Alternative Press Expo Part 2: Comic Creator’s Connection


This will be a three part blog entry, each highlighting a different topic. This one focuses on the  Comic Creator’s Connection event.


So, what exactly is “Comic Creator’s Connection?”

CCC is an event in the San Francisco’s Alternative Press Expo; it’s like speed dating for individual artist and scriptwriters looking for a collaboration. You get 5 minutes with a different person to talk to. Every five minutes you switch. If you’re an artist, you get to talk to about 10-20 scripters. If you’re a scripter, then you get to talk to 10-20 artists. That’s the gist. Give em your business card, a sample piece of art/script, etc as a memoir.

Above: On Sunday, it was much quieter than Saturday. I’m glad I bought a two day pass because the people who were in charge of this let us do it on both days :3

I shouldn’t be surprised, but when I was at the tables the gender difference was overwhelming. I believe on Saturday there were only three females sitting behind the artist side of the tables (me included).

My three main reasons as why I went in the first place:

1)see what people are interested in (get to know the trend)

2) it was free, and hoping one out of those few might actually be paying (need some pocket money)

3) find out how to throw my pitch (learn to socialize about the topic)

SO. Here are the CONS of CCC:

NOISY: I can’t just single handedly blame this on the group of people across from our table doing a demonstration, nor can I blame it entirely on the floor below us at the artist alley. We were also trying to talk over each other’s voices across our tables too.

WATER: After about three talks I needed to drink water constantly. Even had to refill the bottle at one point. My throat hurt so much after that thing. Next time I do this I should bring a gallon of water.

DO YOU HAVE YOUR PITCH?: I am not going to name anyone in general since there were more than just a few, but CCC was most likely meant for more serious people who have already stuck to an idea for a script. I wish APE would have mentioned this a little more on the site or something, because I know some people walked in with nothing but an idea for work on the top of their head. Or a synopsis of an idea on a piece of paper and no script. Even artists with no work is not a good idea. Actually the guy who sat next to me on Saturday just decided to bump in to check out CCC, but at least he was smart enough to hook his work up to his smartphone and show it like that.

BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH: I am an ass here, but some people just talked too much about their idea without me being able to say much about my own interests. It wasn’t that ‘I wish I had more time to talk to you about this’ it was more like ‘okay can I PLEASE talk to you right now about this?’ But still, all of us tried to be considerate, and seeing as we only had five minutes, I needed to quickly interrupt a few people just to make sure we’re both on the same track.

WHERE IS YOUR CONTACT?: Okay, I’m very sure APE specifically said to ‘bring your contact information with a sample of your work’. I don’t know how much more concise that can be. For anyone who has ever written any contact on a piece of scrap paper, I’m going to tell you it’s probably in the paper recycle trash bin in my room. BUT if anyone who was smart enough to pick up a piece of paper on the main table (that said APE COMIC CREATORS CONNECTION) for artists/scripter contacts to write on, then I’ll take a peek.

ONE PIECE OF PAPER: Just to point it out to anyone who works at APE–I think only five of us or something followed this rule. The script writers usually stapled several pages, but some gave me a few papers that weren’t serialized so it got confusing whose scripts were whose in the end. For me I used a single piece of paper–I made a tri-fold brochure with a business card inserted. BOO YAH suckas.  But still, APE people are right to tell people to limit their samples, and I think this was incredibly mis-interpreted on the site.

I PLAN TO MAKE IT THIS LONG: Wishful thinking can be nice, yes, but wishful thinking without even knowing what your proposal is…that’s another thing. It’s great to think your idea is going to go somewhere, but as an artist one of the things I learned was ‘don’t get your hopes up’. Some proposals could be a year long. Some longer. Some a month. But as I’ve noticed, many people here scripted movies instead of comics (just reading their scripts with a glance to tell you if they knew what they were doing or not). They aren’t quite aware of the time, effort, and planning it takes to make a single page. Many scripters had a full plan as to how long their comic is (with a synopsis), but their ‘guess’ on how long it would be on a comic is very, very, very off.

Above: Another person checking out my portfolio. Imagine more than 15 people checking out that binder for the whole day, giving your a pass/fail chance to collaborate with a project. Nervous, anyone? I know I wasn’t the only one. 

AND. Here are the PROS of CCC:

I DON’T KNOW YOU: Awesome. Many strangers to talk to, friends to make, people you may never ever see again in your life. Some you’ll meet on the internet again. If I hated you and I hated your work, it’s completely O-K because it’s likely you won’t remember me ever again in your life. Or will you? *gulp* But being serious again, everyone was at a different level and we all respected each other for that (well, for me and my tablemates, yes)

WAIT, SO YOU DRAW AND SCRIPT?: Yes, there are people who are capable of both, and more. Congrats. I was kind of amused when people asked me if I wrote the stories that I drew in my portfolio. And of course, I saw some ideas tossed around in CCC and I thought ‘hey man this guy should just draw the comic himself–his art looks totally rad!’ Some of us conversed on being both artist and scripters…stuff like that.

IT’S NOT TWILIGHT: Lol i just had to make that phrase. From my memory, I don’t think I heard a single story about vampires, and only a few about romance. Well, not sure if it’s a pro, and I’m spoiling something, but there was a lot of  pitches about zombies and post apocalypse…..and post apocalypse zombies.  Haha, let’s see what next year’s comics cough out XD

HI, WE MET AT CCC: Well, I guess CCC is pretty fun, efficient, and I finally met someone who wants to collaborate. Congratulations on those who emailed me, but I was overwhelmed with the emails and now I have to sort it out. Thank you all whom I’ve talked to at the con–scripters and artists alike, I’ve learned a lot reading/looking/talking with all of you, and it was a great experience. I’m sure we’ve all made friends here. Even if none of us hooked up.

I LOVE THAT TOO!: Seriously, I found TWO other people who loved Tsutomu Nihei, and I was totally psyched! I wish I had the contact with the guy I sat next to on Saturday, he was soo cool since he was the first ever person who liked BLAME! as much as I did. And lol I’m so glad I added those simple doodles of the Darkstalker chicks in the back of my brochure. Seems like a LOT of people love Darkstalkers :D

And to EVERYONE who went to Comic Creators Connection, the best PRO of it all was….

You were all a brave soldier to be here.

You (and I) were all brave souls to sit in front of people whom you’ve never seen or met before. We put our game faces on, tried to impress the other person who was trying to impress us in five minutes. [Almost] all of us were noobies who have never done this in our life before. We all learned something from it, it was a two hour gamble in APE to find someone…someone in this world that might have similar interests as you. If you found someone, good. If not, now you know that this event….is just the beginning.

Above: At the end of the event, all of us were pooped.



One thought on “Alternative Press Expo Part 2: Comic Creator’s Connection

  1. Pingback: Alternative Press Expo Part 1: Overall » Artwork from Jackie Lo

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