PORTLAOISE became ‘geek’ heaven as comic book fans from all over the country descended on the annual Celtic Con convention.
Artists, illustrators, creators, publishers and fans arrived for one of Ireland’s biggest comic book gatherings, with attractions that included a geek market, a comic village, an artist alley, craft stalls, display vehicles, a gaming zone, costume characters and an exhibition area.
Organised by Martin Moore of Celtic Comics in Portlaoise, the 2018 midlands comic convention was extra special, as it coincided with the Old Fort Quarter Festival that brought huge crowds onto the streets in glorious sunshine.
Martin thanked everyone who made the event such a success, particularly all the crafters, vendors, visitors, artists and host venue O’Loughlins Hotel.
The convention featured the launch of The Bog Road by former Portarlington resident Barry Keegan, with vibrant illustrations that include local landmarks such as Emo Court, the Rock of Dunamase and the Slieve Blooms.
The comic, about the struggles between a bog creature and the people of Portarlington, was published by Dublin-based company Atomic Diner. The book received a grant from Laois arts office as part of the Creative Ireland project, with the support of arts officer Muireann Ní Chonaill and heritage officer Catherine Casey.
Meanwhile, the popular Savage Town exhibition has been extended until the end of July at Dunamaise Arts Centre, featuring artwork by Declan Shalvey and Philip Barrett, in association with Celtic Comics.