British Comics Now delegation heads to Toronto Comic Art Festival, championing UK creators and publishers

The Lakes International Comic Art Festival has just released a new video promoting its massive British Comics Now! project, championing the voices of UK comic creators and publishers, as their delegation heads to Toronto Comic Art Festival this weekend (11th – 12th May 2024).

Funded by the Arts Council EnglandThe Adlard Family Charitable Foundation and The British Council, British Comics Now aims to be a nationally-significant project for Britain’s comics and graphic novels sector, delivering a step change in the global exposure, distribution and recognition of the sector. Looking to make a huge impact nationally and internationally on the work of comic artists and graphic novelists in the UK, the project includes the first International Rights Market for comics in the country, taking place at the LICAF annual weekend Festival in Bowness-on-Windermere September, only the second of its kind in the world.

British Comics Now will also take creators out to key international festivals, which are also industry events, providing them with a dedicated pavilion to tell the story of the sector, attract interest and attention and find new partners, publishers and advocates.

As we previously reported, on their way to the internationally acclaimed comic book festival Toronto Comic Art Festival are Jason ChuangIsabel GreenbergClio IsadoraB. MureBex Ollerton and Martin Simpson, representing a wide range of modern comics, creators who have both self-published their work and been published, too, and keenly familiar with current forms of distribution and promotion.

All six comic creators have been extensively interviewed by Andy Oliver, publisher of Broken Frontier, who is an integral part of the British Comics Now project.

“Traditionally, British comics are often thought of in terms of genre fiction and all-ages work,” the Festival notes in the video description. “But dive into the independent UK comics scene and you will find an expansive ocean of sequential art, remarkable in its dazzling diversity of styles and approaches. From abstract and experimental comics to socially relevant comics; autobiographical work to graphic journalism and biography; through to alternative and underground-style self-publishing… our comics output in the UK has never been as vibrant and wide-ranging in scope as it is today.

British Comics Now Logo - Landscape

“British Comics Now looks to celebrate these exceptional levels of creativity by spotlighting some of our finest creators and their comics. The next generation of exciting creative voices. These are our TCAF contingent. Jason Chuang forges an intimate connection between reader and page with abstract and surreal illustrations. B. Mure tackles profound social issues and emotive themes through gorgeous fantasy imagery and allegory. Bex Ollerton communicates the realities of lived personal experiences with an expressive and accessible cartooning style. Clio Isadora uses raw candour to reveal emotional truths in powerful and incisive slice-of-life narratives.

Isabel Greenberg is one of the key figures in the new wave of Brit graphic novelists, blending classic mythology with a modern sensibility. Martin Simpson entrances the reader with striking and detailed artwork that has a genuinely unique aesthetic.

“This is the true face of comics as an art form in the UK. This is British Comics Now!”

• TCAF The Toronto Comic Arts Festival is an internationally acclaimed comic book festival held annually in Toronto, Ontario. TCAF is a free-admission event. More details here:

The Lakes International Comic Art Festival returns to Bowness-on-Windermere Friday 27th – Sunday 29th September 2024

• The Lakes International Comic Art Festival is online at: | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube | Little LICAF on Facebook | Little LICAF on Instagram

• Sign up for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival Newsletter

Read the Broken Frontier “British Comics Now” Interviews

“I Love to Walk on the Spectrum Between Explicitness and Obscurity” – Jason Chuang on the Visual Language of Comics and Abstract Takes on Autobio

“I Never Get Sick of Folk Tales and Mythology” – Isabel Greenberg Talks Arthurian Legends, the Brontës and Her Self-Publishing Roots

“I Like Reopening Certain Parts of My Life that Were Challenging” – Clio Isadora on Autobio Comics and Her Avery Hill Graphic Novel ‘Sour Pickles’

“I Want to Figure Out How to Make Work that is Useful to Others” – B. Mure on ‘Ismyre’, Allegory and the Realities of World-Building in Fiction

“If I Make a Comic, People Are More Able to Empathise With What I’m Trying to Communicate” – Bex Ollerton Talks Neurodivergence in Comics and Her Upcoming Projects

“Norse Mythology… It’s Such a Wonderful and Incomplete Beast” – Martin Simpson on His Graphic Novel ‘NORD’ and His Love of Legend

Categories: British Comics, Comics, downthetubes Comics News, downthetubes News, Events

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