VanCAF Presents: Comics Classroom

The Vancouver Comic Arts Festival is very excited to announce our inaugural educational day. Happening on May 17th 2019 at the Central Branch of the Vancouver Public Library, Comics Classroom is a free opportunity to learn vital comics skills and practices directly from comics professionals.

This day would not be possible without generous financial support from the Capilano University Animation Department. From department head, Don Perro: “The Comics Classroom Project is a fantastic addition to VanCAF that brings real learning to the Festival. The skilled artists instructing these workshops bring with them decades of experience and will serve to inspire and direct a new generation of talent. I am so grateful that Capilano University Animation Department can help make this project possible!”

We are also thankful to the Vancouver Library for providing space for this in their expanded 8th and 9th floor learning labs in the Main Branch on Robson. These new facilities are an amazing addition to the centre of literature for the City. VanCAF would also like to recognize the City of Vancouver for their financial support in helping to make this event happen.

The workshops are designed so that those new to the medium and those who are more experienced can learn and practice the foundational skills of making comics. Instructors come from a variety of backgrounds, from Russian by way of San Francisco, to Tasmanian, to important Canadian creators. VanCAF provides these workshops free to the open community in an informal setting. Priority will be on an equitable exchange of ideas and uplifting and bringing forward unique voices.

Participants will be able to learn colouring techniques from Tony Cliff and Simon Hanselmann, gag strips with Doug Savage, Inking by Simon Roy and Roman Muradov, non-fiction storytelling with Gord Hill, and a guide to publishing graphic novels with Faith Erin Hicks.

Festival Director, Isabella Laird had this to say about this series, “ I wanted to bring an education element to VanCAF because there are so many talented cartoonists that attend the festival that could share their knowledge. The artistic skills presented in these workshops can be used in comics, but also in any industry where there’s a focus on visual communication. Participants will be able to network with fellow creators, and share their ideas and comics. I’m very excited to start this education series and hope to grow it in the future.”

For more information and and how to register for the workshops, please click here.

And if you have any questions, you can contact VanCAF at

VanCAF Board of Directors welcomes Isabella Laird as Festival Director

The Vancouver Comic Arts Association’s Board of Directors are pleased to welcome the next Festival Director, Isabella Laird.

Isabella is a writer and creator who lives and works on the un-ceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples. Her love of comics began as a child when she read every Calvin & Hobbes and The Far Side book. She took all the graphic storytelling courses she could at UBC to learn more about the art form. Isabella has tabled at Canzine, selling her zines and art prints, and is always striving to improve her skills. Her favourite event of the whole year is VanCAF, which is why she is so excited to be the new festival director for 2019. As a VanCAF patron, she has always loved visiting artists at their tables, and then laying out all the pieces she bought during VanCAF on her bed, admiring her haul like it’s Christmas morning.

For Isabella, the power of comics has always been how its various design elements work together, communicating with readers in a way that no other art form can. She believes comics are a powerful way to for anyone to transmit their ideas and connect with each other. Isabella is especially looking forward to expanding the festival into year-round programming, as well as making the main festival even more fun, productive, and inclusive.

The board is looking forward to working closely with Isabella on more events outside of VanCAF, most notably the upcoming author reading at the Vancouver Public Library on November 5th.

More information on that event can be found here.

Well wishes and new opportunities

The board of the Vancouver Comic Arts Association wishes to express their thanks and appreciation to Andrea Demonakos for all of her invaluable work as Festival Director of the Vancouver Comic Arts Festival through a period of growth and development. This show would not be where it is today without her stewardship.  This past year, we saw over 11,000 visitors come through the festival, a record high number, which reflects the growth of the show, and the desire of local comics readers to engage in a great community event.

Andrea is leaving an impressive legacy on VanCAF, and a solid, sustainable foundation in place for the show to grow into the future.

We are currently accepting applications for a new Festival Director, with festival work starting in the fall. There are already exciting things in progress for the 2019 show, with announcements to come.

Please see posting below. Applications are due July 29th by 11:59 pm

If you have any questions, please contact

And check out Andrea’s exciting new venture and visit her business, White Squirrel  –


The Vancouver Comic Arts Association (VanCAA) is currently searching for a Festival Director. VanCAA is a non-profit organization that supports and promotes the growth of the comics community in the city of Vancouver, British Columbia, primarily through organizing the Vancouver Comic Arts Festival (VanCAF), which takes place every spring at the Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre in downtown Vancouver. Our organization is passionate about comics and its role in contributing to a vibrant artistic community. We are looking for the right individual that shares our vision!

The Festival Director role is a nine-month (September 4, 2018 to June 15, 2019) contract position with an expected workload of approximately 300 hours over the course of the contract. The successful candidate would work from home, and would need to be available for some evening commitments. The Festival Director will work closely with the Board of Directors to manage the association projects, represent VanCAF in the community, and carry out associated administrative duties.

The ideal candidate for this role will:

  • have excellent written and oral communication skills
  • be organized and able to manage multiple deadlines
  • have experience in planning and co-ordinating special events
  • have experience building, developing and sustaining budgets
  • be proficient in managing an administrative computer environment, in particular Google Docs and Microsoft Office Suite (experience with Adobe Creative Suite and and web development and accounting software is an asset)
  • be knowledgeable of basic accounting principles and procedures
  • be an excellent collaborator who is able to motivate and engage with a diverse group of volunteers
  • be a resident of Vancouver with some comics background, but most importantly a passion for engaging with the comics community in Vancouver and beyond



  1. The management of all aspects of the Vancouver Comic Arts Festival operations, including, but not limited to:
  • curating VanCAF exhibitor applications & creating floor plan for successful applicants
  • overseeing event programming submission, participants, and scheduling
  • liaising with vendors, suppliers and venue management
  • recruiting, creating and leading volunteer component
  • selecting and securing the attendance of Special Guests
  • arranging Special Guests’ flights, accommodations and signings
  • facilitating shipping & handling of product from featured guests and vendors
  1. Coordinating with the Board to develop, explore and implement sponsorship and advertising opportunities.
  2. Leading the application and reporting on grant applications with public funders, government agencies, and foundations.
  3. Promoting VanCAF through our website and social and print media
  4. Making ongoing financial decisions regarding budget development, amendments and extraordinary expenses, and delivering a monthly invoice for all incidental costs

Job Type: Contract

Remuneration: $7000

How to Apply:

Please email a cover letter and resumé to with the subject header: Festival Director Application

Applicants from diverse backgrounds and with differing abilities are encouraged to apply. Please contact if you have any questions regarding the position.

We thank all applicants for their submissions. Please note that only those selected for interviews will be contacted.

Closing Date: Sunday, July 29 at 11:59 pm



Vancouver Legends Join the VanCAF Guest List!

We continue to be excited by our range of great featured guests. This latest round brings a couple of Vancouver legends, a featured Fantagraphics creator and our provincial capitals Artist in Residence. A great range of creators from different areas of alternative and underground comics.

Katherine Collins was recently nominated for the 2018 Eisner award for Archival Collection/Project for The Complete Neil the Horse collection published in Spring of 2017. Katherine is a long-time resident of Vancouver and we are very pleased to have her signing at the Festival Table with Pulp Fiction books.

In 1967, George Metzger began serializing his work, Beyond Time and Again in underground newspapers in California. This work went on to be collected in one of the early graphic novels in 1976. In the early 70’s, George moved to British Columbia from the bustling San Francisco Underground comics scene. George has contributed to numerous Vancouver works like the Georgia Straight and Fog City Comix.

Josh Simmons is appearing with collaborator, Shanna Matuszak in promotion for his new book from Fantagraphics, Flayed Corpse. Josh’s collection of horror work features a wide range of amazing creators from the Pacific Northwest.

Lastly, Luke Ramsey, the current Artist in Residence in Victoria, has been creating a beautiful range of work both solo through his self-published works and installations, or through collaborations from his Islands Fold project. In 2015, his first graphic novel, Intelligent Sentient? was released by Drawn and Quarterly.

New Featured Guests for VanCAF 2018: Craig Thompson, Ronald Wimberly, and Steve Skroce

The VanCAF team is proud to announce the addition of three new featured guests!

Craig Thompson is a cartoonist and the author of the award-winning books Blankets, Good-bye, Chunky Rice and Habibi. He was born in Michigan in 1975, and grew up in a rural farming community in central Wisconsin. His graphic novel Blankets won numerous industry awards and has been published in nearly twenty languages. Thompson lives in Portland, Oregon.

Ronald Wimberly is an artist who works primarily in design and narrative. He’s designed several graphic novels as well as shorter works for The New Yorker, DC/Vertigo, Nike, Marvel, Hill and Wang, and Dark Horse. Ronald was the 2016 Columbus Comics resident and two time resident cartoonist at Angoulême Maison des Auteurs. He’s worked with The New Yorker, Dargaud, DC, Marvel, Image, Dark Horse and many others. He’s exhibited in New York, Tokyo, and Paris.

Steve Skroce is a Canadian comic book artist and writer, he began his career at Marvel comics working on characters like The X-Men, Cable, Wolverine, and Spider-Man. After transitioning into storyboarding for films like The Matrix and V for Vendetta he returned to comics with We Stand On Guard written by Brian K Vaughan in 2016, and is currently writing and drawing Maestros for Image comics. He speaks fluent Esperantu and is a 4th level Reiki master.

Johnnie Christmas Returns to VanCAF

Cartoonists Johnnie Christmas returns to VanCAF this year as a guest, with limited appearances.


Johnnie Christmas is the creator of of the graphic novel, FIREBUG. He co-created the #1 New York Times Bestselling graphic novel series ANGEL CATBIRD with acclaimed writer Margaret Atwood. He’s also co-created the critically acclaimed series SHELTERED. He is a graduate of the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY, earning a BFA in Communication Design/Illustration.

Johnnie will be at VanCAF on Saturday only.

Julia Kaye is a VanCAF Featured Guest

Comic creator Julia Kaye will make her first appearance at VanCAF this year, as a featured guest!

Instead of a traditional written diary, Julia Kaye has always turned to art as a means of self-reflection. So when she began her gender transition, in 2016, she decided to use her popular webcomic, Up and Out, to process her journey and help others with similar struggles realize they weren’t alone. Julia’s poignant, relatable comics honestly depict her personal ups and downs while dealing with the various issues involved in transitioning—from struggling with self-acceptance and challenging societal expectations, to moments of self-love and joy. Her new book Super Late Bloomer both educates and inspires, as Julia faces her difficulties head-on and commits to being wholly, authentically who she was always meant to be.

Call for Programming

Do you have an idea for a panel at VanCAF? An interesting discussion on a current issue in the comics industry? A new approach that’s stirring up the industry? Or a debate between creators from different schools? Tell us about it!

The VanCAF team is looking for suggestions on panels, workshops, and other events during the festival this year. If you have something that you’d like to be part of our festival’s programming, please fill out the programming application on our website.

Volunteer at VanCAF!

We are looking for a dedicated group of individuals interested in volunteering at VanCAF this year. Volunteering at VanCAF is a great way to get hands-on event management experience, as well as the opportunity to meet other people who love comics, and help out the folks who create them. Volunteers are an essential part of operating VanCAF, the show would fall apart without them!

If you’re interested, or know someone who is, please check out the sign up form here.

The Salt & Honey Podcast is Coming to VanCAF!

Update: Unfortunately Sloane and Leslie have cancelled their appearance at VanCAF this year, due to personal circumstances changing.


Salt & Honey is a podcast hosted by two friends who happen to be full-time cartoonists, Sloane Leong and Leslie Hung. It features unique insights into the creative process behind comics, interviews with other creators, and insider perspectives on the comics industry.

VanCAF is proud to have both hosts as featured guests for 2018. Leong and Hung plan to co-host a live recording of one of their podcast’s episodes in front of an audience at VanCAF as part of our programming!

Introducing Lucky’s Lounge

VanCAF is proud to announce that we have partnered with local comic book shop Lucky’s Comics to create a new on-site experience: Lucky’s Lounge.

Lucky’s Lounge brings together artists focused on DIY and self-made books, and features artists who are creating new dynamic experimental and inspirational work. It’s a chance to create a space to elevate the voices of unique artists that hold a special place in the comics landscape.

If this sounds like the space for you, and you are interested in joining this area, apply directly to by February 14. Lucky’s Lounge will be curated by the fine folks at Lucky’s Comics.

Lucky’s has been an important and vital voice in the Vancouver art and comics community for well over 20 years and we are very excited for this opportunity to work together.

Boum Announced as VanCAF 2018 Guest

The cartoonist known as Boum will be traveling from Montreal for her first guest appearance at VanCAF! Her slice of life comics give a charming glimpse into the world of parenthood.

After ten years of studies and work in animation, Boum tried making comics and became completely addicted. She is mostly known for her Boumeries, a journal comic, and for A Small Revolution. Her comics are shortlisted for many prizes across the years, including the Bedelys, Expozine Awards, Joe Shuster Awards and Ignatz Awards. She is currently working on several comic projects at once, while also illustrating kids’ books.

Emily Carroll Announced as VanCAF 2018 Guest

Emily Carroll

Emily Carroll

Artist and writer Emily Carroll, whom you may know from her phenomenal horror comics (Into the Woods, When the Darkness Presses), will be a Featured Guest of VanCAF, to celebrate the release of Speak: The Graphic Novel. Emily, an Eisner Award-winning illustrator and author, is also the creator of many popular web comics including His Face All Red and Some Other Animal’s Meat.

This will be Emily’s first appearance at VanCAF.

VanCAF Exhibitor Application Deadline Extended

For everyone interested in exhibiting at VanCAF, the deadline to do so has been extended an additional month. Rather than December 31, applications are now due Wednesday, January 31, 2018. The decision was made to help alleviate some holiday stress from our potential exhibitors, and to encourage new folks to apply as well!

If you have have already submitted an application, thank you for taking the time to do so. You should have already received an email confirming receipt of your application – if you have not, please email and let us know. Please also let us know if you need to make changes to an application you have already submitted.

Acceptance to the festival will be based on a variety of criteria, so please be thorough in filling out the application. The more we know, the better! All applicants will be contacted by February 16, 2018 and informed whether their registrations and table space requests have been accepted.

Exhibitor Application for VanCAF 2018 Now Open

The application to exhibit at the Vancouver Comic Arts Festival is now open! If you’d like to apply to exhibit at the show, please fill out the application on this page.

Applications are reviewed by committee, they are not accepting on a first-come, first-served basis. As space in our venue is limited, preference will be given to comic creators over those in other creative industries. (If you’re an illustrator, be sure to check out the ArtBreakers Market)

VanCAF will be held on Saturday May 19 and Sunday May 20, 2018 at the Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre in Vancouver, B.C. Exhibitor space is available in full-table ($160) and half-table ($80) denominations.

For more information about the exhibitor application, please visit this page.

Comic Creators and Publishers at VanCAF

With VanCAF just a few days away, we wanted to remind everyone of the amazing list of exhibitors we’ll have at VanCAF this year! That includes comic book artists, writers, graphic novelists, cartoonists, illustrators, publishers, and more. For the most up-to-date list of creators at VanCAF this year, take a look at the Creators page. For the full list of publishers that will be at the show, visit the Publishers page. Don’t forget to review the Debut Books page as well, with info on new books that will be making their first appearance at VanCAF!

Some of our Publishers will be conducting Portfolio Reviews on Saturday morning, and all aspiring comic creators are welcome. The reviews are first-come first-served in the Workshops Room C, from 10:00 AM through 12:00 PM on Saturday.


Unfortunately the following exhibitors have had to cancel their appearance at VanCAF: Taneka Stotts, Genue Revuelta, Sarah Simes, Culdesac Press, Leigh Davis, Rosemary Travale, Kurtis Wiebe, Owen Gieni, Kelly K., Craig Arndt, Hannah Fisher.

VanCAF 2017 Programming Schedule Now Available

We’re taking over the Roundhouse this year at VanCAF, with activities in almost every room in the building throughout the weekend.

In the Performance Centre and Workshop room, you can join our exhibitors and guests in their Panels & Workshops. For descriptions of each event and their scheduled times, visit this page.

In the Arts & Crafts room for the first time ever we’re holding Comics Lessons for Kids! From 10:30 AM to 3:30 PM on Saturday and Sunday of VanCAF, our kid-friendly exhibitors will be teaching hands-on lessons for children so they can learn how to make their own comic books. Then at 3:30pm teenage comic creator Dawson Ross will teach a workshop on comics for teens. Click here for the full schedule.

Also new this year is the Comics <3 Games arcade, in room B! It’s your chance to experience a curated showcase of local indie and experimental games. For the full list of contributors and their games, visit this page.

And of course, check out our full list of Exhibitors, comic book creators and publishers who will be selling their wares in the Exhibition Hall and Gym.

French Comic Guests Travel to VanCAF

Comic creators Sandrine Revel and Marcelino Truong are traveling to Canada to promote their newest comic releases, and VanCAF is pleased to welcome them as guests of our show!

Sandrine Revel, special guest of VanCAF on tour from France, is a prolific French creator of graphic novels. In 2001, she won an award for her work for young readers at the prestigious Angoulême International Comics Festival. She has published more than ten graphic novels in France, including of LGBT interest, as well as a successful line of Children’s comics. Glenn Gould, A Life Off-Tempo (NBM) won her the French Artémisia award which recognizes female comics creators.

Sandrine will be signing at table N5 in the Gym at VanCAF on Saturday 3:00 – 4:30 PM, and on Sunday 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM.

Marcelino Truong is an illustrator, painter, and author. Born the son of a Vietnamese diplomat in 1957 in the Philippines, he and his family moved to America (where his father worked for the embassy) and then to Vietnam at the outset of the war. He attended the French Lycee in London, then moved to Paris where he earned degrees in law at the Paris Institute of Political Studies, and English literature at the Sorbonne. His first book, Such a Lovely Little War: Saigon 1961-63, received acclaim in the New York Times, Mother Jones, and Kirkus; the sequel, Saigon Calling: London 1963-75, will be published in the fall of 2017.

Marcelino will be signing at the Arsenal Pulp Press table N4 on Saturday 2:30 – 3:30 PM, and on Sunday 1:00-2:00 PM.

Both guests appear at VanCAF thanks to help of our partners the Consulate general of France in Vancouver and the Alliance Française de Vancouver.

Faith Erin Hicks joins VanCAF guest list

Vancouver-based cartoonist Faith Erin Hicks returns as a Featured Guest for VanCAF 2017! The second volume of The Nameless City graphic novel series: The Stone Heart was released this week as well, and will debut at VanCAF this May.

Faith has also loaned her considerable talents to create a poster for this year’s event, that will be available as print at the festival. For more information on Faith, check out her profile on our Creators page.

2017 poster by Faith Erin Hicks

Chip Zdarsky at VanCAF 2017

Hey there VanCAF fans, did you hear that we announced our first Featured Guest today for VanCAF 2017? It’s CHIP ZDARSKY! He’s an award-winning comic artist and a writer, and you probably know him if you’ve read Sex Criminals or Jughead or Kaptara or Howard the Duck or Star-Lord! We’re psyched to have him visit all the way from Toronto on both days of the Vancouver Comic Arts Festival this year (Saturday May 20 and Sunday May 21) and if you want to meet him he’ll be exhibiting all weekend!

Who’s coming to VanCAF?

We’ve made some major updates to the VanCAF site, including the addition of Creator and Publisher profiles! Why not start reviewing the lists now, to start planning who you want to meet at the show? We’ll be updating both lists over the coming weeks, as well as adding the books that are debuting at VanCAF, which you can find over on the Books page.

Exhibitor Applications now closed

Applications for table space at VanCAF 2017 are now closed. Thank you to everyone who applied! We are overwhelmed at the quality and quantity of applications we received.

We will be contacting all applicants on or by February 10 to let them know if their registration and table space request have been accepted.

In the meantime you are invited to follow VanCAF on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and/or Tumblr. We are @VancouverComics on all of those social media platforms.

If you have any problems, please contact

VanCAF 2017 Update on Festival Dates

The dates for the 2017 Vancouver Comic Arts Festival have changed and are now May 20th and 21st, 2017. While meeting with VanCAF’s venue partners, the Roundhouse Arts & Recreation Centre, we discovered that a miscommunication had occurred during the Festival management transition, and that the venue booking is one week earlier than previously announced, without the option of keeping the announced dates. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause to attendees and exhibitors who have already begun to make plans to attend.

The silver lining here is that for 2017, our TCAF and VanCAF shows are on back-to-back weekends! We hope this will encourage Canadian and international guests and exhibitors to apply for both shows, and take advantage of the opportunity to travel across our beautiful country in order to do so.

On that note, applications for VanCAF 2017 are still open and will remain open until January 7th, 2017. We have already received an unprecedented number of exhibitor applications for VanCAF 2017, so if any potential exhibitors would like to rescind their application for this year’s VanCAF, they are welcome to do so by sending an email to

Again, we’d like to apologize for this change and any inconvenience it may cause. We hope all of the enthusiastic supporters of VanCAF are as excited as we are about the opportunity this provides to create an even more dynamic and unique event in support of Vancouver’s comics community.

Thank you,

Andrea Demonakos and the Staff of VanCAF.

VanCAF returns with a new Festival Director and Advisory Board

VANCOUVER, BC — November 1, 2016 – The Vancouver Comic Arts Festival (VanCAF) is pleased to announce that going forward it will now officially take place in partnership with The Toronto Comic Arts Festival (TCAF). The partnership will take effect immediately, beginning with the planning of VanCAF 2017, a two-day comics exhibition taking place on May 20 and 21 in downtown Vancouver, British Columbia, returning to The Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre.

TCAF’s staff will directly oversee all future iterations of VanCAF, under the stewardship of the new VanCAF Festival Director, Andrea Demonakos. Demonakos, previously of Emerald City Comicon and ReedPOP, takes over from departing Festival Director and VanCAF founder, Shannon Campbell. Campbell will now join the VanCAF Board of Directors in an advisory capacity, alongside new board members Miles Baker and Andrew Woodrow-Butcher from TCAF, Vancouver-based comic creator Nathan Fairbairn and musician/visual artist Jarrett Samson.

“When I heard Shannon was ready to move on from the event she created, I was a little worried that meant the end of the festival,” said Christopher Butcher, Festival Director of TCAF. “It is my belief that Canada needs a strong and vibrant comics community coast to coast, and that was why it was so important for us to join with Andrea and step up to make sure VanCAF will be around for years to come in support of the west coast comics community.”

“I’m incredibly excited to be stepping into this role with VanCAF and TCAF,” said Andrea Demonakos, VanCAF’s new Festival Director. “VanCAF brings together two of my favourite things: the west coast and Canada’s vibrant comics community. We will continue what Shannon and her team have built for 2017, and work to grow, build, and diversify the festival even further in the years to come.”

Shannon Campbell, VanCAF founder, had this to say about the partnership, “VanCAF was conceived as a natural west coast complement to TCAF, a show I have always admired for its commitment to promoting comics of all shapes and sizes. We’re thrilled for VanCAF to continue under that banner, and I personally can’t wait to see what the TCAF team brings to the festival with their passion and experience.”

About VanCAF

The Vancouver Comic Arts Festival (VanCAF) is a two-day celebration of comics that launched in May 2012. The festival features readings, panels, and workshops, alongside an exhibition for cartoonists from across the country and down the coast. Since 2012, the festival has grown from 3,200 attendees and 92 exhibitors to 10,300 attendees and over 260 exhibitors in 2016. Exhibitor applications for VanCAF 2017 are now open at

About TCAF

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival (TCAF) is a week-long celebration of comics and graphic novels and their creators, which culminates in a two-day exhibition and vendor fair featuring hundreds of comics creators from around the world. Festival events include readings, interviews, panels, workshops, gallery shows, art installations, and much more. TCAF 2016 welcomed over 25,000 attendees, with over 600 creators and publishing professionals exhibiting at the festival. The next TCAF will take place May 12-14, 2017. TCAF is presented by Toronto Public Library, and The Beguiling Books & Art.

Please direct all media requests to

— Edited November 28, 2016 to include change of festival dates.

VanCAF returns in 2017

The Vancouver Comic Arts Festival will be returning to The Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre on Saturday May 20, and Sunday May 21, 2017.

Further information about the Festival, including exhibitor application information, will be made available in early November.

Got a question? Hit us up at

— Edited November 28, 2016 to include change of festival dates.