Thursday was Preview Night, or afternoon, since it ran 4-7. Brent and I get there about noon. They let us drive right in the back of the convention center, park on the floor and unload right next to Artist Alley. So much easier than last year when we parked in the garage and had to make multiple trips back and forth through the mile long pedestrian walkway. Setup was a breeze. Ronin had 5 tables in a row. Wizard had actually placed us next to Studio Ronin, which is a completely different bunch, who had out cool models out from movies and stuff they work on. They had several tables as well, so almost the whole row was occupied by somebody with Ronin in their name. We set up faster than expected and waited for the other Ronin folks who soon arrived.
The doors opened at 4 and we were instantly busy. Lots of familiar faces dropped by. As well as new faces with familiar names, or at least, familiar screen names. The book flew off the table and the sketch list began to fill. The first request was for a classic Batwoman, you know, the one with the purse. I thought that was an interesting choice, but that it would probably be the only time I ever drew that character. I was wrong, because I got the same request next! This time, I was in a long line of a Batwoman theme. Who knew she was such a popular character. I really like when people are doing themes because you get to see so many different interpretations of the same idea.
I pretty much spent the whole con working on sketches. I have never been so busy. I had to turn a few people down, which I really hated to do. A few generous souls let me finish their sketches after the show, which I will spend the next day or two doing. I didn’t get much time on the floor at all, which I regret a little. I tried to visit with everyone I knew, but missed a few folks. I would have liked to buy some more books and get a few sketches myself, but time didn’t permit.
Even though Saturday is the convention’s busiest day, my busiest day was Friday. I think I owe that to all the fine folks I’ve met over the internet coming over early. But who’s to know for sure?
Hanging out Friday night at Knuckles was a lot of fun.
Saturday morning, woke to the alarm, cleaned up and sneaked out as quite as I could so as not to wake any of the roommates. Got down to the con and noticed that nobody was around. Tried to go onto the floor, was stopped and told I couldn’t get in until 8. Asked”What time is it?” “7:30.” Turns out, the clock in the room was an hour fast. Back to the room, Chris was up, got coffee and a danish at the hotel lobby, Pat shows up and hangs out. Off to the show.
Saturday was busy. I sketched throughout the day, breaking once to get a sandwich(“I’m sorry, how much did you say that was?!”) and twice for the bathroom. Sales were good on the book, but actually less than Friday, which was insanely good. This same inversion was felt by a lot of the other Artist Alley people I talked with, and it happened for us at previous shows.
Ronin did their big signing event for the Hope:New Orleans charity anthology. I heard they did good numbers, and from what I could tell it was selling like hot-cakes. The book is also going to be Ronin’s first title distributed by Diamond, so look for that soon. It’s 200 pages of goodness.
Saturday after the show, recorded with the Around Comics folks in the hotel room with a room full of guys. That was good fun. Stayed out way too late but I got to meet and talk to a boatload of people. Met John Romita Jr., which was a great thrill. He and Paul Jenkins, Joe Q, Billy Tucci were all hanging out and I did something stupid for their amusement. Hanging out with people after hours was such huge fun that I can in no way express on this keyboard. I owe it all to those great people I got to be around. Actually, the whole show was fantastic because of all the people I met and talked with throughout the daytime and nighttime hours.
I would like to thank everyone who stopped by the booth, or I met on the floor, or after hours. This is just a sampling of the folks I would like to thank. There is no physical way that my feeble intellect can hold every name. My deepest apologies if I miss somebody, because I know it’s going to happen.
The Around Comics guys: Chris, Sal, Tom, Matt, David Price, Vince B, Dustin, Chip, Dan, Mark, Mike Oliveri, Neil Gorman, Sean, Jim, John Siuntres, Scott Johnson, The Comic Geek Speak guys: Peter, Bryan and Tasha, Matt, Kevin, Brent and Brandon(Horrorwood), Steve Bryant(Athena Voltaire), Doug Klauba, Matt “Darth” Kramer and fiance, Mike “The Pamp”, Mike Norton, Library Boy, my Ronin brethren: Noble, Kari, Shane, Bram, Grant, Russell, Sean, Jesse, Jefferey and Tonia, Andy Jewett, Ryan, Nick T, Nick D, Brian Defferding(School: A Ghost Story), Taki, Raven, Chris Samnee, Cullen Bunn, Gary, Bubbles, Thudpucker, Tibbitz, Flonk, Lab Rat, Adam, Arthur, Ryan Hoffman, AlterEgoComcs, Chris Moreno, Ben, Phil, the father and son who got headshots of The Thing and Grundoom, the couple from last year who got the next two books and a sketch of the Phoenix, everyone in costume, all the fine folks from the Around Comics forum, the Comic Geek Speak forum, The Jinxworld forum, and last but never least, the mighty Pat Loika!
There were folks there that I missed that I really wanted to see, and there were friends who couldn’t make it this year, and they were sorely missed.
Now, the pictures:
Shane Welker(Shylock) hates me:
John Siuntres of wordballoon.com:
Noble and Pat:
More Ronin Tables:
Sean and Jim from Raging Bullets podcast:
Shane contemplates life’s intricate mysteries:
David, Chris, Vince, and Matt:
Shane is finally happy:
Nick T avoids the camera:
More sleeping roommates:
David and Chris making sure they have enough condoms “Zero. You?” “Yep.”
My Favorite Canadianian Bram Cayne:
Positive energy exudes from Brian Defferding(School:A Ghost Story):
This sums up everything: