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Results 1 - 25 of 171
1. GLAS Aims To Become The Next Major American Animation Festival

The festival is set to take place next March in California.

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2. ‘Teeth’ Wins Grand Prize at Japan’s New Chitose Airport Festival

The creepy "Teeth" topped the field of competitors at the world's only animation festival taking place in an airport.

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3. This Weekend in Vancouver: Ken Duncan, Sanjay Patel, Peter de Sève, Jin Kim, More Light Up Spark Animation

Learn how 'The Iron Giant,' 'Shaun the Sheep Movie' and other animated standouts came to be at Spark's annual conference.

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4. Klik! Animation Festival Starts Today in Amsterdam

The festival's theme, "Rock, Paper, Scissors," focuses on materiality, D.I.Y. culture, and the beauty of imperfection.

0 Comments on Klik! Animation Festival Starts Today in Amsterdam as of 10/27/2015 6:11:00 AM
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5. lakes interntational comic art festival 2015

I love how the town of Kendal in the Lakes District puts on a good display when it's time for its Lakes International Comic Art Festival!

One of the highlights for me of comic festivals is when I see young comics creators publishing their own work and experimenting with fun ways to market it. Check out this great stand by Zoom Rockman! (He's been publishing since he was eight years old.)

Here's his Skanky Pigeon character and, hey, a few friends and I have little cameos in The Zoom comic!

When I first saw Zoom at LICAF, he was drawing grumpy faces onto the spuds he put into his Unhappy Meals (shown here). He's @The_ZoomComic on Twitter.

And hey, two more familiar faces!

Here's Jordan Vigay, whom I first met at Animated Exeter festival, and then again at The Phoenix Comic festival in Oxford. He publishes The Red Crow comic. (He's just joined Twitter as @JordanVigay.)

And here's Jonny Toons, whom I first met at Thought Bubble festival in Leeds. His comics magazine's called Crystal Orb and you can follow him on Twitter at @JonnyToons.

And this week The Bookseller reported that both Jordan and Jonny will be contributing to The Phoenix Comic, which is very exciting!

The other awesome thing about LICAF was being there when Philip Reeve and concept artist Ian McQue met for the very first time! Ian's art is hugely inspired by Philip's Mortal Engines quartet, and I think Ian's artwork has helped shape how a lot of fans see that world now. (Here's an early image of the traction city of London.) I had dinner with them and it was fun seeing them be such mutual fanboys. Philip's Railhead publisher, Oxford Univerity Press, commissioned Ian to do several book-related images, and here's his digital painting of a Hive Monk:

I wasn't able to go to their Railhead event because I had an event at the same time (gah!!) but I hear it was packed-out and amazing, with Ian doing live drawing while Philip did readings from the book.

Photo by Sofi Croft on Twitter

Philp and I felt honoured to be asked to features our new book together, Pugs of the Frozen North, for the festival finale show. Here on the Reeve & McIntyre Sofa of Mystery are some top snow scientists we discovered in the audience.

Photo by Jody Lawson on Twitter

It was fun meeting people after the show; check out this beautiful crocheted pug! (Here's a free pattern if you want to try knitting a pug!)

And we even had our portraits drawn by a couple member of the audience! (Thanks to Forbidden Planet for hosting that signing.)

Other exciting things: seeing Skipton-based comics collective Team Ketchup and their second comic anthology.

I think Jody Lawson took this photo, too!

Hey, spot the yeti from when I illustrated the Summer Reading Challenge! So fab!

I didn't have a lot of time to run around buying comics, but I really, REALLY wanted to get copies of the 24-Hour Comic Marathon publications. I took part in the 24-Hour Comic Marathon last year (you can read my comic here) and it was a gruelling thing to do - make a 24-page comic book in 24 hours - but a lot of fun, too, and sort of therapeutic to pump out a book that fast, and then have it printed and ready to sell the very next day. (Publishing can feel so SLOW sometimes!) And here are all six comics from this year, completed the day before I bought them!

Emma Vieceli was one of the artists who took part (and she's also a LICAF Patron):

Here's John Allison's comic:

And Jade Sarson's!

Here you can get a peek of some of the interiors...

Check out this page of Jonathan Edwards (Jontofski)'s 24-Hour Comic, and its pencil rough! He painted the pink tones first, then drew the black ink on top. Such beautiful compositions. Hopefully all six comics will be collected into a book, like the 24 by 7 book that Fanfare published of our comics last year.

Dan Berry and Richard Short also made 24-Hour Comics. But not all the comics that weekend were drawn on paper; Joe Decie (who took part in the 24-Hour Comic Marathon with me last year) painted a comic with acrylic pant on a wall in the walkway between two pubs.

You can see more photos here on Joe's Tumblr page.

The other terrific thing I saw at the festival was The Three Rooms in Valerie's Head, a performance by writer David Gaffney, comics creator Dan Berry and musician Sara Lowes. I had no idea what to expect - Dan gave me the tickets on the street - and it was FASCINATING. Dan, David and Sara were like a band, immersing us, the theatre audience, into their weird and wonderful story. We could see them looking to each other for the timing, and it was fun watching Dan's face as he could see and hear people's immediate response to each panel of his comic on the screen while David Gaffney gave a dramatic reading of the text. There weren't any speech bubbles in the artwork, David supplied all the words, which made it almost like watching a rough animated film. The story was, in turns, creepy, mysterious and very funny.

Like last year, Dan had been in charge of this year's 24-Hour Comic Marathon and taken part himself again. He also teaches, and hosts the incredible Make It Then Tell Everybody podcasts, and I don't know where he found the time to make SO MANY images for this peformance, but it was wonderful. I really hope they take it on tour, to places such as the Edinburgh Book Festival; people will love this show.

Oh, and another highlight was meeting Nev the Pug, together with his devotee Laura Sneddon.

There wasn't a lot of dressing up at this particular festival, but I did spot a few ace costumes, including this Batgirl in my signing queue in the Page 45 room. (Spot my Jampires book with David O'Connell - which started with a Comic Jam! - and my picture book There's a Shark in the Bath.)

Page 45 is a terrific Nottingham-based bookshop, hosted by the hugely knowledgeable Stephen Holland and Jonathan Rigby. And Stephen was having a big birthday! Philip and I drew him a card with lots of cuddles from pugs and Sea Monkeys. (You can read Stephen's highly illustrated review of Pugs of the Frozen North on the shop website. They ship internationally!)

But I wasn't just doing Pugs events, I also hosted a Dinosaur Police event, along with a handy local police officer.

Check out the T-Rex drawings kids made!

I wasn't sure what age the audience was going to be, but we had five-year-olds, teenagers, adults, and it was good fun.

Oo, there's one by a mum, on the right. I love it when the adults get involved and draw, too.

I had everyone create a profession for their dinosaur:

And this guy started turning his Football Dinosaur into a comic. I hope he kept going with it!

Philip Reeve and I also led a Comics Jam session in Kendal Libary. (Here's a selfie with the people who took part in the background.)

The great thing about a Comics Jam is that everyone comes away with a comic, and they all take exactly the same amount of time to create!

Here are a couple of the comics people made.

Hey look, it's Dr Mel Gibson, a genuine comics doctor! And she's brought her suitcase of recommended comics for her own workshop.

I could tell a lot of these kids in our sessions had comic-creator parents; the level of drawing was very high!

And it was great to catch up a bit with people I hadn't seen for ages, including the small-but-very-remarkable Felt Mistress, Louise Evans.

Felt Mistress and Jontofski are such a power couple: Jonathan draws creatures, Felt Mistress sews them, and we all get to enjoy them.

It's Supercrash author Darryl Cunningham!

And Canadian artist Kate Beaton! I love her history comics SO much and she has two new books out: a picture book called The Princess and the Pony and a collection of comics called Step Aside Pops!.

It's Asia Alfasi! I first met her at Hi-Ex festival in Inverness, but I hadn't seen her in years, and I wish I'd had more time to catch up with her. (Can someone remind me of the name of her tablemate? I used to know and I've blanked!)

Great to see Sally Kindberg and Steven Appleby:

In the pub, it's French creator Boulet, Nora Goldberg, Joe Decie, Warwick Johnson Cadwell and John Allison:

My former studio mate Ellen Lindner, over from New York City with her husband Stephen Betts:

Andrew Ruddick (aka Pud) and Emma Vieceli (who often has a hard time getting all her books at comics festivals, and Page 45 had ALL THE BOOKS. Wahey!)

Ed Hillyer (aka ILYA) and Jontofski:

Stephen Holland and Jonathan Rigby:

And, of course, a HUGE THANKS to the red-shirted team who ran the festival so beautifully! Julie Tait, Carole Tait, Angela Diggle, Phil Welch, Katie White and everyone who helped out! And my wonderful hosts at Ash Meadows Guest House, Philippa and Peter!

You guys were amazing. Follow LICAF on Twitter at @comicartfest!

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6. The World’s Only Airport Animated Film Festival is Back — And We’re There

Of course, it takes place in Japan.

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7. Tonight in New York: Animation Block Party Opening Night

The opening night screening is free and open to the public.

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8. edinburgh book festival 2015

Once a lonely hunter ventured out upon the ice
The wind was howling fearful cold
It wasn't very nice
Then out of the swirling snow some tiny dogs burst forth...

Photo tweeted by Tom Gates author Liz Pichon

...And thus begins the theme song of the new Reeve & McIntyre book, which launched at this year's Edinburgh Book Festival!

Now, Philip Reeve and I might get taken more seriously by grown-ups as Proper Authors if we turned up for events wearing black turtlenecks, stroking our chins, and taking turns giving dour gazes into the middle distance. But that's been done before and isn't half as much fun.

Photo tweeted by writer Gwyneth Rees

Last year we came space-themed (photos here), and this year we started with a handy shirt my husband, Stuart, had bought years ago in a market in Moscow, and built up the costumes from there. We thought we'd avoid blue (too much like another Frozen) or red (I'm not Mrs Claus) and I love the yellow on our book cover, a look I'd borrowed from the Japanese edition of our earlier book Oliver and the Seawigs! I seldom think foreign publishers actually improve on our covers, but the Japanese totally did.

Here's our Pugs cover evolution. (And I just saw that our American publishers have gone public with a blue cover.)

Photo by Stuart

Of course books aren't ALL about cover colours and costume. But there are millions of books in the world and somehow we have to figure out how to make ours jump off the shelves. Besides, dressing up makes going on stage much easier somehow. It's like being in a play. This time the excellent Esther Marfo sewed my dress to my drawing of it. Here she is in her workshop:

And here's the icicle tiara I made, with plastic soda bottles, a comb, scissors, a candle and a glue gun.

You can learn how to do almost anything on the Internet. Here's a tutorial I adapted to make the tiara. It was a lot of fun to make, and not too tricky, after I'd messed up the first couple icicles.

And my Aunt Joy just happened to give me this dog-paw necklace on my recent trip to the USA, so thank you, Auntie! Selfie with Stuart in our Edinburgh hotel lift:

And yes, we did look a lot like traveling balalaika players. Which is GREAT, everyone loves a good long balalaika album, or two, or twenty-two. Our Oxford University Press designer, Jo Cameron, created this terrific album cover for us:

And Philip created a special edition of our standard anti-yeti spray. Very important to take along, when you're journeying to the Frozen North.

Ah, a chance to try it out in the Author Yurt, on one of Edinburgh's most famous yeti, Philip Ardagh!

Hmm... did it work?

Oh dear. Not only did it not work, but it seems to have caused that yeti to REPLICATE. ...Or wait, is that writer AF Harrold? It's hard to be sure.

Printed photo by festival photographer Chris Close

I was thrilled to bits that illustrator Steven Lenton came along to our event and took this Pugs-in-action photo. He's the first speaker in Nosy Crow's Illustrator Salon, hosting its first event in London on 14 Sept (with plans to feature non-Nosy Crow illustrators, too). Nosy Crow's Tom Bonnick set it up partly in response to the #PicturesMeanBusiness campaign to get illustrators credited for their work, and encourage people to take an interest in talking about a book's pictures and finding out more about who made them. You can book tickets to the Illustrator Salon here, and read more about the campaign at www.picturesmeanbusiness.com.

Philip and I can't imagine not bigging up both the writing AND the pictures in our book, and we love how kids get excited when they discover they can make a simple drawing and have it come out well. Here are some of the audience's pug drawings that we got to see when we met them afterward at the book signing.

You can learn how to KNIT your own pug over on my website here.

I love this girl's drawing of me, and Philip and me in our preferred way of arriving at book festivals.

After we finished our first event, Stuart, Philip and I popped over to Blackwell's Edinburgh to meet Fiona and sign some copies of our various books. (You might still find a few signed Pugs books there if you're quick.)

Thanks for the lovely write-up, Fiona! :)

Then it seemed appropriate to pay our respects to Edinburgh's own canine hero, Greyfriars Bobby. (You can read his story here.

But it wasn't all PUGS at Edinburgh, that was just the latest book! I also had a storming DINOSAUR POLICE event to do. Here was the view of Edinburgh Castle on the second morning, from the stairwell in our hotel.

I donned a vintage frock and yellow gloves I'd found last week in Seattle with my sister and met up with Dinosaur Dave, aka David Sanger from Scholastic UK. Dave made a great dinosaur, roaring, rampaging around the tent and falling asleep on the floor and snoring loudly, right in the middle of the stage. Thanks, Dave!

I wore my lucky Officer Brachio badge, stitched by Sami Teasdale.

And here are some T-Rex drawings!

In Dinosaur Police, Trevor the T-Rex escapes from the pizza factory with pizzas still stuck all over his body, so a lot of these dinosaurs had food stuck to them, too.


One of the coolest thing was seeing kids who were repeat visitors, either from previous years or from the previous day's Pugs event. Thanks for coming back, guys!

And I love it when everyone draws, not just the kids! Here's a fab T-Rex tweeted by writer Pamela Butchart. Big thanks to everyone who came along! You can learn how to draw your own T-Rex and more on my website right here.

My one big disappointment about this year's Edinburgh Book Festival was that my event was on at almost the exact same time as Philip Reeve's event with his co-author Kjartan Poskitt. They worked together years ago on the Murderous Maths books, and recently have been doing the Borgon the Axeboy books together, with Reeve illustrating and Poskitt writing. (Poskitt's name also appears as a god in the Mortal Engines books.)

Of course, I pestered them as much as I could before and after our events...

...But I saw this photo tweeted by their Faber publicist of Philip lying on the floor on stage, and was GUTTED I hadn't see it myself.

When we were out and about with Stuart, we caught sight of the bus to Clovenstone, the name Philip borrowed for the land where he set his GOBLINS trilogy.

Go read the GOBLINS books, they're ace!

A few other sightings of writers and illustrators whose names you may recognise... here's writer Moira Young with Philip Ardagh:

And writer Patrick Gale, who hosted us at last year's North Cornwall book festival!

And here in the centre is the excellent person who runs the whole show, the children's book section of the festival, Janet Smyth! I got to meet all three generations! Here she is with her mum and daughter, who was also working for the festival. Huge thanks for making it so fabulous!

Oo, it's the always-super-photogenic comic creators, the Etherington Brothers! (Who are actual brothers and make comics together, which is the coolest thing ever.)

And Naomi Alderman, who writes the scripts for Zombies, Run!, among many other things.

With writer-illustrator Steve Anthony:

Comics creator Jamie Littler, who recently illustrated a book with writer Danny Wallace:

Liz Pichon's Tom Gates fingernails:

Writer Nicola Morgan has done loads of work for the Society of Authors CWIG committee (Children's Writers & Illustrators Group) and done research into why Author Visits to schools are such an important thing in getting kids excited about reading, writing and drawing, and advice on Author Visit fees.

Amazing double-act, illustrator Steven Lenton and Tracey Corderoy (and friends):

Illustrator Emma Dodd:

And I even got to catch up and draw with some of my Scottish relatives! Here's a picture I drew of Eve and Callum at dinner:

Stuart and I were so busy at this festival that we didn't get much time to wander about, but we did take a good walk along the Royal Mile and see all the other performers, which made me feel very normal in my own costume.

Excellent elephant puppet:

Big thanks to Janet Smyth, my Scholastic team Dave Sanger and Sophia Pemberton, our OUP team Elaine McQuade and Keo Baxendine, Joely Badger and all the staff and volunteers who made the festival run so smoothly.

And biggest thanks to lovely Stuart, who read through my Pugs script with me, listened to my ukulele practicing, helped me zip up costumes, helped carry luggage, and generally made the trip more pleasant. My hero! :)

I meant to draw a nice festival round-up picture on the train, but I was so shattered that this was all I managed:

If you missed our events in Edinburgh, we're gearing up for the PUGS ROADSHOW, so check on my Events page to see if we stop near you!

You can read Philip's Edinburgh blog here, and the Bookwitch has already blogged about our Pugs event here.

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9. guardian children's literature festival 2015

For London's very first Guardian Children's Lit Fest, it seemed important to make an effort...

...or at least to MAKE AN ENTRANCE.

My co-author Philip Reeve and I were thrilled to be part of it. The Guardian Children's Book website hosts loads of amazing material in a time when children's book journalism in the major newspapers is very scarce. Emily Drabble and her team have been doing a great job of getting the word out. You can follow them on Twitter at @GdnChildrensBks. (I've done several how-to-draw tutorials for them, including how to draw a Hungry T-Rex, Jampires and a Silly Unicorn.)

So Philip and I brought along our brand new book, Pugs of the Frozen North:

And encountered several PERILS along the way:

But together with the audience's help, we plotted our way through them to reach the North Pole.

Here's a picture we drew right before the event: I drew Philip and he drew me! (It's fun working with a writer who's also an illustrator.)

With the addiction of a giant die, things got awfully exciting:

Sadly, I didn't get a chance to go to any of the other events, but they looked ace. On the way to our book signing, I passed Joseph Coehlo in poetry mid-flow:

And I'd seen on social media that Paul Stickland had been preparing to paint a giant dinosaur:

Photo by Paul Stickland

And I was just about to jump in and paint with him...

Photo by Paul Stickland

... but then I was whisked away, back into the sky. (Thanks for the photo, Paul!) I think Paul's posted a video somewhere of the giant T-Rex he drew; it was pretty awesome.

Photo by Paul Stickland

...Back in the sky, where I was met by my trusty steed, the Dartmoor Pegasus. Ha ha, I just had to share this one, posted by Mathew Tobin (@Mat_at_Brookes on Twitter, GrimResistance on Reddit):

Big thanks to the Guardian team, to Emily, to everyone who came along, to OUP publicist Sarah Howells, and to Stuart for carrying ukuleles, blowing up the giant die and being generally fabulous.

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10. Festival by Pixelatl Director José Iñesta: “Animation Can Change the Fate of Mexico”

The director of Mexico's leading animation conference speaks with "Cartoon Brew" about the future of Mexican animation.

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11. Don Hertzfeldt’s ‘World of Tomorrow’ Leads Fantoche 2015 Awards

Don Hertzfeldt continues his winning streak in Switzerland.

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12. Snoozefest – Perfect Picture Book Friday

Title: Snoozefest Written by: Samantha Berger Illustrated by: Kristinya Litten Published by: Dial Books for Young Readers, 2015 Themes/Topics: Sloths, sleep, festivals Suitable for ages: 3-7 Opening: In the center of Snoozeville, dwells the wee one,                   … Continue reading

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13. Festival Report: In the Midst of Crisis, Animasyros Propels Greek Animation Industry

Greece doesn't have much of an animation industry, but Animasyros aims to change that. Cartoon Brew reports from Greece on what their animation industry looks like today.

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14. While NY Geeks Out Next Weekend, So Cal Goes Punk

Not going to NYCC this year? Sure you could spend hours hunched over the computer waiting for the latest news to come out of the Javits center or if you like a little punk rock with your reading you can spend that Saturday enjoying a full day of art, literature, and music in San Bernardino CA […]

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15. stratford-upon-avon and space suits

This weekend, the Reeve & McIntyre Roadshow hit the home of England's greatest playwright at Stratford-upon-Avon Literary Festival! (It's also where Shakespeare lived...)

Here I am, back in the blue wig and flight cap for Cakes in Space shenanigans with the festival's director Annie Ashworth and one of our top-level space cadets from Oxford University Press, Elaine McQuade.

These kinds of events are usually pleasant, but working together as a team on books with Reeve makes them loads of fun. We were pleased to see that while we were busy at the festival, The Guardian ran an article on co-author teams, with a good emphasis on illustration and comics:

And Reeve and I got a mention, hurrah! Thanks, Imogen Russell Williams!

Speaking of all things space-themed on May the Fourth (be with you), Philip's just written a blog on Star Wars and why it's been such a big influence on his work:

(And if you're looking for more good Star Wars reading material, check out these models cut from single sheets of paper.)

But back to Stratford Lit Fest! One of the best things about a festival is when we hear afterward how people in the audience have been inspired to go away and make their own drawings and stories. Philip and I led them in drawing Pilbeam the robot and a killer cake, and a girl named Erin went away and started her own Pilbeam-inspired comic! Yay! I hope she keeps going with it. (Thanks to @KathrynEMarsh for tweeting it.)

While we were in town, Philip could feel the bard looking down over not one, but both of his shoulders:

And he signed copies of the Uncorrected Proof edition of his new book, RAILHEAD, which is coming out about the same time this September as our Pugs of the Frozen North book.

One of the fun things about a festival is getting to meet other authors. (In fact, it's how I met Philip, at the Edinburgh book fest.) Here's Philip getting served his asparagus starter on a plank, with a bit of fake grass, next to Elaine and Professor David Crystal.

We got to meet David, his wife/manager Hilary and their actor/writer son Ben Crystal, who worked with his dad to create an Illustrated Shakespeare Dictionary for young teenagers.

Other fab people we saw at the festival: Nick Butterworth! I love Nick's work and studied it quite a lot when I first started out. And funnily enough, he looks so much like his characters, including Percy the Park Keeper:

Here are Ashley Harrold and Philip swapping books in the Green Room:

Ashley, Steven Lenton and Tracey Corderoy all came to our Cakes in Space event (thanks so much!) but I didn't manage to snap a picture of Steve before he had to run and catch his train. But here's his fab co-author Tracey, with some of their charaters:

A quick hello with Chris Riddell:

And somehow I entirely missed seeing the marvelous Neill Cameron, but here's a photo tweeted by the festival. (Hope to catch you next time, Neill!!) He's come straight from taking part in the Phoenix Fest in Oxford, which sounded amazing. (Check out some of the tweets from that festival here!)

Big thanks to Annie and her team which made the festival run so smoothly! I hope lots of people went away inspired.

And I went back home to Stuart, and we spent a day in Kent visiting the bluebells and eating wild garlic. (Whiffy!)

I promise no bluebells were harmed in the making of this photo.

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16. Festival Call for Entries: Festival by Pixelatl, Corfu, New Chitose Airport Festival

Three new calls for entries from Cuernavaca, Mexico; Hokkaido, Japan; and Corfu, Greece.

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17. Festival Report: Pictoplasma 2015, Where Character Is King

Cartoon Brew's European correspondent reports from an art event that emphasizes characters above all else. But is that a good thing?

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18. South African Artists Are Drawing Attention With ‘Kariba’ Proof-of-Concept Trailer

A small team of Cape Town-based artists are set to pitch their feature film at Annecy.

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19. dinosaur police: hay festival 2015

I had my first Dinosaur Police event yesterday, at the Hay Festival in Wales! And I got to wear my brand-new dinosaur-inspired hat! My sculptor friend, Eddie Smith created it (the same guy who helped me build the giant Seawig and talking cake hat), and my local tailor, Esther Marfo, made the dress. (Oh, and I made the book!)

This photo's by Jay Williams for Telegraph Books, and I was awfully excited to be included in the gallery between Pam Ayres and Virginia McKenna, both of whom I got to meet in the Green Room. Here's a doodle of my awesome Scholastic UK publicist, Dave Sanger, bravely helping me on stage to lead the audience in a very rousing rendition of the Dinosaur Police SONG. It might not have been the most tuneful number on the day, but we all sang it with great gusto. (Thanks, Philip Reeve, for writing the lyrics, and Sarah Reeve, for teaching me some ace uke chords to play with it!)

Here's Dave, sheltering from the rain under the umbrella of my enormous hat. Oh... and I have some exciting news about David!

Not only is he a fab publicist, but he's signed a book deal with Quercus for a book for adults, All Their Minds in Tandem, coming out next spring. Yay, Dave! I can't wait to read it.

So for our event, we did some drawing, and some roaring, comics, and general mucking about.

I showed everyone my way of drawing Trevor the T-Rex, and here's one of the drawings from a girl in the audience named Grace. We discussed various possible dinosaur professions, and this one's a dinosaur astronaut. (Here are some guides on my website to drawing dinosaurs, if you want to have a try.)

And it wasn't just people in Wales drawing dinosaurs; here's a picture tweeted in from South America of Inspector Sarah Tops at the same time by Mercedes Ortiz!

And then I got to sign and draw in lots of books. Thanks so much, everyone who came along! (Photo tweeted by Steph Roundsmith at @kidsrwreview.)

Big thanks to the other Sarah, who managed our event, and Glyn Morgan (@GR_Morgan), who was working another event but made me feel very famous by pulling me aside for a photo to tweet.

Actually, a lot of us had fun with the hat. Here are authors Ed Vere, Holly Smale and Tom Moorhouse.

I only had time to go to one event, so I went to see Holly give a talk with Megan Farr and Arabella Weir. Holly and Arabella have both written stories about teenage girls very much like they were as teenagers, and it was kind of funny because I think it they'd met each other as teenagers, they would have loathed each other. Since they're both grown-ups now, they can talk about these things in a friendly sort of way, but I think the audience could still feel the undercurrent of their semi-fictional teenage selves at war. (Which made everything way more interesting than if they'd been very similar.)

The most surprising question actually came from a child in the audience, who said: "You're both obviously very intelligent women. So why are you writing books for children?" (Cue a big intake of breath from several people up front and in the audience who make books for children.) Holly and Arabella answered it well, saying that it can be even harder to write for children, because children don't let writers hide behind unnecessary literary nonsense: either a story works for them, or it doesn't. In fact, Holly didn't even set out to write for children. She made the Geek Girl protagonist 15 years old, and that's what made the editor decide it was a children's book. Both Arabella and Holly said they never dumb down allusions and jokes because they're writing for kids, and Holly pointed to Shakespeare references in her stories.

Both writers said it's harder to make people laugh than cry, which I very much agree with. It reminded me of a line tweeted recently by Ewa SR:

Being funny doesn't mean being dizzy or less talented, on the contrary, it takes more skill.

Another thing that takes a whole lot of skill is moderating talks. Big cheers to people who moderated MANY talks, including Daniel Hahn (who was compere for 18 talks during the festival!) and the Telegraph Book's Martin Chilton, who also had to read a whole lot of books and ask a lot of good questions. Here's Martin, looking lovely in the dino hat. (And yes, he DID suddenly sprout a lavish blond fringe.)

I was sad to miss illustrator Jamie Littler's event with Danny Wallace, but I hear it was a storming success. (Here he is, with the newspaper rose we were all given.)

One of the hardest things about this year has been not having enough time to catch up with friends. And this festival was wonderful for that. On the first morning, I came out of my bedroom at George House to find my great friend, writer Moira Young, also coming downstairs to breakfast. Yay! Here's Moira, with wonderful Shirley Smith, who lives in the house and turns it into a guesthouse once a year, just for the festival. I stayed with her in 2012 and was thrilled to be back.

And it was great to catch up with Moira and her architect husband Paul. Another big treat was getting to have a girly slumber party with Holly Smale, when she found she wouldn't be able to catch the last train home. After dinner, we stayed up WAY too late chatting in the pink bedroom, in our little twin beds, then came back together on the train. Good times.

And the other people who made it a fun visit was the group of Norwegians at the festival - a 'noggin' of Norwegians as I've decided they're called - and they took me out to dinner on the first night: Helga and John Rullestad (who hosted me in Norway for the SILK Festival) and their good friend Odd Henning Johannessen. (Thanks so much, Norwegians!)

Thanks so much to Mary Beard and Heather Salisbury at Hay Festival for inviting and looking after me, Shirley for putting me up, Dave for being my glamorous dinosaur assistant, the team at the Hay Festival bookshop, Dave and Harriet Bayly for the second night's dinner, drivers Darren and Mark, Sarah, the stewards and everyone who made the festival run so smoothly and be so much fun. And big thanks to Eddie and Esther for all the costume help!

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20. 11 Ways Animation Festivals Can Support Filmmakers

A filmmaker offers a few tips for festivals to attract animators—and ensure that they keep coming back.

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21. As Animation Booms Globally, So Does Annecy

Annecy's Marcel Jean and Mickael Marin speak with Cartoon Brew about the Annecy festival, which begins today in France.

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22. Annecy 2015: Thoughts From a First-Time Attendee

Observations and tips from a first-time attendee of the world's largest animation festival.

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23. DIY democracy: Festivals, parks, and fun

Wimbledon has started, the barbeques have been dusted off, the sun is shining, and all our newly elected MPs will soon be leaving Westminster for the summer recess. Domestic politics, to some extent, winds down for July and August but the nation never seems to collapse. Indeed, the summer months offer a quite different focus on, for example, a frenzy of festivals and picnics in the park. But could this more relaxed approach to life teach us something about how we ‘do’ politics? Is politics really taking place at festivals and in the parks? Can politics really be fun?

The post DIY democracy: Festivals, parks, and fun appeared first on OUPblog.

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24. Fairy Sewing Project

About a month ago I started a project, a sewing project. I decided to create my own costume for the World of Faeries Festival, something I've always wanted to do, but never felt I had the know how or guts to do.

I decided it was time to just "do it".

Although each step took several deep breaths, I am very happy to say I know how to use my machine well enough to sew without a manual, and I am way more confident in using the foot and speed. :) The costume is coming along too. It'll be interesting to see it all come together in the end.

When designing, and as I continue to create this costume, I keep asking myself "What would one of my fairies wear?". I want to personify one of my own creations. When do we ever get that opportunity!? It's way fun!!

Here are some progress shots. :)


Took apart a beautiful skirt to make my own "artist" apron. It will also allow for no cashbox.

A crown of course!

My parents bought me a beautiful costume for the ren faires this past Christmas. I decided to modify the chemise to make it longer and more like my fairies' design.

Apron on the chemise. The idea is to have a half bodice in the future, but for now this will do.
Also, HUGE shout out to my mom, who did all of the hemming and sewing for the apron!! 

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25. Ottawa 2015 Selections Announced

Seventy-nine animated films were selected for competition at Ottawa this year.

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