Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival 2015

April 20, 2015 in News

AS USUAL, IT seems like a dream now. As with most Cartoon Festivals, they come and go in a flash with so many activities and social get-togethers lubricated by the products of many hostelries that ‘real life’ doesn’t seem real for the first couple of days back home.

The Twelfth Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival (yes – TWELFTH!) went off with its customary sparkle provided by the town’s influx of cartoonists from all over the country. Oh, and one all the way from Australia, Dean Alston, just so that the ‘international’ tag could be legitimized!

The high-quality exhibition at the Bear Steps Gallery was on the theme of ‘Style’ this year and it was probably as loose-fitting a theme as you could get allowing an awful lot of leg-room for cartoony inspiration. Shrewsbury is spoiled by having a unique exhibition like this every year – on display for over a month, not just during the festival weekend.

The Market Square, as always provided a focal point for the public to spot cartoonists and caricaturists at work. The well-established favourites, the Big Boards, were as usual becoming repositories for brilliant works of cartoon art and well-thought out gags. The new concept of ‘cartoon busking’, initially performed by Roger Penwill and Noel Ford and the ‘quick-on-the-draw’ style entertainment of the Cartoon Melodrawma were more ingenious ways of bringing the concept of cartooning memorably under the public gaze. Workshops in both caricaturing and comic strips were on offer, thanks to Terry Anderson and Tim Harries and Guardian cartoonist Martin Rowson gave an illustrated talk on his view of the last five years of a coalition government.

As usual, the cartoonists sampled the hospitality of various establishments around the town and left the paper tabelcoths in the Henry Tudor House restaurant liberally spattered with cartoony inspiration.

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival is probably the longest-running UK cartoon festival ever and its organisers are already meeting to discuss the agenda for the thirteenth one in 2016. Contrary to traditional belief, that’s a lucky number for many people.

Success for Shrewsbury festival

April 30, 2014 in Events, General, News

Shrewsbury 2014: The music-themed festival was sponsored by Procartoonists.org

Shrewsbury 2014: The music-themed festival was sponsored by Procartoonists.org

The Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival, which took place at the weekend, drew huge crowds and was deemed a success by all involved. And it has already been given a major boost for next year.

The Shropshire Star reports that the festival has just won a £2,000 grant for next year’s event. Every penny will count as this year major funding was cut, so the 2014 festival was run on a shoestring – with a little help from Procartoonists.org.

However, as the organisers predicted, the public would not have noticed as the festival was as lively and busy as ever.

Here is a video of the Big Boards that the Shropshire Star created:

And here are more photos of the event, taken by Kasia Kowalska, that show the breadth of activities that took place at this year’s festival.

Andrew Birch and Kate Charlesworth at work on their Big Boards, the most high-profile element of the festival. They're hard to miss.

Andrew Birch and Kate Charlesworth at work on their Big Boards. The most high-profile element of the cartoon festival, the boards are impossible to miss.

Rich Skipworth, who has taken over as festival chairman from Roger Penwill, adds colour to his board

Rich Skipworth, who is tasked with organising next year’s event having taken over as festival chairman from Roger Penwill , adds some colour to his board

For the music-themed festival Rosie Brooks set herself the task of illustrating the story of Wagner's Ring Cycle in a few hours

For the music-themed festival, Rosie Brooks set herself the task of illustrating the story of Wagner’s Ring Cycle in just a few hours

Daniel Kawczynski, Member of Parliament for Shrewsbury, is caricatured by Jonathan Cusick

Daniel Kawczynski, the Member of Parliament for Shrewsbury, is caricatured by Jonathan Cusick

Alex Hughes, steampunk caricaturist outfit was enough to, er, draw a crowd

Alex Hughes’s steampunk caricaturist outfit was enough to, er, draw a crowd

Harry Venning, creator of Clare in the Community did a talk that was part cartooning part stand-up comedy

Harry Venning, creator of Clare in the Community, as seen in The Guardian and heard on BBC Radio 4,  did a talk that was part cartooning part stand-up comedy

Wilbur Dawbarn hosted cartooning workshops for all ages, as did Cathy Simpson

Wilbur Dawbarn hosted cartooning workshops for all ages, as did Cathy Simpson and Tim Harries

The participating cartoonists were: Rupert Besley, Steve Best, Andrew Birch, Rosie Brooks, Dave Brown, Kate Charlesworth, Jonathan Cusick, Wilbur Dawbarn, Noel Ford, Alex Hughes, Tim Harries, Tim Leatherbarrow, Chichi Parish, Roger Penwill, Helen Pointer, John Roberts, Royston Robertson, Chris Ryder, Cathy Simpson, Rich Skipworth, Bill Stott, The Surreal McCoy, Harry Venning and Gerard Whyman.

Instant cartoons in the Square, handed out to the public for donations to the festival, were a feature this year. John Roberts draws Dizzy Gillespie

John Roberts draws Dizzy Gillespie. Instant cartoons drawn in the Square and handed out to the public for donations to the festival were a feature this year

Royston Robertson and Matt Buck add to the instant cartoons gallery

Royston Robertson and Matt Buck add to the instant cartoons gallery

Finally the Melodrawma is a great illustration of what makes the festival unique. A live comic-strip drawn to the accompaniment of narration, music and sound effects. The Melodrawma team this year was Andrew Birch, Noel Ford, Roger Penwill, Royston Robertson, Bill Stott and The Surreal McCoy.

Finally the Melodrawma is a great illustration of what makes the festival unique. It is a live comic-strip drawn to the accompaniment of narration, music, sound effects … and audience participation. The team this year was Andrew Birch, Noel Ford, Roger Penwill, Royston Robertson, Bill Stott and The Surreal McCoy.

Avatar of Royston

by Royston

Shrewsbury 2014: Where to start?

April 28, 2014 in Events, General, News

Dave Brown of The Independent at work

Dave Brown of The Independent at work

Our first report from this weekend’s Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival is a selection of photos by Mika Schick showing several of the cartoonists starting out on the Saturday morning.

Chichi Parish starts with a border ...

Chichi Parish begins with a border …

Rupert Besley starts from the corner

While Rupert Besley starts from the corner

Nice day for caricatures. Jonathan Cusick (front) and Tim Leatherbarrow in action

Nice day for caricatures. Jonathan Cusick (front) and Tim Leatherbarrow in action

You can rely on The Surreal McCoy for an interesting angle on things

You can rely on The Surreal McCoy for an interesting angle on things

Bill Stott gets his board covered in no time at all

Bill Stott gets his board covered in no time at all

We’ll have more pictures and words from Shrewsbury this week.

The Big Boards from Shrewsbury Cartoon 2013

April 24, 2013 in Events, General, News

The huge drawings made in the town Square in Shrewsbury on Saturday 20th April at the tenth edition of the cartoon festival.

The huge drawings made in the town Square in Shrewsbury on Saturday 20th April at the tenth edition of the cartoon festival.


Shrewsbury Cartoon 2013 – report

April 22, 2013 in Events, General, News

Cartoonists_at_Shrewsbury_Cartoon_Festival_2013 @ procartoonists.org

Pete Dredge and Noel Ford cooperate in the Melodrawma at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013 © Mika Schick @ procartoonists.org

A small selection of photographs from the Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013.

Alex Matthews at Shrewsbury Cartoon 2013 @procartoonists.org

Cartoonist Alex Matthews concentrates on his Big Board at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013 © Geoff Ward @procartoonists.org

 

John_Landers at Shrewsbury_Cartoon_2013 © Geoff Ward @ procartoonists.org

John Landers - coping just fine with an eight foot by six foot canvas at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013 © Geoff Ward @ procartoonists.org

 

Cathy Simpson_Draws_at_Shrewsbury_Cartoon_2013_©_Mika_Schick @ procartoonists

Cathy Simpson gets down to detail on a tablecloth during a function at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013 © Mika Schick @ procartoonists.org

There will a longer post with details of the artwork made over the weekend coming soon.

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013

April 20, 2013 in Comment, General, News

You will be able to follow some of the events at the festival  by following the stream below.

The members of the UK Professional Cartoonists at the tenth edition of the festival.


 

 

 

Shropshire Live talks Shrewsbury

April 3, 2013 in Events, News

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival by Wilbur Dawbarn

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival © Wilbur Dawbarn @ Procartoonists.org

The website Shropshirelive.com has a detailed preview of the 10th Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival, which takes place this month (19-21 April).

The piece gives another outing to this fine cartoon of The Square in Shrewsbury during the cartoon festival by Procartoonists.org member Wilbur Dawbarn, which originally appeared in The Oldie magazine.

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013 exhibition opening

March 28, 2013 in Events, General, News

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013 Poster @ procartoonists.org

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival 2013 @ procartoonists.org

The festival exhibition opens from Tuesday (2 April) at The Market Hall Gallery in the heart of Shrewsbury. The live weekend, as you can see above, is the weekend of 19-21 April.

Shrewsbury: Now we are ten

February 27, 2013 in General

Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival @ Procartoonists.org

This year’s Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival is the tenth one. Appropriately, in this significant year, the theme will be “Time”.

The exhibitions start just under a month from now, on 22 March, and the main weekend of events is 19-21 April. But before it all gets going, we thought we’d mark the occasion with a brief look back at Shrewsburys past, to give you a flavour of the event.

Shrewsbury scenes

Caricaturists, live drawing, workshops and exhibitions at Shrewsbury 2012 @Procartoonists.org

Here is a video from the festival made by Procartoonists members in 2010 (when this site was called the Bloghorn).

So if you haven’t been to the festival before, come along and tell us what you think …

The Melodrawma at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival

The Shrewsbury "Melodrawma" @ Procartoonists.org

Springtime for cartoonists in Shrewsbury

February 25, 2013 in Events, General, News

Shrewsbury_Cartoon_Festival_@procartoonists

Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival @ Procartoonists

We are very pleased to be able to list the cartoonist attendees at this year’s Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival.

They are: Huw Aaron, Charlie Adlard, Dean Alston, Nathan ArissIan BakerRupert Besley, Steve Best (Bestie), Andrew Birch, John Clark (Brick), Matthew Buck (Hack), Steve Chadburn, Jonathan CusickWilbur DawbarnPete Dredge, Noel FordClive Goddard, Tim HarriesJohn Landers,  Alexander MatthewsRob Murray, Chichi Parish, Roger Penwill, Helen Pointer, John RobertsRoyston Robertson, Chris Ryder, Bill Stott,  Cathy SimpsonRich Skipworth and The Surreal McCoy. The festival patrons Libby Purves and Alex Lester will also be attending.

We will be publishing details of the itinerary over the next few weeks ahead of the festival’s first events. The main weekend for the live cartooning and other public events is 19-21 April. Get it into your diaries!