SDCC 2012 Fancy Sketches

I am still recuperating from SDCC. I will resume drawing Fancy Sketch Drive sketches this week, and start mailing them out as they are finished. There were almost 60 ordered so it’s going to take me a while. I appreciate your patience.

Hijinks Ensue Cyanide and Happiness Guest ComicI have a guest comic up at Cyanide and Happiness for my explosm bros (exBROsm, amirite?), who are also sleeping off one too many a San Diego fun time.

Grammar Dalek Shirts should be going on presale soon. Stay tuned for ordering info.

I had an amazing time in San Deiego, but I spent almost no time on the convention floor itself. Normally I am at the booth from open to close every day, but our limited booth space meant that most of the time I was just in the way. And when I made scheduled signing/sketching times, no one really showed up. It was a very odd convention this year and all of my cartoonist friends seemed to echo the same sentiments. People just weren’t visiting their favorite creators very much this year. I think either A) the show has finally tipped and there are only a small percentage of con attendees who are actually there to meet and buy stuff from comics creators (the rest are their for panels or other big media events) or B) There is so much off site and ancillary entertainment outside and around the convention itself, that most fans are going to the actual show maybe 1 or 2 days to see panels, then exploring the other (free-er) events surrounding the con.

For all of these reasons, I spent most of the weekend hanging out with friends, going to parties (especially w00tstock!) and generally having a fantastic time (in which I earned essentially no money and probably didn’t break even on my travel costs, but hey… whatever). I was at (or hovering around) the booth for most of Sunday and oddly enough it felt like a regular convention day. There was a steady stream of fans and sketch requests, and sales. Perhaps the new thing is to save your actual COMIC-coning for the final day. All I can say is that I won’t be surprised at all if many creators take a year or two off after this year. There are far better cons, that cost thousands less to exhibit at, and are far less of a hassle from every angle.

I still think I would have gone (and will continue to go) even if I didn’t have a booth or a floor pass. There is just no other time where so many of my friends and professional acquaintances are in one place at the same time. I reconnected with old friends and made some new ones.

Also this happened: 

Joel Watson of HijiNKS ENSUE and George R.R. Martin

Chewbacca was at that party. So were Geordie and Data. Life is wonderfully weird.

COMMENTERS: What was your favorite/least favorite announcement or news to come out of SDCC 2012? Any other thoughts on the show in general?


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  1. This is probably not the right location for this, but just had an idea for a new T-shirt.
    Similar to the Game of Thrones 'Winter is coming' shirt, but featuring a scary Joss Whedon and some Evil Fox Execs hiding behind the trees. 'Whedon is coming'.

    • I second this fantastic T-shirt idea. Also, Joel, seeing a picture of my favorite online comic artist along side one of my favorite authors made my day. And your party sounds a bit like the first Buffy Halloween where everyone became their costumes in real life.

      • " And your party sounds a bit like the first Buffy Halloween where everyone became their costumes in real life."

        I will laugh at this for the rest of my life.

  2. Oh Joel, I've been missing new content! These are great! "No one cares." lol 🙂

    Will the Fancy Sketch Drive be streamed again this week?

  3. My favorite announcement was from somebody who wasn't even there AT the con: Neil Gaiman's announcement that he would be returning to the "Sandman" world with an upcoming prequel to the series, to be released next year. That will be one story where I won't wait for a graphic novel collection to be released. Gotta have that one as it comes out.


  4. I don't know how much this interests you personally, Joel, but the Penny Arcade guys heavily implied that they would be pursuing a new PAX in or around Austin. *squeel*

    • That's neat for gamers but doesn't do much for me personally. They dont really allow "outsider" webcomics to exhibit and Im not a gamer so I probably wouldn't have a place there.

      Although Austin is looking better and better as an alternative to Dallas.

  5. I was kind of hoping for more news from the Firefly Panel, even if the panel itself was great.

    I was just mad I couldn't go especially since I have too many friends who had press passes for the con and kept sending me pictures of their up close panel seats and them interviewing Joel McHale and hobnobbing. Gah.

  6. oh believe me, if I had been there, visiting the webcomic artists would have been top of my list, sadly to say, I'll have to wait until next year's NYCC to see you guys

  7. Is it weird that my brain uses Adam West's voice for Joss Whedon's drunken ramblings in that comic?

    I know Joss Whedon ISN'T Adam West… but Adam West's voice sounds right with those words.

  8. Comic-Con has gotten too big, and will soon become just an outlet for hollywood to show off their latest stuff. I love Sons of Anarchy, but why are they at Comic-Con.

    NerdHQ-style events – – surrounding the Con are going to start being more and more popular. (One great thing NerdHQ did was sell the seats in advance, no waiting in line for days. This leaves more time to check out the rest of the Con)

    I predict that in the next couple of years, a bunch of smaller, independant comic creators will get together and rent a separate location where they can set up their booths and meet their fans. Perhaps do some panels on their own. This will leave Comic-Con to the big dogs, and make it easier for fans of the comic creators to actually meet them (not having to buy tickets for the whole Comic-Con as soon as they go on sale).

    Over time these smaller Cons will get bigger and bigger, until they realize they have to rent out the convention center, and the cycle will be complete.

    • No, we've made too many compromises already; too many retreats. They invade our geekdom and we fall back. They assimilate entire conventions and we fall back. Not again. The line must be drawn here! This far, no further!

      We will not suffer the indignity of eviction from our own house. We must stand together, united as one, a bulwark against the vile corruption of Glee and Twilight. By phasers and batarangs, we will take back that which is rightfully ours!

  9. I agree. That's what Felicia Day did for Geek & Sundry and I attended the Joss panel at Nerd HQ. (although they need to restrict tixs to 1-2 only, not 8). I spent very little inside the convention center, only attending The Comic Book Law School, by Michael L. Lovitz, press panels, and on Sunday the Buffy panel and Buffy Musical (my team hosted it). The Tipping Point is 150. In this case add three zeros. I predict next year even more smaller events/panels will be in the Gaslamp District. IMO that's good for the Con and for the City. San Diego can never let SDCC leave once the city becomes "G&N Central" (trademark pending).

  10. I love you drawing of the dinosaur in a spaceship with Doctor Who. I loved that panel I thought that idea was brilliant and can't wait for the episode.

  11. Sorry I didn't see you this year, I spent Wednesday night in Artists Alley, rested at home on Thursday (I'm rilly old) made it halfway through the dealers room on Friday before the wife dragged me home. I'd caught the Con plague, though, which I'm still enduring the effects of. Not helping my grammar, either.

    So the Comic-Con bug may have had something to do with the lack of fan traffic – or not. That's my excuse.

  12. I think there was also just a ton of huge announcements that packed the event that nobody wanted to miss. Plus weren't they pre-screening some movies or something?

    My point is I think there is some truth that SDCC is sort of tipping over. It's still a great event, but I think I'd be happier at the Phoenix Comicon. Something about that one makes me think the organizers have a fairly sane head when planning out for their audience.

  13. Hi, used to read HijinksEnsue quite awhile ago, been going through the archives to reread everything, but I get a Database Error for comics after January 5th, 2009 until April 6th, 2012. Clearly it is time for me to take a break from rereading all of this for the time being?

  14. My favorite news out of Comic-Con: Cap's next movie has been titled CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER, followed by comic writer Ed Brubaker's reaction on Twitter; his exact words are "HOLY SHIT"

    My least favorite, face-palm inducing news: Teen Titans writer Scott Lobdell says in the DC new52, Tim Drake(Robin #3) never official went by the Robin name; just jumped straight to calling himself Red Robin from the get-go.

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