Monday, October 17, 2011

Discounted Tickets to Comikaze Expo in Los Angeles

Los Angeles' first large-scale, multimedia pop culture convention invades the Southland, celebrating the best in comic books, anime, gaming, sci-fi, fantasy, horror, tattoos and more, and saluting special guests of honor -- Marvel's legendary comic creator Stan Lee and the iconic Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, who serves as the Comikaze Expo's official "spooksperson." Along with star-studded panels with artists, writers and creators and cast reunions from Nickelodeon's All That and the Police Academy movies, Comikaze also boasts independent film screenings, live shows, celebrity appearances, fan contests, games, portfolio reviews and even a masquerade ball. More than 300 vendors are expected to showcase and sell their collectible wares, so get your costumes on and get ready to let your geek flag fly at the only cross-genre event of its kind in L.A

Get your discounted tickets here!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Baby Tattooville 5th Anniversary Gathering

After years of hearing how much fun all my friends in the lowbrow art scene have at Baby Tattooville, I finally bit the bullet, plunked down my substantial chunk of change, and signed up. For those of you not already in the know, Baby Tattooville is a (not so) secret society that meets annually to celebrate and support contemporary art. It's always at the Mission Inn in Riverside, and is limited to invited guest artists, 50 numbered attendees, and their companions. The majority of attendees return every year, so even though I registered almost a year ago, I ended up being number 41 out of 50.

Baby Tattooville 5th Anniversary Group
Usually, there are about a dozen or so invited artists, but as this year was the 5th Anniversary, so Bob Self - publisher of Baby Tattoo books and founder of Baby Tatttooville - decided to invite back all of the artists that had ever attended! The resulting all-star lineup included Van Arno, Anthony Ausgang, Ana Bagayan, Gary Baseman, Tim Biskup, Luke Chueh, Coop, Molly Crabapple, Bob Dob, Ron English, Gris Grimly, James Gurney, Michael Hussar, Frank Kozik, Lola, Travis Louie, Elizabeth McGrath, Tara McPherson, Brandi Milne, Miss Mindy, Buff Monster, Ragnar, Johnny KMNDZ Rodriguez, Johnny Ryan, KRK Ryden, Shag, Jeff Soto, Amy Sol, William Stout, Philip Warner, and Yoskay Yamamoto. I had worked with some of these artists before - and even gone out to dinner with a few of them - but what a treat to be able to spend an entire weekend together!

Ron English, Eric Segall, Super Cooper Barella Art Collaboration

I brought my 11-year old son, Eric  who was worried that there would be no other kids there. However, as soon as we arrived, he made fast friends with "Super Cooper" Barella, a 12-year old veteran of Baby Tattooville who had just curated a gallery show at Munkey King in Los Angeles and was happy to introduce us around and show us the ropes.

Baby Tattooville 5th Anniversary Art Jam

William Stout Sketch

The guest artists spent most of the weekend working on an "art jam" painting together, designing individual circus punks, chatting, and drawing sketches for the attendees. Eric and I had a blast acting like silly little fanboys gathering sketches from all of the artists in our sketchbooks. By the end, I was just missing a drawing from Amy Sol, who was MIA for a bit - she had her own gallery opening to attend.

Baby Tattooville On Parade Museum Exhibition Book

Gary Baseman, Michelle Valigura, Tara McPherson, Super Cooper, Eric Segall

Tim Biskup, Super Cooper, Eric Segall, Lana Ramirez
Saturday night was the "main event" - opening night at the nearby Riverside Art Museum for Baby Tattooville On Parade. This show collected selections from all of the Baby Tattooville artists (including the ones who couldn't make it this year), and took up two entire rooms at the museum. We then headed back to the hotel en masse to finish up the art jam painting, and to try our hands at a circus punk carnival toss. Each attendee had a chance to knock down a circus punk to keep and take home. Some of the attendees took 5 or 6 tries to knock anything down, but I was extremely proud of myself - I knocked down a "Gris Grimly" on the first throw! I was never particularly good at sports.

Gris Grimly Circus Punk

By brunch on Sunday, Eric and I had gathered all of our books we had signed while we were there, our purchases from the Baby Tattooville Secret Store, and our gift bags stuffed to the brim with goodies donated by the artists. We said our goodbyes to our friends old and new. I can't wait until next year!

Parting Artists - Eric, Jeff Soto, Travis Louie