This last weekend Paul and I were the artist Guests of Honor at Midsouthcon 32. This was pretty significant because Midsouthcon was the first convention we ever attended. Back in 2004, we decided to attend because artist Todd Lockwood was the GoH. We had no idea what else would happen at that show.
What happened was we had found a new home. Back then the staff welcomed the two crazy brothers who sold elf ears and painted funny pictures into the fold and they never let us out. The served free beer and as many cheese puffs that we could consume. We stumbled into the game room and a couple of guys invited us to play a weird game called Munchkin (and would later invite us to their own convention of Hypericon – thanks Todd and Darrell ). We met so many people, sold some art, and enjoyed every part of the convention.
We have not missed a year since.
Paul and I have grown in our art careers since then and our adventures take us all over the states, but when the MSC crew asked us to be Guests of Honor, we couldn’t believe it. And on the 10 year mark – its like they planned it!
We knew the weekend would be fun, but it was more than that. It was a time of sharing stories, smiles and laughs, some booze and maybe even a karaoke song or two. It was a great weekend, and even though my body is still tired, my soul has been replenished.
I want to thank everyone on the crew, you made us all feel special. Danny, Carlin thank you for heading up everything, Eric thank you for being my Lita, Kelly thanks for setting up all the great panels, Jane,Barbara and Bonnie thanks for all your help in the art show. Everyone I shared a panel with – thank you for all the stories and sharing the table with me. Sylvia thank you for making sure Laura and I had some great food even though we are silly vegetarians.
I know I am missing so many names, but I really loved this weekend and every one of you helped make it that way.
So this Fall has been busy. Very busy. Aradani Costumes has been taking up most of my time, plus I have been working full steam on the Elves of Uteria book. Add all of our normal shows, and it has gone by in a blur.
I often tell people you have to say no to projects sometimes when you can’t fulfill them or your schedule is too full, but then again sometimes you just can’t say no. I was contacted by SciFi Now magazine in the UK and asked to do 10 D&D style ink drawings of the the worst fantasy villains. How could I say no to that?
So I worked them into my schedule and the magazine came out the 20th, so I am finally able to post them!
So anyone who knows me (or has spent anytime after hours at conventions listening to me), knows my strong feelings about the state of the art world. In the world of fantasy and sci fi illustration, we are often used, abused and tossed away. Now there are a group of guys who are trying to do something about it.
artPACT will be an online resource for illustrators, at first focusing on the fantasy, sci-fi, horror, and comic book genres. Once up and running, the artPACT website will have information for artists of all experience levels regarding contracts, copyrights, and alternative income solutions.
Most importantly, the artPACT website will feature an anonymous ratings system for companies. Members of artPACT will be able to log on and grade companies overs a variety of criteria such as amount of pay, timeliness of pay, granting of rights, and ease of work. These will be compiled into what will be an overall score for that company. This will allow artists to see, based on a companies rating, if it is one that they want to work for or not.
So right now they are running an Indiegogo campaign to help get the site going. I have already contributed and hope you will as well!