Sunday, March 10, 2013


Hey there sportsfans, Al here with the latest:

Let me talk about the the latest version of the Emerald City ComiCon 2013.  Really in all senses it was a mixed bag rangeing from all sorts of things like the trip up, to set up, to people I wanted to and hang out with and too people getting in the way to get away from my table, to laughing histericly after the show folded up to the way home.
The show was huge!   This is not an understatement.  And it still sold out. The mad rush of fans was crazy espesially the guys who were running to where ever they felt that they needed to get in line first and almost running over each other.  I actually yelled at them for knocking our table, "SLOW DOWN!  NO RUNNING!"  Bizzarre!
Now again like last year I played the Pros and Cons of the show and a show like this needs that kind of input so here we go;

The CONS OF E.C.C.C. 2013

1). No anouncement of the early entery into the show.  This surrpirsied a lot of us and my friend Jason barely made it back to the table before the run of the geeks came rushing forth.  This happen all three days- sunday was the worst.
2). The people who snag volumes of  business cards.  Now of course this is a personal peev of mine BUT when a guy comes by and tells you that he is looking at designs for his own that really bugs me.  But again, this is a personal thing.

3). Cosplay.  Lately over the last year the influx of people dressing up in costume at the shows has incressed along with the size of the show.  I have no issue dressing up like your favorite character not even close I am the last person because if I could do and pay for it I would BUT being on the other side of the table that you dropped hard money on realistate for three days and crowds are stopped in front of your table and no one is getting the chance to even glance at your work- arrrgh!
4). Cramped space.  Even though the show was expanded to two sides of the convention center I still feel like I was very cramped behind the table in artist's alley.  Of course this was elviated by pushing the table out a couple of inches so that wasn't as big a deal.
5). Square Apt.  This is actually more for my bud Jason than me but the reception for sending visa card info via Square just was not working in the building at all.  Makes making a sale hard.
6).  "I spent all my money getting into the show."  This was a pretty common statement I think all of the creators I know have heard.  My take on this is, if that statement is really true, why would you come and torture yourself by things you can't afford?  This isn't the Street of Dreams guys.  Again it's being on the other side of the table.
7). Separate the booths from Artist Alley.  In years past there has been separation of vendors from that of artist alley but that line was blurred with them only taking up a wall side no difference in what I could see.  
8). The load out.  These old bastards who work for the convention center not the con minions were being punks and debating people on validation of parking tickets.  That is the last thing you want to deal with after a long weekend just trying to get home.

Now THE PROS OF E.C.C.C. 2013

1). THE SIZE  OF SHOW!  Whoa!  I haven't see that many people since I went to San Diego.  I am hoping that this show won't turn into a Hollywood Northwest.
2). My booth partners.  They were awesome!  I can't say enough about these guys and I am glad that I have been running with this Wolf Pack for the last couple of years.
3). The people who did stop by and either looked and asked a lot of questions about the scratchboard or actually bought them, all I can say about that is "thank you" for taking the time out of a very busy and moderately chaotic con. 
4). Our Minion.  She was great!   There was never a time when we didn't have some water at our table.  She also helped make sure that lines weren't forming in front our table for our fabled neighbors of Richard and Wendy Pini of Elfquest.  
5). The people.  Most if not all the people were pretty friendly and generally nice.  Only twice did I every see something that was unpleasant like the kid who nearly ran over a fellow creator talking to Jason and Dan just standing at our table.  Or the young couple who were trying to figure out where the rest of their party was.  Apparently these people never played DnD before, you "Don't split up the party!"
6). The after show get togethers.  The drink and draw that we went to the first night was a blast.  We even encouraged people to come over to our table and be part of the spectacle of artwork.   The dinner and sushi we had was awesome.  Loved it.
7).  Contacts!  Now after doing the circuit of shows over the last 10 years or you get pretty inundated by people dropping by and giving you business cards and listing to the pitch.  But in this case after Jason got done talking to Bob Larkin of Global PSD about bound additions of artwork and stories I got my chance to talk to him.  As it turns out I might be able to foster the large scale digital prints for the scratchboards.  For me that would freakin' awesome!
8). Playing the gentleman.  A female friend of mine and that I had met had been trying to get together and just hang out but schedules before had made it difficult for either of us to connect.  But now was the chance to do so in the City where I lived for a couple years.   Unfortunately she had already imbibed a bit more than should have and I came down to see her.  Around her and several women in this bar were a lot of geeky guys in polo shirts and slick looking suits and the like.  Now it looked to me like 7 guys to every one women there.  Not great odds unless you happening to be looking for that and your woman.  Well when I walked in it looked like three of the geeks were swooping in on my friend till I popped in with my beat up leather biker jacket and black stocking cap and said in a kind of changing voice "Hey, what's up?"
Their reaction was priceless and hers was "Oh, gotta go."  She went outside had a smoke I gave her my arm and I walked her back to her hotel room said goodnight and made sure she got in ok.  
So in the end was it worth it?
Yeah, I guess you say that.  There were things that could have been better of course sales for any of the independents could have been better but you could say that about any show  But I did learn one thing about it and I am surprised that I hadn't ever realized it- it's a mainstream show!  People want those mainstream characters that they love not some crazy anthropomorphic bird guy.  So after talking to Dan and George about it I think that when I head to E.C.C.C. next year that will be the deciding factor AND incorporating about a 1/3 of mainstream characters that could really benefit from the scratchboard like say Ghost Rider.

And that is it for the kid.

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