Four interesting, fun, HOT days in Toronto and two days back in Welland and finally settled back to normal.
So, you wanna hear how things went?
The Graphic Medicine Conference was very interesting. It was a departure from my regular sphere of comic strip cartooning. And even though the majority of presentations were dealing with serious health issues, I found the presentations to very uplifting. I think it's wonderful that cartoons are getting some attention and recognition in non-traditional areas. There is both a simplicity and depth in a cartoon that makes it an effective tool in presenting an emotion, a point of view or an explanation. As a cartoonist, it was exciting to see that there are many, many opportunities out there.
On a more personal note, the social aspect of my four days in Toronto was even better than the conference itself. First of all, it was wonderful to meet the women I have been emailing with for several months during the planning of our Graphic Medicine Conference panel...and also the organization of the Laydeez do Comics event at the Arts and Letters Club. It was such a pleasure to finally meet Nicola Streeten, Roz Penfold and Lesley Fairfield and to see Sarah Lightman again.
I also got to meet Brian Fies, the talented creator of Mom's Cancer and Whatever Happened to the World of Tomorrow and of course, the blogger of one of my daily morning pitstops, the Fies Files. Also, I was very happy to meet and have lunch with the very charming Paul Gravett. I even had the pleasure of meeting Warren Clemments of the Globe and Mail who used to create the comic strip, The Nestlings. And it was fun to see my usual cartoon buddies, Paul Gilligan, Rina Piccolo, Jonathan Mahood, Mike Cope and Patricia Storms.
An added bonus to the trip was sharing my hotel room with one of long-time friends who came with me in order to spend some time with her daughter who's working in Toronto for the summer. It was fun to spend some time with her, although most of it was in passing. I did manage to get her out to the Laydeez do Comics night though. I think she's probably pretty comic-talked out by now as I blathered on every evening in our room about all the comics-related stuff of my day.
As usual, I didn't take any photos...but here are few some friends have sent to me...
Mike Cope, president of the Canadian Chapter of the NCS (freelance cartoonist and cartoon workshop teacher), moi, Patricia Storms (childrens book author and illustrator, Brian Fies (see above) and Jonathan Mahood. (creator of comic strip Bleeker)
My presentation, "Fertility, Domestic Abuse and Mammograms: Three Story Lines in the syndicated comic strip Between Friends" (I assured the audience my strip is usually funny...or at least I hope so! :) )
Now to get back to my usual cartooning reality...