Oct 10, 2008

Reflecting on MonsterCon 2008

Reflecting on MonsterCon 2008

I have thought for a week now what to write for a wrapup of MonsterCon 2008 and I decided that Ray Franks (promoter of MonsterCon and my very close friend) put it best with the on behalf of Ray Franks, Shane Peoples and I along with everyone on the MonsterCon committee, I would like to pass on the following statement...

"We'd like to sincerely thank everyone that volunteered their time over the weekend. A ton a hard work was put into the convention this year and it didn't go unnoticed.
So what did you think? We really want constructive critism in order to fine tune the MonsterCon engine. In particular, we'd like to know what you thought about the location, entertainment, merchandise available, length of the con and the time of year for the con. Email us at:
In reflection, here are our thoughts. We saw nearly 1,000 people (attendees, guests, artists, authors, vendors, and musicians) having a wonderful time over the weekend. It's safe to say that we saw nearly twice as many people this year than last year. We heard lots of laughter and fun.
We also thought Brad Loree, Ken Kirzinger, Chuck Williams, Brian Krause, Dean & Starr Jones and Robert Harris were incredibly friendly and wonderful guests. Thanks guys.
Prior to the show, we had a two page spread in the area newspaper, we were mentioned on the radio, ten thousand postcard flyers were circulated, we were on countless forums, websites, and My Space bulletins, we were listed on, and in Comic Buyers Guide, and our website had nearly 6,000 views during the week leading up to the con.
While our attendance definately grew over last year, we were expecting a larger turnout. We were a bit baffled at first but I do believe we discovered the biggest problem. On my drive home, I passed 3 gas stations that were completely out of gas. After doing more research, it appears that the Concord/Charlotte area experienced a worse weekend with the sporadic gas shortages that have been plaguing the area over the last several weeks.
For this reason, the MonsterCon proudly supports the Energy Independence Plan at When Americans feel restricted to travel due to our dependence on oil, something needs to be done soon to remedy the situation.
As for next year, we are hopeful that with a new president and fresh sense of optimism, the economy will be in a healthier state and things will only get better from here. "

Thank You on behalf of Ray Franks, Shane Peoples and I

Aug 28, 2008

The Comics & Toys MonsterCon 2008

To all my BlogSpot readers,

I am putting out a call for anyone on BlogSpot to submit artwork to be featured in the 2008 Comics & Toys MonsterCon Convention Magazine...The convention is October 4-5, 2008...all artwork needs to be submitted to me by September 7, 2008 and needs to be Black & White in a 300DPI TIFF format. This magazine will be approximately 24 pages in length (or more if need be) and will be the size of a standard comic book.

Anyone who submits artwork for the convention magazine and will not be attending MonsterCon in October, I will make sure you receive a copy of the 2008 MonsterCon Convention Magazine.

The official title for MonsterCon is : "Comics & Toys MonsterCon - The Supernatural, Sci-Fi, Superhero Show", now with that being said...what I am asking for is for some of my Deviant friends to consider drawing art for this convention magazine.

The art can be a combination of all three genres or each individual genre (whatever your artist ability draws you to do) and you can include the MonsterCon logo if so desired.

Also, anyone who would like to place an Ad in the Comics & Toys MonsterCon Convention Magazine full page rates are $100.00, half page rates are $50.00 and quarter page rates are $25.00...I do accept paypal and can note you the paypal info upon request.

Thank You for taking the time to read this blog entry in regards to MonsterCon 2008.

***You can also see the Comics & Toys MonsterCon 2008 flyer by clicking on this

Aug 21, 2008

Tim Townsend

Tim Townsend has 13 plus years of comic book work at MARVEL COMICS, DC COMICS, and most of the other major companies. Graphic design and advertising clients that include NIKE, Universal Studios, and Hollywood Reporter, he also specializes in comic book illustration and graphic design.

Aug 8, 2008

What is a Comic Book Inker?!

The inker is one of the two line artists in a traditional comic book, or graphic novel. After the penciler gives a drawing (or copy of the drawing) to the inker, the inker uses black ink, usually India ink, to produce refined black outlines over the rough pencil lines. The ink may be applied with a pen or a brush, and many inkers use both. The inker is usually responsible for every black line on the page, except for letters, which are handled by a letterer. In comic strips, as well as Japanese manga, one artist takes responsibility for penciling, inking and lettering, either doing it all him or herself (as for example Charles M. Schulz) or hiring assistants. For comics printed in color, there is usually a separate colorist.
Although proper inking is critical to giving comic artwork a professional look, it is often seen as more technical than penciling and is less glamorous, as many inkers go unrecognized. This image has been parodied in the Kevin Smith movie Chasing Amy, where Banky Edwards is accused of merely "tracing" the images drawn by the penciler, Holden McNeil. While inking does involve tracing pencil lines in a literal sense, it also requires interpreting the pencils, giving proper weight to the lines, correcting mistakes, and making other creative choices. The look of a penciler's final art can vary enormously depending on the inker.
A pencil drawing can have an infinite number of shades of grey, depending on the hardness of the graphite and the pressure applied by the artist. By contrast, an ink line generally can be only solid black. Accordingly, the inker has to translate pencil shading into patterns of ink, as for example by using closely spaced parallel lines, feathering or cross-hatching.
Some inkers will often do more than simply interpreting the pencil markings into pen and brush strokes; depending on how much detail the penciler puts into the pencil drawings, the inker might add shading or be responsible for the placement of black spaces and shadows in the final drawing, for example. An experienced inker paired with a novice penciler might be responsible for correcting anatomical or other mistakes, modifying facial expressions, or changing or improving the artwork in a variety of other ways. Alternatively, an inker may do the basic layout of the page, give the work to another artist to do more detailed pencil work, and then ink the page himself (as Joe Simon often did when inking Jack Kirby, or as Michael T. Gilbert collaborated with penciller Craig Russell on the Elric of Melniboné series).
The division between penciller and inker described here is most frequently found where the penciler and inker are hired independently of each other by the publisher. Where an artist instead hires his own assistants, the roles are less structured; an artist might, for example, ink all the faces of the characters while leaving the assistant to ink in the backgrounds, or work with the inker in a more collaborative fashion.
Even in traditional North American comic books, many artists regularly ink their own work: Joe Kubert and Jim Aparo would usually pencil, ink and letter, considering the placing of balloons as an integral part of the page, while artists such as Steve Ditko, Kurt Schaffenberger, Nick Cardy, and Bill Everett almost always inked their own work, sometimes inking the work of other pencilers as well.
It is possible to digitally ink using computers, a practice that is becoming more common as inkers learn to use powerful drawing and editing tools, such as Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, Inkscape, Corel Painter, and Manga Studio. A graphics tablet is the most common tool used to accurately ink digitally, and if it is done in a vector-based program, pixelization due to changes in resolution are no longer an issue. However, the process is considered by many to be more time-consuming.

Inker stamp provided by fellow inker Diana Greenhalgh

Here is a piece inked by Diana Greenhalgh ( it is Re-Animator Issue 1 page 21...look at how Diana has embellished from the penciled page to the inked page.

This image can be found at

Jul 12, 2008

Comics & Toys MonsterCon 2008

The Comic Monstore is host to The Comics & Toys Monstercon which is an infusion of The Supernatural (Zombies, Ghosts, etc...), Sci-Fi (Star Wars, Star Trek, etc...) and Superheros (Batman, Spider-Man, etc...) it is one big show that is sure to have something for everyone who you will find a wide variety of merchandise from dealers coming from all over the East Coast & beyond. There will also be plenty of entertainment including gaming, trivia contests, costume contests, movie screenings and much more.

The Comics & Toys MonsterCon will be held on October 4-5, 2008 at the Cabarrus Events Center ( in Concord, North Carolina...this years event has a great list of guests lined up who are ready to meet with the fans, to see a full list please visit The Comics & Toys MonsterCon website at ( not only is this list of guests growing, but there will also be Live Music on Saturday Night after the convention doors close at 6:00pm.

When the convention doors close and The Saturday Night Frights begin you'll find plenty of music and merryment. The Graveyard Boulevard, The Tremors, Psycho Charger and a few other bands will thrill convention goers with their skele-tunes. Single Cell Productions will also be providing their own style of madness and mayhem. All of that is planned and we're just getting started, so if you're excited about the East Coast's most anticipated "Supernatural, Sci-Fi, Superhero Show", start spreading the word. Those interested in attending as a special guest, dealer, entertainer or volunteer, contact Michael W. Kellar at or you can email The Comic Monstore at:

Michael Turner 1971 - 2008

As many of you know, the comic book industry lost, in my humble opinion, one of the brightest stars in the business recently. Michael Turner (4/21/71 - 6/27/08 ) passed away of complications from bone cancer. At only 37, he left an unmistakable imprint on the scene, and I thought it odd, that his death didn't seem to get too much press coverage. His body of work was breath-taking.

The one example that instantly pops into mind is the Identity Crisis #1 cover...I felt like it was a very powerful cover that to me defines what it means to have a comic book character pass into the great afterlife to fight crime from the other side.

I LIKE the exaggerations in his art. It made it fun to look at!
For a guy with so many other extreme talents/distractions, he seemed so focused on his art. For an award winning water-skier, martial artist, and avid video game player, he just seemed like the total package.
But, regardless of how anybody feels, I think the man was a genius, and will be missed!

Rest In Peace Michael Turner 4/21/71 - 6/27/08