Monday, 7 October 2013

Drawing Some Fun

Comix Bubble on the left is Comix Home Base's official mascot
Last week YTSL and I had dinner at Tai Hing in Wan Chai and we ordered the five-spice chicken (leftovers the next day), broccoli and rice made in individual clay pot bowls.

Afterwards there was a sprinkling of rain and we wandered to the nearby Comix Home Base on Burrows and Mallory streets. It is located in a series of pre-war tenement shop houses built around 1910.

Comix Home Base is located in renovated shop houses
Now they are reworked, keeping most of the facade and the structural beams and integrated with modern architectural elements to create new spaces which is fantastic. The shop houses are connected by steel walkways and the way it's designed encourages visitors to walk through every floor (when you start from the top).

One would have thought since Hong Kong is a place that loves comics so much that there would already be some kind of comics museum -- but this is the first one opened in July, a joint project between Hong Kong Arts Centre and Urban Renewal Authority.

It is hoped that Comix Home Base will be the centre for people in the industry to connect and also for fans to have a place to share their interest, as there's even a comic book reading room that also acts as a good resource.

Currently on display is "Tribute to Masters Series: The Birth of a Hero -- Exhibition of Ma Wing-shing's Comics Works". Ma is considered one of Hong Kong's best comics artists and is best known for his Storm Riders and Chinese Hero series. I don't know much about them, but know that Ekin Cheng and Aaron Kwok starred in the movie version of Storm Riders, with the flowing locks and determined look on their faces.

Ma Wing-shing's fluid ink drawing is like a work of art
We got to see draft story boards of Ma's comics as well as concept drawings that are practically works of art on their own. His deft use of ink and brush show he's not just a comic book artist.

There were also many small working models of the various characters he has created as well as a series of weapons -- swords that one wouldn't want to be impaled with...

At the end there's a small room where visitors can make their own drawings, and there were some fantastic ones pinned up on the wall, proving Hong Kongers are very much into comics. There were also some stamps people could use too for fun.

The interior of Comix Home Base
However we arrived at Comix Home Base late and there was only 15 minutes left when a staff member encouraged me to draw something. I said that there were only 15 minutes left and I couldn't think of anything to draw since there was such a short time left!

Nevertheless this is a cool new place to take out-of-town guests, and comics fans to show some local culture. We particularly love the mascot, Comix Bubble, a black bubble character made from ink with a few drips behind him. Hopefully we'll see him star in a few things too!

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