10 conferences to keep the creative juices flowing

Sunday, 29 October 2017

10 conferences to keep the creative juices flowing

We all struggle to get out of our studios sometimes. Work calls. Bills don’t pay themselves. Devoting days to exhibitions, seminars, workshops and even, heaven forbid, holidays can be hard to justify when deadlines loom. But without regular doses of inspiration we’re a fair chance of creative stagnation or burnout. For the thrill- and tax deduction- seekers amongst us here’s our top 10 list of conferences worth planning your next year around.

Pictoplasma, New York

You’d better be quick. The 6th Pictoplasma character art and design conference kicks off on 17 November with a program including James Curran, Amandine Urruty, Edel Rodriguez, Sean Charmatz and Scott Benson. Expect artist talks, panels and screenings of the best in contemporary animation. 

Icon10, Detroit

This illustration conference hits Detroit from 11-14 July next year and combines a two-day education symposium including workshops and a two-day conference with specialist speakers, panels and presentations spanning all sorts of illustration and design niches. 

Offset, Dublin

As if you need an excuse to hit Dublin. But if you insist, this is surely it: three days of ‘key disruptors and genuine influencers’ in graphic design, advertising, animation, branding, game design, photography and illustration. They’ll cover everything from global campaigns to personal projects. Plus there’s presentations, interviews, debates, workshops, interactive demos, creative play zones, a curated marketplace and industry networking areas. Runs 23-25 March 2018

Seoul Illustration Fair

Okay, maybe there have been better moments in history to be planning a trip to the Koreas. But hey, surely things will be tickety boo by next July. If so, the Seoul Illustration Fair is a cracker for illustrators and graphic designers keen to promote and sell their artworks and expand their markets. 

Bologna Children’s Book Fair

This is a must for children’s book illustrators at some point in their careers. The 2018 Fair is on from 26-29 March and promises four days of authors, illustrators, literary agents, licensors and licensees, packagers, distributors, printers, booksellers and librarians – all making contacts, doing deals, debating trends and generally haggling over the world’s best in children's publishing and multimedia. Here’s a sneak peek of the new visual ID.

Frankfurt Book Fair

Either get your skates on or relax, make a cuppa, and pencil this in for next October. Even people who rarely read books, much less make ‘em, know how colossal this international trade show is. Next month, from 11-15 October, the publishing and media worlds will descend on Frankfurt yet again for five jam packed days of networking, conferences and literary and digital publishing discovery.

And closer to home…

Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators

Children's and Young Adult Writers and Illustrators Conference