Kid’s News

Announcing TCAF KIDS DAY 2015! With Featured Guests Matt Holm & Jennifer Holm, poster art by GURIHIRU!

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival is proud to announce TCAF KIDS DAY 2015, which will see the addition of TCAF Featured Guests Matt Holm & Jenni Holm, and an exclusive promotional poster by Gurihiru!

Featuring some of the best and brightest kids-comic creators in the industry, TCAF KIDS DAY is a stand-alone event that takes place on Saturday, May 9th, from 10am to 4:30pm. It takes place just down the street from TCAF, about 10 minutes walk, at St. Paul’s on Bloor, 227 Bloor Street East. TCAF Kids Day is a great place to view large-format presentations by favourite TCAF Guests, and take part in crafts, activities, and storytimes, and purchase books from your favourite authors! Owlkids, Toronto Public Library, and Little Island Comics will be on hand all day to take part in the fun!

 

Welcoming Jenni Hom & Matt Holm! 

matthew-jennifer-holmWe’re thrilled to announce that Jenni Holm & Matt Holm, the amazing sister & brother team behind the bestselling Babymouse and Squish book series’ will be returning to TCAF to kick off our day with their popular presentation! Jenni and Matt last visited TCAF in 2012, and they were just so awesome we had to have them back! Our thanks to Penguin Random House Canada for supporting their trip!

Their presentation will be followed throughout the day by a who’s who of great kid, tween, and teen creators, including Kean Soo (Jellaby), Raina Telgemeier (Smile, Drama, Sisters) and Dave Roman (Astronaut Academy), George O’Connor (Zeus: King of the Gods), and all the way from Japan, Gurihiru (Avatar: The Last Airbender comics).

 

TCAF Kids Day Schedule:

10am-4:30pm: Event opens! Drop-in crafts, projects, and presentations all day!
10:30am-11:30am: Jenni Holm & Matt Holm present: Get Graphic with Babymouse & Squish!
11:45am-12:45pm: Kean Soo presents: Making Comics with Kean!
1pm-2:15pm: Raina Telgemeier & Dave Roman present: Comics Dance Party!
2:30pm-3:15pm: George O’Connor presents: Getting Mythological!
3:30pm-4:15pm: Gurihiru will be drawing and chatting, live!

 

TCAF Kids Day Poster by Gurihiru!

We have a special treat for everyone too! The amazing creative team Gurihiru (two awesome ladies from Japan, working under one name) have produced a special poster celebrating TCAF Kids Day programming, and really everything that’s fantastic about comic books! We are seriously blown away by this image, and we thank Gurihiru for doing such an amazing job on it! This image will be printed as a poster and made available for purchase at TCAF and TCAF Kids Day.

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Lots of great stuff for kids to do at TCAF, too!

As a reminder, TCAF Kids Day is a day full of great author events and activities, but it’s in ADDITION to the programming for kids, tweens, teens, and adults at TCAF proper. TCAF will still have a great kids area in Toronto Reference Library, and there will be programs for kids and families and about great kids comics throughout our programming. TCAF Kids Day is all about creating a dedicated, accessible, and cool space, but there’s lots more at the Festival for comics fans of all ages!

See you at TCAF!

 

 

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Announcing: Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop!

GREAT NEWS: THE TCAF SHOP
IS HERE TO STAY!

Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop now a permanent fixture at Toronto Reference Library.

 

Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop
789 Yonge Street, Toronto, Canada
(Inside Toronto Reference Library)
M-F: 10a-8:30p – Sa: 10a-5p – Su: 12p-5p
416-323-9212 – contact@tcafshop.com
www.tcafshop.com

PPlogo2MARCH 18, 2015: The Toronto Comic Arts Festival is thrilled to announce that its festival shop is here to stay for the foreseeable future! Located inside Toronto Reference Library at 789 Yonge Street, we’re pleased to announce that the shop has been newly rebranded as Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop (with a spiffy new logo design by illustrator Chip Zdarsky), and the store will continue bringing the very best of comics, graphic novels, art, design objects and book culture merchandise to Toronto.

“We’ve received a tremendous outpouring of support since we opened this December,” said Miles Baker, the Shop’s Manager and TCAF’s Managing Director. “Opening as a pop-up shop gave us room to breathe, and get to know our new customers and the neighbourhood. We’ve welcomed thousands of people through the doors, received some wonderful media coverage, and the customer feedback has been phenomenal!”

“Talking to our customers has been key,” said Andrew Woodrow-Butcher, Manager of Little Island Comics, and one of the TCAF shop’s product specialists. “They love books and book-culture and they especially love Toronto Public Library. We’ve worked hard to curate a unique selection of items—graphic novels, cool design objects, and apparel—that celebrates the best of books and graphic novels, from Canada and around the world.”

“And the best part is that all profits from the store get reinvested back into TCAF,” continued Baker. “Shopping here helps grow the Festival itself, ensuring a bright future for our free Comic Arts Festival—who wouldn’t like that?”

Toronto comic fans will be happy to hear that The TCAF Shop will play host to a wide variety of in-store author signings and events moving forward. Readers and fans will be able to meet illustrator Carson Ellis (Wildwood Chronicles, Home) on March 30th, writer Jim Zub (Wayward, Figment) on April 1st, and Publisher Bedside Press for the launch of their classic Canadian comics collection Brok Windsor: 1944-1946! In fact, Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop will be hosting an event this evening, March 18th, for Toronto anthology comic Monstrosity 2 featuring nearly a dozen cartoonists featured in the book! Hurry down to the store!

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Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop has already created exclusive merchandise from Canadian cartoonists Kate Beaton and John Martz, with more artist collaborations planned for 2015. In addition, the shop has continued to source local and international toys, household goods, and apparel from America and overseas to present a selection of merchandise nearly exclusive within Toronto. Add in a carefully curated selection of comics and graphic novels, and The TCAF Shop has an unprecedented selection of material for every age, taste, and budget!

“We’re genuinely excited to be able to contribute to the city’s artistic fabric this way,” said TCAF co-Founder Christopher Butcher. “The annual Festival is a great way to support the medium, and the artists that we love. The store will continue that tradition year-round, joining the ranks of the city’s other great comic shops and bringing something new, and unique, to the mix. We hope to see you here!”

 

ONLINE

Website: http://tcafshop.com
Instagram: http://instagram.com/torontocomics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/tcafshop
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tcafshop

MEDIA

Please direct all media inquiries to contact@tcafshop.com.

ABOUT Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop

Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop is a project of The Toronto Comic Arts Festival, an independent not-for-profit organization which is sponsored by The Beguiling Books & Art and Toronto Public Library. The Festival is held annually at Toronto Reference Library, with the next Festival taking place May 9th and 10th, 2015.

Page & Panel: The TCAF Shop is open Monday through Friday, 10am to 8:30pm, Saturday 10am to 5pm, and Sunday, 12pm to 5pm. It is closed on all holidays which Toronto Reference Library is closed.

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Bienvenue! TCAF Announces Featured Guests Davodeau, Bagieu, and Boulet

Today The Toronto Comic Arts Festival is proud to announce the addition of three new Featured Guests to its 2015 Programme, all of which hail from France. Please welcome to Toronto first-time guests Étienne Davodeau and Pénelope Bagieu, and returning artist Boulet!

Thanks to our ongoing collaboration with the Consulate General of France in Toronto, as well as with publishers of international works including NBM and First Second Books, the Festival has been able to welcome and support cartooning guests from France since its inception in 2003. TCAF’s official mandate is to promote and support Torontonian and Canadian cartoonists, but also to invite some of the best-loved and most critically-acclaimed cartoonists in the world to come and see what we’re producing here! We’re grateful to have had so many wonderful French cartoonists, editors, and publishers attend the Festival, and we’re thrilled to continue this trend into 2015. After TCAF’s official visit to the prestigious Festival international de bande dessinée d’Angoulême last month, we are hopefully setting the stage for even more international exchanges in the years to come.

Fans of French-language comics take note, we will also be planning a spotlight on Quebecois and Franco-Canadian comics at TCAF 2015, with more information to come very soon!

Our thanks again to the Consulate General of France in Toronto, BreadPig Inc., NBM, and First Second Books for their support of these cartoonists and of the Festival.

Please continue reading for more information on our featured guests, and their works debuting at TCAF!

Featured Guests

DAvodeau_160Étienne Davodeau is a multiple award-winning comics author from France.  After having studied graphic arts in Rennes, Davodeau has since created numerous best-selling and critically acclaimed graphic novels, mostly in the reality-based and reportage vein. Titles of his include Les Mauvaises Gens, Le Chien Qui Louches, Geronimo, and Les Ignorants (which was translated into English by NBM in 2013, titled  The Initiates).Davodeau is attending TCAF 2015 with his North American publisher NBM in support of the English debut of Lulu Anew. This translates Davodeau’s best-selling masterpiece, Lulu Femme Nue, which in 2013 was adapted into an award winning film by Sólveig Anspach.
Bagieu_160Pénélope Bagieu is a French cartoonist and illustrator, known the world-over for her blog Ma vie est tout à fait fascinante (My life is quite fascinating), where she shares moments of her everyday life.Her first BD work, Joséphine went on to be a best-seller, with a live-action film adaptation coming released in 2013. In 2010, Bagieu published Cadavre Exquis (Exquisite Corpse, in English), which earned her multiple prizes at the 2011 Angoulême Festival, including Best Humour Album.Pénélope Bagieu is attending TCAF 2015 in support of the English debut of Exquisite Corpse from First Second.
Boulet_160Boulet is among the first French cartoonists to become famous by publishing a webcomic. Bouletcorp started in July 2004, with an English version beginning in 2009. Since starting his blog, he has worked for French comics strip magazine Tchô ! and Psikopat, and on many others as an author or cartoonist. He even replaced Lewis Trondheim as cartoonist of the comic strip Donjon Zénith.Boulet is attending TCAF 2015 in support of Augie and the Green Knight, with the help of Breadpig Inc.

For more information on all of our Featured Guests, please visit our Featured Guests page.

Debut Books

Davodeau_Lrg Bagieu_Lrg Boulet_Lrg
Lulu Anew
By Étienne Davodeau
From NBM
Exquisite Corpse
By Pénélope Bagieu
From First Second
Augie & the Green Knight
By Zach Weinersmith and Boulet
From Bread Pig Inc.

For more information on these and all books debuting at TCAF 2015, please visit our Debuting Books page.

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TCAF Reveals 2015 Festival Poster by Charles Burns

BURNS_TCAF_Poster_WEB_FINAL

FEBRUARY 24, 2015: The Toronto Comic Arts Festival (May 9-10, 2015) revealed today the official poster image for its 2015 Festival, by renowned graphic novelist and illustrator Charles Burns!

This poster, like all previous TCAF posters, will be printed in advance of the show and be available for purchase at the event and at Festival Sponsor The Beguiling books and art. Final design will differ slightly. TCAF Posters from 2003-2014 are available for purchase online from The Beguiling Books & Art.

ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR 

CHARLES BURNS grew up in Seattle in the 1970s. His work rose to prominence in Art Spiegelman’s Raw in the mid-1980s and took off from there, in an extraordinary range of comics and projects, from Iggy Pop album covers to the latest ad campaign for Altoids. In 1992 he designed the sets for Mark Morris’s restaging of The Nutcracker (renamed The Hard Nut) at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. He illustrated covers for Time, The New Yorker, and The New York Times Magazine. He was also tapped as the official cover artist for The Believer magazine at its inception in 2003.

Burns’ graphic novel Black Hole has been critically acclaimed, receiving Eisner, Harvey, and Ignatz comics-industry awards. Black Hole has been adopted to the course curriculum of several classes at the University of Toronto (and in institutions across North America). In 2014 Burns completed his newest project, the X’ed Out graphic novel trilogy, consisting of X’ed Out, The Hive, and Sugar Skull. Burns will attend The Toronto Comic Arts Festival 2015 as a Featured Guest of TCAF, in celebration of this work. Charles Burns lives in Philadelphia with his wife and two daughters.

MEDIA

Please include in your listings. The Toronto Comic Arts Festival 2015, Saturday May 9, 9am-5pm, and Sunday May 10, 11am-5pm, @ Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street. Attendance is FREE to the public. Select guest bios and images are available upon request. Please send all inquiries to media@torontocomics.com.

SPONSORS

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival would not be possible without the assistance of our sponsors and partners, including presenting sponsor Toronto Public Library and primary sponsor The Beguiling Books & Art.

TCAF is produced with the support of the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council.

We would also like to acknowledge funding support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $157 million to bring the arts to Canadians throughout the country.

Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien. L’an dernier, le Conseil  a investi 157 millions de dollars pour mettre de l’art dans la vie des Canadiennes et des Canadiens de tout le pays.

TCAF would like to recognize Random House Canada for their support of Charles Burns’ attendance at TCAF 2015.

Sponsorship opportunities for TCAF 2015 are still available, please contact us at: contact@torontocomics.com for more info.

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Call For Programming – TCAF 2015, May 8, 9, and 10

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Hi there! Do you have a burning passion to share information on comics, through panels, presentations, or workshops? Well TCAF’s Call for Programming suggestions is now open!

We’d love to know if you’d be interested in suggesting a program for TCAF 2015! We have kid, teen, and general audiences programming on Saturday and Sunday at TCAF. We also offer special programming for librarians and educators on Friday, and workshops for comics professionals on Friday too. You can submit something you wanna do, something you wanna see, or just volunteer yourself as a participant or moderator.

You can fill out the form right now at http://goo.gl/FzTLi4.

Submissions close on Monday March 9th.

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Announcing TCAF 2015! May 9 & 10

Toronto Public Library presents

TCAF 2015 – The Toronto Comic Arts Festival

@ Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street
Saturday, May 9, 9am-5pm
Sunday, May 10, 11am-5pm
Free to attend
www.torontocomics.com

TORONTO, CANADA—Announcing the Toronto Comic Arts Festival 2015! Over 300 cartoonists from Canada and around the world are on their way to Toronto this May, to celebrate the very best in comics, graphic novels, bandes dessinées, and manga! A week-long Festival of readings, launches, and art events culminating in a massive, FREE two-day exhibition centeredat Toronto Reference Library, May 10 and 11, 2015!

For more than a decade, The Toronto Comic Arts Festival has showcased the incredible comics art being made here in Canada, and invited the attention of the international cartooning community. The 2015 programme continues to build on those successes, with an increase in programming, and a renewed focus on Canadian cartoonists from coast to coast!

TCAF 2015 will welcome a remarkable array of authors! Highlights from the author guests include:

Burns160Charles Burns: Creator of Black Hole, considered to be one of the most important graphic novels in the Western cannon, Burns will be at TCAF to celebrate his recently completed new graphic novel series X’ed Out (Pantheon Books). Burns will also illustrated one of the official posters of the 2015 Festival, to be revealed.

Davis160Eleanor Davis: An outstanding cartoonist and editorial illustrator (The New Yorker, New York Times), Davis’ recent graphic novel release How To Be Happy (Fantagraphics) was widely lauded as one of the best graphic novels of 2014, and TCAF is thrilled to welcome this her back to Toronto for the 2015 Festival.

Gurihiru160Gurihiru: This dynamic cartooning duo (working under one pen name) hails from Tokyo, Japan, and is beloved in North America for their original graphic novels set in the universe of Avatar: The Last Airbender (Dark Horse). They have also created work for Marvel Comics, Disney, and an array of independent illustration work.

Knisley160Lucy Knisley: A long-time supporter of the Festival, Knisley’s memoirs and travelogues are well-loved across the continent. Knisley attends as a Featured Guest in 2015, in support of her new travelogue/graphic novel Displacement (Fantagraphics).

McCloud160Scott McCloud: Creator of the essential comics text Understanding Comics, TCAF will welcome McCloud back to Toronto in support of his acclaimed new graphic novel The Sculptor (First Second Books).

Stok_Barbara_160Barbara Stok: Hailing from The Netherlands, Stok has an impressive collection of graphic novels to her credit. TCAF is happy to welcome her as a Featured Guest of the Festival in 2015, in conjunction with her debut English-language graphic novel release Vincent (SelfMadeHero), an important and critically-praised biography of Vincent Van Gogh.

jillian_tamaki_160x160Jillian Tamaki: With her cousin Mariko Tamaki, Jillian Tamaki’s 2014 TCAF Debut This One Summer  (Groundwood/First Second) took home a Governor General’s Award, a Caldecott Honor, and a Printz Honor. In 2015, Jillian Tamaki will release  SuperMutantMagicAcademy (Drawn & Quarterly), her hilarious new graphic novel.

Zdarsky160Chip Zdarsky: Hometown favourite and emerging international superstar Zdarsky (a.k.a. Steve Murray) is welcomed as a Featured Guest for 2015! Best-known for his ground-breaking comic series Sex Criminals (with writer Matt Fraction), spring 2015 will see the launch of his new series Kaptara (Image Comics) with fellow Toronto illustrator Kagan McLeod, and a relaunch of Marvel Comics’ Howard The Duck.

And these are just the first nine featured guests among the more than 300 Canadian and International cartoonists participating in the 2015 Festival.

Featured guests will continue to be announced through February and March, with special guests from France, Italy, Germany, Japan, and the U.S. and Canada still to be revealed!

TCAF 2015 will also feature several programming spotlights, including a special tribute to esteemed Canadian graphic novel published Drawn & Quarterly, on the occasion of their 25th Anniversary.

Additional Programs will be announced in February and March, including the CSSC-SCEBD Academic Conference, Library & Educator Day, Word Balloon Academy, Comics Vs. Games 4, Gallery Showings, Screenings, and much more. Visit TCAF online for up-to-the-minute updates.

Website: http://www.torontocomics.com
Twitter: @Torontocomics
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TorontoComics
Tumblr: http://torontocomics.tumblr.com/

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MEDIA

Please include in your listings. The Toronto Comic Arts Festival 2015, Saturday May 9, 9am-5pm, and Sunday May 10, 11am-5pm, @ Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street. Attendance is FREE to the public. Select guest bios and images are available upon request. Please send all inquiries to media@torontocomics.com.

SPONSORS

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival would not be possible without the assistance of our sponsors and partners, including presenting sponsor Toronto Public Library and primary sponsor The Beguiling Books & Art.

TCAF is produced with the support of the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council.

We would also like to acknowledge funding support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $157 million to bring the arts to Canadians throughout the country.

Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien. L’an dernier, le Conseil  a investi 157 millions de dollars pour mettre de l’art dans la vie des Canadiennes et des Canadiens de tout le pays.

TCAF would like to recognize The Dutch Foundation for Literature for helping sponsor Barbara Stok’s appearance at the festival.

Sponsorship opportunities for TCAF 2015 are still available, please contact us at: contact@torontocomics.com for more info.

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Volunteer at TCAF 2015!

Hey there! How would YOU Like to Volunteer at TCAF 2015?

photo (8)Every year we need about 200 people who are willing to set aside their weekend and devote themselves to (among other things) greeting visitors, moving things about town, setting up tech equipment, helping orient visitors, managing the flow of people in the library, and distributing festival guides. In addition to tasks around the days of the festival proper, volunteers also help us with parts of the festival that take place in the days before to the main event; from setting up tables to helping at lead-up events, these volunteers are essential to the festival’s success. We’re incredibly grateful to all of these people, and we’d love for you to be one of them!

TCAF volunteers work in small teams of between five and twelve people. These teams are each responsible for running a particular space or process essential to the Festival. Each team has a team leader, who is usually a veteran TCAF volunteer who knows the lay of the land.

Volunteering at TCAF can be a lot of fun, and is a great way to meet people who are interested in comics! TCAF volunteering looks great on your résumé, and can count towards your required high school volunteer hours. Plus, TCAF volunteers each get a swank TCAF t-shirt, a TCAF poster, and probably a cup of coffee or two, as well as the admiration and appreciation of all 20,000 people who attend the Festival!

If you’d like to sign-up to volunteer at TCAF, please fill in the form linked below. If you have specific questions about volunteering at TCAF, feel free to email me at volunteer@torontocomics.com, and I’ll get back to you in a few days with some answers. Volunteer sign-up will end March 31, so you should sign up now!

Please note that this sign-up questionnaire is going to ask you for your availability during TCAF (i.e. May 7th – 10th 2015). These dates are set in stone on our end; there just isn’t much we can do to accommodate you if you can’t make it due to your work shift/cousin’s wedding/root canal. Check your calendars for this weekend and ensure you are free for the shifts you sign up for. Once you submit your application, we’ll be counting on you!

After you fill out the form at this link, you will be signed up to volunteer for TCAF 2015! We’ll be in touch with you as we get closer to the Festival to give you some more info and to assign you your volunteer shifts.

Thanks again!

-Dan Seljak, Volunteer Co-ordinator

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UPDATED: TCAF 2015 Exhibitor Applications Now Closed

UPDATE: TCAF 2015 Exhibitor Applications are now closed. Applications for TCAF 2016 will open on August 1st, 2015. Mark your calendars.

Update: TCAF tradition and due to an incredible last-minute demand, we will be keeping exhibitor applications open until October 24th. Unlike previous years, this is only a one-week extension and there will be no other extensions. We will be privileging applications submitted by the original due date of October 17th.

Hello Comics!

We’re happy to announce that the Application Process for The Toronto Comic Arts Festival 2015 has begun! Click here to begin your application. We will be accepting responses until Friday, October 24th, 2014.

A few quick notes about applying for TCAF:

– NEW FOR 2015: We are asking creators to exhibit every other year. If you exhibited in 2014 it is highly unlikely that you will be allocated a space for 2015 without extenuating circumstances (i.e., a major new print release, a gallery show, etc.). There are still many ways to participate in TCAF without a table, including programming and workshops. Most publishers are exempted from this rule.

– We are asking ALL creators, collectives, publishers, and self-publishers interested in exhibiting at TCAF 2015 to register online using the application form linked above. If you are a full-line publisher or will require multiple table-spaces, please email registration@torontocomics.com after you have submitted your application for further information.

– If you are a creator attending but sitting with your publisher (i.e.: You don’t need to buy your own table), please still apply! It’ll really, really help us out.

– Filling out an application does not guarantee table space at TCAF 2015.

– Because of the high volume of submissions we have historically received, preference for exhibition space will be given to:

a) Comics creators (versus illustrators/animators/fine artists/other creative persons),
b) Creators with new major works debuting at or around TCAF 2015,
c) Those creators who have not exhibited in 2014.

– We’ll be contacting everyone on or by December 1st to let them know if their registration and table space requests have been accepted.

– TCAF 2015 will feature a day of Professional Development Programming on May 8th, with the main exhibition on May 9th and 10th, 2015, at Toronto Reference Library in beautiful Toronto, Canada.

If you have any problems, please contact registration@torontocomics.com.

Thanks!

– Christopher Butcher, Festival Director.
– Miles Baker, Managing Director

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TCAF in Tokyo 2014 – November 23

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Part of the 2013 crew: Kagan McLeod, Andrew Townsend, Kim Hoang, Miguel Sternberg, Miles Baker

Hey everyone! TCAF will be returning to Tokyo again in 2014, to exhibit at Kaigai Manga Festa / International Comics Festival 2014. KMF will be held Sunday, November 23rd, from 11am to 4pm, as part of the COMITIA comics event at Tokyo Big Sight. The official website for this event is http://kaigaimangafesta.com/ and the Facebook is https://www.facebook.com/kaigaimangafesta.

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival will be set up as representatives of both our own festival and Canadian comics in general, represented by Festival Directors Chris Butcher and Miles Baker, and Translator Jocelyne Allen. As in previous years, we will be bringing a selection of Canadian graphic novels in English, French, and especially wordless books for international fans to discover. We will also have a small selection of festival posters, postcards, and other merchandise available.

TCAF is also offering free table space to any comics artist who has previously exhibited at TCAF 2003-2014. We’ll also help book flights and accommodations, offer recommendations, and plan a few special events and trips with our awesome translator Jocelyne so that you can get the most out of your Tokyo visit.

If you’re interested in joining us in Tokyo, please e-mail us at contact@torontocomics.com a.s.a.p. November isn’t that far away!

– Christopher Butcher, TCAF

Cover photo by Gary Sherman of Tokyo/Mt. Fuji.

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TCAF 2014 Festival Wrap-Up – Announcing TCAF 2015

Toronto Comic Atrs Festival 2014 - As the doors open, Saturday May 10th

Welcome, everyone!

TCAF T-Shirt by Natsume Ono. Modeled by Krystle TabujaraMy name is Christopher Butcher, and I’m the Co-Founder and Festival Director of The Toronto Comic Arts Festival (what we call TCAF). Last month on May 10th and 11th we held the ninth iteration of TCAF, a wonderful celebration of comics, graphic novels, and their creators, from Canada and abroad. On behalf of the entire TCAF team, I’d like to thank all of our attendees, exhibitors, and the staff and volunteers who worked so hard to make 2014 a success.

TCAF 2014 was a pretty phenomenal year for us: we fine-tuned many aspects of the Festival to make them the best that they could be, and introduced new elements to the Festival that will further our mandate to promote and enrich the careers of cartoonists and graphic novelists, with a focus on all of the great work being done here in Canada. As every year, we hope to build on these successes, address deficiencies, and move boldly forward into the future.

As in previous years, the report on our 2014 Festival will be informal, light, and hopefully entertaining, and I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Oh, but before I start: Could you fill out our attendee survey? We’d really appreciate it! Click here.

TCAF 2014 TimeLapse – The Toronto Comic Arts Festival from Toronto Comic Arts Festival on Vimeo.

SAVE THE DATE: TCAF 2015 takes place May 8th, 9th, and 10th

TCAF volunteers at the merch table.The Toronto Comic Arts Festival is thrilled to announce that it will return to Toronto Reference Library and The Bram and Bluma Appel Salon for 2015. The dates are Friday May 8th (Professional Development), and Saturday May 9th & Sunday May 10th (Exhibition Dates). This continues the wonderful partnership between TCAF and its Presenting Sponsor Toronto Public Library, and secures a beautiful, large, and central location from which to continue building the Festival.

In addition, TCAF will continue to spread its programming and exhibitions through the surrounding neighbourhood and the city, by partnering with venues including The Marriott Bloor Yorkville, St. Paul’s on Bloor, The Pilot, The Japan Foundation, and more. TCAF will continue to grow through its programs and exhibitions, maintaining a strong mix of exhibiting and participating artists each with something unique to offer.

We think it is important to include the Friday May 8th date in the ‘official’ TCAF 2015 dates, as this Professional Development Day is a true extension of our aims and goals. We hope that comics professionals of all stripes, including creative and support professionals, librarians, teachers, archivists, and academics, will continue to support and engage these activities.

And, as in previous years, the Sunday of TCAF will coincide with Mother’s Day. We encourage all Moms reading this to get on board with comics (if they haven’t already!) and to explore the great collections within Toronto Public Library! Failing that, we encourage everyone else with a mom reading this to schedule a nice early brunch before TCAF opens to the public at 11am that day…

TCAF Postcard Set 1

Building a better TCAF – Attendance is up! Crowd control is on point.

Toronto Comic Atrs Festival 2014

We’re always conflicted about an increase in attendance numbers, because the physical size of TCAF’s space at the library has not increased significantly since 2011… so we were surprised to hear that attendance was way up for 2014! To us, everything felt like it moved pretty smoothly, and we’re going to do our best to keep things flowing in the Library and all of our spaces in the years to come.

This year’s attendance across all TCAF events was approximately 22,000, up from 18,000 in 2012 and 2013. Both Saturday and Sunday saw considerably more people coming through Toronto Reference Library than last year, based on raw data provided by Toronto Public Library. Sunday in particular was up considerably over 2013 thanks to some really great weather (versus 2013’s hailstorm…).

In addition to the Toronto Reference Library, our space at The Marriott Bloor Yorkville for panels and programming saw vast increases, and our TCAF Kids Day event at St. Paul’s on Bloor hit capacity at several times. Many programs at The Pilot were standing room only, and our Friday professional programming also had respectable attendance, though we recognize there’s room to grow there too!

Our greatest successes came through our wonderful partnership events, particularly all the activities associated with Comics Vs. Games 3: The Bit Bazzar, Comics Vs. Games Showcases, and Comics Vs. Games 3D Gallery. The Bit Bazzar and associated events drew more than 3,000 people, nearly double the numbers in 2013! All of our off-site events this year were very healthily attended. From our kuš Gallery Show “The Last Match” to our screening of the Canadian comics history documentary Lost Heroes to our ever-popular Queer Mixer, events were jam-packed with folks, both those already familiar with the medium of comics and newcomers finding their ‘way in’.

Our continued partnerships and outreach events remain a vital part of the growth of the Festival, and these events will continue to increase in number and diversify in the hopes of reaching the widest-possible audience for comics and graphic novels. Our partnerships with cultural organizations like The Alliance Française, The Japan Foundation, and the Goethe-Institut, and like-minded peers like Bento Miso, the Hand Eye Society, and Attract Mode, will help make this a reality.

Toronto Comic Atrs Festival 2014

Thank you for your support!

TCAF is going to remain a festival that is free to attend, with affordable tables and tons of free (or inexpensive) programming for the public, and we couldn’t do that without the support of our sponsors and partners.

TCAF 2014 Badges!First and foremost, we would like to thank presenting sponsor Toronto Public Library, including the staffs of Toronto Reference Library and The Appel Salon, for their continued partnership and their huge contribution to the Festival. It’s this partnership that helps communicate one of TCAF’s primary goals: the elimination of barriers to entry to the medium of comics. Comics are for everyone, and having TCAF be a part of Toronto Public Library’s rich slate of programming reinforces that fact to the public.  Our thanks to TPL for their continued support.

TCAF also couldn’t happen without the retail and logistical backbone that is The Beguiling Books & Art, and Little Island Comics. These two organizations and their staffs contribute mightily to the organization and execution of this event, and their support is greatly appreciated.

TCAF would like to thank the following organizations for their financial support:

  • We would like to acknowledge funding support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.
  • TCAF is produced with the support of the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council.
  • Seneca College School of Creative Arts and Animation for their support of our festival programming.
  • VIZ Media for their continued blanket support of the festival.
  • We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $157 million to bring the arts to Canadians throughout the country.
  • Guru Studio for their support of the TCAF Welcome Party.
  • TopatoCo for their sponsorship of badges and lanyards (a much-requested addition to TCAF!)
  • Scholastic for their support of our Kids Programming.
  • TCAF would like to thank sponsors Revvly, OwlKids, and NOW Toronto for their promotional support.
  • TCAF Library and Educator Day was supported in part by the donations of publishers First Second, IDW Publishing, Scholastic Canada, and VIZ Media.

TCAF’s partnerships with peer organizations and businesses help create a unique and engaging festival, and we thank the following organizations for their support in 2014: Midoco, The CSSC/SCEBD, Bento Miso, The Toronto Hand Eye Society, Attract Mode, The Japan Foundation, Videofag, and Narwhal Gallery.

tcaf_2014_sponsor_strip

2014: In Review

TCAF Shirt by Fabio Moon and Gabriel BaAfter the 2013 Festival, I sat down with my team to really re-think the Festival, what worked and what didn’t. The tenth anniversary was a great time to reflect on how things had been going, and to look towards building the Festival in sustainable, creative, and ever-expanding ways. I feel like the 2014 Festival successfully bore the fruits of these discussions, and set the stage for the next 10 years of The Toronto Comic Arts Festival. It was a good year, with great guests and exhibitors, thousands of attendees having a wonderful time, and a phenomenally positive energy that buoyed spirits all weekend long. I am very proud of the staff and volunteers who donated their time and energy to execute this very complicated undertaking.

The highlight for me, personally, this year was standing up and welcoming three enormously talented cartoonists—Kate Beaton, Lynn Johnston, and Raina Telgemeier—to the stage for our Friday night Kick-Off Event. I got to say a few words about this year’s TCAF, about redoubling our commitment to inclusion, diversity, and visibility for comics creators of all stripes, and I got to do it in front of three women whose work I admire tremendously. We try not to be too didactic in our approach, but sometimes it’s important to make a statement about the way things are and the way you’d like them to be, and I’m enormously proud I got to do so in front of a packed audience this year.

I’m also very proud of the diversity and vision of our authorial line-up for 2014. We welcomed creators from more than 19 countries around the world this year, with more than 150 first-time exhibitors and participating authors! TCAF has a consistency from year to year, but we strive to keep it feeling fresh and unique as well. Having a high number of new exhibitors helps accomplish that, but sometimes having amazing and unannounced guests helps that too! Our thanks to ‘unannounced’ TCAF Guests Hideki Anno (creator of Neon Genesis Evangelion), and Randall Munroe (creator of XKCD), and the dozens of cartoonists and illustrators who just dropped by to see the show… we’ll try not to blow your cover. ;)

WBA_LogoTCAF 2014 also saw the introduction of new programming streams, new ways of engaging fans of the medium and welcoming newcomers. Our biggest addition was the “Comics Academic Conference” on Friday May 9, run by the Canadian Society for the Study of Comics / Société canadienne pour l’étude de la bande dessinée. We were happy to finally, formally, bring an academic component to the Festival, and we thank the CSSC/SCEBD and Barbara Postema and Glenn Willmott from that organization, for developing this new partnership.

We also introduced Word Balloon Academy, our day of professional development and education for comics creators. Everything from skills-building to health-and-safety (thanks, Kriota Willberg!) to financial advice was available, our way of giving back to creators and strengthening the industry. These programs joined our already-successful Librarian & Educator Day to create a full-day of professional development and educational programming, and we will continue and grow these programs in future years.

TCAF was bigger than ever, with a larger programming slate and more diverse in its approach and presentation than ever before too. It was a year of tremendous growth after a lot of planning and rethinking our whole approach, and, well, that’s why we do this crazy thing every year. Thanks for your support of all of you who attended and worked so hard to make it a success. :)

Toronto Comic Atrs Festival 2014

We Couldn’t Have Done It Without You

TCAF 2014 Tote Bag. Modeled by Andrew Townsend.Speaking of the folks who made TCAF a success, we’d like to thank some of them now.

TCAF would like to thank all of the participating artists and authors for exhibiting with us. There wouldn’t be a show without you!

TCAF would also like to thank those who dedicated their time moderate, plan, or otherwise to participate in our large slate of programming. We appreciate the considerable amount of work that goes into moderating and developing a successful program, and TCAF is far richer for your hard work–thank you.

Our sponsors and partners, outlined above.

Our event partners The Alliance Française, Bento Miso, kuš!, Videofag, Narwhal Gallery, Attract Mode & Matt Hawkins, The Toronto Hand Eye Society, Guru Studio, St. Paul’s on Bloor, The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema, Buddies in Bad Times, Weird Things, The Pilot, The Japan Foundation, The Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre, The Carlton Magic Lantern Cinemas, The Spotted Dick, The Tranzac Club, and Ryerson University.

TCAF would not have as rich, diverse, and international an array of authors without the support of governmental and cultural organizations and publishers working to promote an international vision of the medium of comics. Our thanks to cultural organizations The Consulate General of France in Toronto and The Goethe-Institut, and to publishers Abrams, Conundrum Press, Drawn & Quarterly, First Second Books, Groundwood Books, Koyama Press, Nobrow Press, La Pasteque, Scholastic Canada, and SelfMadeHero.

In addition, we would like to thank Ginette LaPalme, Chris Kuzma, and Patrick Kyle of the Wowee Zonk collective for curating and organizing our small press area, and taking care of an additional 20+ artists and groups. We greatly appreciate your expertise!

TCAF would like to thank the artists of our official Festival Posters, Isabelle Arsenault, Michael DeForge and Lynn Johnston, for creating such gorgeous images to brand and promote the festival. TCAF would also like to thank Sean Phillips, Darwyn Cooke, Steve Murray, Krystle Tabujara, Derrick Guerin, and est em, for providing original artworks to the Festival this year, and to past poster artists Gabriel Ba, Fabio Moon, and Natsume Ono for loaning their artwork to our new t-shirts!

TCAF would like to thank Jocelyne Allen, Aki Takabatake, Yoko Galloway, Mimmy Shen, and Stephane Beaujean for their translation support.

Thanks to the staff and organizers of The Doug Wright Awards for another great year, and Happy 10th Anniversary!

TCAF would like to thank the the following individuals for their support in various roles: Leyla Aker, Corey Mintz, Chip Zdarsky, Erik Ko, Kim Hoang, Georgia Webber, Darwyn Cooke, Miguel Sternberg, Jennie & Henry Faber, Jim Munroe, Ryan North, Denise Anderson, Julie Tait, Aki Yanagi, Ed Chavez, Terry Nantier, Peggy Burns, Julia Pohl-Miranda, Kathleen Glosan, Matt Hawkins, Robin Smith, Barbara Postema, Glenn Willmott, and the numerous folks who helped pull together different parts of TCAF.

TCAF would like to thank the Staff of The Beguiling and Little Island Comics, Alex, Arthur, Bettina, Chris, Christine, Derek, Genève, Halliday, Helen, Jason, Jerry, Jim, Jonathan, Laura, and Paul,  who contribute mightily to seeing TCAF become a reality each year.

Thank you to TCAF’s head volunteers and site coordinators for 2014: Ahmed Aljumaa, Radwa Auda, Connor Baker, Luc Becker, Pip Bradford, Cassiopeia Burrell, Bled Celhyka, Eva Cherney, Murad Hemmadi, Kim Hoang, Kerrie McCreadie, Tiff Preney, and Sally Sparrow.

Speaking for myself, I would like to thank the rest of the staff at TCAF for their hard work and dedication to the Festival this year. More and more TCAF becomes a year-round commitment for many of the folks involved, and I appreciate that you are all willing to rise to the challenge. My thanks to Miles Baker, Andrew Townsend, Andrew Woodrow-Butcher, Gina Gagliano, Krystle Tabujara, Dan Seljak, Georgia Webber, Kim Hoang, Lindsay Gibb, Parish Kilthei, Jamie Edwards, and Nathalie Atkinson. We’ve built an awesome team here.

Finally, TCAF would not be possible without the support of its many volunteers. Our sincere thanks to all of the volunteers and everyone who has donated their time to help make TCAF a success.

Toronto Comic Atrs Festival 2014

TCAF 2015 and beyond!

So we’ve already begun planning for TCAF 2015. Guests are being confirmed, publishers lined up, venues booked. I wasn’t kidding when I said TCAF was becoming a year-round job. Applications for TCAF 2015 will open at http://www.torontocomics.com on August 1st, 2014.

It’s also becoming a year-round festival in many ways, as TCAF begins to exhibit as an organization at other shows around the world, fulfilling our mandate to promote Canadian authors and their works. This year, if all goes according to plan, we’ll hopefully see you in England, Japan, and France. Developing these international relationships, opening up opportunities for our exhibiting artists at home and abroad, that’s what we’re all about, and we’re really looking forward to further growth along those lines in the years to come.

If you are a creator who has exhibited at TCAF who is interested in joining us on one of our overseas adventures, contact us and let us know! We’ll be offering more details here soon.

Toronto Comic Atrs Festival 2014

In Conclusion…

So in closing, please fill out our attendee survey!

But seriously though, on behalf of myself and the entire staff, I’d like thank everyone who contributed to make The Toronto Comic Arts Festival 2014 such a success. We’ll see you all next year, if not sooner…

Sincerely,

Christopher Butcher, Festival Director and Co-Founder

On behalf of…

Peter Birkemoe, Co-Founder
Miles Baker, Managing Director
Andrew Townsend, Support Manager
Andrew Woodrow-Butcher, Kids Programming Director
Gina Gagliano, Programming Coordinator
Krystle Tabujara, Logistics Manager
Dan Seljak, Volunteer Coordinator
Georgia Webber, Guest Services Coordinator
Lindsay Gibb, Library and Educator Day Coordinator
Parish Kilthei, A/V and Site Coordinator
Jamie Edwards, Site Coordinator
Kim Hoang, Site Coordinator

TCAF Event photos used in this post by Toronto Public Library. Additional photos by me. :)

TCAF video produced by Joanna Wong, joannawong.ca

 

 

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