I watched a lot of cartoons and movies. I draw incessantly and carry a sketchbook everywhere. I work in animation and self-publish my books. There are monsters in the streets, don't wear red. Mad bulls and monsters hate that color. I still watch cartoons.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

San Diego '06 con post

Drew this sketch from the big screen projecting B.T's talking head. Never drew him live before, though we all did caricatures of him back at WB. He's not going to like this one. I'm gonna get it. Pencil, on those thin cardboard cover moleskin sketchbooks, post photoshop colors.

Ol'Bruce. As an exhibitor in prior years I was grafted to my table, unable to conscience not being there when someone buys my book or asks for me. I mean, man, it’s work just to be a visitor at the con. And costly! The blessed few who do search me out deserve to find me there, talk comics and gab drawing, this is the place for it, why I'm there. So, you end up not leaving, practicing bladder zen, or do the guilt walkabout hoping to shop but not getting far and return after a half hour. This year I had no table. Nothing new to show. Just a regular con-guest swarming with the rest (can you believe the circus this con has turned into?).

I was free to do something I never do: Attend a panel. This one is special, a Bruce Timm Retrospective. I read about him having one earlier this year held at the Egyptian, made plans to go but work got in the way. Actually didn’t even know this was going on at the con and if I hadn’t run into Dan Riba--an old friend and director from our Batman days--at my brother Louie’s table I would’ve missed it entirely.

Richard Daskas (another alumnus from our Batman days and a fantastic painter) and I sat down as the intros were done, “Bruce…warm, caring…yada…human being...” Richard and I had fun with the lackluster drum roll. Bruce came out and, this is good, he looks well. I had been concerned in recent years when he had lost so much weight, but today he was his old self. And from where I was sitting it seemed that he hadn’t aged. Oh, it might have been me, I wear glasses now and the big screen blow-up of him was a little hazy. But still, his energy was at it’s positive best. The whole thing was rather skimpy on clips for a retrospective but they only had an hour or so. The question and answer covered much of the same stuff that you’d already know, though good ol’ Bruce was sharp with the repartee as he’s always been.

It was good to see him again, though I didn't bump into him in person the whole weekend. Glen Murakami and I got to chat for a bit by Stuart Ng’s and I was hoping that Bruce was going to be around. “This is the worse place to catch up.” I agree. This convention used to be less frenzied and was really about comics not so long ago. Now, it’s big money raising a ruckus. Little folk can’t be heard above that. I left the con Sunday thinking about that. I’ll have to get a table/ booth again next year. Just so the guys can find me. Maybe I’ll be better at walking out from behind the table and stand there to talk a while. You know, about comics.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


Aw man, you hit the mark! I feel the exact same way about the con this year. The exact same thought came to me on Sunday and on the subsequent days this week. Fortunately, I was glad to see your pre con shopping list, and picked up quite a few books while meeting really cool people (Derek Thompson, Ted Mathot, Pierre Alary...) Our chat was brief amongst the madness, but alas we made contact. Thanks for the warm "hey guys!" once again. Lastly, I did attend the Bruce Timm Retrospective at the Egyptian earlier this year and it was quite long. I'm surprised it was condensed to an hour at the con. I missed it at the con, but I'm glad to hear it went well.


PS: Are you still coming down to LA for that screenwriting expo? Sounds interesting...

10:14 AM

Blogger Gerald de Dios said...

Welcome back Ronnie, great post. I was lucky enought to run into Bruce right before his panel at last years Comic-con. He was really super nice about signing my Art of BAS book. He did lose a lot of weight, but that's good he's well.

10:15 AM

Blogger Jenny Lerew said...

What killer drawings of Bruce!
He sure looks like he hasn't changed at all...but why should he---or you? You don't look any older either! Dito Riba!
I missed so many people, it's shameful--but I tried. At least I saw you and Alary and a few others in 3 hours(!). As far as I'm concerned, the Con could be reduced to just the artists' booths--wouldn't that be nice? A separate room for huge studios and whatnot, perhaps. It'll never happen, but still.

10:53 AM

Blogger pbcbstudios said...

cool drawings - that was a good panel. this was my first year to meet Bruce - i've had a lot of chances before but never knew what to say to him. i just happened to be at the same dinner table with him one night and i can tell he's a good guy that's passionate about his work.

Ronnie - where were you at the con? i wanted to give you one of my sketchbooks! you've got to put out another book and get into a booth next year so i'll know where to find you. It's too difficult to find people just walking the floor -


5:55 PM

Blogger Unknown said...

Hi Ronnie,

Cool post!! Great to finally meet you in person at Comic Con. Thanks for your drawing too!! :) I post it up on my blog!! HE ! HE!! Still making a wish that someday you will come up with a storyboard book!! :) You are a great inspiration! :)

Alina :)

10:04 PM

Blogger DaveAlvarezStudio said...

I was one of those who went out looking for you with no luck at all.
I was strapped to the Alias comics table signing Yenny books.
Earl Kress and Paul Dini told me that you were around.
Aaaaanyway, hopefully I'll get to meet you soon.

12:29 PM

Blogger Jo Bling said...

Love your work Ronnie. Am a big fan and have some of your signed small print goodies that i was lucky to pick up from a comic shop here in the UK. Gutted that I wasn't able to make Comic Con but am up to neck in work over here.

Do call by my own 'umble blog if you get the chance. Lots of animation and picture book goodness there.


2:04 PM

Blogger Ronnie said...

Regis-it was good to see you. We'll be going down next year en masse again, I may spend the same three days I did this time but I'll have a spot next to all the Pixar guys. Screenwriting expo sounds like a blast. We're all eager to talk and maybe we'll even make sense. It will be great.

Gerald-Bruce scared the hell out of a few years back and I was worried that it must be the work schedule. Stress does funny things. He almost looked like choice concentration camp casting. Glad he pulled up from that and back to his ol' self. Bump into you next year.

Jenny--I was worried there for a bit that I might have offended you. I'm dear caught in the headlights on most days, the con...fuggedaboutid! Anyway, It was good to catch a glimpse of you even if it was fleeting and you had to rush out. Maybe next year I gots me a book to hand over to you. Be well.

Pb--I wasn't anywhere other than at Stuart's on Saturday. The other two days I was wandering around. That, surprisingly was hard to do even with the freedom of not having a booth. I will be at the con officially next year. I'll have a book as well. That will make me show up, front and center, eh?

Alina--I love meeting people I've only met online. That short stay at Stuart's I did that several times. That part of having a booth at the con I do miss. It was great to meet you and hope to see more of your work. I am musing on a book. Not what people might expect. Maybe even be about storyboarding.

David! Yenny's dad in person? Man, that would have cool. Glad you were there. I hope you had legions of fans around you. Next year? I'll try to be more visible. I'll announce the heck out of it. I may be there only for three days but I'll make it work.

Curtis--thanks for dropping by. That's a nice blog you have there. Thanks for pointing me to it. You're a busy guy. Make plans now to be at San Diego next year. It's madness just trying to find a hotel close by if you wait too long. The con blocks out the discounted ones that they open to the public around January. Be on the lookout for that.

And flights. That airport is busy on that weekend. Don't drive down from L.A., you'll sit in traffic on the five. Look at me doing a mother hen here.

Thanks to all for posting!


11:03 PM


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