The set up was super easy.
But I think that the biggest issue I've got is actually being back home.
There is a lot of emotion that is pent up in the kid here and I'm just starting to feel anxious about being here. There are a lot of old friends here and I feel like I'm gonna be under a microscope of whether or not I was right on what choices I've made moving away. Its kinda of unnerving because after years of being away what kinda of response will I get? I know these are irrational feelings but I'm still feeling them.
I know this area and I know these people. I'm not expecting a great amount of cash to change hands or someone wanting to do trades. I'm not really into doing that anymore. The last trade I did with another artist was for one of my comic books for a freaking holiday card! Because really I spent 4 months slaving away working Corpse Cop "Corpscile"
this other artist spent only a few hours making one design for hundreds of cards to be made.
I was severely disgusted by this exchange. But that's my personal feelings about that. Eugene and the arts community is really a great group of supporting people. But trades with others don't pay the monthly bills. They just don't and the accompanying response from the artists is "I'm just like you man."
No, yer not. I haven't worked this hard for this long just to trade its the reason I moved away in the first place. Even my hostess whom I'm staying with (a successful artist here in Eugene) is feeling stuck. That realization doesn't belly well for the community here. Especially for one whom I revere as my "art mom".
But the day hasn't started yet and the show is about Three and half hours away AND everything I just wrote could be absolute hog wash!
THE DAY OF THE OPENING:
So bizarre for me so I was already in heaven the show wasn't even a hour old. The prints took off the comics took off and even the buttons took off. I was happy that I had square there to help with this.
I was tabled next one of my old comic book partners from Eugene and my Pandora's Garage days, Daniel James Barton. He was surprised by the amount of work that I had produced and had out on the 8'x2' table space that we had. But then again I had to remind myself that Dan and I hadn't shared a table in about 5 years or so.
This time around it was nice to have a table with some breathing space. Nothing wrong with sharing a table with other comic book buddies (so all of you who are reading this, don't take offense because I would not be here at this place in time without your help and understanding and friendship. I thank you all!)
The flow of the crowds did not stop. There was always a constant flow of people coming through the doors that I had not seen before.
This kinda freaked me out. And when you thought (as a vendor) that it should be over and things calm down no it kept going till about 3:30 - 4 o'clock. It was nuts. Not once did I ever really sit down or step away from the table because you didn't know if you wouldn't be able to make it back.
Then more people began to stop by and talk about the work and how I go about the process of making the work on the scratchboard. Other people stopped by and picked up more pieces of work from across the board but show itself was super chill.
By the time the show ended at 7 PM I was over the half way mark of where I wanted to be monetarily. It was a good night and hung out doing a little bit work and went out with a few old friends living in Eugene to celebrate.
Such a fantastic day.
This day was unsure because of how many people came out the day before but typically as with every other show that I have been in Sunday typically are much slower and fewer participants (which after the day before I would be happy with!). But again like the morning before I had another customer stop and make a sizable purchase. But unlike so many other people who usually step away from the table after the sales transaction has taken place he stayed around and asked a fair amount questions about work and compared my work to that of both Virgil Finlay
|Copyright© Lynd Ward|
He had told me that he was an art collector of original works. I gave him my business card and just stood there slightly dumbfounded.
So I guess I just needed to keep doing what I have been doing for the last couple of years with a few tweeks here and there to make the living I've always wanted.
The day was filled with old friends stopping by between sales and passers by. The show came to an end and I packed it up and went out with a huge smile on my face. The Hometown came out and stood up!
So comes the PROS AND CONS of the show
CONS- go first this time round
1). A vendors Table packet could be used to help vendors know exactly where our tables were when loading in.
That's really it.
2). The P.A. Though at times sounded silly with the events they were talking about never over did it. Every event that was taking place was made clear. The music wasn't over the top either but you could tell that it was looped.
3). The temperature. There have other places that I have been to where the temp was too cold or too hot. Well Goldie Locks this was just right. The weather outside did get bad a few times with a downpour or two but inside it never was bad just good and comfortable.
4). The Cos Players. Now in times past I've had huge problem with these guys because it was always about them never the vendors trying to sell work that might one day influence them to dress up like a character from you work. They were all very respectful and never impeded foot traffic along Artist Alley. And personally in my opinion they were all very tasteful and not over the top.
5). The crowd. You can never know what to expect with crowds but in this case everybody was nice and respectful. I didn't see anyone ever step out of line with the vendors even when there was a difference of opinion of a characters origin or some other topic. I did have one person want to try to get me to get back into roll playing but that was the extent of my dealing with a "booth barnacle".
6). The Vendors Now I know a few of these guys pretty well and been at several shows with the folkes from Portland but this was Eugene. A different kind of town and lot of these guys had never been there before. What I really noticed from them was a no animosity with anyone who was showing. At most shows there are always minor grumlings from some vendor that didn't get what they wanted or had an issue with another vendor. This time I didn't see or hear any prima donnas there.
7). Table Placement of Artists Alley. Unlike so many other shows that I have been to the placement of the Artist has always taken second fiddle to big companies push their big ass products and the people who originated a lot cool ideas get pushed off to the side. Not so here. Professionals mixed with independent exhibitors were on the front lines as those doors opened. it was really cool. It felt like we finally got our just do.
So in the end I will say this. would I go back HELL YEAH! This of all the shows that I have done over the last 15 years was the best ran and most enjoyable show I have ever been to. I would definitely head back for this.
JUST A SIDE NOTE:
NOW there have been more help comments and new items to be incorporated in to the new prints
A small certificate to be added to each of the prints in the series of Richard Parker (and to any other print series from hereafter).
With this art collectors could in fact collect the work and know of the authenticity of the work and that it was a part of series not just a one off.
Behind the table banners. As Black Box has changed over the years to reflect the changes within the company a couple of strechy cloth banners need to be purchased for shows down the road. This will two things right off the top:
1). Show off the name of the company. My old table cloth that I had designed years ago just ain't doing it anymore for the kid. And it was down below the waist line so when you had people stopping by they could see who you were.
2). Having Banners will also separate me from the back ground movement of eye catching cos players and other movement that will grab a persons attention from me and the work.
This has always been on my mind but has always been pushed to the back because like all things cost of money but as it improves with sales I can more complete the table when I show.
3). A tall stool/ Seat. One of the biggest issue that if you are doing a solo table you need to be seen and tall stool/seat literally elevates you above the work at the table and your are able to save your feet from standing 8 hours a day on finished concrete. As a vendor and getting older this isn't as easy to do these days.
4). Print series certificates. These are the notations on the back of the prints to let a person know that he or she isn't just buying a one off but a small history lesson to the piece and to let them know that it was part of series.
But most revealing comment that floored me was by Jason Martin of Zombie Tramp. I had known Jason for couple years now and as he was talking to me and friend of mine Larry from Eugene he said when the topic of comic book art came up
"When I look at your artwork Alan, I think of it as more fine art than comic book work. I mean you can see where it (the art style) comes from but it's more fine art."
I was, needless to say, floored by that statement. I had heard from others something similar but not really quite as concise as the way Martin had described it. It hit me like a hammer and I realized that he was right. For years I wanted to bring a comic adventure the magnitude that a European comic has.
ONWARD TO THE BIG 500.
Last year I was interviewed by a small local group to talk briefly about the comics I was doing as well as the art work and galleries I was getting into at the time. You can check out the interview here.https://youtu.be/XwdlqaRxq0g
Yes, there are T-shirts Virginia and you can buy them at TeePubic.com https://www.teepublic.com/user/blackboxman
It just seemed to me that I needed to stretch myself with different ways of getting my work out there and as I was going through Facebook I saw the add and thought to take a look. I liked what I saw. The return isn't as great back to the artist but it does give a platform for you to show your work.
And as always there are places for you to check out as well.
And of course I still have my comics that I have worked on here at Indyplanet.
And mind you there is website
and the facebook page
The Website also has some new stuff added for the comic books featuring Corpse Cop.
And with that this kid is outta of here I got work to do.
And that's it for the kid for now and I am outta of here.
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