Another week, another set of sketches.
But, this wasn't just any other week. This last week was Image Expo 2012! "What was Image Expo 2012?', you ask. Well, as soon as I pull you out of the rock you've been under, I'll tell you.
It was a freaking awesome comic convention right here in our Bay Area backyard, hosted by none other than Image F*&$#ing Comics. Only the best publisher of those little picture books we fondly call comics EVER. All kinds of people converged on downtown Oakland to celebrate, not only Image's 20 years of awesome, but all manner of comic creativity, from other independent publishers like Archaia and IDW, to creators doing it on their own with self-published comics, artbooks, and prints filling Artists' Alley to the brim.
Of course [P5] was there, represented by yours truly and the ever-ready illustrator & designer extraordinaire, Jonathan Chan. We started the weekend off coming straight from the office, so after the set up, we pretty much kicked back for the rest of the day, getting the lay of the land and soaking in the atmosphere. This was the very first year for this Expo and no one, even us in the office, knew what was going to happen once the doors opened. The vibe was definitely mellow throughout the weekend, with it only picking up a bit during the Walking Dead panels and signings on Saturday. Our table had a good turnout, a lot of old and new friends coming by for encouragement and catching up on old times, new customers checking out our wares, and asking our advice about publishing, creating comics, and all kinds of other things. I never really got away from the table til Sunday. I'll get to that in just a tiny bit.
First, this is what I did on Saturday:
I was a bit bored in the morning and after roughing out a pinup of old Image character, Wildstar, I took a look around. What I noticed were my fellow creators, but more than that, the way they looked like cartoon characters. I gravitate towards people with unique looks because they give me endless visual inspiration. So, what did I do in this sea of cartooniness? I drew. Most of the people who had tables around me. Got good reactions from those creators as well so I'm glad nobody was offended (heheheh).
Sunday became my get around the floor, say hi to peeps, and buy out the store day. Got around to seeing the Vescell crew at their table. Enrique Carrion is one of the nicest guys I've ever met. I think he hugged me at least five times over the weekend. Obviously, as seen above, I got to meet and talk to Kurtis Weibe of The Intrepids, Green Wake, and Peter Panzerfaust fame, along with his artist on Panzerfaust, Tyler Jenkins, DJ KirkBride, editor of the Popgun Anthology, Bryan J Glass, writer of The Mice Templar, Shane Houghton, one half of the awesome Reed Gunther team, and the always amazing Ryan Ottley. Too many more to list here, but some of them I will be adding to [P5]'s inspiration list soon, so check back there and hit the links for some great art.
I did spend some money during the expo. I have to support my fellow comic book creators, right? Over at Archaia, I tried to pick up the Jim Henson hardcover of Tale of Sand, but they had just sold out before I got there (silent cries). Instead, I got Royden Lepp's Rust hardcover, which I had been eyeing at my LCS every week since it came out along with An Elegy for Amelia Johnson on the recommendation of Top Cow's newest editor Bryan Rountree. I also got:
Well, color me impressed. And at a low price of $60 for all of that in a handmade box, I had to get it. That was right before the close of the final day.
Needless to say, everything went off without a hitch, and, looking at the almost exclusively positive feedback from everyone involved, Image Expo seems like a big success. I think it was for us as well. Some sales, some commissions, put some money in my pocket. Definitely more exposure and a whole lot of reminders that people are expecting some published work from me sooner than later. So, here I go. Back to work!
Thanks to all the people I met throughout the con. To our wonderful neighbor Andy Suriano and all the people in artists' alley. We are the lifeblood of this industry so keep it up!