Massive gatherings are prohibited in most places around the world, so companies are forced to hold all their events virtually. There are a lot of pros and cons that come with that, but undoubtedly one of the best pros is being able to connect with people that far away.
pixiv and Wacom are hoping to do exactly that with their upcoming livestream art event.
Introducing Drawfest, a Three-Day Drawing Festival
Online art community pixiv and graphics tablet manufacturer Wacom are joining forces to present ‘Drawfest,’ a virtual, interactive drawing festival for artists all around the world. The self-described “massively multi-artist online” (MMO) event will take place this May 21-23 via YouTube Live, in both English and Japanese.
pixiv and Wacom will hold an online, interactive drawing live-streaming festival "Drawfest" in May 21-23 PDT!
In the event, we learn and draw many things altogether with worldwide artists as emcees.
— pixiv English (@pixiv_en) April 15, 2021
Drawfest consists of a series of eight livestream programs featuring online workshops, lectures, and group drawing sessions hosted by internationally recognized illustrators, animators, and comic artists. The full event schedule and list of emcees is on the website.
The team behind Drawfest describes art as universal—that it can help break down the barriers presented by regional and language differences. Its power to do so seems to be part of why the event was conceptualized.
Drawfest was born from the idea of providing an online event with simultaneous Japanese-English interpretation, to give creators the chance to get together with other like-minded artists from all over the world so that everyone could interact and draw together.
Surprisingly enough, Drawfest seems to have flown under the radar somewhat. Sure, pixiv’s userbase consists mostly of Japanese users, but Drawfest’s sponsors are all huge names in the global art community (Adobe, Netflix, Hololive English, Wit Studio, and NetEase Games), so you’d think there would be more talk about it.
What Is pixiv?
pixiv is an online art community created by Japanese developers Takahiro Kamitani and Takanori Katagiri. As of April 2020, pixiv has over 50 million registered users that have uploaded over 100 million submissions, and gets over 3.7 billion page views every month.
By providing a space where creators can post their works and fans can give feedback to the artists, we hope to create a fun environment for anyone who enjoys creative activities. (…) There are other platforms that enable you to post your works, but on pixiv we emphasize the importance of making creative activities more enjoyable and finding works that suit your interest.
The website’s first and main language is Japanese, but its growing popularity prompted the addition of more display languages: English, Chinese, French, Korean, Russian, and Thai. pixiv said in an announcement that 40 percent of all active users are from countries other than Japan.
Apply for Drawfest Now!
Everyone who draws is allowed to attend Drawfest, though pixiv and Wacom ask you to “apply” instead of “register,” implying that there is some sort of screening process for artists that wish to participate.
On the Google form provided, you’re asked for information like what graphics tablet and program you primarily use for art, or whether you’ve drawn for work before. It’s also stated that the form will close after a “certain number” of artists have applied.
So if you hope to attend Drawfest, we recommend applying as soon as possible!