A pop culture archeologist, a screenwriter, a graphic novelist and a “cakelustrator,” who uses cake as her medium, are among the creative and talented artists and authors expected to present this July at the Mazza Museum at the University of Findlay. From July 17-19, the Mazza Summer Conference will feature a total of nine keynote presentations from artists and authors for this three-day exchange of inspiration and reading enthusiasm.
“We’ve made some changes to the schedule this year that we think will better serve everyone,” said Museum Director Ben Sapp. “We’re excited to be able to offer an amazing lineup of keynote artists as well as programming that will inspire educators inside and outside the classroom.”
In addition to the keynote sessions, participants in the conference will attend breakout sessions about teaching techniques, trends in children’s literature, reading comprehension, visual literacy and more. A continental breakfast is included for each day as well as a chance to win door prizes. Up to three hours of graduate or undergraduate credit may also be earned. Registration information for the 2017 Mazza Summer Conference can be found on the website.
Keynote sessions for this year’s conference feature:
Marc Tyler Nobleman – Marc Tyler Nobleman, author of more than 70 books, is a pop culture archeologist. His books explore the creation of Superman, Batman and other pop icons including Bill the Boy Wonder: The Secret Co-Creator of Batman and Boys of Steel: The Creators of Superman as well as other titles: Brave Like My Brother and The Chupacabra Ate the Candelabra. Check out his blog: noblemania.blogspot.com
Renata Liwska – Originally from Warsaw, Poland, Renata Liwska received awards from the Society of Illustrators Original Art 2008 Children’s Exhibition, the Applied Arts Magazine 2009 Illustration Award and others for her first book as author and illustrator, Little Panda. Her “old school” style of beginning with a sketchbook can also be found in New York Times bestseller The Quiet Book by Deborah Underwood, and many others. Visit www.renataliwska.com.
Jane Dyer – What Jane Dyer loved most as a child was creating imaginary worlds. Her more than 50 books for children include New York Times bestsellers Cookies: Bite-Size Life Lessons by Amy Kraus Rosenthal, Time for Bed by Mem Fox, I Love You Like Crazy Cakes by Rose A. Lewis and Talking Like the Rain: A Read-To-Me Book of Poems. Learn more about her at www.janedyerchildrensbooks.com.
Barbara McClintock – Winner of five New York Times Best Books awards and numerous other awards, Barbara McClintock is inspired by her childhood, family and friends. Her parents and her son Larson provided the inspiration for many of her books including The Battle of Luke and Longnose, the next book in the Adele & Simon’s series set in 1908 China and A Child’s Garden of Verses. Read more at www.barbaramcclintockbooks.com.
Drew Daywalt – A Hollywood screenwriter by trade, Drew Daywalt’s first book for children The Day the Crayons Quit, a #1 New York Times Best-Seller, led to additional titles, The Day the Crayons Came Home, The Crayons’ Book of Colors. His favorite crayon is Black. Learn more at www.crayonspicturebooks.com.
Jeffrey Ebbeler – Illustrator of more than 40 picture books, Jeffrey Ebbeler brings words to life through pictures. In addition to writing and illustrating the monthly comic series “Nestor’s Dock” for Ask magazine, he has also done paper engineering for pop-up books, created large scale murals for schools and churches, and sculpted puppets and preformed for several marionette theaters. Find him on the web at www.jeffillustration.com.
Brian Lies – Known for New York Times bestselling bat series, Bats at the Beach, Bats the at Library, Bats at the Ballgame and Bats in the Band, Brian Lies began his illustration career creating Op/Ed illustrations for numerous publications including the Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune and Christian Science Monitor. His work has garnered numerous awards and can be found in galleries around the country. Visit www.brian-lies.squarespace.com.
Akiko White – Akiko White paints in oils with a palette knife technique. She also paints with watercolor and makes cakelustrations (illustrations using cake as the medium) for her children’s book illustrations. In 2013, she won the SCBWI Tomie dePaola award with an illustration made with cake. Find out more at www.akikowhite.com.
Matt Phelan – Illustrator of more than 20 books, Matt Phelan is also the author and illustrator of the graphic novel The Storm in the Barn (winner of the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction), Around the World and Bluffton. His latest book is a graphic novel retelling of Snow White. Learn more at www.mattphelan.com.
More details on the Mazza Museum’s 2017 Summer Conference can be found on the website.
Founded in 1982, the Mazza Museum at the University of Findlay celebrates the joy of storytelling through the original art of picture books using education, exhibits, events and artist visits. Giving world-renowned artists a platform to share their creative process, the Museum invites people to explore the art within the story through its programs for children, adults and educators. As a unique learning and development opportunity, Mazza enhances the academic experience for all students at the University as they pursue meaningful lives and productive careers. The Museum, located in the Virginia B. Gardner Fine Arts Pavilion, is home to more than 11,000 pieces of artwork from picture books, making it one of the largest and most diverse collections of picture book art in the world. For information on events, tours and more visit www.mazzamuseum.org.