Back from the show…!


I’m back from MEGACON in one piece. Randy Green and I flew down Thursday afternoon on one of those small short-hop jets and about two-thirds of the way to Orlando, the turbulence got so bad I thought my teeth were going to shake out of my head. I was absolutely terrified. It was the worst turbulence I’ve ever experienced…. and for someone who’s not thrilled to fly in the first place, it was very very frightening. I was tempted to get down on my knees and kiss the ground when we landed, but resisted. The show itself was a lot of fun. It was great rooming and hanging out with Randy all weekend. We were given adjacent but separate tables at the show, but we decided that since neither of us had particularly large set-ups, we’d just share one table. The night before the first day of the show, I’d slept on the hotel bed, which was a lot softer than my back prefers– and so I was in a lot of pain on Friday. I couldn’t comfortably bend over to sketch, and so had to turn down commission requests that first day. But the next two nights I slept on the floor, and my back was back to feeling great the rest of the weekend, and I sketched like a fool. I did more sketches at this show than I have at any other for as far back as I can remember. Randy was the same way… we both sketched furiously during the show, and even in the room at night after the show and early in the morning BEFORE the show. I think we were both determined to complete the lists of commissions we’d taken and we both managed to do so. The fans down in Florida were wonderfully friendly, polite and enthusiastic. After working in a relative vacuum for so long since the last show I attended, it was very nice to get some feedback from people who read and enjoy my work. It was also great to see and talk with some folks I usually only get to see at shows– like Skottie Young, Josh Middleton, Phil Noto, Tim Townsend, the wonderful Nick Cardy, Jimmy Palmiotti and so many others I think of as ‘con buddies’, since I only see them or really communicate with them at these shows. I also met Derrick Fish who does the web strip DANDY AND COMPANY. Derrick’s a really nice fella– and he graciously gave me copies of a new project he’s working on called TAILS TO AMAZE which is a lot of fun. I’d pictured Derrick as looking like the kid in his comic strip (I tend to do that with artists for some reason… imagining they look like characters they draw)– but he looks nothing like Bernard. I also had a wonderful discussion with the legendary Howard Chaykin while waiting for the shuttle to the show on Sunday morning (and while riding the shuttle to the con). Since being introduced to him a couple years ago, he’s always been incredibly nice to me and is always eager to discuss the craft of comics art. I love hearing his insights and talking with him always inspires me. He’s got some amazing projects coming out in the next year… I can’t wait to see them published!

We never got a chance to hit any of the amusement parks in Orlando. We were staying at the Doubletree, which was right across the street from the UNIVERSAL ISLANDS OF ADVENTURE theme parks. And the show organizers had set up a group event to take many of the show guests there on Thursday night… but Randy and I were both so wiped out by the time we got to the hotel that we decided to skip it. We just got a snack and sketched in the room. I hadn’t slept very well the night before we left for the show, so I was really pooped. I was just as happy to not spend an entire evening trudging around a crowded amusement park.

The flight back to RDU International was much smoother, thankfully. Very little bouncing around. I was hoping for a bigger plane for the ride back, but it was not to be, so I’m happy the air currents were more agreeable the second time. When we first arrived in Florida on Thursday, it was 86 degrees. It cooled down a bit by Sunday… but it was still pleasant. When we got off the plane in Raleigh, it was in the low 30’s…. and I was in a short sleeve t-shirt. What a difference…! We hustled to the car as quickly as we could to keep me from going into hypothermia. OK… it wasn’t that bad, but it was certainly a shock to the system.

So it was a great trip– but I’m happy to be home. I was pretty wiped out yesterday– hence no post. But I’m feeling more alive now, and it’s time to get back to work.

This is Entry 199.


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