I went to the SPACE (Small Press and Alternative Comics Expo) for the 7th time last weekend April 24th and 25th in Columbus, OH, at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center. This was the first time Space has been at this location. The last few shows were at the Shriner Convention Center and that was one huge hall with all the tables in about 10 long rows. It was sort of too spacious and loud with all the noise bouncing off the hard floors and walls. Tables along the sides had lighting that didn't hit their tables. This year was like a welcome flashback to the years SPACE was in a Holiday Inn. This year was even better as that Holiday Inn was looking very old and going under some extreme work the last time the show was there. The Ramada Plaza was much more homey, as the tables were closer, the isles were roomy but not spaced extremely apart. This made the show seem more cosey to the fans and there was probably a lot more interaction between the fans and the creators than in the larger convention hall of the last few years.
My table (Fan-Atic Press) was just inside the entrance to the event. Next to me was my pal Clint Basinger who has made the trip with me to the last few shows. He has his own table sporting his excellent, highly creative comics and art under the company name, Cosmic Moustache Comics.
Here we see Dan Taylor holding my Slam Bang #5 vol III, which he contributed to. Dan does some fantastic mini-comics and art. His company is Weird Muse Productions.
Here is a look at 2 of his mini comics. (I plan on contributing to Time Warp Comix.)
Christina Wald is a frequent contributor to Slam Bang. She is a very busy illustrator in Cincinnati, OH, and the book The Little Red Bat just came out showing off her brilliant art. See her site HERE.
Adding some style to the show--- Joseph Morris of Torc Press. See his work HERENathan Corrigan (Oldest son of Tim Corrigan) shows off his publishing empire! Gumshoe Comics! I purchased his book of sketches and you get one of the originals free with each purchase of the book. How crazy is that! I also bought his comic called Weird Comics Drawn Weridly, and it has some very strange and wonderful character drawings and comics in there. Well worth $3.00.
Plastic Farm, writer and artist Rafer Roberts with his better half.
I've seen him at every Space show I'm been to. I always buy his lastest books. You can too, right HERE.
Tim Corrigan of New Voice Media on the left, Matt Feazell famous creator of Cynicalman on the right! Send Tim $15 for a year subscription to his Tim Corrigan's Comics and Stories, a monthly comic book digest with color covers!
Find out about Cynicalman at Matt's site HERE. These are some of the most talented guys at SPACE each year. I come to this show particularly to visit with them and check out their newest books.
Eric Adams is a writer, illustrator and designer, best known as the creator and self-publisher of the comic book series LACKLUSTER WORLD and a partner / creative director with the Cincinnati-based TURNSTYLE CREATIVE. He hosted a panel I was on a year or so ago at SPACE, and did a fantastic job. I didn't have time to check out all of his books this year, but will catch up by checking out his SHOP online.
Bob Corby of Back Porch Comics is the mastermind behind the Space show. Thanks to him this is all possible! Thank you again this year Bob!
A completely shocked Larry Blake is checking out a copy of the stellar second issue of Strange Space Stories put out by Main Enterprises. Larry is a fantastic artist and can be reached only at: Larry Blake, 69360 St. Rt. 124, Reedsville, OH 45722. He has lots of great comics, write him and ask how you can buy them! Larry was also recently showcased in a beautiful hardcover KISS book about all the Kiss Fanzine editors and publishers over the years. He had a write up and a color photo in the book!
Jim Main of Main Enterprises poses with a black and white original portrait of himself, by Larry Blake. As soon as I walked into the show room, Jim returned 3 pages of my original artwork I'd sent him back in 1988. HA! True story! If I looked hard enough I'm sure I'd find some things I've got hidden of others works that got misplaced so no hard feelings. In fact we talked about putting out a top secret project that has been talked about for years. Catch Jim's books (and he has many of them!) HERE
Jim puts out the excellent Comic Fan. #6 is another thick issue full of reviews and articles for people that love comics!
Bruce Chrislip. Bruce could just be the most prolific small press creator that step foot into the SPACE show this year! I mean, come on....check out this bibliography of his work. He came over to my table (behind it actually) and showed me some super rare art and posters from the very early days of small press. Wow! He said he has a collection of over 900 mini-comics. I think that is what he said. I should have been taking notes. Bruce also helped out on the book about the Underground Comix of the 80's that just came out by Fantagrphics. He is also working on his own book about the early days of small press. Wow.
Here is Clint having his harty Hardees breakfast before the show on Saturday. He will tell you he ate all this, but I know he left one bite.
Clint and I saw that every table at Hardees had one of these on the wall next to it. We argued about what it could be. Clint thought it was an early phone device. I dissagreed, as it was too large to fit on your belt, and didn't seem to play any mp3's. He agreed when he realized there was no LED screen to view apps.
These were the billboards that were facing the parking lot when we arrived and left each day. I never knew that glass could be so comfortable, and....no comment on the other one.
David Branstetter of Dim Light Graphics home of Straw Man. David is a member of the Comic Creators Alliance a group that meets once a week at the comic store The Comic Quest in Evansville, IN. Allen (me) and Clint Basinger are also members as well as about 10 to 15 others. Ask us about the comics this group has put out in the last few years.
About Straw Man: Straw Man is an independent comic about a guy that thinks he has super powers but doesn't. Is he crazy? Maybe. To get copies http://www.comixpress.com/ or email: email@example.com
Ava Ann of http://www.a2alien.com/. She was selling alot of these head pieces, "antennae" at the show as I saw just about every lady and girl walking out with one.
Mike Indovina is the writer and illustrator of TIMELESS a web comic at: http://www.satyrplayproductions.com/ He recently collected these into a printed comic and he has lots of other comics such as; Satyr, Chimera and cards, shirts....I see him every year at SPACE and he just keeps adding to all the great products at his table. Check out his books! (Same link as above.)
Left to right; Tim Corrigan, Larry Blake and Allen Freeman (me). Tim has his wallet out so he must be making change! HA! Wait, now I can't say I took all of these photos. Ratz!
Mike Kitchen with Ultraist Studios. http://www.ultraist.net/ Spy Guy #1 (unlimited series) is a fantastic comic and everyone should see it! Really. I'm also reading his The Possum. Wait, this is by Blair Kitchen and it's from Possum Press. So, which one is in this photo? Either way they are both very talented writers and cartoonists, both comics are very, very good. Spy Guy even has a 16 page text Ultraist Manifesto! Can't wait to read that. (Update: Mike is the one in this photo. Blair was at the show but not around his table at this time.)
Matt Feazell is drawing in a sketch book.
Suzanne Baumann of Fridge-Magnet. She and Matt are from Hamtramck, MI.
Didn't get the info on this character but thought it was interesting.
Tony Goins of PANEL. A Columbus, OH group that put at PANEL the anthology. It's always very original and PANEL #15 has a movie theme and comes in a DVD case. Put out by http://www.ferretpress.com/ Tony also just put out Downs #2. He is a great artist and writer. You have to check out his work. http://www.itradedmyeyes.com/
Kassandra Heller, artist. See more of her work at http://www.kassandraheller.com/
Randy Pare on the right. Contact him about his RKYV digital magazine. It is great. firstname.lastname@example.org
Steve Peters of Awakening Comics. http://www.awakeningcomics.com/
Here is his character Sparky as Spider-Man (A request from me.). If you buy one of his books he would do up a cool color drawing of Sparky as anyone you wanted. Cool!
Blink Strips vol. 2 by Max Ink. http://www.maxinkcomix.com/
I have to have everything that Max works on and so will you when you get one look at his comics.
The blissful Kel M. Crum of Dangerousbird.com with his Cornelia Catroons. Kel has an amazing singing voice as you'll hear when you watch the SPACE DOCUMENTARY listed above!
I'm still trying to locate all the info I was going to post here about the groups that are helping students learn to create comics and get scholarships in the graphic arts. The man and woman in costume above are models in some of their classes.
Space Prize 2009 Webcomics Category 1st Place: Introspective Comics http://www.introspectivecomics.com/ Ryan Dow
Mini-Comics Short Story Category 1st Place: Aliens poop on Your Children, Chris Garrett. http://www.ninetimesnine.com/
General Category 1st Place: The Dreamer #1-5 IDW. Lora Innes-Artist Writer, Tom Waltz-Editor. http://www.thedreamercomic.com/
Space Anthology 2010 free at http://www.comicsxp.com/
I can't wait till Space 2011! Maybe I'll get out all the books I'd planned to have at Space with me this year. I'll start working on them now!
All the photos I took at SPACE 2010 will be posted HERE eventually. Check it often. Once they are in this set on Flickr, you can download any image at any size, on up to the original.
More photos by Allen http://www.afreemanphotography.com/
Small Press Newsroom. Send your comic to get a review by me! See the blog here: http://smallpressnewsroom.blogspot.com/
My photos of Space in 2004!
My photos of Space in 2007!
My photos of Space in 2008!
My photos on Flicker of Space in 2008!
My Space blog 2009!