Radisson Blu Hotel / The Light), with surrounding venues hosting panels and live events taking place across the weekend.

We remain committed to being as inclusive a show as possible, and it’s one of the core values that makes the convention, and the festival as a whole, what it is. While we’d like to be able to include everyone who may wish to exhibit at the show, Thought Bubble has now reached the stage where the demand for exhibition space exceeds the venue space available to us, and the convention is curated.

As with previous years, this involves a simple online registration form which is now live on the website, and will remain open for two weeks until midnight on Sunday 29th January. In order that this process remains as fair as possible, after this time we won’t be able to accept any more exhibitor applications (including to the reserves list).

The registration form contains full terms and conditions of exhibiting, which can also be found on our website here, so please take the time to read these fully before submitting your application, and if you have any queries during the process, just drop us an email. Remember that all applications received during the window will be considered in full, so there’s no need to rush your entry.

Following the close of the registration window, we’ll contact all those who applied by mid-February to confirm whether we’ll be able to accommodate them this year, and also to take payment for the table – and any changes to this schedule will be communicated ahead of time. If your email address, or primary contact reference, changes at any point during this time, please let us know as soon as possible.

Because of this curation, and the nature of the festival as a forum to promote comics and those who make them, we need to give priority to comic book publishers and retailers, and comic book artists and writers (either independent or publisher-affiliated). If you have exhibited with us in the past and do not fit into this category, please do still fill in the online form once it goes live, as we would love you to come if we do have room in one of our exhibition spaces.

Every year, we also have a small number of people who book tables and are then unable to attend, and so we’ll form a reserves list of unsuccessful applicants who will be offered tables should they become available. As these offers are based on previously confirmed exhibitors cancelling, we are unable to advise on the date at which they will become available, but as soon as we receive a cancellation we’ll contact the next person/group on the reserves list with first refusal.

The decision on who we can accept to the convention will be made by the organisational team as a whole, to ensure the process remains as fair as possible, but due to the number of applications we receive, we’re unfortunately not able to give feedback to unsuccessful exhibitors, as we’re only a small team. However, to give an idea of what we’re looking for, we’d like to see:

  •  Examples of your work, ideally online versions (including webcomics)/e-shop listings of comics/graphic novels/prints/illustrations you’ll have for sale at the show;
  •  If the above is unavailable, then a portfolio website such as DeviantArt or Tumblr will also be suitable;
  •  If your work is mostly print, as opposed to online, then we’d also be able to view scanned versions of documents via dropbox links (or similar);
  •  If you’re a creator with no online examples of your work, then please link to/provide a bibliography/list of credits if none of the options above are possible;
  •  If you’re a retailer with no formal online presence, then please give as full an idea as possible as to the range of merchandise/titles you’d be bringing to the convention;
  •  If in doubt shout it out – tell us about what you think you can bring to Thought Bubble, even if it may seem obvious to you; if it’s not immediately apparent on the information you provide to us we may not know about it, and we don’t want anyone to miss out;
  • Similarly, if you’d like to table next to/near other specific exhibitors please let us know – after curation closes and table plans are drafted it becomes very difficult to move people around, so please make sure to be specific if you’d like to be close to someone at the show;
  • Thought Bubble also loves sharing – we’re more than happy for exhibitors to share table space, so if you’d like to exhibit with friends or as a collective then please do send us a combined application;
  • Finally, and perhaps most importantly, when filling out the application form, take your time – you’ve got two weeks to complete the form, and all applications received in that window are considered fully after the close of the registration period before a final decision is made, so make sure to fill it in correctly and with as much detail as possible to the answers.

Full details as to pricing, along with full tabling terms and conditions, are live on the website now along with the registration form, and the terms and conditions will remain in place for reference until after this year’s events. Please do make sure to read these carefully, as they contain very important information about attending the convention, should your application be successful.

We’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who supports Thought Bubble, and we look forward to seeing many of you this September!



Thought Bubble 2017 – January Update!

Hey gang!

We hope you’ve had a nice festive break, and an enjoyable start to the new year – we’ve been cracking on with planning for this year’s Thought Bubble events, and we’ve got our first wave of updates below, including important information for people wanting to apply to exhibit at this year’s convention.

Our website has undergone its yearly regeneration, and you can probably spot part of our brand new festival image at the top of this very blog! 2017’s image has been created for us by the brilliant Jen Bartel, and is helping us spring into action after a short winter break. You’ll be able to see the image below popping up on all our online media, and later this year once our posters and billboards start appearing all over the country!

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We’ll be updating the website throughout the year as we confirm details for this year’s events, so be sure to check it regularly – and any time we have important information about the festival we’ll pop it up on here and our Twitter and Facebook accounts too, so however you like to get your bubbly news there’s an option for you.

As mentioned last month, this year’s Thought Bubble is moving to Leeds city centre, and in the calendar to September, in order to give us more space to work with for our events, and a wider range of partners to help the festival grow.

We’re excited for this new incarnation of our convention, which will be taking place on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th September, and we’ll be opening exhibitor table applications for the event on Monday 16th January. Exhibitor applications for the convention will be open for 2 weeks, until midnight (GMT) on Sunday 29th January, and we’ll be aiming to let people know if their application has been successful by mid-February.

We’ll have another blog post coming on Monday with full information on how to apply, and the curation process, if you’ve never attended Thought Bubble as an exhibitor before, as well as providing more information on the new convention village we’ll have in place this year. Don’t forget that this is a curated process, not first-come first-served, so there’s no need to rush your application when the system goes live.

Finally, following on from our exciting announcement that 2017’s first festival guest of honour will be Gerard Way, we’re delighted to present our next wave of guests for this year’s Thought Bubble! We’ll be updating our guest list throughout the year, but early confirmations include:

Charlie Adlard (The Walking Dead, Astronauts In Trouble)

Cecil Castellucci (Shade the Changing Girl, Soupy Leaves Home)

Jody Houser (Mother Panic, Rogue One)

Joëlle Jones (Lady Killer, Superman: American Alien)

James Stokoe (Orc Stain, Godzilla: The Half-Century War)

Marley Zarcone (Shade The Changing Girl, Effigy)