Monday, April 7, 2014

Wizard World In Review Part One: The Comics and Art

I attended Wizard World Saint Louis (WWSL) on Friday and Saturday (I was too exhausted to go Sunday) and met many, many, cool folk. In fact, there was so much I saw and so many interesting people I met I thought it would make sense to split my review of how the convention went for me into various segments. Therefore, first off I'm going to talk about people whom were there in a strictly comic-related/illustrated art-related capacity that I interacted with, followed by people who were there to promote other items such as movies, books, or a variety of intriguing crafts and jewelry. Lastly, I'll put up a third post where I plan to give a sort of wrap-up of my thoughts about WWSL.

The Comic-Makers and Art-Creators
To be fair and not appear to favor any creator over another I'm going in an alphabetical order by company/group name, a person's last name, or a creator's artistic pseudonym.
Neal Adams
I saw Neal at last year's Wizard World and he was as energetic and friendly as ever at this show too. I wasn't able to chat with him as much as last year because he was always so busy interacting with fans who came up to talk to him--often about his work on Batman over all the years. His website can be found here.

Brian Atkins
I've discussed "Gargoyle by Moonlight" before and how I greatly enjoyed reading it. Well, Brian Atkins was the artist for that comic and it was fun to see him at WWSL and chat with him about upcoming adventures of the titular hero. I look forward to more "Gargoyle by Moonlight" in the near future! Find him here.

Big Dog Ink
I've talked about Big Dog Ink's works before and it was fun to see them at the convention again and hear about their upcoming projects. See more of their work here.

Gerimi Burleigh
Mr. Burleigh was one of the coolest folk I met for the first time at WWSL, as not only was his artwork quite good but he also was extremely friendly and clearly excited to talk about his work and inspirations. I picked up some of his work and will get a review up sooner than later about it. I highly recommend you check out his website here, as the art is as delightful as he was.

Aaron Campbell
I first discovered Campbell's work pretty recently on the popular Dynamite comic, "Uncanny" he illustrates with writer Andy Diggle. We spoke at length about "Uncanny", his work on "The Shadow", and comics in general. Campbell was very pleasant and fun to talk with, perhaps an interview for the blog is in order? We shall see! Find his website here.

Greg Capullo
Mr. Capullo is of course currently known for his long-running work with Scott Snyder on DC's Batman. Capullo was eager to sign folk's comics and very cordial to everyone, despite quite a line forming of people who wanted to get an issue of "Batman" signed or purchase a print. Follow him on Twitter here.

Capybara Ink
Capybara Ink is an entity founded by Matthew Miller that specializes in a variety of comic art put on coasters, bookmarks, art prints and more. Plus, the mascot is a capybara, which is just awesome as those animals are cool. Learn more about Capybara Ink here.

Comic Creator's Coffee Club/C4
The Comic Creator's Coffee Club is a group of comic fans and makers who gather on a monthly basis to discuss comics and show off their work. They are a nice bunch. Learn more about them here.

Andrew Day
Mr. Day is comic artist and illustrator I met at WWSL who had some great-looking art on display and for sale. You can see more of his stuff here.

Athena Finger
The granddaughter of Bill Finger, the often unaccredited (at least by DC) co-creator of Batman, Athena Finger was at WWSL to raise awareness about her grandfather and the general need for creator's to receive the recognition they deserve for their work. Follow her on Twitter here.

Danny Fingeroth
Danny Fingeroth has worked on and edited a variety of Marvel comics throughout time and has more recently been creating a variety of interesting books about comics. Find out more about him here.

Anthony Fowler
A local artist in the Saint Louis area, Anthony was very friendly and had some cool artwork. See more of his stuff here.

Bryan Fyffe
Bryan Fyffe is an artist who makes some pretty cool-looking pieces. He was at WWSL to sell his artwork and crafts, so I could have put him in either category for my review of this convention, but because I was so impressed with his artwork I thought it made sense to put him in this category. You can see his work at this website.

Danny Haas
Danny Haas had some really fantastic-looking art at WWSL, especially his stuff that takes two related characters or a character and their alter-ego and puts them together in a half-and-half image. You can see more of his stuff here.

H-eri is an artist who creates works that I would say are both beautiful and a bit sad-feeling at the same time. You can view her work here.

Terry Huddleston
I met Mr. Huddleston for the first time at this WWSL and found his artwork quite good-looking. He does these cool portrait-style drawings of various comic characters or other celebrities that are fun and you can find his stuff here.
Ink and Drink Comics
A comic collective of sorts, Ink and Drink comics puts out a themed anthology every six months and has been doing so for four years now. A variety of talented local artists contribute to it and I would definitely recommend picking up an issue. Find out more about them here.

Matt Kindt
Matt Kindt has been behind a variety of popular independent comics and works from DC. He had a lot of his work for sale at the convention and I would recommend checking out his work that he has either just written, or both written and illustrated. Learn more about him here.

Caleb King
Caleb King was at the convention to promote his works such as the webcomic "Surreality" with Carla Wyzgala and  "Past Tense" with Andrew Day. Surreality can be found here and Past Tense here.

"Kitties with Pottymouths"
Steve Higgins is behind this concept that is both at once adorable and offensive. Namely, it is  drawings and images of cats that may look cute, but which don't hesitate to swear up a storm. I love it and bet you will too, so check it out at this website.

Andy Kluthe
Mr. Kluthe is the man behind "Nerd Rage" a popular web-comic that is pretty funny from what I have seen of it. You can check out "Nerd Rage" at this website.

Jeremiah Lambert
Mr. Lambert was at WWSL showing off his assorted artworks and illustrated work. You can see more of his stuff here.

Salvador Larroca
I met Salvador Larroca at WWSL and told him how much I enjoyed his work on "Invincible Iron Man" with Matt Fraction back when they did that comic a few years back. He was very appreciative. Here is a wiki about him.

Megan Levens
Megan Levens is one of the creators behind the upcoming Image comic "Madame Frankenstein". She showed me some preview artwork and it looks like it is going to be a pretty cool comic--one that I'll be sure to check out! Find her here.

Lion Forge Comics
Lion Forge Comics was at WWSL last year and returned to this convention to promote their assorted intersting works, from licensed comics such as "Miami Vice" and "Knight Rider" to their other works with celebrities such as "Rampage" Jackson. They have a variety of interesting things coming out soon. Read more about Lion Forge here.

David Mack
Mr. Mack is an incredible artist who has done some amazing work on comics featuring Daredevil, along with his own work on "Kabuki". He also was extremely nice and very excited to talk about his work. Another person I need to work at doing an interview with! Check him out here.

Chelsea Mann
Chelsea Mann is an artist and illustrator who has been working at her webcomic, "Son of the Philosopher". She also had an incredibly cool Iron Man watercolor I bought. Observe:
Yeah, that's pretty awesome. Learn more about her here.

Jake Bonebrake is the man behind "Martian". He and some friends were at the convention and their excitement at talking about the comic had me wanting to grab a copy. It's interesting with its mixture of stylized ultra-violence and science-fiction and fantasy. You can learn more about "Martian" here.

Darryl McDaniels AKA "DMC"
Darryl McDaniels is one of the members of the famous rap group Run DMC. I of course love rap music and enjoyed talking about it with him, but the reason Mr. McDaniels is in the comic category is because he wasn't at WWSL to promote his music. No, he was there to promote a comic he has coming out. As he described it to me, it has the feeling of rap and other assorted music genres through the incorporation of things such as graffiti imagery and such, but it is not about a rapping super-hero. Instead it is a story about a new super-hero universe with his character starting out as the first powered hero and other ones then coming into existence. It sounds pretty interesting and I look forward to checking it out upon its official release. For more about Mr. McDaniel's you can check out his website here.

Jason Metcalf
Jason Metcalf was at WWSL selling his assorted artwork and chatting with folk about his various projects. See more of him here.

Buster Moody
Buster Moody was at WWSL to promote his artwork which has a nice underground-look to it. You can find his stuff here.

New Haven Comics/Zero's Heroes
Aaron Walther was at the convention to promote his comic "Zero's Heroes" coming out via New Haven comics, an independent comic-book publisher. It was a fun looking title and you can learn more about it and New Haven Comics in general at this website.

"Oh Hell"
I read a short preview of this comic at WWSL thanks to writer George Wassil being there to promote it. I enjoyed what I read as the concept is clever--a boarding school literally in Hell--and the art was snazzy too. There will be a Kickstarter for the comic soon and I hope it does well! See more about it here.

Planet Me Productions/"SpeciMen"
I had the pleasure of meeting Matthew Mossotti at WWSL, one of the founders of Planet Me Productions which is in the process of releasing their comic "SpeciMen". Mr. Mossotti described their series as a, "The Matrix" meets "Star Wars" and was very excited to discuss it. Learn more about Planet Me and "SpeciMen" here.

Julianna Pardue
Julianna Pardue is an artist and illustrator I met at WWSL and whom I commissioned an awesome sketch-card of Moon Knight from:
Very cool. See more of her stuff here.

Ellis Ray III
Ellis Ray III is a Saint Louis-based artist and comic-maker who I've actually met before by sheer chance when I was out and about and he complimented a cool "Avengers" shirt I was wearing at the time and told me how he works on comics. He was at WWSL too and as fun to chat with about comics this time as he was the other occasion we met. You should give his stuff a look at his website which can be found here.

Artist Rori! was at WWSL to promote her comic "Tiny Pink Robots". I'd met her at a previous convention and it was fun seeing her and the fun-looking cartoon robots again. You can find her online here.

Ethan Van Sciver
I talked with comic-artist Ethan Van Sciver at WWSL too, and he was very eager to chat with folk about everything from comics to politics. He also expressed interest in doing an interview sometime so that would be great too! Follow him on Twitter here.

Kate Sherron
Ms. Sherron was at WWSL to promote her impressive illustrations and artwork. She's local to Saint Louis and quite talented.Give her work a look here.

Dan "Smif" Smith
Mr. Smith was at WWSL to promote his comic "Armageddon: Hell". He was another one of the people I greatly enjoyed meeting at WWSL as he was very friendly and eager to share the details of how "Armageddon: Hell" came about. I picked up some copies of the comic and hope to review them in the near future, but in the meantime you can learn more about the comic here.

Kyle Strahm
Mr. Strahm was at WWSL promoting an upcoming comic "Spread" he is doing with Justin Jordan and which he said to keep an eye out for an official announcement about a publisher. See more about him here.

Sugar Fueled
Sugar Fueled is the official name of works by artist Michael Banks. The illustration style is both at once cute and creepy, so you know I find it pretty cool! View more work here.

Urbn Pop
Urbn Pop is the artistic name/home of Chris Hamer. Having done artwork for a variety or companies, Mr. Hamer has a style that I would say is fun with a slight edge. You can give his stuff a look-over here.

Wascally Wee Willy
Wascally Wee Will AKA William Harroff was at WWSL with his unique brand of comic-inspired artistry. I also enjoy seeing his work and recommend you give it a look too at his website, which can be found here.

Joe Wills
Joe Wills was at WWSL promoting his artwork and was fun to chat with. See more of his stuff here.

Brian Woodward
Mr. Woodward was at the convention showing-off his dark-fantasy-styled artwork. It was very pretty and a bit scary at the same time. You can see what I mean at this website.

Carla Wyzgala
Ms. Wyzgala had a variety of intriguing watercolor paintings and assorted artworks on display at WWSL. You can find more of her stuff here.

Zenescope was at WWSL showing off their wares and I was lucky enough to chat with their publisher (who also does other tasks on the comics). I haven't ever reviewed a Zenescope comic before but hope to read something by them soon. Check them out here.

In Closing About The Comics and Art
There were a ton of great comics and artists at WWSL. If I met you/your company and I didn't mention you it can be for a variety of reasons. It may be because we didn't interact much beyond a simple hello, or I lacked your card and am unsure how to find you online. That, or you were mean and I don't want to give you any press. If the last one is the case work on being nicer to folk at conventions, I mean you want to sell your stuff, don't you?

Anyways, stay tuned for my article about the movies, books, and other assorted crafts at Wizard World in my next post!

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