Posts Tagged ‘comic books’

Inaugural Cincinnati Comic Expo

September 21, 2010

Well I’ve spent some time trying to clear my own head and get back in the mood to start posting on here. Well I’m back now to writing meaningless post on here again.

Well this past Saturday went to the inaugural Cincinnati Comic Expo in Cin……….. well you can figure it out. I drove all the way out in the morning and drove back that night and I feel it was worth it. I’ve also need to compliment their PR rep, cause they were able to get a lot of attention on the show in local magazines and radio shows. Unfortunately I forgot my camera, so I didn’t get any pictures this time.

The show was designed to focus on comics; mainstream, small press, and independent. They wanted to veer away from “pop culture shows” some cons have become in the past few years. They had 70 comic creators and 50 vendor tables. Besides just comic and games stores showing up, they had a local Leggo store, the local 501st legion, Underground Video Network, Blue Line Pro art, and a few other such things.

Their featured guests included comic creators from the Golden Age Murphy Anderson, Russ heath, and Allen Bellman; Comic Book Historian and Executive Producer of the 1989 Batman movie Michael Uslan and his son David who also works in the business now too; Archie Comics writer and artist Craig Boldman; plus comic creators and artiests Tony Moore, Steve Scott, Lora Innes, Thom Zahler, Dave Aikins, Dave Michael Beck, Sean Forney, Joe Gentile, and Josh Medors who is suffering from cancer so the con ran a charity auction to help raise money for his treatment.

The whole thing took place in the lobby around the basketball area (the Cintas Center) of Xavier University. I forgot to see if they offered degrees in human/mutant relations. It worked out very well. It made the whole convention floor an U shape. They had guests and vendors aligned on both sides of the wall around. One of the center’s snack bars was open selling food, at the usual prices. The center had plenty of free parking for everyone.  Though the location didn’t really have that many places to get food from near by that I could tell. I didn’t have a long or hard drive to find food, but just not walking distance.

For most of the day it was nearly impossible to get close to any of the comic dealers boxes.  There was people going through them almost the whole time.  Some of the ones in the further back didn’t have as many people and were easier to get to though and by the end of the day it started to thin out.  The artists on the other hand were a little easier to get to.  One would have a swarm at their table at certain times, but for the most part they were easy to get to and talk with.  In particular I got to meet Ricky Henry, Chad Schoettie, Rodney Fyke, Scott Zambelli, and Dustin Carson

Besides the main floor they had use of small room in the back that was split between functioning as a panel room and a gaming room. The gaming portion was run by Yotta Quest and they demoed several board and card games throughout the day. There was also another vendor Art of War in the main hall doing demos of some games. Mostly superhero based miniature ones.

There were a few costumes at the show. Besides all the Star Wars ones from the 501st. The was a Joker and a Harley Quinn of course. I do recall seeing Red Robin, Stephanie Brown Batgirl, a Hulk made to look like one of those toys with a block head and hands, Jubilee, Sora from Kingdom Hearts, and more.

They had a few panels during the day that I unfortunately missed all over. They also held their costume contest and charity auction there. I attended the auction, that start half an hour later than the program guide said it would. It was the last thing of the day and most of the other attendees were heading home, meaning there was not a lot of people there. This meant several nice pieces of art got sold really cheap and some didn’t get any bids. The staff members running also didn’t really know what they were suppose to be doing or to much about every piece up for sell. They were able to make do and it did end up running very well for the small crowd. I personally got an original Archie Comics’ Jughead as Superman by Craig Boldman, Batman and Harley Quinn print by Scott Zambelli, a great pencil of Thor, and a Star War piece of General Grieves. Which brings me to the question, does anyone out there want to buy some art?

They’ve already got a date and location for next year too. The Duke Energy Convention Center in downtown Cincinnati on September 17, 2011. This will give them more room and closer proximity to hotels. I’m looking forward to seeing what they do and who they get next year.

I say this is a good show for any comic fans out there in the area to check out.

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Gallery Walk with Beau Smith

May 18, 2010

 

April 10-17 was the Ohio River Festival of Books which featured several authors at different libraries, schools, and other locations for a week to promote reading, libraries, and other such stuff. I don’t, like a book fair but more so. I attended two different events they held during the week. The first one was a Gallery Walk at the Huntington Museum of Art by comic book writer and collector Beau Smith (pronounced ‘Bo’).

Beau is a native of Huntingon, West Virginia, he know lives in Ceredo, West Virginia. He was a comic book fan from an early age and has never lost his love for them. He got into the comic book industry first by sending in letters to comic book companies that got published in the back of the books and meeting industry people at conventions. From there he got a chance to do some writing in some magazines and then got more jobs and more jobs till he’s been writing freelance for over fifteen years. He’s also worked as marketing and publishing exec for such companies as: Eclipse Comics, Image Comics, McFarlane Toys, and IDW Publishing.

The museum is running an exhibit on comic art which is running through May 30th. Beau is a big collector of comic book art and has a collection of over 90 pieces at home. The museum asked him about exhibiting some of it and he agreed. They selected 36 pieces to use and on April 11 he gave a guided tour of it.

The group who showed up was divested. Small children, old people, Beaus’s family and friends, reporters, comic book fans, people trying to get into the industry, myself, and others. Beau went down each piece and explained the significance of the piece; where it was from, what’s in it, how he got it, and more.

Some of the pieces included:

A Spider-man from his black costume days in which Beau and a friend of his, who was there, were used as models by an artist friend of theirs.

A Superman story featureing Aquaman from 1977 that he bought in 1980 for five dollars. The piece now would be worth over $500.

Some pieces form his work on Guy Gardner Warrior.

Pieces from his early work writing as one page stories for a magazine. In each of them he was able to work in saying something about the local area of Huntington or Ceredo;one of them mentioned ‘Thundering Herd.”

A piece from Judge Parker (I think I can’t remember now) that was drawn by a friend who drew Beau into it with a hat that said “Ceredo” on it.

A piece from his work on the comic book adaption of “24.” This piece was uninked as it was inked and colored on a computer.

A piece from his comic “Wynonna Earp” about Wyatt Earp’s daughter who investigated paranormal activities in the old west. He went into a long discussion about the different threats she faced and the hierarchy that existed with them. It was really interesting to see him just ramble on about this as it was so natural for him, like I feel a true writer should be. 

A piece from Sgt. Rock by Billy Tuci, which he pointed out the detail Tuci goes into getting everything just right. 

Through out the tour he gave information into the workings of the comic industry and how it’s changed over time. He repeatly encourage people to follow through on what they want to do in life and find something they loved and find a way to make it into a career.

At the end he hung around and talked with people.  There were several people who wanted to show him their art and get his opinion on it.  Including a seven year old.  He answered a few questions about different pieces that he hadn’t mentioned before as well.  I waited around and ended up being the last guy to get a picture of him, but it did give me a chance to check out some of the other art they had int he exhibit as well.  All and all very fun and I recommend anyone likes comics and/or art to go check out the collections they before they’re gone.