Dog City does SPX
This past weekend we debuted Dog City #2 at the Small Press Expo in Bethesda, MD. We had never tabled at SPX before and in fact had only tabled as Dog City at the Maine Comics Arts Festival, which is considerably smaller.
We were very pleased with our first tabling experience at SPX, albeit a bit exhausted by the end of the weekend. We connected with friends we’d made at previous conventions, made some new friends, and attended some great panels (there seemed to be broad consensus among people we talked to that the programming was excellent. A definite highlight of the show was James Kochalka and Gary Panter jumping into the discussion to answer Juan’s question at the Dash Shaw and Frank Santoro panel).
Sales at the show were a little slower than we’d anticipated; although, to be fair, we really had no idea what to expect from a show this big. And even though we didn’t move an overwhelming number of copies we did alright and put some boxes into good hands. We were also really psyched to see so many Dog City contributors at the show with awesome work. Josh Lees, Dan Rinylo, Caitlyn Rose Boyle, Jon Chad, and Luke Howard all were selling amazing work at the show. Eleri Harris and Mathew New were giving out great stuff too. Overall it was a fantastic show.
But enough of all that boring stuff, what about the cool comics we picked up at the show? Without further ado, a spotlight pick from each of us:
I had never heard of Plunkert before—apparently he’s a professional graphic designer and illustrator and this is his first comic book. I’m not usually crazy about indie superhero parodies but this one felt a little different, possibly because of the distinctive drawing, which was showcased at an 11X14” page size. Plunkert cites Fletcher Hanks and Bill Everett as influences and it shows in the best way possible.
SMOO #7 - Simon Moreton
This past year, I’ve been discovering more and more minimal comics that do not eschew narrative. They’re a joy to read. It was a real treat to find SMOO #7, a comic of this very kind, at SPX this past weekend.
This issue of SMOO is about the Shropshire countryside Moreton grew up in. Split over three zines, a map, and a letter, the whole book is wrapped snugly in a belly band.
This collection of stories masterfully deals with memories, particularly what it really feels like when you revisit your home, many years later. In SMOO #7 Moreton deft’s abstraction makes the essence of the Shropshire landscape palpable. It is a delight to see that Moreton’s minimal and abstract cartooning does not do away with narrative altogether in the way that so many abstract comics do. Instead SMOO #7 creates a series of relatable, fictional spaces, each with their own micronarratives.
I originally saw this comic posted on Jeremy’s Tumblr, and I loved it then, so getting to own a physical copy makes me pretty happy.
This is just a really effective mood piece. The use of blue lineart and tones really enhances the tone of the piece. I also love Sorese’s idiosyncratic drawing style.
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