Friday, July 31, 2009

Comic-con: signings

This is my third (and final) blog post regarding our trip to Comic-con last weekend. In the past, I was not too interested in having my favorite books signed by my favorite artists. It can be a little awkward and disappointing to meet the people I look up to. Easier, sometimes, to keep some things a mystery. But recently, maybe after the last ALA we did a few weeks ago, I felt like, "What the heck?" and it's been pretty fun. I also like to get a photo of Julie and Romy with the person whenever possible.

The first signing we went to was for Seth's new book, GEORGE SPROTT. It's a BIG, beautiful book. He was doing a little something different for each person in line. But every drawing was drawn first with a brush pen, and then shaded with a non-photo blue pencil. Thanks, Seth!

Next, we got Richard Thompson to sign his first CUL-DE-SAC collection. He'd been asking us how Romy was handling the bustle of the con. We told him she had one or two meltdowns but she was really doing well. We got an awesome drawing of the wonderfully hilarious Alice Otterloop doing her thing.

Last, but not least, is the drawing we got from Lewis Trondheim, after stopping him on the convention floor. I explained to him we'd missed his signing and he was very nice to sign our copy of LITTLE NOTHINGS: THE PRISONER SYNDROME, right there on the fly. Julie was wearing a PEANUTS shirt that day with a Snoopy and Woodstock pattern. He noticed...

A final note, also regarding Trondheim. I just read a crazy bit about his signings, particularly the one at the First Second booth. By Brian Heater at The Daily Cross Hatch, from a very interesting, in depth con report here. to meet Trondheim at the Fantagraphics booth. “He’s already gone,” Eric Reynolds breaks the news. The French artist, it seems, couldn’t get out of there quickly enough. When, during his signing, someone asked Trondheim if he was enjoying the show, he answered, simply, “no,” without a smile. No one can tell when Lewis Trondheim is kidding. When I first met him earlier in the day at the First-Second booth, a fan mentioned casually that her favorite character from the Joann Sfar collaboration Dungeon was Marvin the Dragon. She loved the way he burped fire. Trondheim quickly pulled out a disposable lighter from his pocket and proceeded to torch the title page of the book he had just signed. Again, not even the slightest hint of a smile.

Here's two photos of that going down, courtesy of the Hatch...

Wow. Wish I could've been there for that. Very awesome. Very creative. Wacky Frenchmen.

And Tom Spurgeon's (The Comics Reporter) take...

By the way, I'm told that Trondheim has done the burned sketch thing before, and in fact have seen photo evidence. He only does it once a show for obvious reasons -- he has to be asked for a Marvin, and you just don't set things on fire in a crowded place in blithe fashion. Man, what a great gimmick.

Thus, closing my report on another Comic-con. Good times had by all.

Except for, maybe, Trondheim?


rama said...

Hello Matt,

I am working on a portrait of Richard Thompson for the Team Cul de Sac project that you may have heard of. May I have your permission to use your photo of him in this post as one of my main references?

His wife was kind enough to share some pictures with me and they are workable, but your photo is very dynamic and lends itself to the idea I had in mind.

If it's okay, will you please let me know? If not, I completely understand. Thanks either way for considering it.

All the best, Rama

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