I was drinking a Caipirinha at the outside patio of one of the hotel bars, talking with Skottie Young, Chris Roberson and Allison Baker about comics. I was actually enjoying the sun, and my drink was delicious. Topics ranged from the influence of “the Maxx” in our comics to how special it is to work inside the Hellboy universe, with stories about smuggling things from one country to another and who has more original Chris Bachalo pages thrown into the mix.
The girl working at the bar is brazilian, so her Caipirinhas can be trusted.
The guy working at the bar of the Scholastic party was also brazilian. I was impressed when José Villarubia recognised the bartender’s strong accent and said to me “he’s brazilian”. I didn’t get a caipirinha there, but I can’t complain of what I did get: an advance copy of Craig Thompson’s Space Dumplins.
There are no brazilians in space in that book. Not yet, at least. I just read the first few chapters.
Back to San Diego, which is what I can’t stop thinking about. Maybe it is really because I’m from Brazil and I only see these people once a year, maybe twice, but when I can spend five days talking with so many of my friends and they’re all doing such great comics, I can’t complain about where my life has led me.
San Diego was a blast this year.
Bá and I had a wonderful time in San Diego Comic Con this year. I don’t care what people say, it’s still my favourite convention. It’s the only place where you’ll find all the publishers, from the smallest to the big mainstream ones, where independent or alternative artists interact and share their passion in the same space as international super stars of books you grew up reading, and it’s where we can still celebrate the Eisner Awards (where everybody who attends is bound to discover at least one cool book that catches your attention).
It is getting harder and harder to attend SDCC, getting a 4 day pass is hard, getting a hotel room is hard, and there are more and more people going for the entertainment part of the convention rather than the comics part, but still I think SDCC is pretty special and the energy from the authors and the readers was just unbelievable. If you can see past the sea of people, the comics-section is still the most inspiring place you’ll find on those five days of summer. And, since we didn’t have a table this year, we could also walk around and discover so much more stuff, and see and talk to so much more people, and leave with the even stronger feeling that we’re living in these very special creative moment in Comics, where the audience is really diverse, the production is diverse, and the doors are wide open for Comics to go everywhere.
We even did a presentation about that during the convention.
One of the panels we were part of this year was called “Different is cool”.
We created that panel.
We made that name up.
It was basically me and my brother talking to the audience about how incredible it is to go your own way, find your own style, and how your work stands out when you stop trying to do what everybody else is doing and try to focus on doing what only you can do. Our presentation was a love-letter to the convention and to the Comics’ World, to this place where we can discover such a wide variety of artists and styles and possibilities, and how refreshing that is, and how inspiring, and how many of the authors we admire have had that same moment when that voice in their heads said it was okay to do something you love even if nobody else is doing it.
The room was big, full of readers, of fans and friends, and it was great having that opportunity to talk about our love for comics, and to reflect on how nowadays is a great time to go after your dreams. It was the best way to start the last day of the Con, and it gave us this buzz that we carried to the interviews we made, and to the signing session that followed. We love comics so much and, with the response from the audience at our panel, we felt loved back. It was an incredible feeling.
We first came to SDCC in 1997 dreaming of drawing super-heroes for Marvel and DC, but our journey took us to a completely different path. A more personal path.
We haven’t looked back ever since.
We always come back from San Diego inspired to make more comics. Bá spent a couple of days in L.A to share that enthusiasm with Gerard and talk about the new Umbrella Academy series. It’s going to be great. Knowing there are more Umbrella comics coming is more exciting to me than the news of an Umbrella Academy TV series. Bá and Gerard have so much fun stuff planned.
As I write this, I got my copies of Casanova Acedia #3 in from the printer. It should be in comics stores on July 29th. We’re really making an effort to go back on schedule, since releasing Two Brothers in Brazil and France and touring took us so much always from the drawing board and resulted in this very big (unprofessional) gap between issues 2 and 3. Issue 4 will come out next month.
This year I finally stopped at some point and managed to be interviewed by my friend Jimmy Aquino for his Comic News Insider podcast and I talked about the books I did, the new book coming out (Two Brothers) and about what I love about comics. When he finally asked me the geeky questions, about which characters or books I would like to work on, I think I let him down with my answers, but I forgot to tell him one thing:
Despite focusing on creating new stories and trying to do different things, my brother and I will draw on a mainstream DC book for the first time this year, and it will be published next month.
Back to the drawing board.