Cincy Comicon was a blast

Here's a fun fact about Cincy Comicon. It's not in Cincinnati. It's not even in Ohio! It's in Covington, KY. But Cincinnati is close. In fact, I walked from my hotel over the John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge this morning before the convention got started and was in downtown Cincinnati in 15 minutes. The bridge is great for walking and biking, with a wide path shielded from motor vehicle traffic. When then bridge opened on December 1, 1866 it was the world's longest suspension bridge. It was designed by John A. Roebling, the same civil engineer who designed the Brooklyn Bridge. It's a beaut:

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Once I got into Cincinnati, I headed to a restaurant called Cheapside, which has excellent espresso. I also had a tasty smoked salmon salade niçoise. It's called Cheapside not because the ingredients are cheap, but because it's on the corner of 8th and Cheapside street.

Before I tell you about the convention, here's another important thing. There were some scary bugs clinging to the outside of my hotel window on the 11th floor. I took a photo and called Cincinnati born-and-bred David Pescovitz to tell me what they were, but he didn't know. If you do, please tell me in the comments:

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OK, now onto the con! The cool thing about this con is its focus on comic books. I don't go to many cons, but the ones I have gone to seem to give comic books short shrift. Not here! I think one of the reasons is that Tony Moore, co-creator of The Walking Dead comic book series, is one of the organizers, and Tony loves comic books. The other producers I met also have a deep fondness for comics. (Yes, there are some sword and throwing star dealers here, but they are off to the side.) cincy-comicon21

The first person I met when the doors opened was a guy named Gabriel. He told me that he has read every single post on Boing Boing! That's 124,540 posts, including this one. Gabriel is the proprietor of Psychological Industries, which makes stickers, posters, T-shirts, and zines for happy mutants. Gabriel also brought along his 21-year-old copy of the Happy Mutant Handbook for me to sign. I was honored.

Here are some of the artists I met today:

The two images directly below are by Annie Wu. She's a storyboard artist for Adult Swim's The Venture Bros, and draws for Marvel, DC, and Vertigo. Her work has the same kind of quiet confidence and delicateness of Adriane Tomine's work.

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Below, Frank Ready. His specialty is science fiction and monster tattoo art, as well as very cool art prints like this one: cincy-comicon04

I knew Jason would like this owl print, so I bought it for him. The artist is Carrie South (aka Crap Panther). Love her work. Her husband is Frank Ready.

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I met Angela Oster, a watercolor artist who likes Boing Boing! After we chatted, she went back to her table and painted this flattering portrait of me. I like to fantasize that I'm as handsome as the fellow in her painting: cincy-comicon06 cincy-comicon05

I also recommend that you check out Angela's very cute book, Little Vampire Girl.

This poster was taped next to a urinal in the men's room. Can someone call the number and tell me what it's about?

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One thing that bugs me about mainstream comics is how they have really great artists do the covers, and then not-so-great artists do the guts. Jenny Frison only does covers -- she's one of the great ones. She told me that after graduating from Northwestern she took classes at the venerable Kubert School on New York, where they take comic art very seriously:

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frison

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Not surprisingly, Walking Dead co-creator Tony Moore had a very long line of people who wanted his autograph on their incredible Moore artwork.

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Time for a snack. I went to a Persian restaurant in Covington called House of Grill. The owner was really nice and gave me a free refill of doogh (yogurt drink), which was delicious and had a lot of minced mint leaves in it. I also liked that the menu used lorem ipsum to describe their dishes. I had the chicken kebab plate. Fantastic!

lorem

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I am definitely going back for lunch again tomorrow. When I got back to the convention hall, I was thrilled to meet Jim Rugg. He's a fantastic artist from Pittsburgh who co-hosted Boing Boing's Tell Me Something I Don't Know podcast, and was the creator of Street Angel, which he drew for Boing Boing. Jim gave me a copy of his new one shot zine, BW, which has samples of obscure 1980s black-and-white urban superhero comics in the vein of Escape from New York and The Warriors. It's cool!

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I told Brian Ewing (below), that Cory has one of his prints at his house. His work is stunning, and he has one of the best business cards ever:

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I met book cover and fantasy artist Rebecca Frank. She had several fine canvases on display, and I asked her if they were oil or acrylic. She said they are digital prints. She's a self-taught artist who paints in Photoshop:

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Clint Basinger is a well-dressed comic book artist who has a publishing company called Cosmic Mustache Comics. At his partner's urging, he gave me a copy of his comic, Bad Guy Bounty Hunters. I'm looking forward to reading it!

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Finally, meet Kate Leth, the famous cartoonist and comic book writer. We flew to the con on the same plane out of Los Angeles, and rode to the hotel together. Her work includes, Patsy Walker A.K.A. Hellcat!, Vampirella, Girl Over Paris, Spell on Wheels, Adventure Time, Edward Scissorhands, Fraggle Rock, and Bravest Warriors.

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She's very friendly and her artist's table is next to mine. I have an artist's table, too, but I didn't know I was supposed to bring anything so my table is bare. It's terribly embarrassing. I brought a deck of cards, and I will show you a magic trick if you'd like to see one.

Cincy Comicon is taking place all weekend long. Get your tickets here!