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4-9-studios
08-07-2006, 07:56 PM
I was wondering if someone that Exhibited at San Diego Comic Con 2006 and Wizard World Chicago 2006 could tell me how they compared to each other. Now I live in San Diego and I know that we have the biggest freakin' Con ever, but how they did exhibit wise from the two. I'd really like to go to Chicago next year, but want some input first. Thanks!

Craig DeBoard
08-08-2006, 03:18 PM
I didn't go to Chicago, but I have a friend who did.

He said the crowd was light all weekend and that sales were down for everyone. And he usually does pretty well at cons.

He also said somehow CBLDF got screwed over by Wizard at the con but didn't go into detail.

JasonM
08-08-2006, 03:53 PM
I didn't have a table exactly, but from my perspective it seemed like attendance was up! I guess it depends where you were. Have they announced final numbers yet?

ryarger
08-08-2006, 04:03 PM
I haven't sold at San Diego yet (next year!) but I did about the same amount of business in Chicago this year as I did at the Motor City Con in Detroit this May. Given that the attendance at Chicago is *much* greater than Motor City, this was a bit of surprise.

Lots of people walking by, few people buying.

I finally resorted to a sign that read "Stop! Read this book or God will kill a kitten" with the necessary drawing of a kitten in peril. That got lots of smiles, but people just didn't want to stop this year... darned economy!

kdmelrose
08-08-2006, 04:16 PM
I didn't have a table exactly, but from my perspective it seemed like attendance was up! I guess it depends where you were. Have they announced final numbers yet?

According to Wizard World, attendance was up, if only slightly: more than 58,000, up from 56,000 last year.

JasonM
08-08-2006, 04:19 PM
Ok, so it wasn't my imagination.

As for purchases, remember, artist alley is an after thought at best. You have to navigate retailers and publishers before you can even see artist alley, good luck if anyone has money by then!

They don't even have the media guests by artist alley.

Oh, and lets not forget that a table in artist alley is now up to $300! It's only a matter of time before they kill AA all together.

Cat
08-08-2006, 04:31 PM
According to Wizard World, attendance was up, if only slightly: more than 58,000, up from 56,000 last year.
On Saturday at Comic Con..it was 125,000 and they turned away 15,000

I did both last year..and Comic Con BLEW Chicago away..but I have no Idea about this year...I skipped chicago this year..too close to SD

Oh, and lets not forget that a table in artist alley is now up to $300! It's only a matter of time before they kill AA all together.
$300?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!? !?!?!?!?

Are they HIGH!!!! HOLY MOLEY!! I hope it is just the bigger show..cuz Texas is not worth $300 a table.

kdmelrose
08-08-2006, 04:33 PM
Yeah, I saw Chicago described this week (at The Beat, maybe?) as a nice regional convention. It's nowhere close to the national pop-culture event that Comic-Con is. You just can't compare the two.

kdmelrose
08-08-2006, 04:42 PM
On Saturday at Comic Con..it was 125,000 and they turned away 15,000 ...

The 100,000 to 125,000 and beyond figure for Comic-Con is over the entire convention.

JasonM
08-08-2006, 04:46 PM
Yep, $300. It's fair if they had ANYTHING to make people go to that end of the con, but they don't. Traffic just has a hard time flowing there and from everything I've heard, they know it and don't care. It's all business after all.

BUT, it's unfair to compare comic con to wizard, chicago may be huge, but it's not the nations center for entertainment like LA is. After all, if you want a movie deal it's gonna happen there, not chicago!

kdmelrose
08-08-2006, 04:48 PM
BUT, it's unfair to compare comic con to wizard, chicago may be huge, but it's not the nations center for entertainment like LA is. After all, if you want a movie deal it's gonna happen there, not chicago!

Comic-Con is in San Diego. Wizard World has a convention in Los Angeles, but it's still not the event that Comic-Con is.

(EDITED TO ADD: This year, Wizard World LA had a three-day attendance of 27,000.)

JasonM
08-08-2006, 04:53 PM
Comic-Con is in San Diego. Wizard World has a convention in Los Angeles, but it's still not the event that Comic-Con is.

(EDITED TO ADD: This year, Wizard World LA had a three-day attendance of 27,000.)

To the first part, you know what I meant :p

To the second part, never gone so I couldn't say what they're doing wrong.

Craig DeBoard
08-08-2006, 05:07 PM
I didn't go to Chicago, but I have a friend who did.

He said the crowd was light all weekend and that sales were down for everyone. And he usually does pretty well at cons.

He also said somehow CBLDF got screwed over by Wizard at the con but didn't go into detail.


This is from my friend's blog about WW Chicago this year.

Wizard Magazine is the most popular magazine about comic books on the market. It is supposed to discuss what is hot in the comic book market and report on upcoming creators, as well as comic-related merchandise like toys and films.

But don't let the glitz of the magazine fool you. It's as in-depth as an ashtray and has become the MTV of comics. It tells readers what is cool. It doesn't report on all the great things sequential art and comic books have to offer you.

Futhermore, Wizard actually hates comics.

I just worked Wizard World Chicago. It's the biggest comic book convention in the Midwest. The guest list wasn't great this year (although I finally got to meet Keith Giffen!), and fan attendance was down all three days. Many of the people I talked with in Artists' Alley (the best thing about the whole show) were having bad sales. Some thought it was because the massive San Diego show (the biggest in the nation) was just two weeks prior. Gasoline was around $3.23 a gallon in the Chicago suburbs, so that didn't help either.

But let's get back to revealing why Wizard Entertainment hates comics.

First, they put indie comic book creators (and many well-known comic book creators, i.e. Phil Hester, Bill Sienkiewicz) in the worst places on the floor. Artists' Alley is always at the far back of the show. Many ticket holders never make it back to the alley because they come only for the vendors. Some who make it to the alley have already spent all their money on the vendors. The small press booths were wedged into an opposite far corner of the show. Why not put the small press and indie folks together?

Also, why not flip-flop the placement of Artists' Alley and the vendors? Everyone knows, even the vendors, that the vendors will make their money. People come to that show to buy comics and toys. If the vendors were put at the far end of the floor, fans would have to walk through the Small Press/Artists' Alley tables and booths in order to get to the vendors. People would have to look at us and our wares. Fans would then have to walk back through us to get out of the show, giving them another opportunity to check out indie comics.

Why don't they do this? Because Wizard hates comics. As long as they get their $300 per Artists' Alley table (or $850 per Small Press Booth), they have no reason to care if indie creators are making money or not.

If you want more proof that Wizard hates comics, talk to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. I was stunned to see in the show program that there was no CBLDF benefit auction this year. There was a sketch duel raffle at 11:00am Saturday morning, but that was it. When I first started attending the show years ago, the CBLDF auction was a major after-show event Friday or Saturday night at the convention hotel. It lasted two or three hours and generated a lot of money for the CBLDF.

I went to the CBLDF booth Friday morning and asked about the auction. They said there was none. I asked why not and was told, "Wizard said they couldn't accomodate us."

Wizard could not get one room in the massive Hyatt hotel for a couple hours on Friday or Saturday night? Wizard could not cancel yet another showing of a damn anime film so the CBLDF could have an auction to raise money to PROTECT COMIC CREATORS?

The CBLDF representatives then told me that Wizard wanted to hold the sketch duel at 11:00am Sunday morning - one of the worst times to hold the event. As I was told by one of their reps, "No one would be there. Hardly any of the pros would be here, and most who were would be hung over. And most of the fans would be hung over too, so no one would show up. We told them to put it on Saturday, and they did."

So, Wizard - "the comics magazine" - doesn't like to accomodate the organization that protects creators and vendors of comics.

All that being said, many thanks to everyone who stopped by the Pickle Press table to chat with me and Bill Wilkison. I hope everyone enjoyed our stuff. It was great to see lots of old friends and make new ones.

The next stop on the Pickle Press 2006 convention tour is the Phoenix Cactus Con. Come to Mesa, Arizona September 23-24th. I'll also be doing a signing in Mesa on September 22nd. More details to follow.

JasonM
08-08-2006, 05:17 PM
1) attendance was up, so perception plays a big role.

2) The only way things will change is if no one gets a table for a year and Wizard looses a lot of money. Then maybe they would accomodate AA a bit more, but until then it makes no sense to just complain - it'll solve nothing so long as they make money.

Wizard doesn't hate or love comics... they do love money though.

SDulaney
08-08-2006, 05:30 PM
I only did Saturday and Sunday camping out at kirby and Sarge's table but this show had an odd vibe I couldn't put my finger on. Last year was "Con of the Living Dead." This was the year of...it's hard to say. The people who did both shows seemed fresher this year dispite less time between shows. (Maybe less time to dread two cons back to back was a factor this time.)

No offense to Brent and any other Wizard staffers who might be on the board, but if the numbers were up over last year, I'd like you to meet my new bride Nikki Cox. In other words, I have to call Bullsh!t. Wizard already inflates the attendance (or did in the past) by counting a 3-Day ticket as three attendees. Do they count as four now that there's a preview night? I was doing a bit of running around the floor Saturday and the only time I had trouble getting around was if somebody in a costume stopped to be photographed. The floor layout pretty much betrayed the fact a number of the folks who used to set up at both finally said screw it, opted for a smaller than usual set up or had gone out of business. I almost missed the Devil's Due booth as I walked the floor.

As for business, it was hit and miss. Guys who thought business in AA was fantastic usually were very close to the "star area" with more "name" creators, Chicago regulars with a following and "A-level" Image/DC/Marvel credits. The closer you got to what Dash Martin refered to as the "tumor section" of Artist Alley, the more you got into the unknowns, wannabes and not quite "name" players. In that area business varied table to table with people have developed decent followings over the years doing better.

I mentioned to somebody it was a shame Wizard got greedy. Granted, maybe I'm jaded now that I've seen the promised land along the Embarcadaro, but as Gareb added shows, Chicago seemed to take hit. "Why go to Chicago when I can do the Wizard con in Dallas/LA/Boston/Philly?" They pulled the plug on Boston after one year after it didn't draw like Philly. If there's a similar HeroesCon revolt next year with pros opting to go to Charlotte rather than Philly the same weekend, Wizard World East may not be long for the world.

Plus the Wizard shows are so interchangable, Chicago isn't as special as it used to be. (Philly Special Guest: Kevin Smith with Alex Ross, Michael Turner and Jeph Loeb. Chicago Special Guest: Alex Ross with Kevin Smith, Jeph Loeb and Michael Turner. LA Special Guest: Jeph Loeb with Michael Turner, Alex Ross and Kevin Smith.) The first couple of times I went to Chicago, it was a big deal and they were getting to where they could challenge San Diego in importance if not attendance. By trying to mass produce the Chicago Con, they took the next San Diego Con and turned it into the Motor City Con.

EDIT: Seems like next year may take a hit too. http://www.publishersweekly.com/article/CA6360370.html

stahss
08-08-2006, 05:45 PM
...Artists' Alley is always at the far back of the show. Many ticket holders never make it back to the alley because they come only for the vendors. Some who make it to the alley have already spent all their money on the vendors. Also, why not flip-flop the placement of Artists' Alley and the vendors? With a few Wizards being the exception (like Chicago last year, where AA was split into 2 rooms for example), I don't think it's the placement of vendors vs AA that necessarily leads to bad sales- it's more the Wizard crowd itself. Heroes, for example, had about the same set-up WW Chicago has every year, albeit on a smaller scale. People have to get past the vendors to get to the little guys. The crowd, however, is a friendlier one, one that seems to want to talk to artists and buy art as opposed to the Wizard crowd, which seems to be more concerned with getting that exclusive Aunt May Heroclix and the sketch variant to whatever comic Wizard says is hot. Couple that with the ridiculous table prices, and it's a recipe for disaster for most small pressers.

I had a pretty "terrible" location at Heroes, along the very back wall, furthest from the door, behind all the vendors and big name people and I did quite well. A majority of folks would make out better hitting the "2nd tier" cons (or what I call 2nd tier, anyway), like Baltimore or Heroes over the Wizard shows. Just read the magazine and you'll know what kind of crowd to anticipate and how you'll then perform as a creator.

Cat
08-08-2006, 06:01 PM
But one BIG difference with Heroes is it is an Artist show..HALF the dealer room is artists and The other half is vendors...no big toy companies, or tv shows, or mivie promotion. The folks go to Heroes FOR the art..they go to Wizard for the toys.

I have been getting steadely declining number at Wizard shows and have had to fork out more and more to get in the door. LA was a joke..I did not even cover my plane ticket. I skipped Chicago mostly because of it proximity to San Diego, but also because last year, being one STUCK in the gaming room, was a complete waste of time. Both from sheer exhaustion and lack of interest from the attendees. I will end my year so far with the WW TX but only because it is basicly a home town show...although two weeks before that is another show in Dallas that is a phenominal local event. They have great guest and GREAT attendees who appreciate the artists and show it. WWTX also has the artists in a separate room from the vendors...the Celebrities are in there as well. But the $300 price tag for a table is going to make it hard for me to commit to that one as well, local or otherwise.

Buckyrig
08-08-2006, 06:06 PM
But one BIG difference with Heroes is it is an Artist show..HALF the dealer room is artists and The other half is vendors...no big toy companies, or tv shows, or mivie promotion. The folks go to Heroes FOR the art..they go to Wizard for the toys.

So, which shows are more like this? Frankly, I don't go to cons partly because I don't want to be in the middle of the bullshit you're all describing. I don't give a crap about toys, video games, or (while I am there for comics) movies. I live a five hour drive from San Diego and I have never had more than the most passing urge to check it out.

stahss
08-08-2006, 06:28 PM
The folks go to Heroes FOR the art..they go to Wizard for the toys.That's what I'm sayin, girl. It's a completely different vibe, catering to a completely different crowd.

Notice the "guests" at the two shows and how they differ; at Wizard it's the "Young Guns" and other hot artists from the Big 2, generally. Heroes boasts people like Gene Colan and Nick Cardy- people with - gasp!- grey hair. :laugh: Wizard caters to people who read Wizard Magazine; there's nothing wrong with that...creators need to choose their battles and go where they're most loved. It's why I stay home. :laugh:

SDCC, though, is in its own category given the heavy multimedia presence. New York may end up in the same category after it builds up some steam.

Cat
08-08-2006, 06:51 PM
That's what I'm sayin, girl. It's a completely different vibe, catering to a completely different crowd.


I am with you.. we are on the same page! High Five!!

stahss
08-08-2006, 06:56 PM
I am with you.. we are on the same page!Form of...an ice missle! Form of...a kangaroo!

Bucky, as far as cons to check out, I guess it depends how far you want to travel. Heroes in North Carolina is excellent for meeting lots of artists and small pressers...I've heard the same for Baltimore, Motor City Comicon (Detroit), and Emerald City Comicon (Seattle), but I've never been to any of those.

crozonia
08-08-2006, 07:03 PM
Wizard Chicago has the largest Artist Alley in North America. It is an attraction even though it's at the back. There were a couple instances where there were people who only had a couple of bucks left. As long as there was a little profit margin, I didn't turn down a sale and took whatever money they had. I didn't drive 10 hours to Chicago to turn down a new reader. That was my attitude.

I did well at the show, better than last year, paid for all trip expenses including the table and turned in a little bit of profit. The important thing was nurturing the readership I established last year and expanding it.
I did notice that you do start to tap out your own defined "market" with your older products. For instance, I sold 184 Crozonia #1's last year. This year I only sold 109 Crozonia #1, although my total sales were greater (240). I bet next year, I will only be able to sell around 60 Crozonia #1's. So in order to stay successfull, you really need to have a new product.

crozonia
08-08-2006, 07:06 PM
I will end my year so far with the WW TX but only because it is basicly a home town show...although two weeks before that is another show in Dallas that is a phenominal local event. They have great guest and GREAT attendees who appreciate the artists and show it.

What Dallas show is that? Sounds interesting....

Bucky, as far as cons to check out, I guess it depends how far you want to travel. Heroes in North Carolina is excellent for meeting lots of artists and small pressers...I've heard the same for Baltimore, Motor City Comicon (Detroit), and Emerald City Comicon (Seattle), but I've never been to any of those.

And don't forget the Canadian National Comic Book Expo (http://www.hobbystar.com/ComicConToronto2006/CC_Main.asp) in Toronto. It is outside the US, so it never gets the same type of coverage, but in both size and attendance, it will be the 3rd largest show in North America this year, larger than NY Comicon. The artist alley tables are much cheaper as well.

Buckyrig
08-08-2006, 07:10 PM
Bucky, as far as cons to check out, I guess it depends how far you want to travel. Heroes in North Carolina is excellent for meeting lots of artists and small pressers...I've heard the same for Baltimore, Motor City Comicon (Detroit), and Emerald City Comicon (Seattle), but I've never been to any of those.

Thanks...more just to "keep in mind". I have a tendency to take off on trips without warning. If I can combine it with a visit...but Seattle is the only one of those where I know anyone...right now at least.

Cat
08-08-2006, 07:39 PM
What Dallas show is that? Sounds interesting....


The Dallas Comic Con/Sci Fi Expo. Run by the Guys behind C2 Ventures
This (http://www.scifiexpo.com/dcc/DCC7.html) was the show in April then there was a small one in July (http://www.scifiexpo.com/dcc/SFX2006.html) and they are gettig ready for the last one of the year in October (http://www.scifiexpo.com/dcc/Next-Convention.html) ..

they put on a GREAT show with Great guests and they do three a year. Every so often they will have a Fan day show..a one day free admission big name guest. Good stuff.

Moonrider
08-08-2006, 08:00 PM
Hi guys, thanks for whoever made this thread because I'm finding out things that I wanted to know but afraid to ask about comic conventions in the US.

I myself am gathering some info and resources to make our own Comic Convention right here in Indonesia. So far, I'm still working alone on the project along with some friends in discussions. I've just begun to spread the words and so far the response have been a mixture of sympathy, support, enthusiasm, sarcasm, and of course apathy. But the fact is, this project must launch whether they support us or not. When the Con happens, they will come undoubtedly despite their contradicting opininons over it. That's what we think, let's just hope we're right.

Right now, I'm really curious just what is in the US that makes a Comic Con or a Comic Expo great? What brings the masses? We have quite a very different structure of masses in Indonesia, community-wise. How should we bring them together? How do YOU guys bring your communities together? Or...you actually don't? Then I would like to know why.

This is the basic knowledge of comic communities and subcultures in Indonesia. We have the Manga community which are abundant and perhaps cover over 50% of the comic population. Those are the guys that rarely read anything else, be it for their lack of income or because they tend to dislike other genre for its surface since Manga is all they know for reference. Then we got the US mainstream readers, usually rich kids who buy some titles or graphic novels a month, avid collectors who can either turn into a really open minded guy or a frickin' comic snob who get off saying that he got that near mint first appearance of Cable for hundreds of dollars (is that possible? I'm just making examples here, never check prices) .....off his Dad's wallet. A lot of them also read Manga and actually more flexible in the titles they're reading, but still a lot of them won't admit it or won't stop scorning it. Then we got the indies kids, which I admire most but damn are they clueless. Most are photocopied-comic artists/writers (most of them do all the chores themselves including distribution) who make comic books only the way they see fit, not very reader friendly and erratic in drawing and storytelling. Other are older people that got into the game for so long forgot to give his experience to the young 'uns. So looking at those communities, we definetely have a problem.

And the best part is, I promised to invite many if not all comic professionals in their respective field from all over US, Asia, Southeast Asia, Europe and local activists. Now you know I REAAAAALLY need some help.

Any more info would be appreciated, but reading about you guys comparing Comic Cons already even help me more than I can imagine. Wish you guys all the best, and please keep the spirit up :)

Scott Story
08-08-2006, 09:42 PM
While I agree with Sean that this show seemed different in vibe, I will say we had a great time. We sold more each day than we had ever sold there, and people were definitely shelling out their hard-earned cash for stuff. Let me put it this way: I didn't do any sketches for people, and only took one after show art commission, and based solely on comics we sold we more than double and almost tripled what we made last year. We made enough to pay for our table, plus most of the cool swag I got. (I got lots of artist sketchbooks, a video, and some great books over at the Tomorrow's Publishing table).

If I had to guess what was different, it was the lack of adult entertainers/models and pirated video sellers.

I've never been to San Diego, but it looks to me like the biggest artist alley I've ever seen is Chicago Wizardworld. I was a little concerned at first, because here were tons of talented people selling essentially the same type of product I was, yet apparantly there were enough fans to go around.

Imperium Comics
08-08-2006, 09:54 PM
My only problem was that I couldn't get rid of Scott Story for the entire weekend--next to me at the show, the hotel, everywhere I turned, there he was!

Sorry I didn't get to say goodbye when you left, but I had last minute bargain hunting that had to be done.

James Dracoules
Editor
www.imperiumcomics.com

Scott Story
08-08-2006, 10:14 PM
Stalking James is my new hobby! We even got a room close to his at the Embassy Suites. Coincidence? Hmmmn.

It was fun talking with you guys during the show. I look forward to seeing you at future shows.

Cat
08-08-2006, 10:17 PM
Chicago (http://www.wizarduniverse.com/conventions/chicago/WWC_Floorplan.pdf) has 279 artist alley tables give or take a few..Heroes (http://www.heroesonline.com/con-aalley.htm) con has 300+ Artist tables and booths.

4-9-studios
08-08-2006, 10:27 PM
well from what i'm getting is that this show is still up in there air depending on the audience your going for. So I'll ask this. What would be the TOP 5 cons you would appear in? I've never traveled out of Cali so I only know San Diego, LA Wizard, Wonder Con in San Fran, and APE also in San Fran. So come on guys give me your top 5.

I would think San Diego would top them all.

Fresco
08-08-2006, 10:38 PM
Yep, $300. It's fair if they had ANYTHING to make people go to that end of the con, but they don't. Traffic just has a hard time flowing there and from everything I've heard, they know it and don't care. It's all business after all.

http://www.franchesco.com/chicago/Ch35.jpg
um... Chicago was a blur of activity and crackled with fun and excitment. I can tell anyone listenting that Wizard DOES care about the Artists and its Alley-- if folks had a hard time drawing any from the healthy crowds, its on them, not Wizard. If I was selling melon ballers and kettle corn at a comic book show-- how is it wizard's fault that I didn't sell too many melon ballers to comic book fans? In other words... if what I had did not intrest the folks there, how is THAT Wizard's fault?

No offense to Brent and any other Wizard staffers who might be on the board, but if the numbers were up over last year, I'd like you to meet my new bride Nikki Cox. In other words, I have to call Bullsh!t. Wizard already inflates the attendance (or did in the past) by counting a 3-Day ticket as three attendees. Do they count as four now that there's a preview night? I was doing a bit of running around the floor Saturday and the only time I had trouble getting around was if somebody in a costume stopped to be photographed.

As for business, it was hit and miss. Guys who thought business in AA was fantastic usually were very close to the "star area" with more "name" creators, Chicago regulars with a following and "A-level" Image/DC/Marvel credits. The closer you got to what Dash Martin refered to as the "tumor section" of Artist Alley, the more you got into the unknowns, wannabes and not quite "name" players. In that area business varied table to table with people have developed decent followings over the years doing better.
http://www.franchesco.com/chicago/Ch36.jpg
this is coming from the front of the hall (main entrance is at the vanishing point)

and it extended all the way to the concession stand:
http://www.franchesco.com/chicago/Ch40.jpg

Put Jim Lee in the "tumor" section in Artist Alley... and I guarantee you that folks will find him... and stuff will sell off his table.

Brent does a fantastic job, so does Gabe, and Stephen, and the rest of their capable and experienced staff. God Bless Wizard for doing what they do. Back in the day... folks could casually stroll past a spinner rack and see comic books at a 7-11 ...those days are gone. The only major infulux of fresh blood into the industry today is from conventions.

God Bless Wizard!

crozonia
08-08-2006, 10:41 PM
These are the only ones that make sense from a sales perspective.

San Diego Comic Con
WW Chicago
Toronto Fan Expo
New York Comic Con
Motor City (only because I can drive there)


I wouldn't touch any other Wizard Worlds. $300 is too much for a table in most cases.
And don't forget, book festivals can be very successfull!
Jim

Cat
08-08-2006, 11:05 PM
Put Jim Lee in the "tumor" section in Artist Alley... and I guarantee you that folks will find him... and stuff will sell off his table.

Brent does a fantastic job, so does Gabe, and Stephen, and the rest of their capable and experienced staff. God Bless Wizard for doing what they do. Back in the day... folks could casually stroll past a spinner rack and see comic books at a 7-11 ...those days are gone. The only major infulux of fresh blood into the industry today is from conventions.

God Bless Wizard!

I completely agree with this statment! I have the feeling that LA was so so because it was the FIRST year actually in LA, that and the lack of Hotels near the Con Center. I really wish that Chicago was not running so close to SD. It is REALLY a tough turnaround. It is probalby the only Wizard show that has been a real success for me personally and professionally(with mild exception to last year...damn Gamer Room!!). This was my first time missing Chicago in the last 4 years.

Fresco
08-08-2006, 11:23 PM
I really wish that Chicago was not running so close to SD. It is REALLY a tough turnaround. It is probalby the only Wizard show that has been a real success for me personally and professionally(with mild exception to last year...damn Gamer Room!!). This was my first time missing Chicago in the last 4 years.

Oh, hey CAT you were missed in Chitown. If I didn't live in Chicago, not sure I would have done both shows either... (still recovering from the one-two punch less than two weeks apart) :)

Was great seeing you and your beautiful smile in San Diego!!! What a rush of excitment that weekend was. I wish you all the success imaginable... you're a total class act (with boku talent to back it up with).

Party on!!!

Cat
08-08-2006, 11:32 PM
Oh, hey CAT you were missed in Chitown. If I didn't live in Chicago, not sure I would have done both shows either... (still recovering from the one-two punch less than two weeks apart) :)

Was great seeing you and your beautiful smile in San Diego!!! What a rush of excitment that weekend was. I wish you all the success imaginable... you're a total class act (with boku talent to back it up with).

Party on!!!

yeah I had a one two three knockout ..Heroes, Dallas, then San Diego all with in 3 and a half weeks..there was NO way I was going to make Chicago this year. I feel your your pain.

Aw shucks, Thanks for the lovin Fresco. I hope to see you again before the year is up!

Fresco
08-08-2006, 11:39 PM
yeah I had a one two three knockout ..Heroes, Dallas, then San Diego all with in 3 and a half weeks..there was NO way I was going to make Chicago this year.

Good Lord... :confused: I got tired just from reading that.
Hope to see you as well...

btw: Chicago got rid of the 'other" artists alleys from last year. This year it was all one continuous "L" shape. Wizard does listen --and they do their best to accomodate best they can. Looking forward to next year!

http://www.franchesco.com/chicago/Ch21.jpg

Cat
08-08-2006, 11:47 PM
^OK..that is just COOL!!!

Craig DeBoard
08-09-2006, 12:50 AM
http://www.franchesco.com/chicago/Ch21.jpg

Man I can't wait to see Adams swing this around and scream "masturbation".

Very cool pic by the way and super cool work. Who's doing the work by the way? I haven't seen you face to face in a few years Franchesco (we met beack in '03) so I don't quite remember your face.

Nick Pitarra
08-09-2006, 01:34 AM
Man I can't wait to see Adams swing this around and scream "masturbation".
Ha!
I'm going to be at WWDallas this year.My next door neighbor already has a table(it really is 300.00,sheesh). The last 4 years I've been staying at the Howard Johnson Inn around the corner ...its dirt cheap(we even met some strippers that worked at...i think it was Baby dolls...they offered us free lap dances,but thats a story for another day). We're thinking about staying in the hotel across from the con...anybody know the prices?(i think all the creators stay there).

Fresco
08-09-2006, 04:07 AM
Very cool pic by the way and super cool work. Who's doing the work by the way?
The artist featured in this pic is Eric Maruscak:

http://www.franchesco.com/chicago/Ch14.jpg

His kickass work was this first thing everyone who attended the Comicon got to see as they walked up to the front doors.
He created his massize work of art before our very eyes as the comicon went through its short 3 day fun-fest.
He is one of Digital Webbing's very own... Congrats ARTERIC!!!

http://www.franchesco.com/chicago/Ch26.jpg

SDulaney
08-09-2006, 09:43 AM
I completely agree with this statment! I have the feeling that LA was so so because it was the FIRST year actually in LA, that and the lack of Hotels near the Con Center.

If I remember right, there's a long running marathon that was held that weekend and some reports said it reeked havoc with parking and directing traffic to the LA Wizard show.

Brent does a fantastic job, so does Gabe, and Stephen, and the rest of their capable and experienced staff. God Bless Wizard for doing what they do.

I'll agree with Franchesco on this. While I do have some complaints about the oversaturation of Wizard shows, WizChicago is still one of the smoothest running shows I've ever attended. There may be the occassional hiccup like the 2005 Artist Alley set up but you don't hear complaints about the credential process or the attitude of the "Elite" security people like you do coming out of San Diego. Wizard's convention staff do a fantastic job.

Thinking more about it, I think I may have figured out why a lot of Artist Alley people had their best Chicago ever this time around. With fewer retailers, attendees had more cash once they hit Artist Alley this year. Who knows how many times we've lost sales because a guy had to watch his cash after buying action figures or back issues or swords/light sabers. As I walked through the retailer area, I saw a lot of RECENT books for sale and the back issue dealers were doing mark downs. Maybe, just maybe, this was the year our browsers of the past finally had the cash to try new non-Premire Publisher stuff or buy the original art and prints they held off on in the past.

4-9-studios
08-09-2006, 01:16 PM
If I remember right, there's a long running marathon that was held that weekend and some reports said it reeked havoc with parking and directing traffic to the LA Wizard show.

Yeah the marathon SUCKED! I arrived 1/2 hour late to my table. Traffic was crazy. I hope Wizard checks out events in advance to warn us about things like that. I'm still debating if I'll be doing LA this year. For one I'll be in San Fran. at Wonder Con March 2-4, then get time off from work to go to LA March 16-18. Two, the attendance wasnt to great last year. I got a nice amount of people visiting my table, but so many guest were dissappointed on how small it was, they said that they probably wouldnt come next year.

I'll be going to Wizard Texas, but just as guest. Check it out, see if it's worth doing.

Paul Sizer
08-09-2006, 01:54 PM
As skeptical as I was after hearing about the "Alley of Death" from last year, I was completely surprised to have made back my table fee by 2PM on Friday! Even after finding my table in the back-most butt crack of the Artist Alley area, traffic for all 3 full days was great, and I walked away with my table, hotel and gas paid for! And that was with selling a $25 book!

Of all the cons that Wizard has absorbed, Chicago had enough of a base to survive, and Wizard's presence isn't strong enough to squash the fan base there. Sure, Wizard's got the idiotic wrestling crap and too loud booths up front, and that detracts and attracts the casual fans, but the hardcore audience knows where to find the meat of the con. Anyone with half a brain knows to look in Aritst Alley to find the hidden treasures and big names hidden among the newbies. I came away very glad to have gotten back to this con, although I am concerned about next year's being so close to SDCC.
Chicago should not compared to SDCC because they are two very different animals, but it is still a major con tied to a major city, and it survives because of this connection.

If you want to see my photos from the con, check them out HERE:
SIZER WIZWORLDCHICAGO 2006 CON REPORT (http://www.paulsizer.com/matrix/wwchi06_conreport.htm)

Craig DeBoard
08-09-2006, 04:41 PM
Those photos are awesome Paul. The crisis of infinite super girls cracked me up. Unbelievable so many people would dress as the same character.