Chicago Comic Con exceeded all my expectations. The turnout was simply amazing. Based on the past couple of years, I assumed that it was going to be a bit of a sleepy show, especially with the lack of bigger name publishers in attendance (aside from the excellent Top Shelf). I figured, hell, the plane ride was already covered and I could stay with friends, so why not?
I am so glad that I did. As I mentioned before, I shared a table with Tim Broderick and Brian ‘BMAN’ Babendererde, and together we were in rare form. However, I think the lack of larger publishers ended up working to the advantage of smaller players like ourselves. People coming to the show looking for comics ended up finding their way back to Artist’s Alley when the booths in the front were found wanting. I also think the con playing the Celebrity Card brought in a different crowd than the fanboy-heavy mob in years past. Perhaps this helped our comics find a more receptive audience. Consequently, the sales were amazing: I sold over 100 books for the third time ever. Thanks to everyone who took a chance on PS! You guys made my weekend!
As usual, there were plenty of costumes around, though I was so busy chatting at the table, I hardly got any photos at all. I did manage to snap a shot of Kitty Pryde, though. She was always one of my favorites back in the day. I also squeezed in one fun commission for one of my long-time regulars.
However, the weekend wasn’t without its downsides. Most notoriously, the contemptible former (and nearly convicted — may it yet happen) Governor of Illinois made a disgraceful appearance to the convention on Saturday, with his hat in hand and begging for autographs. It made me feel dirty to be sharing the convention hall with such a figure. Star Trek, Batman and other actors are one thing, but this was quite another. It was shameful. I’m only happy to say that every time an announcement for the man came over the PA system, Artist’s Alley erupted in a cacophony of boo’s.
The other notable downside was that aside from Tim, Brian & Alisa, only a handful of other people I knew braved the show this year, and it made for significantly reduced socializing after hours. It was nice to have a little more time with some close friends, but I did miss the giant cartoonist katamari we normally take to our favorite family-style Chinese restaurant. It was a little sad when only three of us showed up on Saturday night.
However, those grumbles aside, I had a great time, and I will be back again next year! Thanks again to everyone who took the time to come out and see us. We’re so glad you did!