Diego Comic-Con 2005 (July 13-17)
as promised, here's my report of this year's big
(my beloved wife) and I left Bellingham on Saturday
July 9th, our SUV
packed to the brim with books and collectibles. I
was already suffering from sheer exhaustion before
we left, having been on a constant 7-day weekly
work schedule since the beginning of June. A couple
weeks earlier, the couple who were going to help
us at the booth had to cancel the trip because
of a medical issue. Without our anticipated help,
we knew this would be an exhausting convention.
drove to LA in record time and arrived at my niece's
by Sunday night. My niece was not well and had
to go for surgery on Wednesday July 13th (the day
Comic-Con setup and Preview Night).
We were all
stressed out about that. Nancy decided
that she needed to be in LA for the surgery and
at that point I felt like I was going to burst into
left for San Diego to set up a day earlier than usual
so Nancy could be back in LA on Wednesday. Setting
up on Tuesday was actually quite nice and went without
a glitch. Nancy went back to LA on Wednesday morning
and I managed to recruit a couple of swell people
to help me (thanks Maryann and Larry) with the booth
on Wednesday's Preview Night. My
niece's surgery went very well, to everyone's relief,
and Nancy headed back to San Diego on Wednesday night.
had the good fortune of staying with our friends
Maryann and Nick who live in a high rise about 5-minute
walk from the Convention Center. It was super nice
of them to invite us. We met their grand kids who
were really cute. Maryann and Nick are very pleasant
and staying with them was delightful.
July 14th was the official opening. There was a nice
flow of people all through the day and things went
the afternoon, I went to a memorial for my friend
Bill Liebowitz, owner of Golden
Apple Comics in Los
Angeles, who passed away earlier this year. It was
a very moving event where several people related
their personal stories about the Big Kahuna. Bill
is clearly missed in the industry that he was such
a huge part of. It was good to see Sharon (Bill's
wife) looking well and hearing how his son Ryan is
now carrying the torch.
night we went to the Scholastic Party.
We enjoyed chatting up with industry friends Terry
Kibuishi and a few others. We got a nice gift
bag with lots of great books including a color version
of the second tome of Jeff Smith masterful epic Bone.
Bone looks great in color! Jeff looked like he was
having a good time.
we headed to the Baby
Tattoo Books party which was fun as well. There
we chatted with publisher Bob Self, Attaboy (who's
publishing a really eye popping magazine called Hi-Fructose), Gris
Grimly and Crab
Friday onward, everything
became sort of a blur.
I had a constant line of people and my exhaustion
Saturday was the
I signed and sketched for 8 hours straight and
only took a 15-minute break for lunch. My hand was
By Sunday, I had a mounting fever, and was on medication.
I just wanted to make it through the day.
back, I can't say that this year was a lot of fun
but it was certainly our most successful year in
terms of sales.
we were short handed I virtually had no time to walk
around the hall. Except for a few books I bought
Plant Comic Art and Mile
High Comics, I did
virtually no shopping.
gift and samples from so many talented artists.
Way too many to list but here are some of the
caught me eye:
nice series by Otis
Frampton called Oddly
I haven't had the chance to read it yet but I'm impressed
with the slick package and the fun cartoony art.
Otis gave me his rendition of an "Insanely Twisted
Rabbit" which I'll be posting in the fan
art section in the coming
pal Royden Lepp (who
did a ZED pinup in issue #5)
has a new series entitled David. He gave me the
issue at the Comic-Con and I was impressed. This
is the story of David from
the biblical text adapted in sequential form. Royden
of talent and
he showcases it nicely here. I like his rough and
animated drawings. The storytelling is clear and
fluid. The coloring is nicely understated with an
is top notch
with cardstock cover and slick paper. Nice job.
Matte came by my table and gave me a
copy of Horus:
Volume One which compiles
her three mini-comics into
one slick package. This
is a wonderful little book, with illustrations in
the vein of the great European BD artist René Goscinny,
and the story is fun to boot! I really like
Soo's Jellaby is
another book that caught my attention. Kean's
beautifully paced storytelling
and cartoony yet subtle artwork is evident in every
page. Kean is another talent to watch for.
other little book I got which I really liked was
Paper Biscuit "Frogg's Lament" from Ronnie
I haven't had time to read all the text yet but
I love the drawings. They remind me of early
1900's black and white children's
book illustrations. Gorgeous
and expressive like the work of Ernest H. Shepard.
closing, I'd like to add that it is always a pleasure
to meet old friends and make new ones.
Once again, it was nice chatting with industry friends Greg
Anzalone and all our friends from Sideshow Collectibles,
Scott Card, Bill
W. Rozanski, Jhonen
Vasquez, SnakeBite, Bob
Vakalis, my friends from Animation
Nation, my friends from Flight, and many
many more. I guess we'll do it again next
Gagné, July 28th, 2005