SHCHUCHINSK, Kazakhstan – From April 13-18, at seven educational locations in the city of Shchuchinsk in Kazakhstan, 13-year-old author of London’s ‘The Final’ comic, Daniel, gave masterclasses for schoolchildren and students of the Akmola region on the basis of creating this type of popular and profitable literature.
Daniel, the young author of the graphic novel “The Final”, made his first visit to Kazakhstan, where he visited Nur-Sultan, Almaty and finally Burabay. The purpose of the visit was to organize a series of art presentations for young people in the city. The program was organized by the creative residency ECG HORIZONS BURABAY (Shchuchinsk) with the support of the public non-profit organization Eurasian Creative Guild (London). The idea of organizing speeches of international speakers for young people and creative teams of the Akmola region was born during the meeting of the delegation of the Guild with the governor of the region, Ermek Marzhikpayev, who is held in March this year. This is the first initiative of the residence at the invitation of a foreign speaker after the pandemic, and the experience has proven to be very successful and positive!
During the five days Daniel held seven presentations. More than 200 young people, aged 11 to 25 (along with their teachers and mentors) learned the basics of creating comics, thanks to the support of the guild’s ambassador in the Burabay district of Yussuf Krykbessov.
“We were very lucky that Daniel came to see us in Shchuchinsk. I was moved that our children were trying hard to learn English, they tried to talk to Daniel! We are finally joining European models of activity creativity, it’s a very important event,” said Mr. Krykbessov.
The first presentation began at the hospital site of the Higher College of Technology, where future programmers and designers learned the art of creating comics. During the meeting, listeners not only received techniques and tips that Daniel experienced first-hand, but also discussed with Taina Kaunis, Executive Director of ECG (London), about such an important issue: “Why do programmers need comics?”
After that, students from Secondary School No. 6 participated very actively in the presentation, where students from grades 7 to 8 took part, with great passion, in an interview with Daniel. The school principal, Mr. Kuanyshbek Shayakhmetov, expressed his gratitude to the Guild team and also expressed his desire to participate in other ECG HORIZONS BURABAY residency projects with the children. “We are grateful to our guests for igniting a spark of desire in the souls of the guys to create, study, learn and create something new in their lives,” he said.
Daniel continued the cycle of encounters with a presentation at the Arman School of Art, where younger students delved into the technicalities of rendering typefaces and pages. “Daniel held a master class on creating comics, which aroused the interest of children. It should be noted that Daniel is only 13 years old, and he already has personal creative publications on this topic “said the school principal, Ms. Aigul Turguzhina. fingerprints. No less active and incendiary, Daniel held a master class for the students of Gymnasium No. 1. Curious students did not plan to stop him anytime soon, asking question after question. As the director of the school, Mrs. Lyubov Tukacheva, said, it is very important to adopt the experience of more advanced countries in certain areas, as the gymnasium has already done with the experience of establishments of UK education.
Successfully, the students of the school “IQanat Burabay” whose intensive life does not stop for a minute discussed the creation of comics. The listeners gathered in the cinema hall, where the theatrical rehearsal had just ended, so the creative atmosphere surrounded the event from the very beginning of the meeting. And the most daring of the meeting participants even asked Daniel for autographs, so he gladly signed copies of his book for them.
Daniel had an intensive and diverse conversation with the translation students of the Higher Pedagogical College: the students not only enthusiastically participated in the conversation, but also supported the idea of voluntary assistance at the international festival “Voice of ‘friends: poetry and art’, which will take place soon in Shchuchinsk on the initiative of the ECG (London). And the listeners of the latter in this series of presentations, held on the basis of the Rixos Borovoe hotel, were not future talented artists, but hotel employees. “Amazingly, even me, a person twice as old as Daniel, found a lot of new and interesting things for me in the master class,” shared Nelly Filippova, a hotel designer.
Of course, the listeners benefited not only from the performance of Daniel himself, but also from the projects in which young talents can participate, as well as from the comic itself, were personally introduced by the founder and director of the publishing house Hertfordshire Press, vice-president of the ECG (London) Marat Akhmedzhanov. “Often teachers and parents find comics to be something frivolous and sometimes harmful,” said Marat Akhmedzhanov. “But let’s get to the stats. In 2020, the entire US comics industry (all periodicals, graphic novels, and digital editions from all publishers, genres, and channels, plus merch) brought in a record $1.28 billion, or about 800 billion tenge [according to the DTF portal]. Not so bad to win over a billion dollars, is it? At the same time, Comicsbeat has released statistics on sales of graphic novels, comics and manga in the United States for 2021. Judging by this, the popularity of the genre is at an all-time high and sales are increasing. at a frantic pace. For 2021, sales are up nearly 70% and the total number of comics/graphic novels sold for the year is more than 2018 and 2019 combined. Since 2003, the growth has been an impressive 558%. The industry is probably going through a new golden age. Manga has even better numbers – the genre generated 280% more profit than last year [according to Shazoo]”.
The managers of the residence ECG HORIZONS BURABAY and ECG (London) plan to make these creative “business trips” of foreign cultural and artistic workers regular, allowing residents of the Akmola region to familiarize themselves with modern trends in the industries. creativity and realize their creative potential. And a pleasant bonus for all participants will be the final material with a photo, published in the British quarterly magazine OCA this summer.
Hertfordshire Press is a British publishing house which, since 2002, has specialized in the publication of contemporary fiction and non-fiction by authors from the Eurasia region in English and national languages, magazines, guidebooks, as well as the realization of presentations and forums. Additionally, the publishing house focuses on reprinting works from past years, which, despite their enduring relevance, are not currently available in English. Over its history, Hertfordshire Press has produced over 200 books of classics and contemporaries.
Eurasian Creative Guild (London) is a public non-profit organization founded in 2015 in London with the aim of uniting and promoting cultural and artistic personalities from the Eurasian region in the English-speaking world. The main activity of ECG (London) was the organization and holding of festivals in different countries of the world, literary and creative competitions, conferences and other events during which creators have the opportunity to discuss new projects, to present their works, as well as to become familiar with the work of colleagues and have the opportunity to reach the international level.