Among the contributors will be: graphic novelist Marjane Satrapi, creator of Persepolis, a politicised graphic novel set in Iran, which has sold more than 1.5 million copies; Pat Mills, creator of 2000AD; Bryan Talbot, the creator of The Adventures of Luther Arkwright; and illustrators Warren Pleece and Lee O’Connor.
One comic strip will see musician and comic book writer Dev Hynes, who records under the pseudonym Lightspeed Champion, put forward a script for the competition-winning illustrator to design.
Entrants are asked to submit illustrations through www.ctrlaltshift.co.uk/unmaskcorruption, by 25 September. Five shortlisted illustrators will then be given a brief by Hynes to respond to.
Paul Gravett, founder of comic festival Comica, is one of the judges. ‘We’re looking for someone who can really communicate through their drawing,’ he says. ‘There’s no set medium – Manga, traditional or mainstream [are all acceptable]. Comics are a complex language. Beyond the drawing, they need to think about symbols, layout choices, sound effects and how to construct sophisticated meanings.’
Advising entrants, Hynes adds, ‘For the story I’m writing, I’m trying to create something with a universal message which can be adapted in many ways. But part of what is truly wonderful about comics is that it’s not TV, it’s not film and there’s no budget. Your imagination can run wild – so let it, and have fun.’