Kendal, 8th March 2016: The Lakes International Comic Art Festival is delighted to announce its first major British guest for the 2016 Festival weekend is Mick McMahon. Perhaps best known for his work for the top weekly SF comic 2000AD, Mick’s credits also include The Last American and Batman Black and White.
Mick McMahon, whose highly-regarded work has influenced many comic artists, became a regular contributor to 2000AD starting with Prog Two in 1977. He drew several characters for the comic, most notably Judge Dredd (including his first published appearance), Slaine and theABC Warriors.
While most of his comics work was for 2000AD, he also drew the memorable, much-praised two-part “Junkyard Demon” strip for what was then known as Doctor Who Monthly in 1981 (a strip written by Steve Parkhouse) – and one issue of DC Thomson’s Starblazer, “Jaws of Death”, published in 1982.
Mick sought pastures new in the mid-1980s. His most notable work during that period is The Last American, written with aplomb by John Wagner and Alan Grant, collected by Com.X, “probably my only work that troubled the scorers during my brief flirtations with Marvel Comics and DC Comics”, he says. “Although I did enjoy my work on Alien Legion and Batman Black and White, the latter being my only foray into writing (performed under the benevolent eye of David Gibbons.”
Mick’s favourite strip out of all his comics work is the relatively obscure “Decap Attack” in the British weekly Sonic the Comic, scripted by Nigel Kitching and Richard Piers Rayner. (Mick also drew several covers for the title).
He is currently working on Kestrels, an upcoming series of graphic novels in collaboration with Ben Dickson.
Down the years, Mick has also dabbled in designing for films and video games, and for a few years he had what he calls several ‘proper’ jobs, working in game studios.
“I’ve been to Cumbria a couple of times a year for quite a while now, and I am looking forward to being up there and having someone else telling me where to go and what to do when I get there,” he says, “although I’m sure I’ll manage the bar bit without any guidance…”
Commenting on the announcement, Festival Director Julie Tait said: “We’re thrilled Mick is joining us in October 2016. His work is hugely popular with both artists and fans, and he’s been a major influence on many creators – some past and future guests of the Festival. We’re looking forward to making Mick welcome in Kendal.”
About The Lakes International Comic Art Festival
The fourth Lakes International Comic Art Festival will run from 14-16 October 2016 in Kendal, Cumbria, celebrating great comic art from across the world. It is the only one of its kind in the UK taking over the whole town of Kendal, on the edge of the Lake District, for a weekend.
The festival features comic artists from around the world, including Joe Kelly and Benoit Peeters, as well as performance, film, exhibitions, comic trails, workshops, master classes, live drawing and independent retailers and publishers. The events programme is bursting with opportunities to get up close and personal with some of the leading comic artists and writers from across the world – see them draw, talk about their work and bring comics to life. A free family zone provides drop-in activities for all ages, alongside a series of fantastic workshops for kids and teenagers.
The Lakes International Comic Art Festival brings the town together for a weekend to celebrate the amazing world of comic art.
A promotional sketch for Mick McMahon’s Kestrels project, written by Ben Dickson
Vintage Dredd: Mick’s opening spread of the “banned” Judge Dredd episode from 2000AD Prog 72. The controversial episodes of the Dredd saga will finally be collected by 2000AD as Judge Dredd: The Cursed Earth Uncensored in July.
Judge Dredd by Mick McMahon
Vintage McMahon: a wraparound cover for 2000AD Prog 336 featuring Slaine
Modern McMahon: cover art for 2000AD Prog 1848 featuring Slaine
The Lakes International Comic Art Festival is the only one of its kind in the UK, taking place in one of the UK’s most beautiful areas – the English Lake District in the North West of the country, in the market town of Kendal. Modelled on European-style festivals, such as Angoulême in France, it takes over the whole town for a weekend of comic art. Its aim is to celebrate the whole spectrum of comic art, inspiring existing comic art fans and creators and, it hopes, generating new audiences and creators too. It invests in creators through a commissioning programme and has an emphasis on developing international collaborations.
The hugely successful 2014 Festival in Kendal featured a stellar cast of both British and international creators and a number of special exhibitions, and attracted thousands of fans young and old to the Lake District town.
The Festival’s dedicated organisers are determined to build on last year’s visitor numbers still further, reflecting their aim to deliver a truly European-style comics festival involving the whole of the local community and visitors in a truly unique comics experience.
Festival Sponsors and Benefactors
The Patrons of the Festival are comic creators Boulet, Sean Phillips, Bryan Talbot, Mary Talbot and Emma Vieceli, and Stephen L. Holland, owner of the award-winning independent comic shop Page 45 in Nottingham.