The webcomics blog about webcomics

Let’s Get Back To It, Then

Hey. How you doing? Have a good set of holidays? Good, good. I spent what was supposed to be rejuvenative downtime fighting a cold which is still hanging on by its bacterial fingertips, so I hope yours was better. 2020 has started out more terrifyingly chaotic — and more quickly — than I’d expected, even at my most cynical. I’ve been pretty buried in the step back from the fight and catch your breath mode that we all have to engage in from time to time, but I’m back to exercising my opinion at lawmakers with specificity and persistence¹. But today, let’s talk comics.

  • I cribbed that last bit from the introductory tagline that Brad “Sexy, sexy man” Guigar and “Los Angeles resident” Dave Kellett use at the start of each episode of ComicLab (at least, once they’ve finished up with whatever weirdass random absurdity they have on deck for the cold open), and if you’re not a regular listener, let me direct you to their year-end, best-of-2019 clip show.

    There is absolutely zero useful advice in here — unless you want to get a commercial film crew to stop shooting in front of your house, or possibly to stay married — but there are plentiful hilarious stories and rants, plus Drunk Orson Welles. I advise you not drink anything while listening, because you will end up spit-taking on multiple occasions.

    Oh, and Happy Birthday to LArDK. You had a hell of a 2019 and I suspect 2020 is going to be even better.

  • As long as we’re talking about 2019, Heidi Mac over at The Beat has compiled her annual survey of folks in the comics biz looking back over the year and forwards towards the next. As of this writing, the first three parts are up, but you’ll eventually find all of them (there’s usually a half-dozen or more) here. You’ll find the excessively wordy input of a hack webcomics pseudojournalist in Part 1.
  • When Tom Spurgeon’s memorial service was announced, word was that in addition to Columbus in mid-December, there were tentative plans to also remember The Spurge in New York in the new year. Those plans are concrete now, with the Society of Illustrators building on 63rd the venue. New York isn’t quite the center of the comics universe it used to be, but there’s plenty of people within daytrip distance of Manhattan, and on the 24th (that’s a Friday), they’re invited to the 3rd floor reception at 6:30pm, and the 1st floor memorial at 7:30pm.

    If you’ve been feeling the absence of Tom Spurgeon for the past two months, I’m going to encourage you to attend if it’s in your means to do so. Don’t feel that you didn’t know him well enough, or that you aren’t important enough — I can tell you with absolute confidence that if Tom knew your work he wanted you to succeed at comics, and if he had no idea who you are, he still wanted you to succeed. I am undecided if I’m going to go again, but I’ll tell you without hyperbole — in these unsettled, fraught times, saying goodbye to Tom among a tiny fraction of the community he loved was a balm.

  • When people say that comics is a medium of almost infinite potential, I like to think that some of them are thinking about things like graphic medicine — the idea that comics can help educate people about health and medicine, whether as providers, patients, or policymakers. Cathy Leamy has been ahead of the curve in providing comics in this niche, which has grown to the point that panels and even entire conferences are being organized around the idea; fittingly, it’s via Leamy’s Twitterfeed that I’ve learned of some upcoming events.

    Following last year’s first event in the Boston area, there will be a three-day schedule for the New England Graphic Medicine Conference hosted by Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Boston; the call for papers ends on 10 January, but given that the topic list contains such areas as artist health, climate change, comics journalism, and The Nib cited as an area of discussion, there’s probably some folks reading this that are what NEGMC are looking for.

    Then, in July, Toronto will host the Graphic Medicine Conference the weekend before SDCC, covering similar territory, with a deadline for submissions on 31 January. Note that GMC presenters are responsible for their own expenses (including conference registration), although they note that [d]iscounted rates and some limited scholarships will be available for students, artists, and others in need; registration info isn’t up yet, so no idea what that might cost you (it appears that in past years, presentation by videoconference was an option).

Spam of the day:

Get better photos with the optical zoom lens with manual focus telescope

No lie, my current phone (a midrange 2019 model) has a better camera on it than any actual physical camera I ever owned, going back to my 35mm film days. I don’t need a doodad to make that differential even greater.

¹ Truly, I never thought that I would need to have both local and DC offices for my representative and senators on speed dial.

RSS feed for comments on this post.