A few weeks ago, I found out about a one-day event happening near me (for once!): Locust Moon Comics Festival at the Rotunda in Philadelphia. It was too late to consider exhibiting, but once I knew some other bug artists would be in attendance, my decision to go was made. Even though I wasn’t able to stay the whole day or attend the panels offered at the nearby Locust Moon Comics store, I did snatch up a bunch of great art and comics and had the pleasure of meeting some lovely artists I sure hope to keep in touch with going forward! It also provided a good opportunity to get an idea of how things tend to differ at a comics-specific event from the furry conventions I’m used to selling at.
The weekend train on the Media Elwyn line is still non-operational, so I took the replacement shuttle down to the University City station and walked 20 minutes or so to the Rotunda. I’d actually not been in that area of Philly before – my usual haunts are a few stations further down. The venue was on the small side, but light and airy; the crowd seemed of adequate size for the show while I was there, neither too sparse for the number of exhibitors nor too difficult to navigate.
A large print of this year’s poster hung at the entrance to the Rotunda.
I made a brief lap around the room and then approached the group of artists I was most eager to meet. They were all sitting together. There was some combination of them recognizing me from my bug blog and art and me introducing myself. Right away I picked up some bug stickers from Esabelle Ryngin and a comic about wasps from Carly Tribull. I also spoke to Shoona, who I’d recently interacted with on Tumblr. We chatted for a while and I gave them each a flyer with my special event coupon on the back. Who knows, maybe we’ll geek out about bugs some more in the future or end up tabling at the same event someday!
There were other goodies to grab, too. Andrea Tsurumi had a great “Nobody Listens to Worf” poster I picked up along with a short double comic. Stevie Wilson had a fun zine, “Cat Help is the Best Help,” which I’ll be giving to a dear friend who has two very “helpful” cats. My biggest splurge was a copy of Vattu Book 1 by Evan Dahm – he signed it and drew in the cover! I devoured half of it on the bus home (it would have been the whole were I not susceptible to headaches while reading in moving vehicles).
A view from one corner.
Eventually I returned to the buggy tables and talked a bit more with the artists there. Esabelle had a number of tiny sculpted insect jewelry pieces: grub earrings, a stag beetle necklace and earrings, and a bee pin. They were all well-made, but I was most interested in the bee. Esabelle was beyond generous in straight-up offering it to me and making a tiny little envelope for it right there so I could get it home safely! I hope she gets a shop up soon; I’m very eager to point bug fans to her products and handiwork.
I had to leave shortly after that, but I had a great time! I hope all the artists did well and had safe trips home. Perhaps I’ll consider exhibiting myself next year when I have a few more of my short comics finished. For now, I’ll be enjoying others’ work and finding inspiration in it, no doubt!
My haul of stuff!