:| I don't know what I'm doing when it comes to Comic Conventions yet, and it bugs the hell out of me. I hate to say it, but I have to give my personal experience at HeroesCon this year a great big ol' D for Disappointing, Discouraging, and Depressing. Not due to the company I kept, mind you. The best part about the con this year is what made it so awesome last year: I went with my best friends, and met a lot of really incredible people.
Last year, I think, was really great for me because it was a new experience, and my first time really seeing how people in the industry interact and network with each other, both casually and professionally. I got to meet a lot of great artists as a student, and didn't really feel any sort of pressure and it was pretty awesome.
And this is going to sound silly because I still have a LONG way to go, but I just felt so out of my element in the artists alley this year. There's probably a number of reasons for this including:
-I've still got such an anime/manga influenced style compared to 90% of the artists there. The people at the con aren't there to look at Manga art. It was sorta weird to be sandwiched between Pat Quinn and Pat Bolin, both amazing artists with a much more main stream super hero type of style. The whole weekend was spent watching people stop to go through either of their portfolios, pause at mine for a second before going "oh wait... this is... not what I was expecting..." and moving on to the next Pat. Not that I didn't get a good number of people looking at my stuff. I was really popular with the Teen Age girls and 10 year old boys at least *lol*.
-I'm listed as a professional guest and trying my best to represent SCAD at the mojo table, but it was getting sort of hard to sell myself when people asked what I was doing and could only be like "Uh, well... I'm working on such and such! It will be out .... uh... eventually! Look, I did these pages for school!" It just didn't feel very professional and I felt very awkward.
-I snafuu'd basically everything I wanted to have for the table. My cards arrived at my apartment while I was at the con (they look awesome, BTW. Too bad I didn't have them all weekend). I only finished about a third of the 15 page mini comic I wanted to have printed up just for the con, and then forgot to even put the finished pages in my portfolio at all. I tried to put together a new sketchbook at the last minute, just to have SOMETHING new, and realized I just haven't been sketching much over the last year, and could only come up with like, 4 pages worth of character designs.
-My medication has me not only looking all swollen and puffy, but it's got me terribly moody and self conscious anyway, so I wasn't really in the mood to be the social, drinking butterfly I was last year.

This all sounds really horrible and negative, and the con sort of did burn me out, but I also feel like I did when I finished my first contracted comic job and started getting the horrible reviews from it... I feel pretty crappy, like I could have done 100% better if I had just tried harder and put more into it, but I learned a lot from the experience, and I'm gonna use this to push myself forward.
Like I said, I met some really incredible people, and have been flipping through the books and minis I picked up, and a lot of them have got me really inspired to really kick ass this summer. I want the pages I do for my first graphic novel to be freaking phenomenal. I want my inks to tighten up and look amazing. I want to get back into doing painting and illustrating every week so I'm exploring new mediums. I want to start sketching as much as possible so I'm not feeling stagnant for ideas. I want to start being an artist again.

On that note, sorry there's no art to go with this post :( Hopefully my motivation will carry over and allow me to post art here more often! Also my day job has been crazy busy! If you're a food geek like me, make sure you buy a copy of this months Food and Wine! My Boss is on the cover ;D

1 comment:

Dan said...

Hey, I know you don't know me or anything, but my name is Dan and I'm over 10 years old (10x3 in fact)=). I don't know if it will make you feel any better, but when I saw your name in the program I instantly remembered the kick ass batgirl you did for one of the sketch challenges on the Mojo site. I wanted to ask you about a sketch, but I had already contacted a number of folks in advance and had pretty much spent all my cash before I walked in. I could see how it would be awkward to attend such a con when you're still building a portfolio , but from a consumer/fan perspective, I identified you as a young artist who is still establishing herself. As far as your style goes, you may be right that the majority of the people don't go to the shows to look at anything that varies much from standard superhero fare, but I for one like nothing more than to see different spins on classic characters - and I've seen you do that on a number of characters (not just Batgirl)- and it really works well! If I had it do over again, I would've plotted things out differently so as to pick up a piece from you (even if it meant not picking up something I did come away with)- and hope to get a chance at another point. I hope you do get inspired and fired up and maybe a little pissed off and really show what you can do the next time you have such an opportunity. But if your rates for sketches and whatnot go up when that happens, maybe you could give a small discount to guys named Dan who are over 10 ;).