Alternative Press Expo Part 2: Comic Creator’s Connection

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

PART ONE: http://jackieloart.com/blog/alternative-press-expo-part-1-overall/

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.

 

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Alternative Press Expo Part 1: Overall

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This will be a three part blog entry, each highlighting a different topic. This one focuses on the over pros and cons of the event.

PART TWO: http://jackieloart.com/blog/alternative-press-expo-part-2-comic-creators-connection/

So I went to Alternative Press Expo this weekend. Glad I didn’t get a seizure from over excitement. And I kind of regret not shoving my hand into all the ‘free candy’ bowls. Still, incredibly experience as always. Lots of more serious artists than other places. I barely bought a thing on Saturday, and barely spent much on Sunday. One reason is because I already had a lot of things that were sold from last year. Second is that I haven’t really had much of a chance to save any money. Third is that quite some people I wanted to see….weren’t there :(

above: ARCH Supplies was one of the incredibly few merchandise tables that didn’t sell comics. I didn’t even see that sign that said ‘ARCH’ on it when I ran to the table, and the guy was like ‘HEY!’ I had that usual blank face when I was staring at him for a minute. It took me a bit to realize it, but wow even the art store guy recognized me!

Things that happened:

  • meeting/seeing people I know: Walking down every row at APE, someone would make eye contact and wave, or tap me on the shoulder and say ‘HI!’ Soooo many people were from CCA (California College of the Arts). Classmates, teachers/faculty. In fact, I don’t think I knew half their names, and I think I’ve never seen a few in my life. I have this really funny feeling that the MFA comics department knows who the hell I am after the Phil Jimenez show.
  • Classmates with tables: Stuff to buy, stuff my classmates were selling. I feel a bit guilty for not just lavishly spending money on my classmate’s stuff, but I call that ‘pity buying’, where I buy things I don’t seriously seriously want from someone I know so they can make profit.  Maybe something minuscule, but nothing big. I mean it always cheers me up when someone buys my stuff, but it also disappoints me that they end up never being hung on the wall and often stuck in some dark corner or tossed. I sound really harsh, but with more than half my room covered in OTHER people’s’ work, I think I know when to stop doing that, and that I’m sure my CCA buddies understand the other way as well.
  • People look at my work: This year was a bit more supportive than last year. I’m glad I wasn’t completely rejected by a guy who already saw my art half a year ago. I do this to every comic convention–not to just flaunt my work (there are many with better portfolio), but to see if groups are interested, have commercial media companies tell me what they like in my work, what to focus on, and what direction might be good to head to, and make sure my improvement is constant. My work may have started in one direction last year when someone at APE told me to ‘work on backgrounds’, and so I started improving, and now that led me to a better understanding about how to ink them in pencil drawings.
  • Comic Creator’s Connection: Very interesting event. Kind of like speed dating with script writers. I’ll have a blog entry about this soon. Let’s just say that it came out incredibly positive.

NOW, let’s start with the cons, at this con (get the joke?)

  • Biggest issue I had was THE NOISE. Hoo boy it was so loud that  many times I’d literally be shouting at the other person’s ear or repeat over and over to say what I’m trying to say. It was freakin insane. Even upstairs when I was doing the Comic Creator’s Connection event, it was still just as loud, PLUS all the talking across from us with the lecture/event.
  • Not enough time. Usually conventions start at least 10am for artist alleys. I had Comic Creator’s Connection, and that already killed two hours.
  • “Walls”: For anyone whose table was set up on the sides of the building or along the bars, you are one fortunate motherf*cker. That is very rare, but because you guys all had that, it was SO much easier to see what people were selling instead of staring at the table. I feel very uncomfortable making eye contact with artists, and by pretending like you’re staring at the wall, it’s much easier for me to concentrate on whether I should buy it, instead of that crazy guilt I feel when I see the artist’s near-crying eyes begging me to buy something, or have them say ‘HEY CHECK OUT MY SWAG’
  • Stupid name tags are too delicate. Even before the day ended my tag fell off its necklace thing, and I literally had to shove a new hole through it with a pen and stick it through again. That is bullshit. But at least they are saving that extra plastic. However, next time they do this, they should have those donut-shaped stickers  you stick on line paper when it rips.
  • No bags upon registration: I mean…it’s not a HUGE deal for me anymore because I know it’s San Francisco and I knew there wouldn’t be much about plastic bags when you registered for APE, but I think they should have noted that on the site earlier, just in case.
  • Anime Destiny and New York Comic Con were on the same weekend as well.
  • That map they provided was INTENSE. I had no idea how to read that thing!
above: Fuji Dreskin (red hair) sitting behind table. Seeing as tables costed so much, I hope everyone who had a table at least broke even :(

And now for things I liked:

  • The registration took less than a minute, even when Laurel and I were a bit late.
  • The tickets were quite affordable for two days
  • Advertisement: Okay you’re probably thinking this is the most goddamn annoying part of cons–all those extra postcards and papers you’re never gonna read that they put in your bags at cons. Well, they didn’t have any bags, and they laid everything on two tables. So you could CHOOSE what ads you wanted to keep. I looked for ones that were offering opportunities/publishing/printing….things I might be able to take advantage of. Very nice. However, Sunday the table was a shit pile because people just tossed them everywhere.
  • People and artists: As always, there were plenty. And for the record, there may have been a LOT of people, but I’ve seen way more hectic ones before. If I can super-walk-dodge across a row with a bag in each hand without bouncing into anyone on Saturday, I will say it wasn’t too crazy.
  • Toilet paper in the stalls, and water in the water fountains

above: Tone Rodriguez actually caught me when he said ‘didn’t I see this portfolio before?’ Damn. Well, at least this entire portfolio was full of comics and not my usual cg drawings), so he read my stuff. WHEW. But then comparing what he saw at Big WOW and now, I’m improving, at least. Even I get aggravated if the same person hands me the same drawings and ask what I should improve on, so I completely understand. 

Overall, loved the thing. Even if I said there were a lot of cons, the fact that there were so many serious artists who were here makes it way better.

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CCA Lecture: Phil Jimenez

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I recently went to a lecture at the California College of the Arts, with guest comic artist Phil Jimenez. oh boy.

The first half of the lecture was just Q&A with that guy sitting next to him (the second half was the audience asking questions). It was really great, because on the facebook website, we could post questions prior, so that when he was doing the Q&A, many of our questions were answered. I think I posted a lot of questions on that page. In fact…it felt like  half the Q&A part were my questions. Well, I got answers from an honest professional, which is great.

I mention honest, because he works in the profession as a job instead of a hobby (something illustrators understand a lot). Things he liked, things he didn’t, ideas…comments, I dunno. He didn’t try and dodge questions. Something that really blew my mind was his explanation of American superheroes vs. Japanese manga characters. I can’t quite quote it exactly, but here’s the idea summed up:

‘American Superheroes aren’t represented to have so many flaws. instead, we see them as an icon–a theme. Some superheroes represent justice, while villains represent immorality. In Japanese manga, characters are related because they’re human–they are flawed, and therefore, we relate to them in a different way. In American comics, the superheroes are themes–ethics, morality, capitalism, religion. They’re more like metaphors represented in the character; they’re not real. They are ‘represented ideas’, icons.’

Okay, that was just a bit of what he said. Since he worked for DC, I asked him about women in comics. I don’t think he answered it as a representer of DC, but an honest guy working in the superhero comic industry. Here’s roughly what I remember (and hopefully I’m not twisting any words):

……Okay, I really don’t remember very well what he said. >.>’ To sum it up, female artists are given the doubt of being a comic artist, when one should actually be respecting their skill to bring something new to the world. I do remember my ass being on the edge of the chair the more he talked about it though.

Well, that was most of it. In the end, I was able to get a photo of me and him. He’s awesome.

I think the head of the MFA Comics department knows who I am now (from all the question-posts for Phil Jimenez). Sadly, I don’t think I will ever be in the program. But I hope in the future, because of this program, there will be more guest comic artists in the industry of comics that aren’t indie experimental ones.

 

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Colors on the Computer

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I have always sucked at coloring on the computer, either because I never know when to stop, or that I suddenly stop when I am too tired or don’t want to finish it (basically we call that ‘lazy’). Maybe that’s why a ton of my stuff is done with markers and ink, even though I know how to use Photoshop. I’d still say I have a long way to go before saying ‘yes I can paint digitally’

Emily Stepp, a classmate of mine (wait, did we ever have class together?) posted a lineart online, here: http://www.emilystepp.com/blog/?p=181

 

So, I was kind of surprised about this. There were a few things about what happened: 1)I took a color theory class where I learned about colors, and 2) Instead of relying on the painting skills which I already lack (even though I took illustration), I used some photo manipulation techniques instead. Yes. I suck at painting. But that doesn’t mean I don’t know how to mix paint.

When I was working on this, I had recently seen a ton of updated images of classmates’ work, and everyone was doing such colorful images. So I decided to do colorful colors too.

 

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Finding your groove, everyone’s groove.

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I’m 23, and can you believe I went to my FIRST concert ever? Going to anime convention concerts apparently don’t count by 98% of the people I ask. Okay, it was more of a performance, and no one really knew me so I was pretty damn lonely there. But I DID have a camera….

Setting: The Shine Lounge

The Shine Lounge

It kind of sucked how I forgot to bring a water bottle and wanted apple juice or orange juice, but I forgot how to pay the bartender and if I had to tip, blah blah (I’ve only gone to a bar once to buy root beer two years ago).  I regret not asking the nice bartender guy how to order apple juice >.>;

the first group was this: Otway Ross

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/OtwayRossMusic

Get Music: http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/all-having-reasons/id332574408

Dude, that guy in red was really tall compared to me too, maybe three feet, ahaha. But he had a strong voice and a nice light humor. But did I mention how tall he was?

I had no idea who the hell this group is, then again when was the last time I listened to anything like this? It was calm, and the lyrics very cute, all done in a deep voice. Now, if you listen to something like Europop music, and suddenly something like this hits you over the head, it’s like “WHOOA THE UNIVERSE IS EXPANDING”  @o@

I mean something like DDR music isn’t the only stuff I listen to, but it keeps my ‘groove’ going when I’m drawing, and if anyone’s ever  disturbed me during drawing in thesis, you’ve probably seen me jolt or scream or fall off the chair when you break my concentration. But back to topic.

Take a chance and check out his music. If a guy can sing about wearing ties, I think he is on the win list for me.

I came to see my friend’s group “The Stars at Dusk”, second group.

The Stars At Dusk

Their facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheStarsAtDusk

Sadly, I didn’t know ANYONE except the main singer (the guy in the middle of the picture). Strangely, some of them sort of knew who I was (?) but I’ve never met them before and the place was dark.

The performance at this time was quickly getting super wild, with all his followers yelling “I LOVE YOU!” and stuff in the group (even though the place was kinda small). If I were to describe this scene, it would be like Outkast’s “Hey Ya” music video  XD (but his music doesn’t sound like that) Oh yea, and the hair whipping.

Of course, because a huge chunk of music I listen to is foreign, I often don’t pay attention to the lyrics and more on the background music as well, so I give you credit too, little emo kid, Big happy guy, and asian guy with E-pl1 camera (Darrell, the guy with the long hair, your nickname shall be ‘Darllene’ haha). Having no knowledge of how a guitar works, I cannot say anything about it. But the drums were silly–the emo kid was totally banging the thing, but his expression was completely the same the entire time XD

Here I must say, if you like the energy of classic rock music combined with a voice that doesn’t sound as if it’s screaming like nuts in a mike (like a lot of other rock), you’d might like The Stars at Dusk.

I’m sorry Shine Lounge, I had to go home (because I thought it’d end at 10:00) so I couldn’t see the last group :(

 

 

 

 

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My generation of comic artists…?

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I went to Big WOW comicfest convention. I might update about some other things that happened that Sunday.

I saw two guys (Alex Nino and some other dude) talking about my generation of comic artists right in front of me as I was checking out Mr. Nino’s work. I guess they didn’t know I was an artist when they were bullshitting about my ‘generation.’ Sad thing is, I kind of agree with a lot of stuff they talked about. In fact, I want to be the NEXT generation after this generation. Well I sure as hell convinced both that I might as well be (sorta) .

 (Sample of Alex Nino’s art)

They were speaking about the concept of understanding old comics. Understanding that a comic artist is not only the ‘artist’, they color the images, they script the story, AND they ‘animate’ the work. I agree that some amount of people don’t really see it like that. Drawing pretty pictures does nothing if you can’t direct it in a good direction. And directing a great story doesn’t always mean the artist is capable of capturing the moment. With the stuff I read today, it’s quite rare you find something that can do both. Not impossible, but rare.

Although nowadays we have many tools to help us out, it doesn’t level up our skill level, it just makes it easier. And many people don’t quite see that. Just because they have a nifty program or the fanciest tools possible, it doesn’t mean their work will end up looking better–if you can utilize the tool, then do it well. And as they were talking about it, having a program that could possibly do ANYTHING will spoil the artist if they don’t know the basics. I can clearly see that in many artists’ work nowadays. If you want a picture to look perfect, you got to have the skill to do it first. You can draw a pretty picture, but can you script the story well?

Okay, this part I kind of disagreed on, and slammed it to their face that it was possible–good storytelling can be told WITHOUT colors. You just have to do it well. I mean, I’m no pro at it, but at least my work showed them I spent time and effort on it, other than some people who just do it to get it done.

The story. 

I overheard all of this when this Alex Nino guy and some other person was talking. They saw me stop admiring his work and staring at them in silence and asked if I was interested in something. I said ‘yea, I’m interested in your conversation, go on’ They were talking, and I took out my portfolio, and said ‘hey, I’m looking for some wise feedback, and you look pretty ol–I mean wise. I guess you can say I might be part of the generation you two are talking about, but please check out my stuff. I want to create a NEW generation with my work. please’ So the artist kindly took it out, and put it on the table for both of them to see. He flipped to the first page, and had that ‘holy shit girl how old are you? This is kickass!’ kind of reaction….or so I kinda imagined. Then I talked about my own honest opinion about the current generation of comic artists using computer programs and stuff to lessen the work and time needed to blah blah I don’t quite  remember (but I remember Alex explaining that it kinda ‘spoils’ the artist). I told him that my work was nearly all black and white (but hand drawn) but didn’t mean that I was a lazy artist or anything. One guy said ‘whoa, I don’t think you’re in the generation we’re talking about’ and I said ‘no, I’m going to be the generation after this one.’ BOO-YAH.

I wasn’t aware of who the hell this dude was (he looked old and his work was amazing) until he said ‘oh hey, I got to go to a panel’ I asked him ‘which one? I’m sure you can go a few minutes later’ (or something like that). And he said ‘No, no, I mean, I’m the one talking in the portfolio’ I kind of paused, shook hands with both the guys, and we departed.

So, what do you think about today’s generation of comic artists? Good? Bad?

 

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Sanity in its prime

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Music is great. So are music videos. I recently saw a post from Green Tea Graffiti about a music video on their facebook, and you know, I haven’t seen anything this bizarre in quite a while… I know the last time I ever saw japanese music videos (maybe 6 years ago), they weren’t all that interesting, so I never really watch much after that. I saw this post, and I was like ‘WHOA WHAT THE HELL?!’

watch?v=yzC4hFK5P3g&feature=youtu.be

I think I may have been missing out, because this video was posted a year ago. But wow this was a mindfuck to my eyes. And it was the perfect inspiration for a future project I’m working on. And daaang, wtf was I missing out on these past years?

This is their newest video:

<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/UoK8DaJRDaM” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Music by Kyary Pamyu Pamyu

After seeing these two videos (and some other stuff), I’m not sure what the hell I’m going to be dreaming about tonight. Although the music isn’t very varied, these two songs are a bit catchy…

If they had a cd that showed all their music videos in HD, I’d totally wanna buy it.

I know there’s all sorts of stuff out there, and I also know i haven’t seen much of it either due to the lack of television and not having good internet to watch it through. If anyone knows anything similar to this I’d love to hear about it.

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Image Expo: One hell of a Saturday.

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Respect, ignorance, and unjustified actions are problems that occur at conventions. Especially comic conventions. I’d assume more at anime conventions (since i go to those more, and they can get pretty crazy). You know, another thing was that I didn’t see any volunteer ‘bouncers’…at all. In the convention–well, there were the Mariott people in the building and all they did was help tell people “this is the entrance.” Lol, I’m not kidding at all, but they were incredibly polite, well dressed, well mannered people. When I had about 30 pounds on one shoulder, one guy even helped carry the luggage (ALL comics pretty much) all the way across the convention to the exit room for me; what a gentleman!

 

This line looked long as hell. In fact, their ticketing process was genius! Basically, you buy the ticket at the table or pre-reg, and then you get the ticket immediately and walk into the line. Even before you enter the door. THEN, when the door opens, Voila! The line just zoom zooms its way in. No hassle, no whining, and no pushing. Of course, there’s always the ‘doodlers’ in the front of the line often (I can be one sometimes too). Always nice to take a little peek, hehe.

 

 

So you know, I just mentioned there were no enforcers in the room. So did it get rowdy? Well some guys yelled, but you know, that’s normal. Other than that, ABSOLUTELY NO VIOLENCE, NO CRAZY LARPING, AND NO PANIC/SEIZURE/ALLERGY events. NONE. You know, this deserves more than just applause. You know why? It’s because of respect. In this convention, there was a lot of respect–the artists respect the buyers, and the buyers respected the artist. Maybe that many of us were artists ourselves? Maybe it’s just that people at this convention were more mature? I’ve no idea, but it was just…amazing.

 

I think I’ve spent the most time in this convention buying/talking to the vendor-artists than any convention (more than Wondercon), because just about all the artists, AND writers, AND letterers could help me relate my work, and give me pointers, even talk about their life deeper in experience about starting out. I know comics are a very hard task, but seeing the people behind the Image Comics group, I can see they’re very happy to be where they are now. I think the most rewarding thing at this convention for me was being able to meet big artists in Image Comics, shaking their hands, and knowing that they once started out just like me. I know, personally, it is incredibly impolite to hug someone you just met like 5 minutes ago, but if I could, I’d really give everyone at that con a big big hug .
WHOA, guess who I met? I bought some stuff from them, they even took one of my works! But I think the best part was when they looked at my portfolio and critiqued it! Now it’s not that they were boss at what they do (okay yea), but it was that they actually honestly pointed out things that worked for them personally that made sense and explaining it on their own work than just pointing at my stuff and say ‘this is what you should do.’ There is a difference between being polite, being honest, and being constructively honest. But I could have a HUGE list of photos for everyone else who did that too (sorry I can’t post all you guys, but hopefully I’ll send you all a pic)

 

I shopped a lot. Maybe it’s because I wanna support all the artists, or that I can relate to them myself, or more like the fact that they all took a chance at a convention in Oakland and I want more cons near here, OR just that I just loved it.

 

Oh yea. My wallet’s empty right now. Shop till you drop? Well it was damn worth it. Sadly, I didn’t go to any panels today because I was just so freakin carried away with shopping and talking with the artists…but you know, talking face to face with many authors and writers pretty much answered every single question I’ve had in my mind for ages about this stuff. For a person who has gone to conventions for more than half a decade, I must say, this was one of the top ones I’ve been to. It was smaller than Wondercon, but more rewarding as an artist. Thanks, all of you.

 

Oh, and more pics? Sorry I didn’t get very many good pics of people, the light in the room made many of my photos blurry, and at one point I was so fixated into the comics I completely forgot I had one around my neck ^_^’

 

A great critique for my art. Pratrick McEnvoy, one of the authors of Starkwe Ather Immortal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Did I say ‘artists’? I didn’t just mean drawing artists. There were crafts, and even MUSIC too! Here we have the creators of  ‘The Lil’ Depressed Boy’, but if you look down on the desk, that’s a CD I bought by an artist (sadly forgot to take your pic) called Kepi and David Houston, influenced by the comic itself!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And HERE’s something innovative! This group made a recording of standup comedy–for nerds! And I thought it was really funny too–you don’t believe me? Go to their table and listen to it yourself!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ah, a bit of friendly advertising here–01 Publishing’s Kat Rocha (right), and Josh Finney (he’s not in this pic), author of Titanium Rain, and soon-to-publish Utopiates. They really helped me out these past two years. Just meeting these two wonderful artists only once/twice a year is very rewarding. Same goes with many people at this con I’ve met.

 

 

 

The biggest thing I loved in this convention was the respect given from artist to buyer and vice versa, the worst thing in the con was regretting to buy a friday pass as well. And maybe some cloth bags.

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Battle of the Strippers: Sterling Gee

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Oh man, my friend Sterling Gee is creating a 30 day (once-a-day) comic strip, for this competition called “Battle of the Strippers”

Well, amazingly enough, I think he’s capable. This is a sample of one of the funniest strips I’ve read so far:

This series he’s making is FULL of hilarious subjects about world conquest-is it even possible? Well in the manga “Eden-it’s an endless world” it left the question unanswered (or answered, depending on how you interpret it). Anyhow, check out his work here:

deviantart: http://silvertide.deviantart.com/

website: http://sterlinggee.com/

Sterling was an illustration student who graduated from the California College of the Arts, just like me. For some reason I never found that out for years until I was more than halfway done with college there.

Extra cool work:

Bay Area Artists Unite Comic Anthology Cover

Transformers guest art for comic anthology

-Also in collaboration with Edward Morales in ‘Living with Robots’ comic series.

 

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Goodbye, Franken Fran

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Franken Fran and sisters

Goodbye, Franken Fran. This is a short manga series I really liked, because it was very unique in story and art. This series abruptly ended a while ago, but had a very happy ending. I also found out the artist is female, which makes it just that much cooler (i wanna be just like her! yay!)

 

The series has a lot of guts in it, and full of dark humor and a very twisted view of science. Basically, it’s about a girl (Fran) with incredible doctor skills, being the creation of another doctor, Dr. Naomitsu Madaraki . She is very innocent and honest, yet all the creations she makes end up always turning back on the person who hired her. Her most unique trait is that she has four arms and two giant screws on her head, and stitches all over her body. She also meets her other two sisters, Gavril (right) micrand Veronica (left). The rest of the story can be found here.

 

Like I’ve mentioned, this series is a manga, and the art is very beautiful. The character designs are very unique, and I like how the entire series doesn’t revolve around Japan. In fact, some of the characters claim they’re human, yet don’t even look like it at all! Anyhow, it’s a must-read for anyone into dark humor, science, maybe occult.

 

This drawing is made with pen, marker, and a whiteout pen. I thought it was kind of unique that I didn’t draw any sort of pencil-underlining inside of this, so i just whipped out a pen and started drawing. WOW that saved time, and I kind of like the feel of that too. I saw my teacher Baron Storey do it, I didn’t really understand why until now. Sometimes, it’s just nice to not try and ‘be perfect’…maybe I should dub this drawing method ‘perfectly imperfect’ or ‘imperfecty-perfect’ haha. I avoid using the eraser a lot when I draw, even with a pencil, because I’m so accustomed to using a pen now. I know all my work won’t be like this, but I would love to master this kind of skill in the future for my work. Oh yea, also edited a little bit on photoshop with the light, and stuff…that might be another thing about this. Also, this is not a scanned image, I had to take a photograph and edit it a bit to its normal stage

I don’t have confidence in digital drawing, color or color. But I do in pen and ink, and powder graphite (not pencils much). I also have incredible confidence in photo retouching and photo editing, because I started learning Photoshop when 6 came out, and it wasn’t very popular for digital art until CS started coming. So during that time, I learned about photo retouching, and I gained much experience. If anyone knows the teacher ‘Michael Jay’, I believe he was the teacher who taught me Photoshop basics in a class at Laney College when I was in middleschool (or was it highschool?). I combine photo editing with my drawings now, and it helped accommodate for my weaknesses (color and painting) and strengths (lines and shading) in my work.

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