50 Reasons to Stop Sketching at Conventions
Writer/Artist: Stuart Immonen
Publisher: One Horse Leadworks
Price: $5.95 US
As creator Stuart Immonen notes in the back of this book, 50 Reasons first saw life as a daily web comic in 2004, allowing the super-hero artist to flex a different set of artistic muscles. He later adapted and collected the toons to create this small, attractive volume, and it’s been for sale on Immonen’s website for some time. I’d noticed it and heard good things about the book, and I’d been meaning to order a copy. Recently, I spotted it on the shelf at my local comic shop, and I was thrilled to see this odd little product reach a wider set of readers by more conventional means.
I’ve been to a few comic conventions in my time, twice making it to the granddaddy of North American cons, Comic-Con International San Diego. I’m a fan of cons, and I’m very much a fan of con sketches. I’ve a small, themed sketchbook to which a wide variety of industry artists have contributed. Among them is Immonen himself (offering up a weird but fun caricature of Kurt Busiek, torturing the artist during their Gorilla Comics collaborative period). But there are awkward, annoying and even ugly sides to conventional culture, and Immonen does an excellent job of conveying those elements in a succinct manner.