Monday 6 – Sunday 12 July, 2020

This week we’re thinking about protest in comics and narrative illustration – at a time when speaking out feels so important:

Monday 6 July 

For the first of our weekly playlists we’re looking back to ELCAF 2018 where we were joined by Chris Airplay! Get together, get inspired and tune in to his Sonic Doodles soundtrack with us – the perfect start to the week!

Tuesday 7 July 

From Tuesday you’ll be able to download a free zine making workshop made by long time ELCAF friend and Hong Kong based artist Charlene Man – with exercises that explore belief, emotion, and what you truly care about.

Download all our Summer 2020 workshops here.

Friday 10 July 

The incredible artist and activist Amyra Leon will be joined by brilliant illustrator Molly Mendoza for a takeover over on our ELCAF Instagram account, including an in-conversation to discuss their work together from 6-7pm UK time.

  • Amyra and Molly have worked together on the stunning Freedom, We Sing published by Flying  Eye books – a deeply evocative picture book for our time; designed to inspire and give hope to readers around the world with Molly’s lush illustrations and Amyra’s lyrical texts inviting kids to ask themselves what it means to be free.
  • If you have any questions for Amyra and Molly please feel free to DM us your requests ahead of their time online!

Throughout the week

We’re spotlighting some amazing ELCAF exhibitors over the course of the month. Keep a look out on our Instagram this week for the brilliant Stella Murphy and our fave print maestros PageMasters.

Our programme is all free but please don’t forget to donate if you can! All proceeds will go to BlackLivesMatter and Hackney Winter Night Shelter


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Tuesday 30 June – Sunday 5 July 2020

This week we’re thinking about careers and education in comics and narrative illustration:

Tuesday 30 June 

We’ve partnered with House of Illustration and commissioned illustrator Peony Gent to create two secondary school packs – an ‘Introduction to Comics’ and ‘Comics in the Curriculum’. These free and incredibly designed resources are free to share far and wide! 

Designed especially for 11-14 year olds, they are a brilliant introduction into comics, and perfect for anyone currently homeschooling or even just looking for some fun drawing prompts. 

Download the workshops here.

Friday 3 July 

The brilliant Lou Bones will be taking over our Instagram Stories this Friday from 2 – 4 pm.

  • Lou is currently an Illustration and Animation Agent for Jelly London
  • Want to know about kick-starting your career? The industry? Being a freelancer? Fair pay? Contracts? She’ll answer your questions on our stories so please DM us anything you’d like to ask beforehand! 

Throughout the week

We’re spotlighting some amazing ELCAF exhibitors over the course of the month. Keep a look out on our Instagram this week for Aleesha Nandhra, Bebel Books and Olivia Sullivan

Our programme is all free but please don’t forget to donate if you can! All proceeds will go to BlackLivesMatter and Hackney Winter Night Shelter


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Free online events for ELCAF 2020!

Welcome to our free programme of online events for ELCAF 2020!

Check back here for weekly updates about our online events throughout July. Inspired by a ‘need for change’, we will be delivering a selection of tunes to keep you inspired on Mondays; free downloadable workshops on Tuesdays; ELCAF live chats and conversations on Fridays as well as takeovers, an ELCAF Zine, exhibitor spotlights and more over on our Instagram!

We hope you enjoy joining us during this time to pause, reflect, create and converse as we explore topics such as; careers and education, gender and race, protest, wellness and more.

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A statement from ELCAF

Our little team at ELCAF has been working hard over the last few weeks to try and find solutions to replace the physical festival that we will miss so much this year. This has not been an easy task, and we’ve been grateful to receive a lot of constructive feedback from our artists, exhibitors and partners over the past few weeks.

In light of uncertainties surrounding the pandemic, we have made the sad and difficult decision to cancel our plans for ELCAF 2020. Weeks of reviewing and revising our ideas and budgets have revealed that some of our plans couldn’t be delivered in the way that we wanted to at this time. There are also a number of changes that we as a team need to navigate in order to work out what is best for the festival moving forwards – and we need some time to step back and do this.

ELCAF, and the team behind it, has always endeavoured to grow the festival as a community platform which represents, supports, nurtures and celebrates the artists and small press publishers that are involved. Despite the obstacles we face, we will continue supporting this community in whatever capacity we can. We also hope to strike up meaningful conversations and reflections through a small but free programme of activity.

Throughout our time working on ELCAF, we have developed strong friendships with the staff at Nobrow and value that greatly. Nobrow is also a small team, made up of some brilliant people, who have been nothing but supportive of the festival throughout these years.

We have tried to answer a few questions below, in order to provide more information and transparency about our decisions for 2020. You can also read our FAQ section for further clarity about our festival and the way in which we operate.

Finally, we would also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone else who has supported us over the years, and in particular, most recently. 

Ruth, Vanessa and Marianna (The ELCAF Team) x


How has the pandemic affected ELCAF? 

The loss of ticket sales and table fees has reduced a substantial revenue stream which we rely on to produce and run the festival. As a result we have been forced to cancel ELCAF for 2020. The team have struggled to find ways in which the festival can continue online whilst still being tenable.

What does this mean for exhibitors and artists?

We are writing directly to our exhibitors, partners and artists, and will continue to support the community where possible through our social media channels. We hope to strike up meaningful conversations and reflections through a small but free programme of activity this year.

Discussions are also underway in regards to a smaller, physical outcome towards the end of the year that will celebrate the hard work that has gone into the ELCAF x WeTransfer 2019 Award. 

What about ELCAF’s funding?

We are lucky enough to receive Arts Council England funding. We had secured ACE funding for two years (2020-2021) and are currently in conversation with the Arts Council about funds lost (work done to date), reallocation of funds (towards next year, or smaller events) and protocol for event cancellations. 

What does it mean for ELCAF?

Sadly this means we cannot deliver a physical festival or a full digital programme this year. However we hope to continue being part of the community, making the contributions that we can, and evolving our ideas as we go – with your support. Most importantly, we hope to come back stronger for the 10 year anniversary of ELCAF in 2021, which we would love to be able to celebrate with you!

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ELCAF 2020 / COVID-19 update

Hello from our small team here at ELCAF! We would like to update you on our plans regarding the current worldwide situation, and thank all of you for your patience, as we know many of you are waiting for additional information. As much as we hope to continue as normal, we are currently working out the best plans and contingencies moving forward with the festival, with public health and safety being our main priority.

We will make a formal decision in the next few weeks about ELCAF 2020, taking into account the venue, dates and current confirmed exhibitors and artists. In the meantime, we kindly ask you to sit tight and pause any travel plans for the time being.

As soon as we know more we will notify all of our exhibitors, artists and partners of next steps in order to make ELCAF 2020 happen and be the best it can be for everyone involved.

Keep safe everyone! Much love, the ELCAF team xx

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Cristina Daura is our ELCAF 2020 Artist in Residence

We’re delighted to announce the incredible illustrator and comic artist Cristina Daura as our ELCAF artist in residence for 2020.

Cristina’s signature style is bright and bold, using elementary colours to marry together the playful with an altogether darker humour. Having originally attended the festival in 2015, it’s been amazing to see her work develop and as such, to welcome her back as this year’s artist in residence. Her beautiful imagery matched by surreal, other worldly narratives have translated perfectly for the visuals and identity of ELCAF 2020.

Cristina has worked for the likes of The Economist, Nike, Penguin Books and The New York Times, as well as making posters and album covers for a number of bands and clubs.

Cristina’s 2020 ELCAF poster will be available in July as a limited edition screen-print.

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