Posts Tagged ‘convention’

My travels – Part 1 – MoCCA

June 17, 2009

Man, have I been traveling a ton this last month. As a matter of fact, I was on the road (or in the air, or on train tracks, or sleeping on an air mattress at a friend’s apartment) for 15 out of 19 days. Just too much. I’m happy to be home till Comic Con.

In order, these were the events I went to: The National Cartoonists Society’s Reuben Weekend, Book Expo and MoCCA. Since MoCCA is the most recent (two weeks ago), I’ll hit that first and the others (hopefully) next week. (Yep, I’m not very timely and thus a bad, bad blogger.)

I mooched a place to stay off of my friends Bob (professionally known as “R.”) Sikoryak and Kriota Willberg. Bob is quite well-known in the “alternative comics scene” and it was fun to tag along with him and experience an area of comics I don’t know nearly enough about.

And now the bullet points:

• MoCCA moved from the Puck Building to the Amory on Lexington. It’s big joint where you could systematically see every table but, man, was it hot.

• Got to sit near my friend Marek Bennett who just put out a new book on a Xeric grant. A “block” away way was Brendan Burford whose newest edition of “Syncopated” was just published by Villard Press. Marek, Brendan and I all play ukulele (me just barely). Brendan even had his with him. It seems to be a popular instrument among cartoonists, which leads me to…

• Sunday night’s “Comic Strip Serenade” at a joint out in Brooklyn. Put together by a couple of comics historians, it was a performance of early 20th century sheet music inspired by comic strips like Pogo, Barney Google, The Gumps and Krazy Kat. And, my oh my, were there are a lot of ukes involved. As a matter of fact, the last piece was music that was an integral part of a comic strip called “Them Days Are Gone Forever” and featured not one, not two, not three, but four, count ’em, four ukuleles!

• And a big shout out to Gocomics.com reader Dorian, who I’ve christened the “MoCCA Weekend’s #1 Bo Nanas fan” for coming to the show to see me. (I am always shocked and amazed when anyone comes specifically to see me at these things, such is my humbleness and meager level of fame.). She was kind enough to pick up a Bo book and the new Great Scott book. Unfortunately I’d forgotten to bring Bo buttons with me so I mailed her one with a sketch as a “thank you.”

I’ll be at MoCCA

June 5, 2009

MoCCA fest

Sure, I got back from NYC just about 45 minutes ago (or so it seems) and I ‘ll back this weekend for MoCCA – Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art Festival. (According to the poster above, we’ll all be sharing space with various sea creatures.) I’ll be at table 230 with various books – Bo Nanas, Jack N. Box, and my new Great Scott one (which I’ll have for purchase online when I get back…I promise.)

Your guide to identifying the North America Cartoonist

May 26, 2009

SPACE photo by Ron Corby

If you always wondered about my appearance in the wild, here I am. This is what I and my table look like (minus the surly look cuz of my hurtin’ back). Now it’ll be oh so easy for you to find me at MoCCA next week.

SPACE recap – Part 5

April 26, 2009

Yeah, I know I said the last SPACE recap would be the last SPACE recap but, heck, I met a lot of nice people. Please click on their art below and visit their sites.

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Joey Jacks

Hermit Hill | Volume 1

Nate Bramble


SPACE recap – Part 4

April 25, 2009
Click to view back cover

Ryan Claytor

(I’m going to do my SPACE recap in random posts throughout the next few days, as well as show art from some of the cool people I met there. Please click on it and visit their websites.)


Since SPACE is now a week-old distant memory, it’s time to wrap up my recap with some tidbits:

• Since I live in a small town without a bookstore, I asked my friend Jenny if there was a cool one we could go to in Columbus. We went to Half Price Books. This is the kind of economic model I like: spend money and get twice as much. (Notice that I didn’t say,” Pick out the books you want and pay half as much.”). Yep, I spent a lot there. Here’s what I got, in no particular order and from memory (since it’s a big heavy bag of books, it’s downstairs and I have a bad back.) Frank Miller’s Ronin, a James Sturm book, couple issues of Mome, Tank Girl, Anthology of Graphic Fiction, a collection of Stan and Jan Berenstain’s non-bear cartoons, a DVD of Flash Gordon movie serials and probably a few things I’ve forgotten

• I proved my unmanliness at dinner when Jenny pointed out that Payton Manning was sitting a couple of tables over. I know the Payton Manning is some sort of football guy, but you could point out any person short of a 12-year-old girl, tell me it is Payton Manning and I’d have to agree. Luckily, Jenny’s boyfriend Chris was the same way. Because of our collective lack of testosterone, Jenny had to call one of her “real man” friends who would appreciate such an occurrence.

• On Sunday night we watched my Flash Gordon DVD and another movie Jenny had that no one else would watch with her – “Comicbook-The Movie.” (Straight to DVD, directed my Mark Hamill, filmed mostly at the San Deigo ComiCon, starring a load of cartoon voice talent.) Y’know, how one’s interest in certain subject matter can carry one through a piece of entertainment more so than “regular folk”? That didn’t happen here.

SPACE recap Part 3

April 24, 2009

James Anderson

(I’m going to do my SPACE recap in random posts throughout the next few days, as well as show art from some of the cool people I met there. Please click on it and visit their websites.)

I was part of a panel last Saturday called “The Adventures of a Working Class Syndicated Comic Stripper” along with Jeff Stahler (“Moderately Confused” and editorial cartoonist for the Columbus Dispatch) and Steve Boreman (“Little Lost Dog”). I was actually sort of “hosting” it since I’d proposed the panel, so I felt responsible for it and, thus, came up with questions/topics for us to talk about and the like. So, I was a bit disappointed when the three of us walked into the panel room and there were only two people there. I’ve never seen it written down anywhere but I’m guessing a key guideline might be that the panelists shouldn’t outnumber the audience.

But a few more people dribbled in and in the midst of it we probably had around twenty-five. Not too bad.

I was a bit worried that we’d run out of things to talk about rather quickly but that didn’t happen.

Jeff talked about being offered to take over the “spot” left by the “Berry’s World” panel with only weeks to spare. He also talked about his “Dear Dudley” strip which he did with a partner for only a year.

Steve talked about how he designed his strip so the production end of it would be relatively quick to balance his 60+ hour regular job.

I talked about a monkey or something.

We yakked for over 50 minutes and got to squeeze in some Q&A before getting kicked out for going too long. But, better too long than too short.

John Read from Stay Tooned Magazine will be transcribing the panel for an upcoming issue so keep your eyes peeled for that. (We’re going to edit out all the swearing though. Sorry.)

Next time: Why I am not a real man.

SPACE recap Part 2

April 22, 2009
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Pat Lewis

(I’m going to do my SPACE recap in random posts throughout the next few days, as well as show art from some of the cool people I met there. Please click on it and visit their websites.)

Saturday morning starts with my bad back fighting me. I get moving enough but only after quality time with a hot bath and a muscle stim device. (Not at the same time, though.)

After driving to the SPACE place I get my books into the joint via a New York grocery/laundry cart. (It is an item I have never seen in “the wild.” My wife had one from her Brooklyn days.) It is cool candy apple red but has no steering capabilities whatsoever. Gotta point it where you want to go the first time or you’re out of luck.

I get set up…and then my memory starts to embarrass me. I meet my next-door neighbor Marek Bennett. The thing is, I’ve met him before at MoCCA. At least, that’s what he tells me. When he mentions that he had a beard at the time, the rusty tumblers of my brain fall into place. Same thing happens in almost the same way with neighbor-down-the-way Pat Lewis. (It was SPX instead of MoCCA, and there was no facial hair involved.)

It’s slow early on so we’re all “preaching to the choir” (in other words, it’s mostly exhibitors looking at each other’s stuff). One guy brings over a “Monkey Meets World” book that he carted with him just to have me sign. I’m truly touched. Another person bring a “Stormfeld” book I was in (edited by the late great Wes Alexander). A couple of people (well, two) read Bo online and bought my books, which made me feel great….

…until I walked into the panel room.

Next time: There’s quite an echo in this here panel room….panel room……panel room……..panel room……

SPACE recap – Part 1

April 21, 2009

Marek Bennet

Well, I’m back from SPACE (the Small Press and Alternative Comics Expo, not, y’know, the place with all the planets.) Since it’s a busy week ahead, I’m going to do my recap in random posts throughout the next few days (as well as run art from some of the cool people I met there. Please click on it and visit their websites.)

First off, I have a spectacularly hurting back. It’s been bad for a couple of weeks but really flared up just a few days before SPACE, which includes two things that backs just love: long hours of driving and lifting boxes of books.

I actually packed the car before going the chiropractor Friday morning then took a nap after my appointment but, in the end, the drive just about crippled me. Pain, walking crooked, not being able to support my own weight. (The last symptom resulted in my not shaving the whole w-end and looking like Gabby Hayes.) But the drive itself was OK. Fueled by Advil and Mountain Dew, I chatted (via cellular technology) with my parents and sister, a colleague and a former student. Took me about eight hours to get to Jenny Robb’s house. (She is the assistant curator of The Ohio State Cartoon Library & Museum.) As always, good to have friends is strategic places around the country for guest-room mooching

Next up: My memory fails me.

OSU and SPACE

April 17, 2009

The Cartoon Library and Museum at Ohio State University (which is just the coolest place, run by the coolest people) is having an 0pen house today (Friday, April 17) from 3-5 pm in conjunction with SPACE.

Alas, I won’t be able to make it. I’ll be traversing that lonely road towards Columbus so I can see everybody on Saturday.

SPACE Small Press and Alternative Comics Expo

April 13, 2009

If you’re going to be in the Buckeye State this weekend (specifically in Columbus OH), I’ll be at SPACE – the Small Press and Alternative Comics Expo (specifically at booth #129).

I’ll also be on a panel called “The Adventures of a Working Class Syndicated Comic Stripper” at 2:00 on Saturday, April 18 with Jeff Stahler (“Moderately Confused” and editorial cartoonist for the Columbus Dispatch) and Steve Boreman (“Little Lost Dog”). None of us are (or in my case, were) at the top of the totem pole, so it will hopefully be a unique look at the syndication game. If you’re not going to be able to be there for the Q&A, feel free to send me topics that you think could be discussed.

(There’s a cool poster for SPACE that I saw…somewhere in e-land. If I find it, I’ll post it.)