Saturday I was at the Con by myself and Amber took to the streets of Toronto to do some shopping and general touring around.
The first thing I did Saturday morning was head directly to Francis Manapul’s table (new Detective Comics artist). He had not arrived yet and so next door to him was Ken Lashley. I got engrossed watching him draw Cyclops blasting Wolverine on a blank X-men comic cover. While watching that he and I and a few of the other guys got to chatting about how he got started and schooling for art and what movies he and we all liked. At first it was kind of a geek-out meet the creator type of experience and eventually was just conversation that you’d end up having with any of your friends really. It also turned out that Ken, amazing guy that he is, simply took donations for the work he created for the fans. No set prices, just sort of a what would you like to pay and then art created, or ask for something and the pay what you can afford.
Once I had watched Ken create that cover, and then a quick Flash headshot for another guy I asked him to do me a Superman, and since it was during about the 2nd hour of watching him work and just chatting I forgot to take progress pictures.
Once interesting thing that came up, especially with him mentioning that he practically gives away things was some of the price gouging that goes on by some artists at conventions. For example, Tony Moore, an artist on The Walking Dead was charging $40 for signed, used, shotgun shells! Ridiculous.
From there I went up to see a couple more sketch duels. On the way there I ran into a pretty sexy Green Lantern!
The first duel was between Tyler Kirkham and Kevin Maguire and they drew Venom. Maguire didn’t know what venom even looked like and so it was kind of a run away for Kirkham. During the duel, since there is actually not much to see except on the updates of progress I tried my hand at drawing what those guys were drawing.
It was during that duel that the guy beside me, who was checking out my work asked me which company I worked for! I was a bit stunned by that. and simply replied ‘Oh, no-one, I just draw as a hobby’.
The two drawings I was working on were Red Robin when the guy asked that question, and then I decided to try my hand at Venom since that is what was going on with the duel.
The second duel actually featured the aforementioned Ken Lashley vs Tony Moore, and while art is subjective, I think that Ken’s drawing was far superior! They were challenged to draw Rocket Raccoon and Groot from the Guardians of the Galaxy.
Tony Moore’s finished product
From here I headed back to the show floor and happened to be walking by Francis’ table just as he came out and set up his stuff. I asked him if he could sign my Flash Vol 1 and he was happy to do that and then I asked if he could do a Batman commission for me and he said ‘yeah sure’ and promptly got to work. I was excited to see it happen really since he works in water colours which is quite unique.
Mid way through working on my commission YTV came over and interrupted the work on that for a segment that had him create a thing what was with the host and whatever props got pulled out of a bag. While I wasn’t all that thrilled that the work he was doing for me that I was paying for just pushed aside for that, is was pretty cool to watch that too.
He got back to work on my Batman and it was interesting again to chat with him while he did that work about how he does his work and get a few details on his run with Detective and a bit of a general outline of what the stories are going to involve. Once his work of my piece was done he said I should let it dry before I do anything with it.
I think the finished piece was totally worth the wait, and the cost. It was cool to see it be made, to chat with Francis like he was just my pal and all that. Awesome!
So I stuck around while he worked on a drawing of the Flash on the cover of a guy’s sketchbook. This was also very interesting since it was a colour picture and I got to see how he built that up.
That was the end of the show for me on Saturday. However on the way back to the hotel I did run across a whole bunch of pretty awesome cosplayers!