View Full Version : Convention critiques

08-05-2003, 05:11 PM
Since we're in the middle of convention season, I thought it might be helpful if we shared our experiences and tried to get some kind of list together of who to look out for on the convention floor to get a good portfolio review (and maybe even who to avoid).

(ummm. . . Good meaning fair and accurate and can give good advice, not "You're great!". . . Just thought I should clarify that. . .)

I went to San Diego Con a few weeks ago, and these are the people who I found particualrly helpful:

Bart Sears (The First, The Path, Crossgen Art Dirrector)-- This guy's amazing! He looked at my portfolio for about five seconds, and was able to point out everything that was good and bad about it, and told me some exercises that would help me improve my work. He won't go easy on you, but the beat down is worth it.

Sergio Cariello (Crux)-- Another tough reviewer (these Crossgen guys don't go easy on you, hoo-boy!). Mostly focusses on what's wrong with your stuff, but he was very honest, which I appreciate. He mostly just echoed Bart Sears, but sometimes hearing something more than once lets you know they're not just making it up.

Carlos D'Anda (Bionicle, Divine Right and Robotech inker)-- Just a good portfolio review. He has a good eye for what you're doing right and what you're doing wrong and what you need to work on.

Mike S. Miller (The Hedge Knight, Imortal Two)-- This guy was cool, he was willing to sit me down at his booth and spend some time looking at my portfolio and give me advice about what's working, what's not working, and told me some books to check out that he'd found helpful that he thought would help me too. He's got a real good eye and was able to point out some things that other people weren't quite able to find the right words for. He even gave me his card and said to get in touch with him in six months so he could see how I was improving.

Frank Cho-- An average reviewer, but I thought I should mention him because he was able to give a few good stroytelling tips that nobody else brought up.

Josh Middleton (New Mutants covers, Meridian)-- I didn't actually get a chance to talk to him, because he was packing up to leave when I got to his booth, but a friend of mine said that he gives an awsome portfolio review. I'll look for him next time.
I did get a change to talk to Kaare Andrews though (who shared the booth), but he gives a surprisingly bad review, which is cool because he'll admit to it and tell you that you should talk to Josh.

And speaking of bad reviews, let me warn you about Neal Adams, because nobody warned me . . .

One tip that I learned-- The pros tend to be more interested in looking at your stuff on the first day or two of the convention, before they get too warn out and sick of all the fan boy enthusiasm.
Well, that's it so far. Hopefully some of you other guys will have a few more good names to add to the list by the end of the summer.

I'd like to post the pages I brought with me on the sequencial art board here, but my computer with all my Photoshop and Dreamweaver stuff can't connect to the internet for some reason (right now I'm useing my brother's computer). Hopefully I'll get it working soon though.


08-05-2003, 10:22 PM
Well, I don't know who gives good advice for pencilers, but here's my experience from attending Heroes Con as an inker.

The best and most thorough review I've gotten is from Steve Bird of Tsunami Studios. His crticism and advice was very honest and practical, about how to apply things to best get the job done efficiently and aesthetically.

Ray Snyder also gives great, detailed technical reviews. Bob Almond, Karl Story, and Greg Adams give good ones as well. Tim Townsend is alright. Bob Layton doesn't really review your pages exactly, just repeats his inking theories, which can be good or bad depending on what level of inking you are at and what you're looking for in a critique.

Can't think of any really bad ones, per se. These are Southern inkers, mostly, so this will particularly help those of you who concentrate your con-going in Charlotte, Atlanta, Orlando, Dallas, Baltimore, New Orleans, etc.

08-30-2003, 05:41 PM
I know this is alittle old but I think it is a great thing for anybody that doesn't want to waste time in line for nothing,I know from experiance.
Recently went to the Philly show and got very mixed reviews.
Just to clarify I'm also an inker.
The first place I went to the editors who were reviewing were doing a really great job of offering possitive crits. on just about anything that came their way(one example was 4 pinups that were on loose leaf notebook paper) said editor spent 20 minutes giving the artist drawing comics 101. At that time editors changed and everything went down hill after that(of course I was next in line). This person basically didn't want to be reviewing and did everything he could to get through people as fast as he could.Needless to say if that had been 10 years ago I would have went home and burned my studio to the ground( sour grapes?NO.Just looking for some respect when dealing with Professionals)
The next step,get right back on the horse.
Top Cow Matt hawkins was very nice in reviewing not just my portfolio but evryone that came up he had great C&C's. The thing I liked the most about dealing with him was, he didn't just look at one or two of my samples but all of them(about15)and found the good things I was doing and the bad with help to correct(hope that makes sence I nedd sleep)
Also spoke to Bill Reinhold who was very nice in the fact that he also actually took the time to give examples as to how he would have done certain things( such as hair, you all know who you are:D )also pointing out the good things.
My next experiance was in Chicago were I only got a chance to have a sit down with Dark Horse that went very well. The rest of the companies were already booked with up for the day but I did leave photo copies with all:cool:
I know this seems abit long winded but I tend to ramble sometimes.