I set up at the Alternative Press Expo (APE) last weekend for the first time. Considering my relatively close proximity to the show, and how much I enjoyed myself, I felt like I’ve been missing out on the previous events. I’ve only attended APE twice before, first in 1997, and then in 2001. The show didn’t seem interesting to me back then, and I never felt compelled to check it out again until now. I’m glad I did, since it was a cool show.
I flew in William Stout for the day on Saturday. He spent time at our Flesk booth signing books and talking to people. It was great to have him there. (Thanks, Bill!) We had galley samples of our upcoming Dinosaur Discoveries and New Dinosaur Discoveries A-Z books by Bill. The show gave us a chance to promote the forthcoming books and get some direct early feedback from people.
I found the show patrons to be hip, smart, and the majority of them to be young. It was a cool crowd. I managed to walk the show on Sunday, thanks to my buddy James Walker who watched the booth for me. I’ve known James since 1994 when we worked at Lee’s Comics together. He helps me out at all shows we exhibit at.
The artists exhibiting were a talented bunch. There was an exciting blend of different types of creative people all sharing their personal works. Many people had these neat hand made comics and/or prints. A few artists I had not been aware of totally blew me away. Ape is a great venue for non-mainstream people, allowing them to have a relatively inexpensive opportunity to show off their items. The environment was mellow and didn’t have that crazy crowd factor of the San Diego Comic-Con show.
My friends Jim Vadeboncoeur Jr. of JVJ pubs and Manuel Auad of Auad Publishing stopped by. It was great to see them, as always. Both of these guys have helped me tremendously over the years and continue to inspire and push me with their own projects and accomplishments. Jim publishes the ongoing Images magazine and Black and White Images collections. Manuel published those great Alex Toth, Jordi Bernet, Franklin Booth, and Alex Nino books. He has a few new projects in the works. You can check out his website here for details.
This picture (above) is of Bill Stout and Jim Vadeboncoeur Jr. looking over one of the volumes containing Edwin Austin Abbey tearsheets from Bill’s collection. He brought them to the show for me to borrow, as I am starting a new pen and ink collection of his work. Thanks to Bill, and Jim Silke, I have a massive amount of material to go through.
Again, the show was fun and I’m definitely going to set up again next year. Thanks to everyone who stopped by. See you next year.