Tiiiiight! Emerald City Comicon Recap!


Above image after Clay Mann, who was across the aisle from us with a giant banner with this image behind him. I mean no disrespect. Well, maybe.

Emerald City Comicon was a pretty good time. If one wanted to use modern vernacular, you could describe it with words like, ‘Sweeet!’ and ‘Tiiight!’

Last fall, SPX was the first convention in a long time, and it had been an even longer time that I had been to a con like ECCC. By that I mean a stereotypical comic book convention with costumes and dudes selling sexy fan art of superheroines, etc. Not since maybe San Diego in 2004? Wow. That was a long, long time ago. I think the fondest memory of that con was Dark Horse giving out free Hellboy movie posters and my friend Tony wanting to take a bunch, with me scolding him saying. ‘Dude! Only take one so that everyone gets a chance to have one.’ only to find out that people grabbed them in troves and then sold them on ebay for like $75 bucks a pop the next day.

Anyhow, the highlight of the show was getting to spend time with the totally radical Breena Wiederhoeft and talk shop, commiserate, comment on the cosplayers walking by, and just generally hang out. Despite tepid sales, and it not really being maybe the best audience for a book like Americus, it was pretty great to just see so many people so excited and enthusiastic. It’s so contagious! All weekend I was thinking about how I couldn’t wait to get home and get the ball rolling.

There were also a handful of people that had read Americus either online or in print and wanted to come by and say hi, or just people that wanted to come by and talk shop or ask questions. Connecting with people like that is the plus side of being stuck at a table for 8 hours having people walk by and judge you and your work.

Another highlight: Greg of Tugboat Press is pretty much the most awesome dude on the planet for many, many reasons. One of the tangible ones are his Free Comic Book Day book, Runner Runner. I’ll post my one pager I did for it soon, but it’s got a really awesome cast of creators: Drew Weing, MK Reed, Jesse Reklaw, Joey Alison Sayers, Nate Beaty, Alec Longstreth, Kazimir Strzepek, Lilli Carre and many, many more. If you’re at a convention this season you can probably pick one up, and if not, get it May 5th at your local Portland comic shops for Free Comic Book Day!

Other major bonus: MK was also in town for a last minute West Coast appearance! Great to see her and also good news: She got accepted in PNCA’s lo-residency MFA program, which means she’ll be around in the summer! Yay!

On Sunday the sun was out, and two days of convention tabling is about all I can handle, so I skipped out to spend some time around the city with Jen. It was a nice break from the hustle and bustle of the weekend, and a perfect endcap to the weekend in Seattle.

Stumptown’s up next, but I have some family issues that might prevent me from showing up. Keep your fingers crossed to every reason for things to be okay.

Anyhow, I’m back and motivated. Let’s see if I can keep this rolling. I know it’s like two weeks later, but I promise I will post a recap of my class at OCAC this week.

Emerald City!

So I’m heading to Seattle for the Emerald City Comic Con tomorrow! Honestly, I don’t really know what to expect. Tyler and I went to the first year we moved here, and it was kind of lame. Mainly just mainstream comics and large vendors. I did get a portfolio review by some big hot-shot at DC at the time. Bob Shrek maybe? I can’t remember. Anyhow, it was a long time ago, and most of the people I talk to now talk about how great of a con it is. We’ll see.

I won’t really have anything new, but I have something old that is kind of new – I reprinted the Lorian Gendarme Guidebook for Adventuring Standards, but took the time to put some love into the reprints. And by love, I mean gold silkscreened covers!

They really helped sell copies of Americus at SPX, which I will also have on hand, along with some mini-comics, and an assortment of prints and original art. I’ll try to have some new posters or prints for Stumptown at the end of April.

I’ll be in Artist Alley with the totally rad Breena Wiederhoeft at table E-16. If you’re in Seattle, come by the show and say hi!

Oh, yeah – my class finished last week. I have been getting ready for ECCC, but I would like to write a recap of the class and how it went sometime next week.



I have some great news to share!

I’m teaching a comics class at the Oregon College of Arts and Craft here in Portland this spring! It’s called Crafting Comics: Narrative & Technique.

It’s basically an intro to comics.

Anyhow, I’m super-stoked. I have always wanted to teach comics, but I thought that it would be important to have some actual experience under my belt. Now that Americus is out, and I’ve been freelancing here and there the last couple years, I feel like I have a lot of experience and knowledge to share anyone willing to learn.

Here’s the link to the Continuing Education page of their website: https://cms.ocac.edu/

And here’s a link specifically for the drawing & painting classes: https://cms.ocac.edu/taxonomy/term/3

Please help spread the word! I need at least 5 people or the class doesn’t happen!

Also, if you have any questions about the class, you can e-mail me at jonathan@oneofthejohns.com or leave a comment here on the site and I’ll get back to you!

Thank You Cards & Other Stuff

A tiny thing that stresses me out: Thank you cards. I always feel like I should make a new one every time I want to send one out, but it’s always a much longer project than I think it will be, or I just get lazy and don’t make it and then don’t send it out. I always feel super-lame buying them, because I’m picky and it feels impersonal and then I always think to myself, ‘Why would I pay for that crap when I could just make them!’

Can you see my dilemma?

Year after year, I think to myself – I should just design a thank you card and then print them up so I always have them on hand. It’s the best of both worlds – it’s more personal than buying them, but without the hassle of having to make a new one each time.

Anyhow, I did a set of four for the great people at First Second to wish them a happy holidays and thanks for all of the work they put into making Americus. They’re all Apathea based.

Here are the other three:

I decided that I’ll print the Liskot one at the top of this post and use that for my thank you cards for the coming year. I love that lizard man!

And if you haven’t noticed, things have been really quiet  – no posts, no Diary of a Space Marine, etc. There’s a couple of reasons for that. If you like reading about excuses, read more after the cut!

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Who Sherlock commission

Here’s a commission I did for someone that was reading the Americus blog. She wanted some image that had both Doctor Who and the new Sherlock in it.

As always, I struggle with spotting blacks and giving things a sense of form. I think this is a good example of how even just doing the simple shapes of color in Diary of a Space Marine help out with that. I wish I didn’t have to rely on the computer. Oh, well. There’s always something to be working on, right?

Also: If you live in Portland and are interested, I am teaching a cartooning class this Sunday at the Woodstock Library on SE 49th Ave from 2-3! You can click on the link in the sidebar to the right to register or get more info.

Americus events recap!


Ah! Things have been really quiet here the last month or so, but not because I haven’t been busy! A bunch of Americus events have been going on back to back and I haven’t really had a lot of downtime in between. So I’m going to take some time now to catch everyone up and let you know how the events went.

Note: Since I’m catching up on like a month of stuff, the post is pretty long.

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Last minute pre-SPX post

Ah! I’m leaving for DC in like 6 hours, but I wanted to do a real quick post before I left.

Besides Americus, and the Lorian Gendarme Guidebook for Adventuring Standards, I’ll have three other mini-comics. I wanted to share the cover designs that I scrambled to come up with the last two days.

I’m actually pretty happy with them. I found a really nice off-white cardstock to print them on, and it really makes them look really nice [which I’ve tried to replicate in these images]. I would take a picture of them to show you, but I’ve already packed them away.

Anyhow, the first two are basically all of the One of the Johns comics reprinted, and then the last one is all of the comics I did for various anthologies and projects while I was drawing Americus.

Anyhow, just a reminder: If you’re at SPX, stop by and say hi! MK and I will be at table H-15/16.

SPX, here I come!

Okay, so I’m spending the week wrapping things up for SPX. MK and I will be at table H-16, next to Tugboat Press and Alec Longstreth! Come by and say hello if you’re there!

The secret project that MK and I have been working on for the show is pretty wrapped up, so the rest of the week is getting my old mini-comics ready to be reprinted. As a spoiler, here’s a mockup of the cover for our secret project:

The reading last week at Powell’s went well. Here’s my favorite picture from the event, taken by my friend Courtney. I was illustrating through hand gestures how the more words in a panel you use, the less room the artist has to draw.

Hopefully once I get back, and I can start working on some stuff for myself again. I had a really good work-groove going on the last couple of weeks, and I want it to keep going!

And a new Save Apathea! website will be popping up soon now that we’ve finished serializing the comic. I’ll keep you updated.

Americus at Powell’s

[Reposted from SaveApathea.com]

Americus is out! Yay! Head to your nearest bookseller and get you one!

I spent most of Tuesday afternoon hanging all 200 pages up at the Basil Hallward Gallery on the 3rd floor of Powell’s.

It was pretty awesome to see the pages up on a wall instead of in a stack in my flat drawers. Also kind of weird to see them all up and think ‘This was three years of my life.’

Here are some pictures:

All of the original pages are for sale, except for this one and this one. Most of them will be priced at a low $100, though ones that have had a significant amount of digital alteration will be cheaper at $65, and some of the cooler Apathea sequences that I’m kind of attached to will be priced at $200. I still need to go through and make the price list, but I will post that stuff here when I do, as well as the contact information for the gallery in case anyone is interested in buying pieces.

If you’re in Portland, don’t forget to swing by tonight for the opening reception and reading. I’ll post some pictures of the event afterwards.

And Kathy Moon reminded me that our guest book review of Teenagers from Mars was featured on Unshelved last Friday. You can check it out here.