University alumna organises Comics Festival inviting Salford guest Lecturer
A University of Salford alumna has been the driving force behind Burnley’s first ever Comics Festival.
BA Film Studies graduate, Holly Emmett, has organised a Comics Festival with guest Lyndon White, who teaches Sequential Arts at the University of Salford.
The two-day event was created by Holly, who graduated in 2019 and began working at Burnley Library as an apprentice. The Festival aims to showcase the accessible storytelling the library has to offer, as well as attracting new audiences who perhaps may not typically visit a library.
During her time at University, Holly met Lyndon, who is fittingly fresh from Comic-Con in London, a fan convention with a primary focus on comic books and comic book culture, and secured work with Image Comics (the third biggest U.S. comic publisher after Marvel and DC Comics). Lyndon will be leading the ‘Drawing Monsters and Magic: Illustration Workshop’ - a masterclass on learning how to draw mythical creatures, such as dragons. He will also be holding an exhibition on the process of comic bookmaking.
Holly says: “My time at University has provided me with industry contacts that I’m so grateful for, and the lecturers who have guided me, particularly through my dissertation, have been key to helping me find the right path.”
The Festival is integrated through the lens of visual storytelling, including interactive methods such as Lego building, and the ‘Level Up in the Library’ console gaming event, which is usually more accessible to neurodivergent communities.
Holly comments: “I hope the Comics Festival takes away the traditional library perspective, and that people realise they are a community space.”
Holly will be hosting an exhibition on ‘The History of Sequential Art’. It will highlight the journey that storytelling has taken, from the early newspapers to graphic novel franchises.
The Salford graduate said: “I wouldn't have the knowledge of the history of sequential art to be able to do the exhibition, if it wasn’t for the University of Salford. When I did the sequential module, it made me realise how much I like storytelling and literature, allowing me notice how much I wanted to work in a library.”
The Comics Festival will take place from 9:00 at Burnley Library, on Friday 16, and Saturday 17 June.
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