Friday, 24 April 2015

Gerhard: "Sitting In One Spot For Four Days"

(via email, 22 April 2015)
Sitting in one spot for four days may not sound like a lot of fun. At a slow, ill-attended show two days can seem like four. But the 2015 Calgary Expo on 16-19 April was hands down THE best organized, best run and best attended show I've ever seen. That was the unanimous consensus of every other guest and exhibitor that I spoke with.

The staff and volunteers were incredibly helpful and efficient and possibly clairvoyant; the food cart would magically appear at the first thought of a hunger pang. Yes, you read that right... they provided free food and beverages (no beer, though) for the guests. The carts were brought around to our tables on a regular basis by extremely friendly and cheerful staff. The quality and selection were top-notch, especially the Mexican salad, California rolls and Dim Sum dumplings... okay, enough gushing about the food. I never liked eating at the table in front of the public, though; feels like you're on display at the zoo or something: Come To The Show! Watch The Starving Artists Eat!

With 102,000 people filing past and with the popularity and exuberance of cos-play (formerly known as 'dressing up') the guests behind the tables got to enjoy the parade as it passed by (when we didn't have our head down sketching). We met a lot of people; some die-hard fans (one guy drove the 3 hours down from Edmonton), some had never heard of Cerebus.

One young woman stood back from the table starting over my head for quite a while. When I asked if I could help her, she pointed at the Regency print behind me and sheepishly asked if I had drawn that. I told her that I had and showed her the smaller print in my display portfolio that she could have a closer look at. She was pouring over the image and I told her that the print was available for $20. She looked at me wide-eyed and said, "I can buy this?" Dumbfounded, she handed over a twenty while I slipped a print from the case and signed it.  She thanked me, told me that she knew nothing about comics; this was her first convention and she wandered away holding her print as if it were a holy relic.

It doesn't get better than that.

We were tired and show-shocked at the end but as Shel said the next morning, "I could do another day!"


Jeff Seiler said...

And...another uninitiated gets to start learning about the comics genius of Gerhard and, maybe, will start reading Cerebus...

Margaret said...

A food cart? Awesome. And "Alone, Unserved & Unquenched"? Hahahahaha! One of these days I need to visit Ger's booth at a con to get me a Cerebus by Gerhard.

Tony Dunlop said...

What did she "pour" over the print - and why didn't Gerhard stop her?!?

CerebusTV said...

Check out the link and you'll see this is one trip Ger had "in the bag!"