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Archive for the ‘comic cons’ Category

Could’ve done the annual Labor Day sketch. However on Thursday I received an email. Last month or so I had entered some contest online. Forgot about it. Then out of the blue I received an email informing me that I had won tickets to see Judas Priest and Deep Purple in concert.

Needless to say, I was floored. Such fantastic news! The only issue was traveling to the venue. The show was at Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater, which was in Long Island. In the past I’ve always gone to Jones Beach theater by car. Regardless I decided to take my chance taking the Long Island Railroad.

Before heading out to Long Island, I had my hair re-colored over at Second Star salon. My hair was rocked out with a custom blended Pulp Riot ombré in shades of blue, along with lovely beach waves.

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Colored my hair with custom blended Pulp Riot ombré in shades of blue + lovely beach waves. Hair done at Second Star salon in Ridgewood, Queens, NY. Sept. 1, 2018. Photo by Kelly Marie.

Getting to Jones Beach wasn’t too bad. Turns out there was taxis waiting to take concert goers there at ten bucks per passenger. This cab driver squeezed in five of us in one cab. Everyone seemed to be psyched for the show. During the ride, the other passengers broke out into vocalizing the guitar riff from the most well known Deep Purple song “Smoke On The Water.” You know that riff – “Ta-ta-taaaa/ta-ta da-dah! Ta-ta-ta da-dah!!!” It was something out of a television show or film. Two of the passengers were two men from Mexico, having the time of their lives. One was already living in the U.S., the other was his cousin. It was the cousin’s first American rock concert. Their vibes turned the cab ride into a celebration, as they were a bit tipsy. Yet despite me being the only female in the cab, everyone acted like gentlemen. Then out of the blue, one of the Mexican guys proclaimed “You know what? Everyone here is so beautiful, I’d like to thank everyone for being here – I’m paying for everybody’s cab ride!” Well hey!

I expected my tickets not to have great seating. When I picked the tickets up from the VIP booth, there was another pleasant surprise awaiting. I go to the gate, asking the usher where my seat was. Turns out my seat was in orchestra! In other words, they were floor seats to the left of the stage, near the water. These were not just any ‘cheap seats.’ Their was usher, a slim Asian teen. I had witnessed her the month before during the Slayer show at the same venue. She had been arguing with three loser dirtbags who were in the wrong section. This young (guessing Chinese) lady really held her own pretty well. This time, she not only led me to my seat with a smile, she graciously wiped down my seat. I nearly forgot to thank her due to shock over how good my seats were.

Missed most of the opening act, which was The Temperance Movement.  Managed to catch the last three songs on their set. The concert itself was a double bill with Judas Priest and Deep Purple. To be honest, I was there more for Judas Priest. Perhaps it was a good thing Judas was up first. Had Deep Purple gone on stage first, Judas Priest would’ve wiped the stage with them. Not to say Deep Purple wasn’t good, but I’ll get to them later.

 

The Judas Priest set itself was mostly classics with tunes from their latest release Firepower. Again, the new album isn’t bad either. It was pretty awesome seeing Rob Halford come on stage on a motorcycle. So yes. Judas Priest ruled.

Towards the end of the set, original Judas Priest guitarist Glenn Tipton joined them onstage. Tipon had bow out of touring earlier this year due to Parkinson’s disease.

The crowd’s age median was a mixture, but mostly older due to Deep Purple. Believe it or not, this was my second time seeing Deep Purple in concert. Saw them live back in 2000, also at Jones Beach. If you’re asking how or why, an ex-boyfriend dragged me to the concert. Again, to my pleasant surprise, I enjoyed Deep Purple more the second time. I suppose this was due to the company I kept then compared to now. Ritchie Blackmore had been long gone from the current Deep Purple line-up, but it made no difference. The band seemed more relaxed without him. If you’re curious, their set list is listed here. Oh, and yes. They did “Smoke On The Water.”

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Deep Purple live at Jones Beach, Long Island. Sept. 1st, 2018. Double bill with Judas Priest.

Which leads us to the Psycho Bunny sketch of the week. So instead of doing the obligatory Labor Day sketch, did one with a Judas Priest theme instead. Without further ado, here’s classic Rob Halford in vintage Judas Priest form.

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The Psycho Bunny sketch of the week. Based on the comic written and drawn by Michele Witchipoo, on WitchesBrewPress. Sept. 2018.

In late October, I will finally do a comic con in Upstate NY. It was about time. So come by, free admission for IncrediCon, Oct. 28th.

You didn’t think I forgot all about my social media shout-outs:

Facebook: pages for Psycho Bunny and for Michele Witchipoo – WitchesBrewPress.

 Twitter: One account for me, and one for Psycho Bunny.

Tumblr: World Ov Witchipoo

Instagram: there’s WitchipooArt.

Get yourself some cool stuff on RedBubble, featuring my designs. There’s dresses, tee shirts, notebooks, etc. The notebooks, and the Quentin Crisp tees seems to be one of the best selling items.

Come back next week for a new Psycho Bunny sketch and finally get to post some commission work.

All photos taken by Michele Witchipoo, unless noted.

 

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Back in April 2018, the East Coast Comic Con took place over at Meadowlands Exposition Center. It only took a quick bus ride from NYC’s Port Authority station to Secaucus, New Jersey.  I never had a table here. The three times I’ve attended (Westchester, NY, then later moved to New Jersey) it was strictly as a spectator.

Again, as with Terrificon, this event focused mostly on comics. There was media guests, but the emphasis was on more established comic creators. The guests include Howard Chaykin, John Holmstrom, David LloydJim StarlinTony Isabella, Paris Cullins, Bob Almond and more.

The attendance from this particular comic con seemed to have increased from previous times. Perhaps because East Coast is one of the better comic cons in the tri-state area, even if the comic creators have worked on more mainstream titles.

Of course, who can ever forget the cosplayers. Observing those who took part in cosplaying, their game was very strong. I’ll leave the cosplayers for last in this blog post, when I get to the contest.

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Amazing cosplay of Ghost. (Ghost as in the band). Not a fan of Ghost’s music, but this is great cosplay.

First, I’ll show some photos of comic book artist Paris Cullins with his love. Nothing is sweeter than two people who genuinely enjoy being with each other.

There was plenty of panels, but only managed to catch one. Missed a panel about Sci-fi writers. As the day was winding down, I was pretty exhausted. That’s why I decided to check out the cosplaying contest. It was really about finding a place to sit down.

 

Observing the cosplaying panel and contest was more fun than originally thought. While I admit, I was semi-roasting from the comfort of my seat, there was a lot of talent in creating those costumes. A lot of work went into all the various cosplaying.

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Ghostrider cosplay. East Coast comic con 2018.

So the contest begins. There was plenty of good contenders. Once two cosplayers walked into the panel room as Warhammer characters, you pretty much knew they were going to win the contest. In which they did. Those Warhammer outfits truly impressed me.

Here’s some other honorable mentions, posted in the photos below.

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Next year’s East Coast Comic Con already looks promising. The guests for next year include Peter Bagge, Drew Friedman, Kaz, Simon Bisley, Jose Luis Garcia Lopez, George Perez, and more to added later.

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The day after the great CAKE and Ben Folds Five concert, me and Ben headed over to Connecticut. There was a comic con happening that weekend over at the Mohegan Sun casino. Terrificon was good that it’s focus was more on the comic book creators rather than obtaining celebrities autographs. That particular artist alley featured established comic book writers and artists, as local talent. Of course there was plenty of cosplay to be found. There was a few known media guests such as model/actress Pom Klementieff, who portrayed Mantis from Guardians of The Galaxy 2. She was sitting next to Henry Winkler in the autograph section.

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No, I didn’t have a table. This time I went as a spectator. It was also an excuse to get out of NYC for a few hours. Despite the dismal Greyhound bus ride, I’d say it was worth the trip. Even if the bus was delayed for over thirty minutes. The passengers were mostly disgruntled Anita Baker fans, trying to catch her concert also happening at Mohegan Sun later that evening.

It was a relief to find a comic con featuring more comic book professionals rather than pop culture personalities. Before the comic con winded down on Saturday, there was a panel honoring comic book writer Roy Thomas. Thomas was presented with an award for his contribution in the sequential field.

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Panel featuring comic book writer Roy Thomas. Prior to receiving an award. Photo by Michele Witchipoo, Aug. 18th, 2018.

Apparently a few exits before Mohegan Sun, there’s a Pez museum. The kid inside me loudly acknowledged this, as I spotted the billboard through my bus window. Sure enough, there was a Pez vendor table at the Terrificon. Kinda wished I had never discarded my old Pez containers. Especially the reissued Star Wars and Halloween editions.

Among some of the comic creators in artist alley: met Bob Almond again, who created the Inkwell Awards, Ray Felix who does Bronx Heroes Con, Barbara Friedlander who I unfortunately missed by the time I arrived at the venue, Art Baltazar, Neal Adams, Afua Richardson, Scott Hanna, C.F. Cebulski, and many others. Below are photos are David Thorn Wenzel and Tifa Chii.

The cosplayers and gamers weren’t left out. Here’s a few other cosplayer photos to round out this blog post.

Last but not least, here’s a cosplayer doing a mash-up of Booster Gold and Goldstar.

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Terrificon is highly recommended as a comic con. If given the opportunity I would attend again. It’s geared towards more mainstream comics rather than self-published and indie. Then again, it’s still a good excuse to get out of NYC for the day. Didn’t spend much time in Mohegan Sun itself. Pretty much all casinos reek of desperation and spilled soda on carpets. As for the return ride to NYC; that was purgatory. Some jackass held up the bus for almost two hours. If there’s anything I learned, the bus drivers that work for Greyhound have the patience of saints. Seriously. That day I witnessed two drivers who had more than enough reason to lose their tempers. Had they done so, it would’ve been justified – but yet they didn’t. So kudos to them. Greyhound itself however, truly sucks. Even those cheapo companies like GoBus, BoltBus or MegaBus seem to have smoother rides. My advice for next year is to get a Zipcar or arrange a carpool. Seriously.

Enough kvetching. In late October I’m going to have my own table at a local comic con. Details forthcoming. So with my luck, I’ll probably end up taking Greyhound again.

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Since I haven’t gotten around to the latest Psycho Bunny sketch of the week, instead let’s have a retrospective. Here’s all the past issues of Psycho Bunny, from issue one to the last release in 2011.

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This was the debut issue, released in 2004. My drawing and humor have improved ten fold since this first came out. Regardless, people had more or less a positive response. It sold out at Jim Hanley’s Universe (when it was located near Herald Square), and Forbidden Planet during 2004 and 2005. MySpace was popular during this time, so thanks to self online promotion, I managed to sell copies online. Unfortunately the printing place lost the files, so I’m unable to print anymore of issue one. Just as well. If you have issue one, hold on to it.

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Issue two was released in 2005, making it’s debut when I had a table at Big Apple Comic Con. The cover was influenced as I was walking through Queensboro Plaza on the way to my job. Literally saw a drunken man slouched on the sidewalk after pissing in his pants. The kitty street walker was added in for maximum effect. She was affectionately known as “Crack Kitty.” Charles Bukowski would’ve been proud.

In between issue two and three, I self-published two mini-issues. Both made their debut at MoCCA Art Fest 2006 and 2007.

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Spring 2008 saw the release of Psycho Bunny issue three, the double issue. Like the previous releases, this one also made it’s debut at MoCCA Art Fest 2008. The year 2008 was also when I became a NYC resident once again. Thankfully.

In 2010, I had a table in Artist Alley at New York Comic Con, otherwise known as NYCC.

The years 2009 through 2012 were very busy. One reason was a decision to go back to college. In addition I was doing the art for a web comic titled Shitty Mickey, which was published on The Brooklyn Rail website. Along the way there was a short Psycho Bunny story published in the comic book anthology IF-X #8. The April Fool’s edition was published in 2012 by Hamtramck Idea Men.

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After having some illustrations published along with various exhibits, it was time for another Psycho Bunny issue. The last one was released in 2011, debuting at MoCCA 2011. This one is still available for purchase. You can always order your copy online if I don’t have a table at a local comic convention.

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My table at MoCCA Art Fest 2011.

Next post I’ll get back on track, moving forward. Stay tuned for a new Psycho Bunny sketch of the week.

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Continued from MICE 2016 Part I and MICE 2016 Part II.

In all, being at MICE Expo 2016 was good. It was also a relief that not only did I make my money back for the table and bus fare, there was a bit of a profit. So it’s definitely worth break out of one’s comfort zone, and to do comic cons outside of your hometown. Even if you’re barely awake in the a.m.

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Comicbook/Zine artist and writer Michele Witchipoo at MICE Expo 2016. Photo taken early in the morning, Oct. 2016.

Some more photos from MICE Expo 2016:

 

 

Being in Cambridge was pretty nice as well.

 

Being at MICE, I had the rare occasion of being near Salem, MA for Halloween. Managed to squeeze in a few hours, jumping on the train. Wasn’t far of a train ride from Cambridge and Boston.

 

It’s very easy to walk around Salem once you navigate around the tourists. Surprisingly I got a very accurate tarot reading in one of those occult shops. The psychic was a kind gentleman. His advice was spot-on as 2017 later unfolded.

There was some annoyance when some fundamentalist Christians started preaching on a street corner. Shouting about the evils on Halloween. Right across the street from one of the witch stores. Nobody really paid them any mind.

Here’s some photos from Salem, Halloween day, Oct 31st 2016:

 

Soon it was time to head back to NYC. Left Salem right before the rush of the evening crowds started coming in. BTW, Beer Works in Salem is an awesome brewery.

I’ll end the MICE 2016 series with some comics and zines picked up during the weekend. There was tons of talented artists, writers, zine makers and comic creators. Unfortunately a few months after MICE, there was an abrupt apartment move (no thanks to a former corrupt, greedy landlord, but that’s another story.) Most of the merch brought at MICE was thrown into a box, which I still have to locate. Luckily I was able to retrieve these:

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Dead-End Rob issue 2 by Luke Howard. Brought at MICE Expo 2016. deadendrob.com

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Alter Boy By Rogan of LB Lee. Brought at MICE Expo 2016. etsy.com/shop/MadComics or email: loonybrain@healthymultiplicity.com

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Paper Pencil Life issue 2. Diary comics by Summer Pierre. Brought at MICE Expo 2016. http://www.summerpierre.com

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Me & Doctor Dee.: A Jape. Script and art by E.J. Barnes on Drowned Town Press. Seen at MICE Expo 2016 as well as other comic cons. http://www.drownedtownpress.com

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Tree Rats! or, The Crepuscular Hobbyhorse. A Farrago by E.J. Barnes. E.J. Available from Drowned Town Press. Seen at MICE Expo 2016 as well as other comic cons. http://www.drownedtownpress.com

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A Beautiful Young Nymph Going To Bed by Jonathan Swift. Illustrated by E.J. Barnes. Available on Drowned Town Press. Seen at MICE Expo 2016 as well as other comic cons. http://www.drownedtownpress.com

That concludes the belated MICE 2016 blog entries.

Dead-End Rob by Luke Howard: deadendrob.com

Alter Boy By Rogan of LB Lee: etsy.com/shop/MadComics

Paper Pencil Life issue 2. Diary comics by Summer Pierre. www.summerpierre.com

Me & Doctor Dee.: A Jape/Tree Rats! or, The Crepuscular Hobbyhorse. A Farrago/A Beautiful Young Nymph Going To Bed by Jonathan Swift, Illustrated by E.J. Barnes all available on DrownedTownPress: http://www.drownedtownpress.com/

Then there’s me, Michele Witchipoo: WitchesBrewPress.com

Facebook: Psycho Bunny and Michele Witchipoo – WitchesBrewPress

MICE Expo 2018 Fundraiser: http://www.micexpo.org/2018/fat-cats-for-mice-fundraiser/

MICE 2018

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Continuing where I left off from MICE 2016 part one.

After setting up my table early in the a.m., I caught a bit of a local comic artist giving a small pep talk/lecture to the newer exhibitors.

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MICE Expo veteran giving a quick lecture to the newer exhibitors. Cambridge, MA. Oct. 2016. 

As the comic con unfolded, you couldn’t help but notice many attendees in costume or cosplay. It just happened that MICE 2016 was scheduled on the weekend before Halloween. Here’s a few photos.

Surprisingly I did good at MICE. To my left was an artist who I met for the first time at NYCC 2016. Had brought his comic at NYCC. Had no idea only two weeks later I would be sitting next to him at MICE. It’s a small world after all. He was a former school teacher who decided to follow his dream.

Also had a chance to meet someone I’ve been conversing online since the early 2000s. Michelle Kane came down to the comic con. After our conversation, she invited me for some karaoke in her area of Quincy, MA. Usually I hate karaoke, but this time the invite was accepted. Later on after MICE closed for the night, me and E.J. Barnes, who was gracious enough to let me stay at her place traveled over.

We arrived at a huge restaurant called Cathay Pacific. In my little black heart I have a soft spot for old school Chinese eateries with vintage Polynesian decor. It was love at first sight. Didn’t care how good or bad the food was. After Michelle introduced us to her buddy Stephen Jay “The Handyman” Spector, karaoke began. Have to say, all three, E.J., Michelle and Stephen all had good voices. As for me, I sat my out of tune ass down.

To be continued…

MICE 2018 fundraiser: http://fundraiser.micexpo.org/

 

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That’s right. It’s a blog post about a comic con I vended at in Cambridge, MA during Oct. 2016. Finally having the chance to post some long delayed photos from when I was lucky enough to get a table at MICE 2016. It was one of the best comic cons I’ve had the pleasure of taking part since I’ve started publishing my own comics.

MICE, which stands for the Massachusetts Independent Comic Expo focuses mostly on indie, alternative, undergound, and art house comics. Many of the comic artists were self published. The annual event takes place in Cambridge area just outside of Boston.

Despite my NYC loyalty, I’ve always loved Massachusetts. Particularly Boston, Salem and Cambridge. Best part was MICE 2016 took part during Halloween weekend. After MICE was over, I managed to zip down to Salem on Halloween day, right before taking the bus back to the Big Apple. In between MICE and Salem was a night at karaoke in Quincy, MA at some old style Chinese/Polynesian restaurant.

 

The night before MICE was going to kick off, there was a cartoonist party at HUB Comics. Located in the Somerville, Union Square area, the next town after Cambridge. Was very impressed by Hub comics. If I opened my own comic shop, this is what it would resemble. A very good mixture of mainstream and alternative comics, graphic novels and other merch. Also got to mingle with the other local cartoonists. My friend and fellow cartoonist E.J. Barnes (who helped put together the tribute anthology to Luisa Felix along with Paul Curtis) showed me around the area, and helped introduce me to the locals.

Also checked out the main drag around Cambridge. Discovered a shop called Cheapo Records, ate at a vegetarian diner, checked out and paid a visit to the Middle East.

Back to business. After setting up my table, anyone who had a table was treated to breakfast and a quick lecture, if anyone wanted to listen. Through out the day, the artists were given water and snacks by volunteers. MoCCA could use a few pointers from MICE.

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Michele Witchipoo/WitchesBrewPress table at MICE 2016. Oct. 2016.

After the first day, there was a celebratory dinner for everyone in MICE 2016 at another venue. Artists were encouraged to doodle on the wall with some free art supplies. Some even showed up in costume.

Day two was more or less the same. Breakfast and someone was doing a quick lecture on the floor before the con started. Since it was Halloween weekend, many showed up in costume.

Part two begins on the next blog post. 

 

 

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