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Akron Comic Con

posted on November 10, 2013

I got to spend this past Saturday at the second annual Akron Comic Con. If Saturday’s turnout was any indication, this particular comic con has a very bright future ahead. The crowds were simply amazing and they kept me so busy all day that I didn’t have enough time to do my own comic book shopping. This comic con has become very reminiscent of the early Mid-Ohio cons with the entire affair taking place in a single large hall, and the best part of all is that it’s mostly filled with comic book dealers and creators. It’s everything that a comic con experience should be and I want to give a tip of the Funky felt tip to its organizers Michael Savene and Bob Jenkins for the great job they did. This one’s a keeper.

T.B.

Catching Up

posted on October 2, 2013

It’s been awhile. I’ve been busy. The summer has been a blur of working on strips, book signings, and work on the forthcoming Funky and Crankshaft collections. Did I say Crankshaft collection? Yes, I did. More on that in a sec. So I’m going to spend a few moments looking back on the summer and early fall, and then ahead to projects in the pipeline.

 

 

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It was still spring when I spoke to the Kappa Kappa Psi chapter at Kent State. As a former band geek, it was nice to touch bases with my musical roots again as well as interact with a great bunch of musicians. I then spent Free Comic Book Day at Ground Zero Comics signing books and chatting with comics fans. It’s hard to imagine a better comics experience, unless… you find yourself at Comic Con International in San Diego.

The San Diego Comic Con is where I want to go when I die. Comic con is about as much fun as you can have in this universe and this year’s event was no exception. As a spotlight guest this year, it was great to just wander the floor, visit with fellow artists, and enjoy the panels. I was joined on my own panel by Alex Sinclaire, the colorist who did the amazing work on Lisa’s Story. A terrific colorist and a terrific guy. I’m still living in the afterglow of Comic Con.

 

 

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I returned home to more book signings and the work that I didn’t get done while I was in San Diego. I’d like to give a quick shout out to the Friends of the Strongsville Library, who did a great job promoting and putting on their event. There was also work to be due on a couple of new books that will be coming out next year. First out of the gate will be volume three of The Complete Funky Winkerbean. The proofs have been proofed, the cover is done and it’s off to the printers shortly. Also on the docket for next year is a Crankshaft book (See? I said I’d get back to it) entitled Strike Four which collects all of the strips chronicling Ed Crankshaft’s baseball journey. I’ll be writing more about these as the pub dates close in.

 

 

Finally, there was the Lisa’s Legacy Team in the Akron Marathon. The Akron Marathon has a five member team relay which allows those of us past our marathon primes to still participate in this outstanding event. We had a great time and plans are already afoot to have several Lisa’s Legacy Relay teams in next year’s marathon.

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All of which brings us to the present. There are still a few signings remaining, but even as the year winds down, there are already a number of signing events scheduled for next year. I’ve had a lot of opportunities to meet with my good and gentle readers this past year, and I’m looking forward to a good many more in the coming months. But for now, that’s about the size of it.

T.B.

 

The Comic Book Sundays 2-The Flash #115

posted on July 14, 2013

The FlashMy family left Akron, Ohio when I was in the third grade, but we continued to return on a fairly regular basis for a long time thereafter to visit with relatives. It was on one of those visits that I was able to make my way to the Rexall drugstore a couple of blocks from my grandparent’s house to check out its comics spinner rack. It was there that I found issue #115 of The Flash. It was the first Julie Schwartz edited book that I picked up, and, once onboard, his books became my only destination for a long time thereafter. I was immediately captivated by the writing of John Broome and the artists Carmine Infantino and Murphy Anderson. It’s impossible to exaggerate the impact that their amazing work had on my budding cartoonist ambitions.

A couple of years later, I would also find a copy of Amazing Fantasy # 15 which contained the first appearance of Spiderman on that same spinner rack, but I eschewed it in favor of the latest issue of The Flash. I was nothing if not loyal. With my second comic book cover homage/pastiche in Funky, I got to spotlight those two artists who first lit it up for me. Bright stars to steer by as I made my journey. Not long ago, Carmine Infantino passed away and the heavens are a little less bright these days. Issues of Amazing Fantasy #15 have sold for north go $50,000, but I wouldn’t have traded a single one of those issues of Carmine’s Flash for it.

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