Monthly Archives: April 2006

Don’t Miss MicroCon!

Today if you’re in the Twin Cities you won’t want to miss MicroCon, the second largest comics convention in the area (the first biggest being FallCon, which is put on by the same folks in the Fall).

Hosted by the Midwest (formerly Minnesota) Comic Book Association, the Twin Cities conventions are no ordinary comic conventions… for one thing they offer free table space to any cartoonist who requests one. This is a rare and generous thing for a convention to offer, indeed.

As a result, you have a huge number and variety of cartoonists doing all sorts of comics… much like the Conspiracy, participating cartoonists include everything from seasoned professionals to rank amateurs… drawing every sort of comic you can imagine… manga, superheroes, funny animals, smut, and even stuff that doesn’t neatly fall into a genre.

Beyond that, the conventions always have a good vibe (cartoonists not having to hustle to make enough bread to cover a table space definitely are a part of that, along with the free food for creators, and the general friendly respect given to all creators by the members of the MNCBA). Really, it’s gotta be one of the best conventions in the country to be a creator at.

Alternative Press Expo

I love Ape-ril. It’s definitely the cartooning highlight of the year for me and my friends here in the Bay Area.
This year was my fave Alternative Press Expo yet. Jeff Mulleti, Meredith Scheff and myself got a table at the event as The San Francisco Cartoonist Conspiracy. We each had some of our own merch as well as two brand spanking new SFCC books.
The Remedy is a new 40 something page book, collecting several months of Cartoonist Conspiracy jam comics. The comics are 10-12 pages each, and every page has several different artists creating each panel.
The other book we had exclusively for APE was The Hamster That Wasn’t There. This 12 page book was created during the last two meetings before APE. This book was very unique for us, the creation was very spontaneous. At the beginning of a meeting, we decided to create a book about a boy and his missing hamster. Every page would be completely created by an individual artist (instead of just trading off panels). Working together we came up with a loose plan of what happens on each page, then we went to work. I think this book is the best front to back Jam Comic we’ve created yet.
APE highlights include that guy with the one page comic “Guess the superhero by their genitalia game”, Mulleti finally finished his Super Van comic, setting up my merch on Saturday morning only to realize the table right next to me ALSO had planned on selling lots of yo-yos, and hanging out with the guys from New Mexico Sunday night (and Monday morning).
Matt Groening was there. So was John Malkovich. I felt I had to mention that. Yeah, there where several cartoonist celebrities there, but they haven’t crossed over into that same realm of pop culture, thus they are unimportant and left out from this journal.
So the good news is I think everyone at our table broke even, some of us even made profit (all spent on comics and expensive expo food) and we about 40 new folks sign up on our mailing list because they are interested in attending one of our bi-monthly meetings. Hopefully we’ll see some of them this Thursday.
I also met up with Andy Singer and Bob Lipski, midwestern co-conspirators and inspiring artists.

Now it’s time for winding down, and reading as many mini comics as possible before Thursday’s meeting.

Jam War!

Jam War was a blast… much blood and ink was spilled, but many gorgeous pages crawled from the wreckage at the end of it. I wish I could post some, but can’t until after judging is completed.

We want to print a book of all the Minneapolis Jam War losers as a mini-comic, so email me if you want to participate in this mini. My team almost certainly will be included… we had a blast losing, though.

Thanks! to Danno for organizing!
Thanks! to Shad for handling everything computery!
Thanks! to Drivas for funding and involuntarily lending us all his lovely visage!
Thanks! to BTA for the paper!
Thanks! to Jeff Rathermel and Book Arts for giving us such a great space to work in!
Thanks! to Wet Paint for providing supplies and letting us stock up at a discount!
Thanks! to Reiner and Grumpy’s for the drinks and discounts!
Thanks! to Nat Gertler for conceiving and organizing the national event!