2018 Ting Comic & Graphic Arts Festival

The 2018 Tingfest

While this festival is an homage to Ting’s work and influence on generations of artists, Tingfest is a rare forum for emerging and established artists to present their work to the public, which is not normally accessible through usual commercial channels.

Centering around a gallery show at The ARTS Project, the festival features a pop-up shop, workshops, artist talks, and more. All programming is free, open to all ages, and held on-site at The ARTS Project. This year is Tingfest’s fifth anniversary –celebrate with us from April 17 to May 5, 2018!

2018 Exhibitors

In addition to Merle Tingley, we are excited to be featuring eleven talented comic and graphic artists from across Southwestern Ontario. Meet all the artists at Tingfest’s Opening Event on Saturday April 21 from 6 to 8 p.m., and stay tuned for when we announce programming as some of the artists will be on panels or leading events!

Billy Bert Young

Billy Bert Young

Billy Bert Young was born in London, Ontario in 1983. He graduated from H. B. Beal Secondary School in 2003, where he was introduced to the drawings and zines of Marc Bell and Peter Thompson and the graffiti work of James Kirkpatrick’s (AKA Thesis Sahib). In 2004 he moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia where he graduated with a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design with a major in printmaking. While in his second year at NSCAD he purchased the book NOG-A-DOD: Prehistoric Canadian Psychedooolia, an anthology of like-minded artists edited by Marc Bell. In this book he was introduced to the work of Jason Mclean and Amy Lockhart, among others.

During his time in Halifax he exhibited work in several group and solo shows. In 2008 he moved back to London to be close to family and to work with local artists that had influenced his work in the past. Since then he has made collaboration a main component of his practice; creating zines, drawings and murals alongside fellow artists such as James Kirkpatrick and Jason McLean.

Billy Bert Young is represented by Michael Gibson Gallery.

Brad Biederman

Brad Biederman

The esthetic of Brad’s work has roots in Graffiti and classical animation.  Whether it be on paper, canvas, indoor or outdoor walls, the viewer is able to piece together a narrative that is consistent and intriguing. Such themes as fantasy, historical fiction and pop culture are often referenced in this work. This accessibility tends to attract audiences from all walks of life. His readily apparent love of both paint as a medium and these themes are displayed in bright colors and movement in his images. The stories that he tells through his work are just as important to him as the physical connection he derives from the action of painting itself and before any paint can hit the wall Brads first love in art always comes to into play…the black and white drawing.

Christopher Dupon-Martinez

Christopher Dupon-Martinez

Christopher Dupon-Martinez, is a conceptual illustrator from good ol’ London. This OCAD grad offers spectators an array of exciting artwork in various palettes and forms, eliciting nostalgia from the viewer. Christopher not only creates visually communicative illustrations, but also lovely comic strips.

Eric Cator

Eric Cator

Drawing and painting from his home in London, ON, Eric has been exhibiting his work in galleries throughout Ontario since 1999, and regularly creates illustrations for film and television. He is currently working on a new set of illustrations for a personal colouring book project, featuring the many bizarre creatures that keep spilling out of his pens.

Jacqui Oakley

Jacqui Oakley

Jacqui Oakley has been a freelance illustrator for over 15 years, working with such advertising, editorial and book clients as The New York Times, Penguin, Rolling Stone, National Geographic, The Financial Times, Vox, USPS, Chevrolet, Miller-Coors, Amazon and more and teaching at Toronto’s OCAD U. Her work has gained recognition from international illustration contests and her paintings have been exhibited in Toronto, L.A., San Francisco, Philadelphia, Montreal, San Diego and Shanghai. After spending her childhood in Bahrain, England, Zambia, and Libya, she now lives in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Jeremy Bruneel

Jeremy Bruneel

Jeremy began his career over 20 years ago after studying at Sheridan Collage in Oakville Ontario. Jeremy is an award-winning illustrator based in London Ontario, whose has worked for a number of magazines and periodicals, including Readers Digest, The Globe and Mail, Rolling Stone Magazine, Geist, Exclaim! and Seattle Magazine. He is now focusing his attention on larger portrait commissions and the music industry, creating art for album covers and concert posters including the Polaris Music Prize and a series of over 50 posters for Call The Office –one of North Americas most historic concert venues– for acts like The Melvins, Jeff Rosenstock, Constantines, Supersuckers, The Dirty Nil, Pup, The Sadie, and Daniel Romano.

Lauren Degraaf

Lauren Degraaf

Born and raised in London Ontario, Lauren studied Fine Art at Fanshawe College. Taking inspiration from the nature that surrounds her home, she is uses light and shadow to show the many types of atmospheres nature creates, and aims to make common plants and animals look almost otherworldly. She uses pencil, ink and pencil crayon, and enjoys employing reductive drawing techniques to achieve a hazy and dreamlike look.

Merle "Ting" Tingley

Merle "Ting" Tingley

TING was an editorial cartoonist for the London Free Press for almost forty years (1948-1986). Over the years, his whimsical humour has attracted a loyal following, not only in the Free Press but across Canada in more than 60 daily and weekly publications. His diverse body of work includes political cartoons, social commentaries, and his famous cartoon mascot, Luke Worm, who is immediately recognizable and famed among readers of all ages. Tingley has been awarded national and international awards for his work and has inspired generations of comic artists in South Western Ontario.

Michael Cho

Michael Cho

Michael Cho is a cartoonist and illustrator based in Toronto, Canada. Michael has painted covers for Penguin and Random House, drawn numerous editorial illustrations for clients like the New York Times Book Review, Entertainment Weekly and the New Yorker and has published an art book of his drawings, Back Alleys and Urban Landscapes with Drawn & Quarterly. He has also illustrated comics and covers for publishers such as Marvel and DC. His first graphic novel, “Shoplifter” was published by Pantheon and debuted on the New York Times Bestseller List.

Sara Froese

Sara Froese

Sara Froese owns and operates a letterpress print shop called All Sorts Press out of industrial Hamilton, ON, where she specializes in producing hand-crafted printed matter using an antique human-powered printing press. She prints custom work as well as her own cards, notebooks, calendars and prints using a combination of illustration, traditional typesetting, and lino block carving.

Scott McKowen

Scott McKowen

Scott McKowen is an award-winning illustrator and graphic designer. He works in scratchboard, an engraving medium in which white lines are carved into a black surface with a sharp blade. He had not read a comic book since he was ten years old when he was asked to illustrate a series of covers for 1602, the graphic novel by Neil Gaiman, for Marvel – for which he received a nomination for the 2004 Will Eisner Award for Best Cover Artist. Most of his work is for theatre and performing arts companies across North America; London audiences will be familiar with his posters for the Grand Theatre. Scott has created covers and interior illustrations for books by Gregory Maguire, Terry Pratchett, Jane Urquhart, Oscar Hijuelos, and dozens of authors who wrote works we think of as the classics. Originally from Ann Arbor, Michigan where he trained at the University of Michigan School of Art, he lives in Stratford.

Willow Dawson

Willow Dawson

Willow Dawson is the author and/or illustrator of several books including, The Wolf-Birds (Owlkids Books), and Avis Dolphin with Frieda Wishinsky (Groundwood Books Canada, Mondadori Italy). Her upcoming book White as Milk, Red as Blood (Alfred A. Knopf, April 2018) by Franz Xaver von Schönwerth, with translations by Shelley Tanaka and a foreword by Philip Pullman will be the first fully illustrated English edition of von Schönwerth tales. Her books have received many prestigious nominations, including The TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award, The Ontario Library Association Forest of Reading and more. She grew up in Vancouver, BC, lived in London, ON for a few years, and now resides with her family in Toronto, ON. Her books are supported by the Toronto Arts Council, the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts.

Photo Credit: Owlkids Books

4Panel Project

As a special 5th anniversary Tingfest feature, we are also bringing SHUFFLE –a 4PANEL Project curated by Ting alumnus Mark Laliberte- to our gallery. SHUFFLE is a collaborative animation that features the work of London-connected artists Heidi Berton, Meg Dearlove, Ben O’Neil, and another Ting alumnus Owen Marshall.

MARK LALIBERTE is a visual artist, designer, writer, curator, and soundmaker with an MFA from the University of Guelph. Curator of The 4PANEL Project, He has also exhibited and performed extensively in galleries and festivals across Canada and the USA. MEG DEARLOVE is a designer and OCAD graduate who has exhibited in galleries both in London and Toronto. HEIDI BERTON is an illustrator whose work ranges in animation, colouring books, and murals. BEN O’NEIL is a recent OCAD graduate, illustrator, designer and curator. He is the official illustrator for Daytrip Magazine and Broken Pencil Magazine’s Online Exclusive Fiction. OWEN MARSHALL is an BealArt graduate currently pursuing a BFA in printmaking at OCAD. Owen’s practice includes drawing, zinemaking, screenprinting, sculpture and ceramics.

2018 Events & Programs

This schedule of events and activities complement the Tingfest exhibition and comic pop-up shop in The ARTS Project’s gallery, where everyone can visit at any time during operating hours (Tuesdays-Saturdays, 12:00 – 5:00 p.m.).

Kids Reading & Creation Zone
Our Kid’s Zone features a selection of graphic novels to read and enjoy, provided by the London Public Library. A creation station will keep the little ones busy with fun, comic-related activities they can create, colour and post on our comic wall.
Families can drop in any time during our operating hours to participate!

Opening Reception
This is where everyone can check out the exhibition of comic and graphic art work we have on display, mix and mingle with some of our featured Ting artists, and enjoy our signature “Tingley” martini at the cash bar. This is a great opportunity to connect with passionate readers, artists, and culture enthusiasts. This event is made possible with the generous support of our Exhibition Sponsor – Heroes Comics.
Saturday April 21, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Free event.

London Comic Jam and Mixer
Join us for a special Ting edition of the London Comic Jam hosted by Runciman Press and Heroes Comics and London Comic Con. An event for all ages, this is a creative event where artists and comic enthusiasts can socialize, have a drink and collaborate on a single comic. You start by drawing the first panel and then slide it across the table and see what the next person adds to the story. The results are always amazing and many times downright hilarious. Bring your favourite pencils and prepare to improvise!
Monday April 23, 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Free Event.

Small Press Spotlight
This is an evening to highlight self-publishing and small press with our guests Christopher Runciman of RP Publishing and illustrator Doug Rogers. Christopher and Doug will share their new releases while discussing the ins and outs of publishing. Hosting the panel is Mike Donachie, a part-time columnist interested in comics. This program is sponsored by London Comic Con.
Tuesday April 24, 7:00 p.m. Panel Talk followed by book signing with new release authors. Free event.

Couplets: The Ting Edition
**UPDATE: For this special edition of Couplets, poet Jim Johnstone and Ting alumnus Megan Arnold are no longer able to participate. However, the event will still go on! Poetry and comic lovers can still come out and see Couplets Founder Andy Verboom and Couplets Alumnus Angie Quick perform.
Couplets is a blend of collaborative writing and performance between two artists who plot an evening of response poems, renga, duets, live interview, writing exercises, shouting matches, and utterly net-less poetic tennis.
Thursday April 26, 6:00 p.m. Free event. Parental advisory – Mature content.

Animation Night returns!
Returning to Animation Night with their latest projects are artists Sarah Legault and Antony Hare. New to Animation Night is Mark Laliberte, curator of SHUFFLE –the latest animated 4PANEL Project, these artists will screen their work and share their insights and creative process with the audience. As a bonus, Mark will share his latest 4PANEL book with our animation audience. The host for this event is Jason Dickson, writer and co-owner of Brown & Dickson.
Friday April 27, 6:00 p.m. Q&A to follow. Free Event. Parental advisory – Mature content.

Wicked Book Illustration!
Meet award-winning illustrator Willow Dawson at this artist talk hosted by Linda Ludke, London Pubic Library’s Collections Management Librarian. London audiences will get a close up with Willow, who will chat about her career in book illustration including her highly anticipated project White as Milk, Red as Blood (Alfred A. Knopf, book release on April 24, 2018), the very first fully illustrated English edition of Franz Xaver von Schönwerth’s dark fairy tales.
Saturday April 28, 3:00 p.m. Artist talk with Q&A and book signing to follow. Free Event.

Unscripted with Super-Illustrator Michael Cho
This is the Ting edition of Unscripted, The ARTS Project’s speaker series in which professionals from the creative industry are interviewed in front of an audience. This time, our featured guest is one of our Ting artists, Michael Cho, whose clients include Penguin, Random House, Marvel, DC, and The New Yorker. Michael will be interviewed by Diana Tamblyn, an Ignatz-nominated cartoonist and artist (in addition to being a go-getter on our Tingfest Committee!). This program is sponsored by the l.a. mood Comics and Games.
Saturday April 28, 6:00 p.m. Artist Talk, followed by a Q&A and signing. Free event.

Dang Zine Workshop!
From the 1930s to the 1990s, zines were a vehicle for fan collaboration, meaningful self-expression, and profound navel gazing. Zines were forever changed by the arrival of the internet, yet they are still influential today. Zines are deceptively simple to make and can be just about anything: everyone’s a zinemaker just waiting to be noticed. Join Ting alumna Jill Clair for a workshop that includes a short history of zines, a discussion of why they are important, and a hands-on introduction to making your own dang zines. This program is sponsored by the Forest City Comic Con.
Tuesday May 1, 6:00pm. Free workshop with materials included. Registration required (spaces are limited!): https://bit.ly/2IF7Slh

Painting and Printing the Pulse of Indie
Sit down with the guys that drive the vibe! Billy Bert Young and Jeremy Bruneel will be here to chat about their art, posters, and all things that rock with host Josh Lambier -the Founding Director of the Public Humanities at Western and the Artistic Director of Wordsfest. Josh will lead a discussion that is sure to include insights into artistic collaboration, bands, and the pulse of London’s creative scene.
Friday May 4, 6:00 p.m. Q&A to follow. Free Event.

Kids Maker Station
To celebrate Free Comic Book Day, join us for a day of creativity, comics and fun with the Tingfest team, including Ting alumna Gabrielle Nowicki. From creating cartoons with paper and LED lights to building a giant fort out of cardboard on Dundas Street, there is something for both the young ones and the young at heart!
Saturday May 5, 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. All ages welcome (that includes moms and dads!). Free creative activities.