“Foyles x ELCAF” launched to create new Creative Spaces for Art and Comics across the UK

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ELCAF 2017 BannerELCAF 2017 has announced a brand new partnership with Foyles to support, celebrate and create new spaces for creativity across the UK.

Foyles x ELCAF is a new collaboration, which sees the UK’s largest independent bookshop teaming up with the East London Comics & Arts Festival to celebrate some of the best creative talent in the UK. This year, Foyles will open its doors in Chelmsford, London, Birmingham and Bristol to host a series of workshops, talks and one-to-one meetings with illustrators, comic artists and experts in the field.

East London Comics Art Festival 2016 - Floor 1
ELCAF 2016. Photo: Tony Esmond

Founded by publisher Nobrow in 2012, ELCAF began as a small one day festival designed to showcase some of the most exciting works in comics and illustration. In the last five years it has grown to become one of the leading festivals of its kind in the UK.

Attracting over 3,000 visitors annually, ELCAF continues to spotlight emerging talent and celebrate the dynamic community of individual artists and collectives that are pushing the boundaries in their creative fields.

As well as the flagship store on Charing Cross Road, Foyles has London bookshops at the Royal Festival Hall, Westfield Stratford City and London Waterloo Station. It also has branches in Cabot Circus, Bristol, Grand Central, Birmingham and as of 2016, Bond Street in Chelmsford.

“We are delighted to be partnering with ELCAF to celebrate creative talent in all its forms,” commented Megan Brown, Foyles National Events Coordinator. “Led by some of the most gifted artists in the creative industry, Foyles x ELCAF offers an eclectic programme of hands-on workshops and entertaining events to bring together budding artists and established talent.”

Curated by ELCAF, this year’s Foyles x ELCAF eclectic programme aims to celebrate the dynamic work of artists that are making waves in the UK’s independent comic, narrative art and illustration scene.

“The Foyles x ELCAF partnership marks an exciting time for the world of comics, small press and illustration in the UK,” says ELCAF Artistic Director Ligaya Salazar, “by giving new opportunities for creators to share their work with new audiences.”

Archie Snufflekins Oliver Valentine Cupcake Tiberius by Katie Harnett

To help encourage creativity and learning from a young age, Foyles will be hosting a range of drawing workshops for children as part of the ELCAF programme. Join in the fun of creating a large scale collaborative drawing with Katie Harnett, author and illustrator of Archie Snufflekins Oliver Valentine Cupcake Tiberius, on Saturday 22nd April in Chelmsford (11.00am – 12 noon).

Award winning illustrator of Smart about Sharks, Owen Davey, will demonstrate how you can use shapes as a tool when drawing at Foyles Birmingham shop on Saturday 29th April (11.00 am – 12 noon).

In London’s Charing Cross store, join collective Nous Vous in creating your own guests and rooms at The Elephant Hotel, a new book by ELCAF Award winner Nicolas Burrows on Saturday, 2nd June.

Death and the Girls by Donya ToddAdults can take part in the fun too with an informal Artists Reception at Foyles’ Bristol store on Tuesday 16th May (6.30pm – 8.00pm). Foyles customers will hear from three local comic artists, Simon Moreton, Donya Todd and Ed Cheverton, as they discuss their work, inspirations, and running their own small press, before having the opportunity to meet and mingle
with them over a glass of wine

Central to the Foyles x ELCAF mission is to support new and emerging talent. An afternoon of Springboard Meetings will be run providing the chance for young creatives to meet industry experts, show their work, ask questions and gain insight into the professional creative industries. Each expert is available for an hour, divided into 15 minute slots which are free to book from 3pm to 6pm on Saturday 10th June.

The line-up and booking will be online from Monday 10th April 2017.

• For more information and to book tickets visit www.foyles.co.uk/events

John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John describes himself as is a “freelance comics operative”, currently working as a freelance editor for TITAN COMICS, as Creative Consultant on the new DAN DARE audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the LAKES INTERNATIONAL COMIC ART FESTIVAL and LANCASTER COMICS DAY.

John has worked in British comics publishing for over 30 years, starting out at Marvel UK, where he edited a number of the Genesis 1992 books with Paul Neary. His numerous credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine at Marvel and Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine at Titan Magazines, where he was Managing Editor.

He also edited STRIP Magazine and worked as an editor on several audio comics for ROK Comics, including TEAM M.O.B.I.L.E. and THE BEATLES STORY.

Most recently he is writing CRUCIBLE as a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and DEATH DUTY and SKOW DOGS with Dave Hailwood for the digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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