Monday, July 22, 2013

Van Gogh Didn't Hang, Either.

Alanah White  and Stephen Hrivnak and their mandala.
(That photo - taken on the Hobuck Beach during Photosynthesis 6 - is just to have something to link a pretty picture for social media postings. But it's a nice mandala they both worked on, and I'm not using it as a bad example.)

Once again, the REAL artist is diffident and ignored, while others get all the attention. At Photosynthesis, the young artists sitting around the bonfire were oohing and ahing over crude mandalas and the fact that somebody had actually pressed down hard enough on Prismacolor pencils to get some color. I wouldn't harsh their buzz - they were having fun, and not being mean about it. And most of them were really math geeks, playing with patterns. Which is a good cross-over. But -

One kid was agog at a poster I'd done, while the others seemed confused. Then I saw her notebook, which was just lying on a log by the fire-pit. 

After flipping through it, I got this quiet child's attention and said, "I'm not going to insult you by saying you have 'talent,' because you and I know that's just a little better ability to see color, or better hand-eye control. But you've done the work. I can SEE you've done the work." 

She'd done her thousands of drawings, and drawn delicate, real nudes, based on friends and herself. Sensitive, soulful, speaking work.

Gorgeous lines, delicate pencils that showed weight, fabulous innovative color - and she had her OWN STYLE. If you're looking for the real artist in the group - look for the one the fake artists are ignoring or snubbing. It's worth it. 
Before I told her what I believe about her art, she'd said, "I saw your face, and I knew I wanted to talk to you." I need to run something for Photosynthesis. I don't even know if I got her name, because it was early in the morning, and I was still trying to get caffeine in my brain. She'd even done some things with word balloons. One Of Us was at the show, just waiting to bloom. I hope she's there next year, too.

Monday, July 15, 2013

2013 Clallam Bay Comicon Report

Oh, you missed it? Not next year, huh? In the meantime, get ready for the 2014 Comicon (links on this page).

The Gang at the Clallam Bay Inn..
Dara Korra'ti started the show by - really -  moving the con to the Clallam Bay Inn, for the fish-n-chips by Cara she'd been hungering for all year.
Fish-n-chips - NOM.
The owner gave us Cara again, who did not disappoint! The addition of another beer on tap, a crisp clean Manny's, was a lovely surprise.

Dara goes old-fashioned on the con newsletter - because she wants to
Dara decided to produce the convention newsletter with a stamp kit. She got the B's in CBCBC (Clallam Bay Comic Book Con) backwards, and we insist this will now be the official printing from now on.

Opening Ceremonies - on the be
Dara ALSO set up the wi-fi so we could all use credit cards! And threatened to bring in a music festival next year. YES, everybody has to pay their $25 vending fees - UP FRONT - from now on. But Dara will probably be doing enough for the con to always get her vendor's access gratis. Come on - how many sales would we have missed without her help?

After dinner, we reparked the cars (those of us who didn't decide to stroll) to the park, and crossed the bridge to hold the Opening Ceremonies on the beach. Yes, I live down there, on the point.

Roberta Gregory (Marcus and lady in the back) at the room party.

Then we had a room party over at the Bay Motel (and we didn't clean fish in the room). Yes, indeedy, the comicon had everything the usual conventions had. I think it was Roberta who said, "Room party! This is a room party!" And we all started laughing. We are simple people - and easily amused.

Saturday morning, and the Fun Days Grand Parade!
Hup! Hup! Hup
Niall Townley, the Fire Piper, leads the way on stilts, playing flaming bagpipes, awwwing an amazed audience - who all pointed out the tiny glittery baby shoes protecting his stilt feet. Niall won the Fun Days Grand Prize Blue Ribbon ("I dinna know where you been, my laddie, but I seen you won 1st prize"). They even gave us comiconers a 3rd prize ribbon - which of course had us falling over ourselves laughing. Thank you, Clallam Bay, for treating him and his fellow cosplayers so nicely. He says he can't wait for next year! Yay! And yes, please, more cosplay - we can't get too much of you fancy people.

Donna Barr in her Ka-Blam tshirt.
And here we are in the Lion's club hall, Saturday morning! We pause here to thank Ka-Blam for so much of their printing help. And yes, I get $10 printing fees every time I wear their shirt to a convention. Me so happy. Oh, and the other advantage we get for running our own con is we get vendor's space #1. Well, we do.

The hall was lovely - clean, spacious, with a nice kitchen and bathroom. Dogs allowed, thank you, if I have anything to do with it. Or your pet monkey or cat, if they're as well-behaved as Cedar and his buddy, here. YES, we cleaned it up very carefully when we left (although I think I left my jar of kelp pickles in their 'fridge). 

Those of you with Lion's Clubs in small towns - they may not have a hall, but they can find you space. And since most people in Lion's Clubs joined in the '50's, they're fading. We decided it would be perfect to hook up comicons with Lion's Clubs in every rural area in America. Yes, they thought we were a bit weird at first - I think we scared them - but they're converts now. I was told they'd expand for us - going to go to a meeting and nail that down, if I can - and spread the word. Hey - fun, charity and a positive outlook - isn't it what comicons AND Lion's Clubs are about? They're a perfect match. I was calling this method of conventionioneering the Dragon Model - maybe I should call it the Lion Model. I'm a Leo, too, after all.

The official Clallam Bay Comicon charity.
Speaking of charity - here's our official convention charity - the lovely Hannah Larrachea and her Cooking for the Cure, a senior class project for the American Cancer Society! The numbers were thinner than we'd hoped - and townsfolks were scared by a door, evidently thinking they'd HAVE to buy. So, because Hannah didn't sell as she'd expected, the vendors and participants all threw $5 apiece into the jar, bought the whole spread, and put up the sign, "Free cookies and cakes!"  Share the wealth. How sweet.

Steve Jackson Games takes on the town kids.
Marcus Evanstar, of Steve Jackson Games, had plenty of space out on the porch to help a few local kids play. It's a gorgeous sunny day, and most people are either putting themselves into water or trying to pull salmon out of it. And it's hard for our people to get out here. But the Photosynthesis folks (their festival is next weekend in Neah Bay) bring their audience here. This is only our second year, and I'm very happy with our future potential - and yes, the person who posted about this on Facebook - it WAS "ridiculously fun." And evidently uplifting to tired spirits.

Dara Korra'ti in concert. Photo: Roberta Gregory (c) 2013
Dara Korra'ti presented a wonderful concert I never got even a moment to attend! (Chief Peon does have its drawbacks). :( But Roberta Gregory grabbed a moment, and sent me this wonderful picture of the lovely and talented Dara in performance. Anyone else who has photos that make people look wonderful, we'd love to add them to this report.

Mike is happy now.

Remember I said the Lion's Club was scared of us at first? Not when the guys running in and out to get Lion's Club barbecue supplies get a convention tshirt and a cupcake! Nice people, nice show, and we're doing it again next year. 

Best Burgers in town. And the food's good, too (German joke).
A post-con party ended up at the By-The Bay restaurant in Sekiu. They were handling the monster overflow from the Breakwater restaurant's hot-water breakdown, and then our remnants walk in and take half the tables. The town only has '50's diner food, but maybe next year.... Vietnamese? (The Three Sisters of Clallam Art Gallery is working on that, with the help of Thu Tran, who runs the haircut and nails parlor and who keeps feasting the whole town. Next year - spring rolls and Thai Tea?)

The fireworks photo is actually from Neah Bay, the week before, for the Fourth of July celebrations. But - it's the same sort of fireworks Fun Days gets on the beach, and probably a lot of the same kids. Plus the spectacular official fireworks, paid for by Unique Junque ("the quarter store," calling themselves Sweater Central for the Comicon, just in case anybody got chilly). 

Now... how do we keep the fireworks, but don't overload the town, already bludgeoned, trying to deal with people staying for Fun Days? Simple - change the paradigm! Everybody get up here Saturday for the parade, fireworks and fun - then we sell and trade and panel Sunday and Monday. We always figure out how to get that extra Friday - why not that extra Monday? Anything you know about a convention, how to run one, and how to attend - throw it right out the window. We'll always have no stinking badges, and $25 vendor fees. See you in 2014!

Roberta and me - Dead Dog time!
And now - the end-of-end-of-con report. We had a Dead Dog party, but as they kept happening, we renamed them the Zombie Dog parties. And yes, most of them were on the beach.

Even more con report and seriously lovely photos at Dara's blog

Vendor Rachel Partain posted these photos of the beautiful area in her Facebook Album.

Thanks to Denny Eicchorn, who sent me this report in email: 

"Saturday, July 13th, 2013, meant one thing, and one thing only: the Second Annual Clallam Bay ComiCon! We drove to scenic Clallam Bay and unloaded our comic books in the Lions Club building, and soon found ourself marching through Clallam Bay with Donna Barr and other ComiCon attendees in some weird annual parade, right behind a kilted red-haired bagpipe player on stilts (whose bagpipes emitted flames spasmodically, fueled by a small bottle of propane), as the sunglasses-wearing citizens of that fine town cheered and applauded at our passage. We only sold $3 worth of goods at the ComiCon, but will carry the memories of that parade for a long, long time."

Yes, sales are better for some people than others, but if nothing else, you can deduct a hella vacation - and always say you were in at the start. Besides, you're probably dying of the heat during the summer, and we have a cool ocean breeze. Come hide and party!

2014 Clallam Bay Comicon

Sticker art - only a dollar - and
panel moderators and table bosses get one for free!
You don't HAVE to buy one, but it proves you
attended. All the 2012-13 tshirts were
stolen at Emerald City!
Hi, folks! And we're off and running for the 3rd year!

Promote your attendance or your shop with the 2014 flyer mini-poster (download link), featuring our logo, Kelpie! If you want to use logo/mascot "Kelpie" for tshirts, buttons, etc., and make some money, contact me.

First, con reports:
The 2013 Comicon Report
The 2014 Comicon Report
Facebook pages: (Year) Clallam Bay Comicon. IE: 2013 Clallam Bay Comicon, etc.

Now - the 2014 information: 

FACEBOOK LINK (If you want to keep up with ongoing discussions, ask questions, organize a sales rep or living space or panels).

July 13-14-15: During and after Clallam Bay/Sekiu Fun Days 9am to 5 pm SUNDAY AND MONDAY for trade show (setup, show, breakdown). (You heard us - Sunday and Monday). SATURDAY is optional, for getting here, enjoying Fun Days, Parade, and Fireworks party night; but highly recommended.

ADMISSION for public: free. "We don't need no stinkin' badges." You're all special guests to us. And don't have to prove you're pros or amateurs.

BOOTH FEES: $25 ($27.00 Paypal).  CONTACT for payment instructions.

The newly renovated building - nice job, Lions!
Clallam Bay/Seiku Lion's Club
90 Bogachiel Street
Clallam Bay, Olympic Peninsula, Washington State, United States (Take Highway 112 through Clallam Bay. After the hard left, look for liqour store on the right; Bogachiel Street is the next left).

ACCOMADATIONS AND HOUSING Motels, cabins, B & Bs, even converted logging skids. Get your ass in gear - rooms fill up FAST! And also Neah Bay AND the Couchsurfers Event Link! Stay with fascinating local people - or if you are a FLP - sponsor a comics/media/art/writer in your own home. Camping: Sam's RV Resort has camping. Includes laundromat, near shopping area; Phone: 360 963 2402

EVERYONE WELCOME. If you do comics, poetry, gallery art, jewelry, paint cars, bake pies, sing, do stand-up, sculpture, hip-hop, light shows, whatever - bring it. Cosplay wanted for the parade. AND HORSES!

HOW TO GET HERE: Take a flight to Port Angeles on Kenmore Air, then take the Forks bus to the the Clallam Bay connection at Sappho.  Yes, Sappho. Bus details at Clallam Transit. Or take Olympic Bus Lines from Seattle. Coming from Portland, or other points south? Take the WEST side of the Olympic Peninsula, Highway 101: Good roads, scenic, food and fuel - and MUCH less traffic, even in July.

GETTING to Neah Bay and back, if you'd prefer not to drive every day - contact Olympic Peninsula Errand Service, for Janet or Adam: (360) 640-4583 NOTE: Neah Bay is a First Nations town, and DRY. And you don't want to drive THAT road after enjoying some wind-down juice.

AWARDS: Who are we to judge? If your fans love you and buy stuff, you win.

PROVIDED: space, electricity (PROBABLY wi-fi). More Wi-fi is 24/7 at the library, right around the corner. LOTS of table space!

SPACE: Dealer's Room: main club building. Gaming and music: outside covered porch. Panels: outside covered porch. Parking: around Lion's Club, Old Fire Hall and Clinic parking lot. LINK TO PHOTOS OF MORE SPACES

PANELS and EVENTS Link: Includes audio-visual details.

GAMES: You want games? Find a Gamesmaster and contact us to be put in the Panel schedule.

CATERING: We have a NICE kitchen available, so if you want to bring and sell food, take care of your own licensing or whatever. 

CHARITY: Comicon needs a charity. Contact us.

BEST, safest, most scenic route if driving: Highway 101 around Lake Crescent, then Highway 113-112 to Clallam Bay (slightly longer, but recommended).

FIRE DISPLAYS: If you want to play Burning Man, contact the District Five Fire Department.


LAST-MINUTE PRINTING: Already on the peninsula and forgot something? Need a large print order at the last minute? Olympic Printers are the guys.

T-SHIRTS: Don't want to drag a million t-shirts along, especially if you have a new design? Get 'em done in Port Angeles and pick 'em up at SickTees.

CHILDREN: watch your own.

TRASH: Container in Lion's Club kitchen. SEPARATE THE CANS.

FACILITY CARE: No tape of any sort on the wall. Respect the Lion's Club's wall displays. We all chip in to clean up at the end of the show. It don't take long.
Don't set yourself on fire.


1: Donna Barr's A Fine Line Press AND Clallam Bay Comicon Central (Official convention t-shirts!).

2: Catalyst Studios

3. Roberta Gregory