Nobrow Blog

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Festivals and Frolics

We said that 2014 was set to be a superb year, and so far it has done nothing but exceed expectations. The last few months have seen us flying all over the world, bustling about the UK and buzzing through London to take part in some fantastic events with some of our favourite authors.  It’s been a whirlwind journey and we’ve been lucky enough to see and experience some truly special moments; kids dressed up as Hilda  for Luke Pearson’s book launch at Gosh, a congregation of designers and illustrators from across the world giving talks at Dublin’s expertly curated Offset festival (talks by all our authors and co-founder Sam Arthur soon to go online, make sure you check it out), we’ve had an exhibition of original artwork by Thibaud Herem at RIBA, launched Big Mother 4 by Raymond Lemstra and Nobrow 9 Magazine at Facing Pages in the Netherlands, and, most importantly, published some beautiful new titles!


But wait, isn’t there more to come?

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Nobrow at Angoulême!

It’s that time of year again! The bitter resolve to stave off the booze, quit smoking, take up a new sport or learn a new language has lasted a good four weeks, and now it’s time to shake off the guilt (we’re assuming you’ve been as unsuccessful as us), unite under the familiar canvas ceiling at Angoulême’s annual festival, and celebrate! We’ll be joining some of the biggest and most exciting publishers of the European comics scene to sell our wares and see what’s new. Joining us this year will be author of Map of Days and The New Ghost, Rob Hunter, for dedications and signings. If you’re at the festival this weekend, make sure you come to stand N19 in “Le Nouveau Monde” tent and say hi! Hope to see you there, y’all.

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Imagine Festival at the South Bank Centre


Imagine Children’s Festival is back once more at London’s South Bank Centre. From Monday 10 February 2014 – Sunday 23 February 2014 you can find a spectacular line-up of authors, events and workshops to tickle the tastes of any and every totter. This year, two of our artists will be contributing to the festivities, so make sure you get these dates in the diary.

Thursday 19th Feb, join Ben Newman, illustrator of Professor Astro Cat’s Frontiers of Space, for a workshop in drawing and space defying character design.

Friday 20th Feb, David Lucas will be holding a very special workshop in storytelling and letter writing to stimulate the imagination and bring out the author in you (or your little ones).

See you there!

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RIBA celebrates London Deco

Join Nobrow and  Thibaud Hérem at the home of the Royal Institute of British Architects to celebrate the release of his latest book, London Deco. The RIBA headquarters on Portland Street is the ideal location for the celebration, not only because it houses the best architectural bookshop in the UK, but also because it’s great portland stone walls and magnificent facade features within the weighty, cream pages of Hérem’s Leporello. From 6pm onwards on the 4th Feb 2014, we will be at RIBA celebrating with drinks, signings and an exclusive exhibition of the original art (with the chance to buy)!

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A Very Special Year

(Illustration by Karine Bernadou for Nobrow 3: Topsy Turvy)

2014: The year of commemoration and remembrance. As party politicos in the UK thrash back and forth over who should think what, and how and why, in our efforts to commemorate the beginning of the first World war, Nobrow would like to take the time to remember some other anniversaries in 2014, and let you use your own cognitive powers to navigate your own channels of thought.

So, 2014… 100 years since the start of WW1, 75 years since Steinbeck first published Grapes of Wrath, 20 years since the death of Kurt Cobain, 100 years since the first colour feature film was released in the UK and the centenary since Ernest Shackleton and his crew’s heroic expedition across the Antarctic, 20 years since the first full multi-race vote in South Africa (and Nelson Mandela was elected), and 150 years since overarm bowling was legalised in cricket. Oh, and 5 years since Nobrow opened its doors and set up its office on the quiet streets of East London! (We like to save the best till last).

To celebrate, and really help lift those January blues, we’ll be holding a one-week sale  at our shop on Great Eastern Street. From 13.01.14 to 19.01.14 you can get 20% off all Nobrow and Flying Eye products, including: books, magazines, prints, wrapping paper, posters and toys. We’ve got a good feeling about this year…


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ELCAF 2014


ELCAF 2014, the third East London Comics and Arts Festival, is back! Taking place on June 14th at a special new location in East London, the third festival will again be showcasing the plethora of youthful talent in the comics and graphic art scene in London and the UK. It will also bring something fresh to our locals by drawing talent from abroad to take part in the event, inviting exciting new collectives and publishers from Europe and the wider world.

And the big news?! Wait for it… This year’s artist-in-residence is none other than the wonderful Chris Ware! Three is certainly the magic number as Ware is sure to bring a bit of sparkle to this year’s festivities. Keep your ears to the floor and eyes to the skies for Ware’s 2014 ELCAF poster.

The line-up of events will be announced in due course but for now rest assured that it will be rammed with all sorts of immersive encounters with the fascinating worlds of illustration and comics.

Last but not least, we are now accepting submissions from all you talented collectives and publishers! The deadline is the 10 February 2014, so you have just over a month to show us what you’ve got.

Find all application information here:

Looking forward to seeing who will be taking part this year!


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Coming Soon: Shackleton’s Journey

As the year speedily storms to an end (my, how fast it’s gone!), we’re looking to some of the exciting releases coming out next year. We’ve got a wonderful array artists, illustrators and graphic story tellers set to produce some absolute stunners. One of the first to be released in 2014 is the truly stunning and inspiring picture-book by William Grill: Shackleton’s Journey. Shackleton’s Journey is a powerful tale that details one of the most perilous and courageous attempts to cross the Antarctic during the Heroic Age of exploration. This extraordinary story combined with Grill’s impeccable pencil work makes this a must have for 2014.  Thanks, Will, for letting us have a peek into your sketchbooks!


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Notable Books of 2013

The New York Times has released its annual list of notable books of the year, and we are absolutely thrilled to find our very own Luke Pearson and the third instalment of the Hildafolk series, Hilda and the Bird Parade, is on there. Brilliant news, Luke (and Hilda)!

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Shoreditch Christmas Triangle

As the celebrations of our dear Saint Nick fast approaches, so does the question of what to buy for whom develop from a niggling thought to a painful and persistent nightmare. But before that yearly conundrum rears its ugly head, stop and take a peek at what we have to offer this holiday. Nobrow is taking part in this year’s Shoreditch Christmas Triangle so to celebrate and make this season truly festive for you all we will be holding a series of ‘Lates’ in the run up to Christmas. Each Thursday before the mighty Crimbo you will get the chance to buy your favourite Nobrow and Flying Eye stock at seasonal prices. Whether it’s London Deco for architectural enthusiasts, Wild for the younger family members or a new print for your other half, as cliched as it sounds, there is something for everyone.


So, here is the line-up of what’s to come:

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Christmas Orders

The layers are coming on, the nights are closing in, the smell of sausage rolls that usually wafts from the back of Greggs has been replaced with warm spices and fruity pies. Hear that faint jingle in the air? Like a jack o’ latern to the ears, classic christmas compilations are  filling every supermarket and corner shop near you. The holidays are coming! But before you get carried away with the merry buzz of festive cheer we want to keep you up to date with some important dates for online orders. We’ve put together a list of the latest possible dates so that you can order your Nobrow gifts in time for the 25th of December.

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Graphic Festival at the Sydney Opera House

Time for a travelogue blog post folks! Just under a month ago, Luke Pearson and I made the very long (but, luckily, not too arduous) journey from London to Sydney, Australia for the Graphic Festival at the Sydney Opera House. And, let me tell you, what an event it was! Art Spiegelman’s performance, ‘Wordless’, was a highlight. It was a mixture of projected slides, spoken word and live music performed by Philip Johnston and band, through which Spiegelman talked about the very first woodcut, wordless graphic novels by the likes of Milt Gross, Frans Masereel, Lynd Ward, among others. This was an amazing spectacle in the great concert hall of the opera house.

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Nobrow Down Under

People of Sydney, prepare! This weekend, Sydney Opera House is opening its colossal doors and welcoming in a stellar line-up of international graphic artists. GRAPHIC is  jam-packed with delectable delights from the world of graphic storytelling and animation. From the 4th to 7th of October you can see and take part in a whole host of events: from the Australian premiere of Art Spiegelman’s Wordless and panel discussions with the likes of Len Wei to performances from the breathtaking Cinematic Orchestra. And, of course, Nobrow will be there and boy do we have some treats to offer!

This is our first visit to Australia, so if you want to catch all our events, then here they are:

Saturday 5th of October, 9.45am – Workshop: Comics with Luke Pearson. Award-winning artist Luke Pearson will be holding an intimate 2 hour, round-circle workshop revealing his inspirations and method in creating the critically acclaimed Hildafolk series. This is a your chance to pick his brains as he shares the secrets of his work.

Saturday 5th October, 5.30pm  – The Arts of Publishing and Editing. Our very own Sam Arthur, Managing Director and co-founder of Nobrow, will be chairing a panel discussion with Francois Mouly, Luke Pearson, Len Wei and Blood & Thunder’s Leigh Rigozzi. A unique gathering of some of the most exciting voices in graphic arts publishing, it’s one not to miss!

Sunday 6 October, 3:30pm –  Label Focus: Nobrow Press. How do we create our books? How does an idea become a reality? Sam Arthur, will be revealing how we publish our books: from the spark of an idea through to the book in your hands. The event is free but make sure you get there early to guarantee a place.

Sunday 6 October, 5.30pm – An Animated Life: Panel Discussion. From Robot Chicken to a festival of GIFs, An Animated Life delves straight into the all-consuming, non-stop(motion?) world of animation and its animators. Graphic is bringing together the great Chris Mackay, Stoopid Buddy Stoodios, Mark Simpson and Luke Pearson (who recently finished story-boarding for cult classic show Adventure Time). Together, this dynamic bunch will take you through their animated lives in a celebration of the best of contemporary animation.

Check back next week for a post festival round-up. And for those who make it, let us know what you thought via twitter and FB (pictures, comments, anything welcome)!

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Professor Astro Cat has landed!

The wait is finally over! The long-awaited, eagerly-anticipated picturebook by Dr Dominic Walliman and Ben Newman is finally here. Professor Astro Cat’s Frontiers of Space is brimful of information about the enormous expanse around our planet: The Universe.

Newman’s stunning illustrations illuminate Dr Walliman’s straightforward explanations and fascinating facts about the planets, the Sun, the Moon, stars, black holes, white holes, telescopes, space stations… and pretty much anything else you’d like to know about space.

As the cold winter nights draw in, we’ll be looking up at the starry sky with Astro Cat by our side, armed with a better understanding of the night sky that moves above us. Why not join us?

You can pre-order your book here.

For those of you who are as eager as us to get started, we’re giving away a free Astro Cat tote bag with the first 300 pre-orders of the book via our online store.

Science and Space is not just for geeks!? Carry your copy of the Professor’s book and your exclusive tote with pride Astro-cats!



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London Design Festival: Robert Hunter artist talk

This week Shoreditch Design Triangle, part of London Design Week, is hosting its annual celebration of the best of Design in the capital. Artists, studios, shops and showrooms have opened their doors to celebrate London’s rich design heritage. From up-cycled furniture, architecturally designed puddings to the best of contemporary illustration – it’s all going on. Last night we hosted an artists talk by Kyle Platts and tomorrow we’re hosting our second ‘Late’ at Nobrow, this time with graphic novelist Robert Hunter (The New Ghost / Map of Days /, Nobrow magazine 5, 6, 7,).

Earlier this week we printed an exclusive Robert Hunter print ‘Map of Days’ (above), which will debuts tomorrow at the event.  It’s a limited print run of 50, four spot, silk screen-print (320 x 450mm) and will be available to buy for £40.

At this ‘Late’, we’ll hear Robert speak about his work for half an hour or so and have the chance to look through his sketchbooks at close hand. There’ll be refreshments and Robert is happy to sign his books. It’s your chance to hear something from one of our favourite artists and ask him questions about his practice. Nobrow’s Head Book Designer – Mina Bach and one of Nobrow’s founders – Sam Arthur, will also be on hand to answer any questions about our books.

This free ‘Late’ with Robert Hunter is on Thursday 19th September from 18.00 – 21.00 (the talk begins around 6:30) at the Nobrow Shop, 62 Great Eastern Street.

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Nobrow Lates for London Design Festival 2013

From the 14th to 22nd of September, Shoreditch Design Triangle, in collaboration with London Design Week, is beginning its week-long celebration of the best of Design in the capital. A veritable array of artists, studios and artisans will be opening their doors to celebrate London’s rich design heritage. From up-cycled furniture, architecturally designed puddings to the best of contemporary illustration – you will be privy to the heart and soul of London’s art and design community.

To celebrate, we’ll be hosting two ‘Lates’ at our shop on Great Eastern Street with two very special authors, Kyle Platts and Robert Hunter.

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