Iâ€™ve heard a great deal of praise for the Baltimore Comic Con over the past few years, but had chosen to avoid attending due to the drive and stayed closer to home and the New York shows. The main reason that I finally made the trip was due largely to the attendance of Don Rosa, whose masterpiece of graphic storytelling I had also avoided for some time. In both of these cases, I had unknowingly cheated myself out of amazing experiences for far too long. The show was great, with a huge guest list and large crowds, though a vastly less claustrophobic feeling to its floor plan than the NYC conventions. Though some artists had obnoxiously long lines of fans waiting for sketches or simply to pay tribute to them and obtain a few autographs, I found myself drawn to some extremely talented people who, though they may not have the superstar title, are certainly worth taking a look at and I wanted to share a few of my favorites here.
Don Rosa graced me with a one-on-one sit down and my notes from that are gathered together in an adjoining piece, but I will once again give a huge recommendation for his Life & Times of Scrooge McDuck trade paperback. If you havenâ€™t read this, you are missing out on one of the best books in the genre! Rosa clearly loves the characters and is more than happy to do free sketches of these characters for fans! I got two:
I also spoke with Neil Vokes, who has worked in the comic industry for years and has developed an amazing ink wash style that blows me away. I have previously commissioned Neil to do a few different reimaginings of my favorite childhood Amazing Spider-Man covers in his own style. He is a great guy, loves the work he does and I now find myself considering covers the best match up with his sensibilities, usually these pieces consist of characters and scenes with shadows, night time, inclement weather, fire and smoke, electrical energy, and scenarios along those lines. Please follow the links below to see what Iâ€™ve had him do thus far along with a beautiful piece that he did for me at the con:
I was also had a chance to meet Steve Lieber face-to-face after interacting with him occasionally online over the past few years. Steve has also been at work in comics for some time and is best known for his art on the Whiteout series. He was as friendly a guy in person as he is online. Not only did I have a blast chatting with him, but he did a stunning sketch for me featuring his latest creation, which he is working on with writer Jeff Parker, UNDERGROUND. This series just started last month, with issue #2 coming out this week, so it should be very easy for you to find the Image label book at your local comic shop. Itâ€™s a very intriguing story filled with solid characterization and suspense. The link to the above-mentioned sketch:
Iâ€™d also like to promote what sadly will likely be an overlooked title, since it is being self-published and has a very limited print run. Eric Adams is both the writer and artist for a fun, snarky little title titled Lackluster World. He had been travelling cons and producing this book for the last handful of years and is shipping issue #6 next month. Adams has a very personable way about him and is one of those few people who is truly clever, not simply falling into the large mass of those who think themselves clever. Lackluster World focuses on an albino 20 something who barely tolerates the buffoons in his workplace most of the time and his Born Again siblings, one pushy and the other missing basic social and cognitive skills nearly none of the time. It is both funny and thoughtful as it looks at the absurdity of modern society and the place of the individual in it. Check out his site at:
Before signing off, I am tossing out free publicity to two companies producing products that are just plain fun, whose products allow me to recapture that kid who loves comics inside of myself. Toon Tumblers are pint glasses with a large product line including tons of our favorite heroes, while Pop Culture Trading Pins is just what the name implies, a new company that just released their line of pins, ranging from the cool old Harvey characters to Eric Powellâ€™s Goon pins. Click the links and support these companies, while getting yourself some cool swag:
- October 13, 2009