That’s the only picture I took from the show.
Before I get back into my run through, I wanted to say I forgot to mention that Liz and I got to chat it up with the exceptional Sally Bloodbath! Liz had met her at a show a year or two ago and I only just recently discovered her by falling in love with this gem. A great lady, glad to have made her acquaintance. Read more about my first day here: http://www.bros-czap.com/kevinczap/2010/09/spoix/
Ok, so Liz and I drove back to Bethesda, and even though we missed the Ignatz awards (and my chance to win a fancy Fakenatz, although Liz Baillie was kind enough to show one to me earlier. She’s a scrappy lady making scrappy comics, check em out) we could see all the comics folks spilling out onto the walkway of the hotel. Party time.
We found Darryl and were introduced to his dudes L and B.T. We were soon joined by Colleen AF and her boy buddy Travis Nichols. Basically, it was a real laid back time, surrounded by so many people I consider to be celebrities (am I from a small town?). I got to introduce myself to Jeff Newelt and I thanked him for her contribution to the Pekar panel. He was really appreciative that I had come to the panel and we talked about Harvey for a bit.
Darryl was amazed that so many people stayed in the basement for so long (apparently, other years the chocolate stops flowing much earlier and the folks part ways well before midnight). After a while, Ayo, Suburbia and I headed upstairs to the hotel rooms to meet up with a room full of more of Darryl’s comics buddies. Anthony Clark was there for a hot second (my brother would be so jealous) but soon left with his ladyfriend. Remaining was a talented group including Josh Frees, Alvaro Lopez-Moreno (he’s a rapper!), Flynn Nicholls, Madéleine Flores and a few others whose names I didn’t catch. The kids were pretty funny, talking about some guy who was knocking stuff out of people hands at the show? I forget his name (that’s not true, I’ll remember forever, although, as I suspected, they were pretty burned out on the joke by the next day). Good times were had by all, even though Darryl got his drawing of food knocked out of his hands a little too much.
Eventually it was time to head on back, so we said good night and I drove Liz home. After that (it was about 3? 3:30 in the morning) I met up my dear good buddy Justin at the old Denny’s we used to go to back in the day. It was really great seeing him and catching up in person after being apart for so long. I finally got home about 5 and I was ready for some sleep.
Smash cut to Sunday, I’m strolling back onto the show floor, and I immediately run into Darryl in his Charlie Brown shirt. The we ran into Travis and we compared out awesome Nurse Nurse pins.
What about our mission?! All those PUPPYTEETH comics we were talking about? Well, Liz and I made an executive decision to declare a SPX special and give them away! At least four times we had to replenish a stack on the free table that kept dissappearing. They came in handy for trades and for getting our names out there. I don’t know how Liz did, but I walked in with at least 35 copies and came back home with 7. Only one person insisted on giving us actual money for a copy, but I consider the whole affair to be a massive success.
I went back to the AdHouse table and talked some more with Chris Pitzer, just barely missing my chance to pick up Lose #2. Apparently he and Jim Rugg had been flipping through PUPPYTEETH earlier and both thought it was really cool! Full disclosure here, I was a bit intimidated at SPACE to say hey to Jim because for some reason I didn’t think he’d be too nice. I’m saying this because I was proven more wronger than wrong. He is such a nice guy! Really seemed genuinely enthused about our book and that I was going to have a table at PIX.
I headed back over to Picturebox and talked some more with Frank Santoro. I gave him a copy of the zine and he seemed pretty impressed with Liz’s work (“There are too many Liz’s in comics”).
I made the rounds a few more times before heading downstairs to see Kevin H on the Constructing Iconographies panel. Definitely worthwhile and enlightening.
Back upstairs I made a final round, saying bye to all the cool people I had gotten to meet. This was really one of the best experiences I’ve had — no doubt I will be there next year, making this a yearly tradition for a while. Liz and I had made plans early on to get a table for this year, but circumstances were a lot different back then, and we weren’t sure if we’d be ready. Since things have just been getting better and better, there’s no question in my mind that we’ll be ready to exhibit next year. Thanks so much to all the wonderful people we met, and a big super thanks for Darryl Ayo, the man of the hour.
Take care y’all.
Ok, before I go, let me call out some of the great books I picked up (for some reason I did not get Acme Novelty Library#20, but I guess I can wait a bit longer til it’s officially released):
- Nurse Nurse #7 – Katie Skelly turns up the heat in the penultimate chapter. The Q & A in the back is replaced with an ominous message of things to come
- Monster – A huge beautiful book from Fort Thunder alums and some other great artists. A real wonder to behold, I was asked by at least four exhibitors if they could get a closer look
- Wild Kingdom – Kevin Huizenga’s new book. ‘Nuff said, right?
- Incanto – Frank Santoro’s beautifully colorful book on dreams and emotion (also Cold Heat 7/8 is really a nice work)
- Cragmore – Pat Lewis’ recently completed epic of a wealthy man vs. the devil.
- Rambo 3.5 – Ignatz award winning book by stylistic chameleon Jim Rugg, this power fantasy has shades of Williams Street humor. A perfect example to bring into the Art of Comics class.
- THB: Comics From Mars #2 – Technically, Liz picked this up for me at the Baltimore con, but I didn’t get it until this weekend. Paul Pope doing what he does best
- The Enquirer – Supreme cartoonist Dustin Harbin knocks it out of the park with this newspaper that is all comics. I’m particularly fond of “My Favorite Joke,” but they’re all great. And all for a dollar! A DOLLAH!
- DUDES! – The evil Madéleine Flores (Darryl Ayo’s words, not mine) delivers a funny and handsome comic.
- anyANYway #1 – Darryl Ayo brings the goods
- There will be another – Gorgeous drawings set amid gorgeous design. Courtesy of Anthony Cudahy
- Lose #1, #2 – Michael DeForge really has it going on. You’re drawn in by the art and you swiftly get lost in the unsettling story, both working together perfectly.
- BLAMMO #6 – Funny stuff from Noah Van Sciver
- Dear HxC Dan – At it’s best when Hardcore Dan is clutching the air or scowling in silence. From Josh Frees.
- Never Jump in a Lone Leaf Pile – Sally Bloodbath is really pretty swell
Just a small sampling of all the great things comics and SPX has to offer! See you kiddie cats next year!