Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Wicked Comic Con Wrap-Up and Ben Templesmith Commission

This last Saturday I went to the inaugural Wicked Comic Con at the Westin Seaport in Boston.

I had a blast.

This show was put together by some of the organizers of the original Boston Comic Con and definitely had a 'primarily a comic show' feel to it. As such, I felt completely at home. I went armed with a heavy backpack filled with books to be signed by the great creative roster at the show and with the hopes of maybe landing a commission or a key book. 

I definitely had a budget I had to keep to and I had not set up any commission beforehand. So this was something of an old-fashioned crap shoot with me heading to the tables of creators I was hoping to get a sketch from without knowing if they were sketching or how much one would cost. 

But I don't want to underplay just how great it was to head to a comic show, meet some creators and talk about their works, and just browse. I'm very thankful.

On to some of the specifics!

As many of you know, I try to get commissions from artists who have a connection to the Supergirl character. But I also try to grab commissions from artists who I think would have a sort of unique take on the character. 

I had gone into the show with a list of creators I might want to grab a commission from. Shawn McManus was at the top of the list. I have loved his work since the late 80's Omega Men book. Unfortunately he wasn't sketching.

One of the names I had been mulling over was Ben Templesmith. I have been a fan of his work since Fell. And his recent super-hero-y work on the Batman/Superman: The Authority Special made me curious what his take on Supergirl would be. 

I am pretty thrilled with the results you see above.

I have to say it was a great conversation about the commission with Templesmith. He had never drawn Supergirl before. (To be honest, I don't think he even knew who Supergirl was.)  I suppose that means I have the one and only Templesmith Supergirl in existence.

I told him how I like unique takes and the Authority book sort of piqued my interest. There was this conversation where I wasn't sure if he was trying to talk me out of the commission, or talk me into picking someone else, or maybe just saying how it would be something of a challenge for him making it interesting.

Whatever the reasoning, I am thrilled I got the piece. 

I will say, this was one of those times where it felt important that I had source material. And the book itself serves as a sort source book too. 

I got a lot of books signed throughout the day. Too many to list. 

Here is a sampling of some Supergirl-centric books I got signed by Rick Leonardi, Amy Reeder, and Margeurite Sauvage. Had to include a Legion book given the Shawn McManus signature is the third on that sort of jam issue.  I had Sauvage sign the Future State Supergirl book as well. Reeder was kind enough to sign some Amethyst issues and let me gush about being a fan.

It was great to get McManus' signatures on his famous Swamp Thing issues he did with Alan Moore. And it was pretty cool to get Jeff Dekal's signature on some of the Sif-centric Journey Into Mystery books from a few years back. I didn't know those covers were his first works in comics.

Lastly, it was great to meet Ron Marz again. I got him to sign Sojourn #1 and Adventures of Superman #15 , one of my favorite Superman stories and one Marz said is one of his too!

All those sigs and the commission put a bit of a bite into my budget so there wasn't much shopping done.

I did grab one key issue I have been looking for in that rare combination of available, affordable, and in decent shape. So I was thrilled to find Adventure Comics #428, the first appearance of Black Orchid, in solid condition.. I was even able to finagle a bit off the asking price. 

Yes! This is now mine!

No complaints here! Hope to see some of you next April at the next one!


Anonymous said...

I love that issue of Supergirl (#27). There were a lot of high concept sci-fi kinds of stories during that run, this was one of them.

Templesmith doesn't really draw real-looking humanoids, but it came out good, and at least he added some of his signature sponge-work. (I assume he uses sponges, that's what it looks like to me, but maybe it's watercolors with a brush.)

Sounds like a nice low-key show. Nice work.


Martin Gray said...

Glad you had a great time. I must say, Ben T looks rather dapper.

I don’t know the Journey Into Mystery artist you mention, off to look him up.

Anonymous said...

Man you are a living breathing “Supergirl Museum”, your fandom is very well curated indeed!