Tina Garceau writes for Bleeding Cool;
I’m more of an illustrator than a writer. I suddenly feel very self conscious that somebody wants me to write something. I feel like I used to do when faced with writing a term paper. Here goes!
My husband Joe is a veteran of a number of comic related events, but the Philadelphia Alternative Comic Convention was my first. I wasn’t sure what to expect. Thankfully, it was an alternative comic convention, so I didn’t have to deal with any fat guys dressed like Klingons, or the really sad chicks who don’t have friends honest enough to tell them that they can’t pull off the Princess Leia slave outfit. It was a smaller, but well attended event for the fans and creators of more personal stories. This was where dedicated artists produced their sequestered labors of love by any means necessary. Being that we’ve been working on our own labor of love, we wanted to see what the other kids were doing. The Rotunda at 4014 Walnut Street which hosted PACC was packed despite the terrible weather and the sweltering temperatures within. It was a terrific opportunity to make new discoveries or to put a face to a favorite comic, and show a little appreciation. It was upbeat. Positive feedback swirled about the room. I met a lot of nice and incredibly talented people!
We first made our way to the table of the Philadelphia Cartoonist Society. My husband is a member of this group of artists and illustrators that call the City of Brotherly Love home. We snagged volume one and two of Jeff Kilpatrick’s “Sketches of Fishtown.” They are a wonderful and heartfelt tribute to the people and Philadelphia neighborhood that Jeff grew up in.
We met Maria Hoey, of Coin-Op Studio, and immediately bought a copy of her book The Nest Egg. Beautifully illustrated, gorgeous colors, and done entirely in vector format. I love Adobe Illustrator (a vector art program as opposed to Photoshop which is a raster art program) and do a lot of my own work in that program. Seeing the staggering amount of work that went into her book was simply amazing!
Lance Hansen stood out because he was wearing a button down shirt and a vintage necktie. He’s an artist, editor, and publisher of Kettle Drummer Books. He enthusiastically sold me on his company’s publications which included a fabulous hardbound anthology “Seduction of the Innocent.” It’s a collection of pinups of girls reading comics by a variety of artists – such as Danny Hellman, Richard Sala, Glen Headd, and many more.
We traded mini comics with Cyn Why. She favored us with a sketch inside the front cover of her Mini Comic – No Talent Hack! I don’t think the title fits, I’ve checked out her web comic on her site and it’s hysterical!
My husband has a background in commercial printing so he was nerding out on the various approaches people took to producing, printing and creating the final printed product. I caught up to him while he was going off on a rant regarding the quality of modern staples and whether the Swingline #34121 long reach stapler is better than the Bostitch #615. Just like us, most of the people we met and talked to were responsible for everything from the thumbnail sketches through assembling the final project. These were hands-on people! My kind of people, and the instant kinship was nice.
My husband and I work on a web comic together called “Monkey and Bird” which appears at co2comics.com. We had put together a mini-comic version of the first chapter of our comic and traded mini-comics back and forth at PACC. We ended up with a stack of fabulous funnies that we are still going through, and we got some kind and generous feedback regarding our labor of love. As I said before, “Nice people!”
Sadly we were only able to stay about an hour and a half. We had to rescue our babysitter from our son, but I’ll definitely return next year! Maybe I can talk the CO2 Comics folks into getting a table!