Beginning in 2016, Kids Read Comics’ annual two-day comics celebration, hosted by the wonderful Ann Arbor District Library, will have a new name: Ann Arbor Comic Arts Festival (A2CAF for short).
The Festival will still feature dozens of comics artists along with workshops, demonstrations and interactive drawing games. It will still be as kid- and family-friendly as ever. And attending the event will be free as always.
What we hope the new name makes clear is that young children aren’t the only ones who can enjoy a fun-packed Ann Arbor weekend filled with comics and creativity. We welcome teens and adults (always have) and offer a slate of guests and activities to meet a wide range of comics-related interests (ditto).
So join us as Kids Read Comics celebrates eight years of bringing comics excitement to Michigan libraries, when we inaugurate the Ann Arbor Comic Arts Festival on June 18 & 19, 2016 at the Ann Arbor District Library.
Keynote speakers at A2CAF 2016 will be Cece Bell, whose comics memoir El Deafo was named a Newbery Honor Book, and the children’s author Tom Angleberger, writer and illustrator of the bestselling Origami Yoda series.
Other guests include Kazu Kibuishi (Amulet), Rafael Rosado (Dragons Beware), Ruth McNally Barshaw (The Ellie McDoodle Diaries), Nathan Hale (Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales), Ben Hatke (Zita the Spacegirl), Zack Giallongo (Broxo), J. Torres (Alison Dare), Katie Shanahan (Silly Kingdom), Carolyn Nowak (Lumberjanes), Kean Soo (March Grand Prix), Lucy Bellwood (Baggywrinkles), and many more!
Please go to the website for full details: a2caf.com
MICE will feature two full days of comics programming with workshops and demonstrations by professional artists, along with panel discussions on topics central to comics. All of our panels and workshops are appropriate for all-ages, but look for the Kid-Friendly tag for activities geared toward families and young readers. MICE Panels are located in the Lecture Hall and Workshops take place in the Lower Level of University Hall, 1815 Massachusetts Ave. Cambridge, MA
Saturday, October 17, 2015
Comics For Life! Cartooning Workshop (Kid-friendly Workshop)
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Get ready to draw your life in comics! MICE 2015 special guest Lucy Knisley, author of Relish: My Life In the Kitchen and many other graphic memoirs, will give you pointers on caricature, and how to illustrate your experiences and tell the story that only you can tell.
Black Independent Comics and Cartoonists Panel
11:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Five accomplished black independent cartoonists discuss their work and careers, as well as issues of racial identity in comics, and specifically in the alternative and independent comics world.
Moderator: Tony Davis Panelists: John Jennings, Micheline Hess, Ben Passmore, Whit Taylor, Joel Gill
Storyboarding Workshop (Kid-friendly Workshop)
12:30 PM – 1:30 PM
Discover where comics and animation collide: the storyboard! We’ll work from existing scripts to develop your skills in sketching, pacing, and movement. Bob Flynn, art director at Fablevision Studios and storyboard artist for Spongebob Squarepants: Sponge Out of Water, will show you how easy and fun the process can be!
Instructor: Bob Flynn
Iron Cartoonist (Kid-friendly Panel)
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
MICE pits top cartoonists against each other in a live drawing event. Utilizing themed “ingredients,” three artists will compete for the title of ultimate cartoonist and earn prizes for the audience.
Host: Zack Giallongo Contestants: Mike Holmes, Cara Bean, Dan Moynihan Judges: Carey Pietsch, John Green, Braden Lamb
Comics Lettering and Layout Workshop
2:00 – 3:00 PM
Join cartoonist (Diary Comics, Behold! The Dinosaurs!) and occasional letterer (Casanova, Seconds) Dustin Harbin for a hands-on workshop exploring the role of lettering in comics page layout. Lettering is a lot more than just legible handwriting: it’s often the clearest sign to a reader of what’s happening on a page, who’s speaking and when, and in what order everything should be read. Participants will work through laying out lettering for a page of comics from start to finish, with plenty of room for Q’s and A’s along the way.
Writing About Comics
2:30 PM – 3:30 PM
In the midst of our review culture, how is comics criticism evolving alongside this exciting, growing art form? A panel of comics journalists, educators, and scholars examine how to write about a medium that includes both visual and literary storytelling. Moderator Brigid Alverson writes about comics at Robot 6 and School Library Journal. Our panelists write for a variety of online comics blogs including: Janelle Asselin (Comics Alliance), James Kaplan (Panel Patter), Zach Clemente (The Comics Beat), and Juliet Kahn (Comics Alliance).
First Aid for Drawing Injuries Workshop
3:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Drawing can be fun, but it can also be a pain! Explore safe and effective techniques for caring for minor musculoskeletal injuries that can occur while drawing. Kriota Willberg, creator of the minicomic First Aid for Drawing Injuries (Or, Pain is Your Frenemy!) helps you to discover strategies for reducing pain while you draw and the differences between treating pain and treating injuries.
Kriota Willberg makes comics and art about body-oriented sciences. As a cartoonist she is best known for (NO) PAIN! A Guide to Injury Prevention for Cartoonists. An educator and massage therapist specializing in the treatment of orthopedic injury, she has also studied fitness and exercise. Kriota has taught injury prevention and anatomy for drawers at the Center for Cartoon Studies, the Society of Illustrators, and MoCCA.
What’s My Style? Panel
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Stylistic chameleon Robert Sikoryak sits down with four outstanding independent comics creators to explore the development of personal style. How has experimentation with graphic and storytelling techniques, media, format or other aspects of drawing comics challenged and shaped their visual styles? What breakthroughs, revelations, influences or inspirations have led to artistic growth? Moderator: R. Sikoryak Panelists: Luke Howard, Sophie Goldstein, Sophie Yanow, Jason Little
Comic Life Drawing (Kid-friendly Workshop)
4:30 PM – 5:30 PM
This introduction to figure drawing gives cartoonists of all skill levels an opportunity to draw from a live model! Explore the basics of dynamic movement, weight, and human anatomy. Easels, paper, and charcoal will be supplied. Zack Giallongo is the illustrator of Broxo, Ewoks: Shadows of Endor, and The Stratford Zoo Midnight Revue Presents series.
Sunday, October 18, 2015
Fable Comics Workshop (Kid-friendly Workshop)
11:30AM – 12:30 PM
Presented by The Eliot School
Looking for your next great comic idea? You can start with one of the oldest stories you know – fables! Chris Duffy, editor of the Fable Comics Anthology, along with artists George O’Connor (The Olympians) and Shelli Paroline (Adventure Time) will give you some pointers in drawing your own comic from well-known fables.
Art of the Mini-Comic (Kid-friendly Panel)
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
The humble mini-comic is one of the basic forms of expression for independent cartoonists, and it ranges from simple fold and staple photocopies, to exquisite handmade artists’ books. Jon Chad (Leo Geo, Bikeman) explores the form, and talks to some of the most creative mini-comic makers at MICE.
Jon Chad has been producing handmade mini-comics and zines since 2006. Jon has illustrated books for clients including the Atlanta Braves, the FBI, and has been commissioned to make minicomics for Cartoon Network’s Regular Show and Adventure Time. Jon Chad’s books Leo Geo and his Miraculous Journey through the Center of the Earth and the sequel, Leo Geo and the Cosmic Crisis are published by Roaring Brook Press. Jon lives in Northampton, MA and teaches book-making and screen-printing at the Center for Cartoon Studies.
Unexpected Cartoons (Kid-friendly Workshop)
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Presented by The Eliot School
A playful workshop for kids and all ages. Participants are led into various drawing exercises that would encourage improvisation and strengthen creative ability. We will approach drawing from new angles and discover unexpected results. All you need is a sheet of paper, pencil, eraser, and an open mind.
Cara Bean is an artist and Educator in Lexington, MA. Cara excels in both poetic self introspection, and silly storytelling. Her Gorilla Year series has received critical praise for tackling autobiographical issues in an innovative form.
Comic Life Drawing (Kid-friendly Workshop)
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
This introduction to figure drawing gives cartoonists of all skill levels an opportunity to draw from a live model! Explore the basics of dynamic movement, weight, and human anatomy. Easels, paper, and charcoal will be supplied. Instructor: Zack Giallongo
Spotlight on Ryan North and Gene Luen Yang Panel
1:30 PM – 2:30 PM
Gene Luen Yang (American Born Chinese, Boxers and Saints) and Ryan North (Dinosaur Comics, Adventure Time) have each made major contributions to defining contemporary forms like webcomics and young adult graphic novels, as well as crossing over into the “mainstream” world: North has brought his absurdist wit to Marvel’s Squirrel Girl, while Yang is currently writing Superman for DC. MICE is proud to present these two original, category-defying creators in conversation with writer and educator Alexander Danner.
Mini-Comic Workshop (Kid-friendly Workshop)
2:30 PM – 3:30 PM
Sometimes the best ideas come out of play, improvisation, and collaboration. In this workshop, you’ll participate in a few fun, collaborative, drawing games and create some wildly unexpected characters and stories with your fellow attendees.
Dan Moynihan lives in Brookline, Massachusetts where he draws and writes comics. His work has appeared in Nickelodeon Magazine and various anthologies. His first picture book, Hiding Dinosaurs, is out this year.
Parenthood and Comics Panel
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cartoonists who have taken the daring leap into parenthood — or parents who have taken the daring leap into cartooning — discuss how having children affects their work. How have they dealt with the challenges of maintaining a creative work schedule with the demands of parenthood? How has being a parent influenced the content of their work?
Moderator: Dan Mazur Panelists: Jennifer Hayden, Jason Little, Glynnis Fawkes, Charles Snow, Sage Stossel
MICE will be held at Lesley University’s University Hall at 1815 Massachusetts Avenue in Porter Square. The hours of the show are Saturday, October 17th, 10:00 am – 6:00 pm, and Sunday, October 18th, 11:00 am – 5:00 pm. Admission is FREE. Special Guests include: Gene Luen Yang, Lucy Knisley, Dustin Harbin, Ryan North, and Jennifer Hayden! Click their website for more information: www.micexpo.org
Swansea Public Library
260 Ocean Grove Ave., Swansea, MA 02777
The Vault of Midnight is proud to host some amazing artists as part of the Kids Read Comics festival!
SATURDAY JUNE 20th
12-1pm: Signing with Faith Erin Hicks (Adventures of Superhero Girl, Friends with Boys), and Raina Telgemeier (Smile, Sisters, Drama)
1-2pm: Signing with Rafael Rosado (Giants Beware! Dragons Beware!)
2-3pm: Signing with Ruth McNally Barshaw (Ellie McDoodle Diaries)
3-4pm: Signing with Zack Giallongo (Star Wars Doodles, Broxo, Stratford Zoo series)
4-5pm: Signing with Zac Gorman (Costume Quest, Rick and Morty)
5-6pm: Signing with Dave Roman (Astronaut Academy), and Chris Duffy (Nursery Rhyme Comics, Spongebob Comics)
SUNDAY JUNE 21st
12-1pm: Signing with Zac Gorman (Costume Quest, Rick and Morty)
1-2pm: Signing with Faith Erin Hicks (Adventures of Superhero Girl, Friends with Boys), and Raina Telgemeier (Smile, Sisters, Drama)
3:30-4:30pm: Signing with Kean Soo (Jellaby, March Grand Prix) and Tory Woollcott (Mirror Mind)
4:30-5:30pm: Signing with Chris Giarruso (G-Man, G-Man Super Journal)
For more information, please visit the link…
The Kids Read Comics Celebration is a totally free event that unites kids, teens, parents, teachers and librarians with professional artists and writers from the comics and animation fields. Our goal is to introduce kids to worlds of imagination while unlocking their creative impulses, and to serve that goal, the convention features:
– hands-on workshops
– panels and presentations for kids, families, and educators
– a chance for kids to meet and chat with comics and animation professionals
– the opportunity for kids to have their own art portfolios reviewed
Our celebration will be held at the Ann Arbor District Library in downtown Ann Arbor, which will host an artist alley and tons of hands-on workshops!
We hope to see you there!
Vault of Midnight
219 S. Main Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Shelli Paroline & Braden Lamb (Artist team on Adventure Time the comic book), Rob Stull (Comic book inker known for his work with Marvel, DC, Image, Aspen, Top Cow, etc.), Zack Giallongo (Known for his work in the Adventure Time comic book, Star Wars: Ewoks – Shadows of Endor, Broxo, and others), and Eric Merced (Has worked for major comic and gaming companies, such as Marvel, DC, IDW, Archie, Fantome, and more) appear at That’s Entertainment on Saturday May 2nd for Free Comic Book Day!
244 Park Ave, Worcester, MA 01609
Zack Giallongo is a professional cartoonist, cheese enthusiast, and amateur banjo-ist. His first solo graphic novel, Broxo, is about teenage barbarians and was published in 2012. He presents his new book: Stratford Zoo Presents Macbeth.
The Stratford Zoo looks like a normal zoo… until the gates shut at night. That’s when the animals come out of their cages to stage elaborate performances of Shakespeare’s greatest works. They might not be the most accomplished thespians, but they’ve got what counts: heart. Also fangs, feathers, scales, and tails, in The Stratford Zoo Midnight Revue Presents Macbeth.
Ian Lendler’s hilarious tale of after-hours animal stagecraft is perfectly paired with the adorable, accessible artwork of Zack Giallongo (Broxo, Ewoks). And with Romeo and Juliet coming in book two, this is a promising new series of graphic novels for young readers.
Ben Hatke has published comic stories in the Flight series as well as Flight Explorer. In addition to writing and drawing comics, he also paints in the naturalist tradition and, occasionally, performs one-man fire shows. He lives and works in the Shenandoah Valley with his wife and a boisterous pack of daughters. He is thr author of the Zita The Spacegirl Series.
Zita The Spacegirl
Zita’s life took a cosmic left turn in the blink of an eye.
When her best friend is abducted by an alien doomsday cult, Zita leaps to the rescue and finds herself a stranger on a strange planet. Humanoid chickens and neurotic robots are shocking enough as new experiences go, but Zita is even more surprised to find herself taking on the role of intergalactic hero. Before long, aliens in all shapes and sizes don’t even phase her. Neither do ancient prophecies, doomed planets, or even a friendly con man who takes a mysterious interest in Zita’s quest.
Zita the Spacegirl is a fun, captivating tale of friendship and redemption from Flight veteran Ben Hatke. It also has more whimsical, eye-catching, Miyazaki-esque monsters than you can shake a stick at.
9 College Street, South Hadley, MA 01075
Join the Brookline Public Library on Thursday September 25th from 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM for a panel discussion with comics creators, critics, librarians and journalists Brigid Alverson (Comic Book Resources, Good Comics for Kids), Katherine Dacey (The Manga Critic), Zack Giallongo (Broxo), and Jennie Wood (Flutter). We’ll talk about how creators consider intended audience, the state of challenges to comics today, and how libraries build and maintain comics collections that support everyone’s freedom to read. Bring your questions and we’ll answer everything we can!
Brigid Alverson has been reading comics for as long as she can remember, and she has been writing about them since 2005. She has an MFA in printmaking and has worked as a book editor and a newspaper reporter; now she is assistant to the mayor of a small city by the day and pursues comics journalism in her off hours. She writes about comics and graphic novels at MangaBlog, Publishers Weekly, Comic Book Resources, and Good E-Reader.com and is a daily blogger at Robot 6. She also edits the Good Comics for Kids blog at School Library Journal. Brigid is married to a physicist and has two daughters in college, which is why she writes so much. She was a judge for the 2012 Eisner Awards.
Katherine Dacey has been writing about comics since 2006, first as the Senior Manga Editor at PopCultureShock, then at Good Comics for Kids and her own site, The Manga Critic. Ms. Dacey lives and works in Boston, MA.
Zack Giallongo is a professional cartoonist, cheese enthusiast, and amateur banjo-ist. Raised in the Northeast, he has a deep and instinctual love of apples, Fall, ancient gravestones, and old, crooked buildings. Although he loves all creatures great and small, his stint as an Illustration major at the University of Massachusetts- Dartmouth sent him down the path of comic craftsmanship rather than being a ranger or a zookeeper. His first solo graphic novel, Broxo is about teenage barbarians and was published in 2012. It hit #4 on the NYT Bestsellers list.
Jennie Wood is the creator and writer of Flutter, a comic series. Flutter, Volume One: Hell Can Wait, the first graphic novel in the series, is available on 215 Ink. The Advocate calls Flutter one of the best LGBT graphic novels of 2013. She is also a contributor to the award-winning, New York Times best-selling comic anthology, FUBAR, Singularity, and Vic Boone: Bourbon and Buckshot anthologies. She is a graphic novel instructor for Grub Street and writes non-fiction features for the educational website, infoplease.com. On September 4, 2014, 215 Ink published her YA novel, A Boy Like Me, a story of a boy trapped in the body of a girl who falls in love and learns what it means to be a man. She recently recorded original songs to go with it. An excerpt of the novel has been published in the December 2013 issue of Provocateur Literary Magazine. Jennie worked on A Boy Like Me while participating in Grub Street’s year-long Novel Incubator program and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Jennie is one of Go Magazine’s Women We Love for 2013.
Robin Brenner (our very own Teen Librarian) is our moderator for this panel. When not presenting programs and reading guidance, she writes features for publications including VOYA, The Horn Book, Library Journal, and Knowledge Quest. She is an active member of YALSA and has served on awards committees including the Margaret A. Edwards Award Committee, the Boston Globe Horn Book Award and the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards in 2007. She is the editor-in-chief of the graphic novel review website No Flying No Tights.
Check out Banned Books Week for more information about the whole week nationwide, and check out the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund for more information on comics, censorship, and how to join the fight!
The Public Library of Brookline
361 Washington Street Brookline, MA 02445
Maris Wicks (Primates) and Zack Giallongo (Broxo) talk about their graphic novels on Wednesday July 30, 2014 at 7:00 PM! Both will appear on August 8-10th at Boston Comic Con at tables C321 (Wicks) and D423 (Giallongo)!
Barnes & Noble
1 Worcester Rd, Framingham, MA 01701
The Maine Comics Arts Festival (MeCAF) has released their programming schedule for the 2014 show to be held on Sunday May 18th:
10:00 – 1:00: Book signing with Big Nate creator Lincoln Peirce (in the main hall)
10:30 – Unusual comics! Choose your own adventure! with Jon Chad
How does your comic become a book? If you thought that a book is just made up of a cover, back cover, and all the business in-between, think again! Explore a variety of folding and book construction techniques and make your own unfolding, choose-your-own-adventure minicomic!
11:30 – DRAW ON YOUR CREATIVITY:
Comic book artist Jay Piscopo invites students to try their hand at cartoon art and demonstrates how anyone can learn to draw and create comics. Using simple geometric shapes, Jay teaches kids how to build anatomy and perspective to create art that tells a story. Stand by for adventure with this interactive workshop! Watch a short video clip at the link…
12:30 – Ben Hatke: The Three Secrets of Comics:
Discussing images in a narrative, gesture, and drawing from life, Ben Hatke (Zita the Spacegirl) talks about three secrets behind making amazing comics.
1:30 – Iron Cartoonist:
This competition will determine the MeCAF Iron Cartoonist Champion! Watch as three talented cartoonists draw against the clock, with suggestions from the audience. Special guest judges will determine the winner.
2:30 – A conversation with Jimmy Gownley and Kazu Kibuishi:
Join us as we discuss comics with Jimmy Gownley (The Dumbest Idea Ever, Amelia Rules) and Kazu Kibuishi (Amulet, Flight).
3:30 – Panel discussion about gender and race issues in current comics, with artists Melanie Gillman, Kori Handwerker and others.
The Maine Comics Arts Festival will be held in Portland, ME on Sunday, May 18, 2014. Featuring over 100 comics writers, artists and publishers, this will be a celebration of the comics art form. This year’s show will be at the Portland Company Complex (58 Fore Street, Portland, Maine 04101)! There will be everyone from mini comics publishers to seasoned professionals. There will be comic book writers and artists, gag cartoonists, newspaper cartoonists, web comics creators and more. The guests will have their own work available for sale. Some people will be doing sketches and selling original artwork. Others will have t-shirts, buttons and posters. All of them have one thing in common… a love of comics. Featured guests include: Kazu Kibuishi, Sean Murphy, Jimmy Gownley, Ben Hatke, James Sturm, Shelli Paroline, Braden Lamb, Joe Quinones, Zack Giallongo, Maris Wicks, and many more!
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Zack Giallongo, Rich Maurizio, Jeff Shultz, and Bob Noberini sign at That’s Entertainment on Saturday May 3rd for Free Comic Book Day!
244 Park Ave, Worcester, MA 01609