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Frank Cho
Monkeyboy King


Joined: 06 May 2006
Posts: 5075

PostPosted: Wed Jul 30, 2014 9:31 am    Post subject: San Diego Comic-Con 2014 Report Reply with quote

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Very strange and "off" year at San Diego. There was something in the air. A taint of something different and bad to come. You can actually feel another giant shift away from comics, and oddly enough to some degrees away from movies, too. It felt like Comic-Con was organically reshuffling the deck and trying to find the new norm.


TUESDAY
*Flew in on Southwest and checked into the Omni Hotel. I'm sharing a room with my bud, Brandon Peterson, again. Met with Steve Morger and the Big Wow Comic Fest gang at McCormick restaurant and discussed next year's San Jose show. Already got a killer guest list started.


WEDNESDAY
*Very mellow day. Set up my part of the booth that I shared with Geof Darrow and Mike Mignola. Both Geof and Mike brought fantastic selection of art to sell. San Diego Comic-Con Preview night opened to an enthusiastic crowd... who all rushed to get exclusive and free stuff from the movie studio booths and toy vendors. Every year, comics are marginalized and brushed aside at San Diego Comic-Con. I heard that they are shrinking artist alley yet again next year to sell more floor space to movie studios. AND they've increased the price of the booth all across the board.


THURSDAY
*Did the Flesk panel in room 28DE at 11:00 with John Fleskes, Bill Stout, Darren Bader and Tery Dodson. All the guys on the panel were over 6 feet tall. I felt like Tyrion Lannister throughout the whole panel. We discussed the various projects that we're working on with Flesk Publications.
*Had lunch meeting with my French publisher, Thierry Mornet from Delcourt, and my buddy, Brandon Peterson. Gave Thierry my "Guns & Dinos" update, and current status of my other projects. Brandon also had big creator-owned projects in works.
*The show was kinda slow, so I had lot of time to goof around with Geof Darrow and his awesome daughter, Alice Darrow. The new art print is moving at a steady pace.
*Attended the annual "Howard Chaykin Memorial Dinner" at Morton's steakhouse with my buds, Howard Chaykin, Axel Alonso, Mike Stradford, Dave Armstrong, Brandon Peterson and Mike Polis. Howard Chaykin was kind enough to join us this year after few years of being absent. For the record, Howard Chaykin is my second favorite Jew after Jesus H. Christ.
*Got a last minute personal invite to the Mindstyle Company party. Might have a Liberty Meadows merchandise deal in the near future. Completely unexpected.
*Someone asked me if I was attending the Eisner Award. I laughed. Eisner is a joke and completely irrelevant today. When an award ceremony, for the most part, actively shuns the big two companies, Marvel and DC, for the last 15 years or more, it's funny and sad. It's like having an Oscar Academy award show but you actively ignore all the movies from the major studios, and only focus and award obscure art films and amateur movies. Eisner award committee is broken and needs a complete overhaul.


FRIDAY
*Big morning business meeting with (Unnamed Company). Steve Morger, my lawyer and wine merchant, were there to finalize the deal. Everything went smoothly. (Unnamed Company) will publish three creator owned projects of mine next year. I am SO excited about this. Look for a major announcement in Baltimore Comic Con in September.
*Again relatively lackluster sales day. People are here for free movie and TV show stuff and for the most part bypassing all the comic stuff. I have no idea why Comic-Con allowed "Fifty Shades of Grey" to be promoted at the convention. It has absolutely nothing to do with comics nor remotely related to comics. Very frustrating. But my art print was selling pretty good. Got to hang with my favorite Boston Hobbit, Tom Sniegoski.
*Did a quick signing at Mile High Comics booth. They were selling my exclusive "Spider-Man/Black Cat" variant. Sad to find out that after 42 years of attending, this is Mile High Comics last year at San Diego Comic-Con due to various reasons, mostly San Diego Comicon is too expensive and stressful to set up as a comics vendor.
*Dinner with John Fleskes, Ocean Fleskes, Tom Sniegoski and LeAnne Sniegoski at a pretty good seafood restaurant, Spike Africa. We nailed down the "Ghost Dog" project and business plan. It's going to be the next Kickstarter project at Flesk Publications, launching end of the year. Very fun and exciting dinner.


SATURDAY
*I woke up kinda late, still struggling with jet-lag. Decent day sales wise. Sold out of all my sketchbooks and the art prints were moving pretty well. Goofed around with my favorite hairless gorilla, Geof Darrow and his talented daughter, Alice, who is slightly taller than me. (Dammit!)
*Lunch with Darren Bader, Dave Palumbo and that Lucas concept artist whose name escapes me at this time. Great time insulting each other over Thai food.
*Steve Morger finalized the Liberty Meadows contract with Madefire. Very cool.
*Dinner at Fleming's Steak House with Steve Morger and French art collector, Frederico Manzano. Talked of possible European trips next year but it was mostly to relax and enjoy the steak.
*Late night meeting with (a different unnamed company) to develop Liberty Meadows TV show. More news as things develop.
*Back in the hotel room to draw and watched Game of Thrones Season 4 before crashing for the night.


SUNDAY
*Relaxing and slow day. Went and bought some art books.
*Took over Mike Mignola's spot at the booth after he left early on Saturday to beat the rush. Adi Granov and his lovely wife, Tamsin, set up next to me. Had a great time hanging with them. Adi's Darth Vader cover and art were just stunning.  
*Lunch with Doug Wagner and Michelle Poust. Great people and fun to talk to. Trying to fatten Michelle up a bit. She's too skinny. Wink
*After lunch, just hung out at the booth. Nothing exciting happened. said good-byes to friends as they packed up and left.
*Signed up for next year.


MONDAY
*Quick breakfast with Steve Morger and Brandon Peterson, and hung out with Juanjo Guardino of "Blacksad" comic. Met Juanjo's new girlfriend. I'm doing a Blacksad pin-up for Juanjo's Kickstarter project.
*Flew home on Southwest Airline. Watched all the remaining episodes of "Game of Thrones" season 4. (The battle between the Mountain and the Red Viper... Holy shit.) All and all, very strange and off year for San Diego Comic-Con, but fun to hang with old and new friends.

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FRANK CHO
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dayofthedead



Joined: 15 Dec 2008
Posts: 1577

PostPosted: Wed Jul 30, 2014 11:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've wanted to avoid San Diego because of some of the reasons Frank is talking about but then again - the fact the artist ally is getting less and less busy is interesting.

That kind of means it'd be easier to meet my favorite creators and get skeches, art and commissions.  Maybe I dunno.
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Otter



Joined: 10 May 2006
Posts: 68

PostPosted: Wed Jul 30, 2014 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great to hear that so many Liberty Meadows projects are in the pipeline.

I'd love to see more from the gang.  While Frank's art is gorgeous... his writing was fun too.  I miss that. The characters are great and I felt the pop culture nods were aimed squarely at my generation.

I'm looking forward to more of that.
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BATFAN



Joined: 08 May 2006
Posts: 2027

PostPosted: Wed Jul 30, 2014 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i get mile highs news letter and the latest came in today, the owner says that they did renew for 2015 because of outpour of fan support. But when i read his reasoning as to why he thought of not coming back seemed rather...childish, unless there's a a deal i dont know that publishers cant sell comics in their booths he was complaining publishers were selling exclusives at their booths and were excluding distributors access to them  so that they couldnt sell them (presumably at a  marked up price). So he was complaining publishers were pocketing all the money (shocker), is there something wrong or unethical here that im unaware of?

Anyway ive missed the last 4 cons but i plan on making my return next year so Frank ill be hanging out at your booth  Razz
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OLLIE



Joined: 11 May 2006
Posts: 1107

PostPosted: Wed Jul 30, 2014 7:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like a lot of cool and exciting things are coming next year. I can't wait. Could you give us your update on Guns and Dinos? is that your next project?
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skull island



Joined: 11 May 2006
Posts: 2414
Location: Tokyo

PostPosted: Thu Jul 31, 2014 12:09 am    Post subject: Good news! Reply with quote

What Ollie said about Guns and Dinos.
And three creator owned projects next year!
"And there was great rejoicing. And they feasted on wombats
and pomogranates..."
And the Ghost Dog project!! Be still, my heart!
I'm sorry to hear the show was slow, but excited about all the deals that went down for the future.
Thanks for letting us in on all of this.


Oh, I blew my only chance to go to Comicon several years ago when it was, presumably, less of a zoo. I was in town for my wife's high school reunion, but I just couldn't bring myself to shell out the sixty bucks for admission. I was headed to the Frazetta museum later that summer and decided to save what cash I had for that. In view of what subsequently happened with the museum I'm happy with my decision.
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nino



Joined: 11 Jul 2014
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Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2014 1:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Frank. Is that sketch cover of Black Cat/Spider man still available? Or was it sold at SDCC?
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MizAllie



Joined: 18 Jan 2009
Posts: 551
Location: Atlanta, GA

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm bummed we hardly saw you this year. It was a weird con for sure; much more relaxed than previous years, which is a good thing, but relaxed doesn't equal sales. And when the booth prices go up (ours by almost 15%) and the sales don't rise to match it, it's hard to want to go back.
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MizAllie



Joined: 18 Jan 2009
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Location: Atlanta, GA

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dayofthedead wrote:
I've wanted to avoid San Diego because of some of the reasons Frank is talking about but then again - the fact the artist ally is getting less and less busy is interesting.

That kind of means it'd be easier to meet my favorite creators and get skeches, art and commissions.  Maybe I dunno.


Thing is, when artist's alley is less busy, the artists can no longer afford to go. Less busy = less sales. Less sales = no money to pay for the over-priced hotels, meals and airfare. I hate to say it, but the presence of comics and comic artists at San Diego is directly related to the number of people that spend money on or with them. If all anyone wants is to buy the latest piece of plastic from any one of the toy companies there hawking their licensed movie related merchandise, then that's all anyone can look forward to seeing there in the future.
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el_caifan



Joined: 08 May 2006
Posts: 502

PostPosted: Fri Aug 08, 2014 3:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Miz Allie, skip San Diego for San Jose's BigWow, lol
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