Info Bites: Speech Bubble & STGCC 2016

30 Aug

Phew, it’s that time of year again where I finally wipe off the dust of this musty blog with an update! September is rolling around soon and it’s shaping up to be a month long comic bonanza in Singapore!

Kicking off on the 2nd of September, Speech Bubble is a brand new event in the Singapore comics scene with a focus on comics produced and published in Singapore (and in South-East Asia to a lesser degree).



The Official Speech Bubble 2016 Poster

An initiative spearheaded by Sonny Liew with the aid of the National Library of Singapore, the event aims to engage people from all walks of life and foster their love for the comics medium through workshops, talks, and exhibitions carried out by the local comics community. Running throughout the month of September, their stellar lineup includes comic luminaries such as Drewscape (who will be talking about drawing non-Superhero comics) and Lefty (who will touch on the relevance of comics in today’s high-tech world), plus some practical panels (like this one about Financial Planning for Freelancers by Karen Tan) thrown into the mix.

Sadly I won’t be around on the weekend when Speech Bubble kicks off, but I’m hoping to at least attend one of the panels on the subsequent weekends. For a comprehensive list of talks and other happenings for Speech Bubble, do head down to their official website!


Next up, the annual Singapore Toys Games and Comics Convention will be happening on the 2nd weekend of September!


Singapore Toys Games and Comics Convention 2016

Taking place at the Marina Bay Sands Convention Halls once again, this year’s guests look promising to me, especially with the inclusion of Emma Rios and Hwei in the lineup! I have seen some people lamenting about the lack of more famous guests being invited to the event in some of the local comic groups I frequent online, but from my standpoint as a casual attendee (my main motivation to go is to support my friends who are boothing at the Artist Alley) the inclusion of Emma and Hwei are a welcome addition to the usual mix of Marvel and DC artists and writers.

Having said that, do drop by the Artist Alley to give the people at Global Beards (Booth AA88) some love…and pre-order their upcoming all-ages comic Yellow Princess: Attack on the Amber Citadel! Also a little birdie told me that Rex Regrets (Booth AA86) will finally be having its first ever hardcover book so do keep a lookout for that too (Rex will be right next to Global Beards)!

If you’re thinking about hanging about the main stage like me to listen to some of the talks, the stage schedule for both days can be found here.


That’s September in a nutshell for me (apart from my upcoming trip!), so till next update, see ya!

Comic Fiesta 2015: Books & Stuff To Throw Your Ringgits At!

15 Dec

Heya guys! As most of you comic lovers in the region should know, Comic Fiesta will be taking place in Malaysia next weekend on the 19th and 20th of December at a brand new location – The Mines International Exhibition and Convention Center (MIECC)!

The Comic Fiesta Committee has put up the event scheduleticketing queue layout, and booth maps on their Facebook page, so you can head there or their official website for all your queries! Someone even made a walking route guide from the closest KTM Train Station to the event hall (Props to Honou-no-Izumi for coming up with that)!

The main reason why I’m writing this blog post is to share with you the comic books and merchandise that I’ve managed to suss out from promo posts in the #comicfiesta hashtags across the social media landscape (a.k.a Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, and Instagram). This isn’t a complete list and is most definitely skewed towards my preferences, but since I’m doing this for myself I figured that I might as well spread the love! I’ve decided to focus more on comics, so there are significantly fewer merchandise and print promotions in this post.

One last note before we begin: I will only be listing the booth location for each of the artists/groups I’m including in this post, instead of pointing them out on the booth map. You can refer to the booth maps (Premium and Basic Booths) here.

Without further ado ladies and gents…my Comic Fiesta Shopping List.

Sarah Thorwing Money CF2014 gif

Time for you guys to shower the artists with love…or your moolah!
You can also find me at Booth G40 to throw money at me like this!
(Yes, that is me in the gif, courtesy of Sarah Coldheart)

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Panelgraph Editorial Meeting July 2015: Dragon riders + Gary Choo

26 Jul

I attended my first ‘official’ Panelgraph meeting yesterday.

Don’t get me wrong. I have been to a few Panelgraph gatherings before, usually held at the food court of Funan Digital Life Mall on weekday evenings, but this was the first time it’s at a pre-booked venue – the Programme Zone of the Toa Payoh Library *and* on a weekend.

Before I get ahead of myself, allow me to give you the lowdown on what Panelgraph is all about.

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Info Bites: STGCC 2014

30 Aug

The Singapore Toys, Games, and Comic Convention 2014


This post is a little late, considering that the Singapore Toys, Games, and Comic Convention (STGCC) 2014 is less than a week away, but I only decided to make a post for it a day or so ago after realising that there are more than a few things I’m looking forward to from the event this year. The biggest irony is that I won’t be able to attend the event this year as I’ll be back in Malaysia attending a friend’s wedding, but thankfully I still have my *ahem* girlfriend and our group of friends there to be my proxy shoppers!

I’ll only be highlighting the stuff I’m looking forward to personally, so this post will definitely come off as a little biased, but hey, I guess it’s kinda my task to get people excited about what I myself find exciting too, right? Now, onwards to the juicy bits!

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Review: Just So Happens

10 Aug

Every now and then, I happen to chance upon a book I’ve never heard or took notice of online before while browsing the bookshelves of brick-and-mortar shops. Just So Happens is one such book.

Just So Happens (Hardcover Cover)

It was the cover which caught my attention as I was walking by it. I’m not exactly sure how to describe it but it has a sort of understated elegance that I found very arresting, and the next thing I knew I was already at the counter making my payment for the book. Considering how I do most of my book shopping online nowadays, this should tell you exactly just how eager I was to dig into it.

I guess you could say that I judged this book by its cover and thankfully I was greatly rewarded.

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Info Bites: CAFKL!

25 May

It’s almost the middle of the year and what better way to commemorate this than a brand new comic event?

Coming to The Annexe Gallery real soon!

The Comic Arts Festival Kuala Lumpur, happening on 7th and 8th June at The Annexe Gallery,  is a newcomer in the arena of comic-related events in Malaysia, but it brings with it a new sensibility: A focus solely on illustration and comic art and their creators, without using other fringe events (*cough*cosplay*cough*) to draw in the crowds as other local comic events are wont to do. Modelled after international comic events such as the Angoulême Festival and Toronto Comics Arts Festival, this event has the potential to become the common ground for comic aficionados and creators from different genres to meet and mingle.

If you’ve never been to the Annexe Gallery before, you should probably grab this opportunity to give this Malaysian arts hub a visit as CAFKL seems to be the last event to be booked for that space before it’s being developed into something else (There are no details on what exactly it’s going to be developed into, but believe you me that it’s probably not going to be another space for the arts).

The Comic Arts Festival Kuala Lumpur currently shares most of its updates on its official Facebook page and Twitter, though I am told that an official website is forthcoming. If you’re interested in attending CAFKL, do prepare an extra RM10 on top of your shopping budget for an entry ‘passport’ which entitles you to freely access the event hall for both days. Though there isn’t much information to go on online regarding the booth layouts and exhibitors for the event for now,  a little birdy has informed me that comic workshops will be hosted by some seasoned veterans, so keep a look out for the official announcement!

P/S: As I will be having a booth at the event, I have already gotten a preview of sorts for booth layout and exhibiting booths and let me tell you, it’s definitely an eclectic mix!

Starting The Year Right: Meeting with Zen Pencils

22 Jan

Hello everyone! We’re almost at the tail end of January so I figured it was about time to kickstart Indiedoodle for the new year!

 photo ZenPencils.jpgOmmmmmm….nomnom.

Earlier this month (actually, on the 2nd day of the New Year to be more specific) I had the honour of meeting the creator of the wildly popular Zen Pencils webcomic, Gavin Aung Than, when he stopped by Singapore for a short visit and hosted a Meet and Greet Session with fans. The session was held at a relatively new cafe named Wheeler’s Yard, which took me and my friends quite a while to get to.

 photo ZenPencils3.jpgWheeler’s Yard, a new cafe-cum-fixed-gear-bicycle-shop. Yes, I know, it’s a very hipsterish place.

In a nutshell, the Meet and Greet Session was awesome. I had the opportunity to pass Gavin some of my zines before he started his session and he is a really nice and down to earth person (I’ll elaborate on this later). I initially thought of doing an interview with him, but I decided that it wasn’t very wise to deprive the many fans there of his time. Also, lets face it, I’d be hard pressed to find a fresh perspective based on all the various interviews he’s done before.

 photo ZenPencils4.jpgGavin Aung Than, Man of the Hour, chatting with his audience.

Still, all is not lost even though I didn’t take notes or record anything, because here’s what I remember from that night off the top of my head:

– Gavin quit his job at a rather big Advertising Agency to kickstart Zen Pencils, a risk he was willing to take because he felt that the time was right. He had been gearing up for something like this for quite a while (drawing comics on the side), so it wasn’t a spontaneous decision.

– He had the support from his family and friends (Side note: surprise surprise, his wife is Singaporean!).

– His inspiration for making comics from quotes (and I’m paraphrasing here) stemmed from his initial annoyance with the tackiness of ‘Inspirational Powerpoint Presentations’ (you know, those with beautiful scenery and/or animals/people behaving intimately with quotes plastered all over them) and he thought ‘Hey, I can make something better and more tasteful out of those quotes!’. And he did.

– When asked why did he use some recurring characters in the quotes he has adapted thus far, he said that he doesn’t consciously make plans for story arcs for those characters as he’s drawing a certain strip. Instead, he summons those characters again when he stumbles upon new and fitting quotes that he considers suitable to continue telling that particular character’s story.

 photo ZenPencils5.jpgA view of the interior of Wheeler’s Yard from where I was sitting. The turnout was pretty solid as the place was packed by the time Gavin started!

Honestly, it’s hard to believe that Zen Pencils has only been around for slightly more than 2 years now, if the fanfare is anything to go by. I find it heartening to see people like Gavin working on comics which broach a different subject matter, as it draws a more diverse crowd to comics, and who knows where these readers might progress from here.

Remember that I said that Gavin is a really nice guy at the start? Here’s why: After the end of his talk and Q&A session, he stayed and signed anything and everything the fans at the venue wanted (from iPads to sketchbooks, including the free stickers and mini prints he brought and handed out generously), and even took the time to pose with each and every one of them for a photo. I’m not exaggerating, he really did. With every. Single. Person. In. Line. All this despite having already mingled with most of them even before the event started and still recovering from his travelling fatigue.

 photo ZenPencils2.jpgZen Pencils’s Buddha Quote poster for sale at 20 SGD a pop, and free postcards and stickers!

My first encounter with a Zen Pencils comic was on tumblr, and it was Alan Watts’s quote adaptation, ‘What If Money Was No Object?’. From there I was directed to the Zen Pencils website, and I’ve been a loyal follower ever since. I always find Zen Pencils’s comics a joy to read, especially on days when I am feeling down and need an encouraging word or two.

Naturally I chose to wait until the very end during the signing session to get a postcard and my patience was rewarded!

 photo ZenPencils6.jpgWise words indeed.

If, like myself, you crave a more tangible form of the Zen Pencils comics, fret not. There will be a Zen Pencils compilation published by Andrews McMeel, coming out sometime later in 2014, so keep your eyes peels for it at your local bookstores!

On a more Indiedoodle-related note, I intend to post an update at least once a month this year, so wish me luck.

Have a great year ahead, and an early Happy Chinese New Year to those of you who celebrate it!

P/S: Photos courtesy of the wonderful Joelyn Alexandra! Except, you know, the very last one.

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