Getting nerdy with the numbers

I like to break down my conventions in detail so I know how to plan out for the future. I enjoy cons when I can speak with educated attendees about art, comics and creators, and I also enjoy meeting new creators and talking with friends I only see at these shows. I also do shows as an income supplement and a way to travel. Now that my 2014 shows are over, I broke down my numbers and really tried to focus on what shows were people spending the most per individual. Not which shows had the biggest numbers, but which shows had the most creator-supportive fans. I had to approximate attendance numbers for ACME (The Arizona Comic Mini Expo), ACE! and Staple! so those figures are skewed but are fairly accurate in my estimation, and if anything I skewed towards a smaller attendee number.

First off, going strictly off profit, the order is Phoenix Comic-Con, Staple!, Tucson Comic-Con, Albuquerque Comic Expo and ACME. Costs varied for each show but my gross income is almost identical but switch Albuquerque and Tucson, though the difference is only about $25.

The number I found interesting, but not unexpected, was the dollar amount spent per attendee. Again, using some estimated numbers, the order for that was; ACME, Tucson Comic-Con, Staple!, ACE!, and Phoenix Comic-Con. So I tend to do better per attendee at smaller shows. Phoenix Comic-Con is the anamoly where the massive amount of people equal a greater total profit. For me, less attendees equals less “observers”, those who walk around and look, with no intention of buying, and also less cosplayers and media guest fans, both crowds who do not tend to support my work. The shows I had the highest dollar amount per attendee both had next to zero cosplayers and absolutely no media guests. The top three shows in this category had no media guests at all. It would be interesting to me see if other creators had similar experiences.

I also have to mention that I was a guest at all these shows this year, so that mitigates costs involved. All involved road travel and one involved hotel fees. I’m looking forward to next year already, with only two shows lined up as of now. ACME4 is in May and I have my first ever east coast convention appearance next summer at a show I have wanted to do for years.

Tucson Comic-Con info

Tucson Comic-Con is next weekend and here is some of the swag I will have for sale. The TCC Souvenir print is only $10 as is the 11×17 Rocket print & the Deadpool print. I also have $5 5×7 prints of Wonder Woman and Deadpool, Vols. 1 & 2 of Doc Unknown are $12 each and VERY limited. I’ll also be doing $20 con sketches and $60 11×17 commissions.

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Conventions, Comics & Commissions

I will be a guest at the Tucson Comicon November 8-9th at the Tucson Convention Center. It will be my first Tucson appearance ever and I’m looking forward to it. I’ll have prints, original art and I’ll be doing sketches and commissions at the show. I will also have some very limited quantities of Doc Unknown Vol. 1 & 2. It’s a very affordable con and lends itself to be very fan friendly. It will also most likely be my only Arizona appearance until May 2015.

Also this month, the Imaginary Drugs anthology is available for pre-order from IDW. I illustrated a short story (written by Fabian Rangel Jr.) and colored another short story with art by my pal John Derrick West.

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Finally, I am open for commissions and this is a great chance to get some original, custom art in time for the holidays. Original art is a unique and great gift. Details and prices can be found here.

Coloring inside the lines

One aspect of my freelance comic illustration life I am trying to focus on right now is doing more color work. I get immense joy out of helping to bring someone else’s lines to life. I’ll still be persuing and working on pen & ink pages as well as coloring my own stuff, but I am slowly building a color portfolio with new projects. Here’s a snippet of recent stuff.

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Interview at Cult of Popture

ACME guest Jason “Gonzo” Gonzalez along with my old pal Negative Steve interviewed me last weekend. We covered my start in comics and how I got into them as a kid. Lots of Jack Kirby and Hero Initiative talk as well as the announcement of a new ACME project. EVOLVE. Vol.1 is coming at the start of 2015. Listen for the sound of me opening a beer at the 30 minute mark, and for the list of artists contributing to EVOLVE at the end of the interview. – https://soundcloud.com/propagandapodcasts/cult-of-popture-10-by-popular-demand-episode-nine

Long Road Home Update.

My most sincere thanks to everyone who shared a post or spread the word about Long Road Home. The Kickstarter was not successful, and for a variety of reasons that were of my own doing. I overestimated the interest in what is essentially a very personal project, and I should have done a better job on the kickstarter presentation itself. So for now, the project is not happening in the way it was intended, but that does not mean it won’t happen. It may just take a little longer, be a little smaller and ultimately more personal. Again, thanks to everyone who helped spread the word and especially to those that backed the project. The fact that you were willing to use your hard earned money to support an art project of mine is very humbling. I wish you all the best.

To keep up to date on the future of Long Road Home, as well as my other projects, please check me out on my social media pages.

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/super75comics
Twitter – https://twitter.com/ryancody
My website/blog – http://super75comics.wordpress.com

Passion

Long post ahead. This is what I recently wrote for bleedingcool.com

Passion. It makes the world go round. Without it, explorers would have never set boots onto boats and astronauts would not have ventured towards the stars. Literature would be nonexistent and adolescence would be ten times harder than it already is. Artists of all stripes have it in spades, or else we would all be accountants, and trust me, being an accountant looks pretty good when you’re staring down bills and waiting for invoices to be paid. What many of us lack in a 401k, a nice car, or financial stability, we make up for in enthusiasm. Unfortunately my landlord doesn’t let me pay rent in enthusiasm and my family can’t buy groceries with passion. Luckily, we live in the future and in this future we can find others to share our passions, and that in turn, can pay bills and create something new and exciting.

Crowd funding, no matter your views on it, can be a very successful tool. Seasoned pros have turned to Kickstarter over traditional publishers. The financial reward is often better and it allows 100% creative control. I have run one failed campaign of my own, but I have also been a part of 3 successful ones as the main artist, and numerous others as a contributing artist. Kickstarter campaigns have paid my bills. Doc Unknown is an indie book I draw (written, created by and spearheaded by the dreamy Fabian Rangel Jr.), and has been very successful in fan reaction, critical reception and in providing me with work. In the past you had to have a few thousand or more copies of your book ordered to be able to make a profit. Today, a creator can make a profit with 10% of those orders. Passion drives crowd funding. Passion for the creators and passion for the project.

Reward passion. My passion is telling stories. I’ve always loved music, movies, comics and books for the same reason, for the stories they tell. I don’t draw comics because I love art, I draw comics because I love telling stories and entertaining people. I’m currently running a kickstarter, my second (and hopefully first to be funded) with that idea in mind. Telling stories, hearing people’s stories, and what they love, what their passion is. Long Road Home is a documentary following four friends on a return trip home after being away for 20 years. Okinawa, Japan is a place I grew up, a place that has affected me more that any other place, person, book, comic or movie ever has. I have a passion for that island, those people, and the family I found there, and I want to explore that. That’s why I need to make Long Road Home and I need help. From other story tellers, and people who love to hear stories.

I understand that not everyone can or wants to support every project, it’s impossible. Backers work hard for their money, and how they choose to spend it is no ones business. So if they do use it to support your passion, respect that. Supporting someone’s endeavors can be as big as a financial investment or as small and amazing as sharing their passion, promoting their campaign, sharing their posts. Promote what you love, support what you love. It’s important that stories are told. I draw comics, I tell stories visually and Long Road Home is just the next step in that. So I ask, whether it’s supporting my campaign or not, show your support for what you do love. Share, re-tweet, promote and invest. Reward passion.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1123955719/long-road-home-a-documentary-about-going-home-agai