Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The weekend of March 16-18 was Wizard World, 2007 at the Los Angeles Convention Center in downtown Los Angeles. Wizard World is a comic convention organized by Wizard magazine. I had a ticket for Saturday, March 17... so on Friday I got all the comics I needed to bring at the ready. Foremost was to get my collection of J. Scott-Campbell comic books signed, I actually only had five, the Danger Girl compilation, an issue of Danger Girl, an issue of Gen 13, ThunderCats and Campbell's rare sketch book, as I have just recently discovered him in my recent renewal of interest in comic book illustration. Together with Scott-Campbell I've also started collecting interesting and very talented young illustrators, such as Humberto Ramos, a Mexican artist who has successfully combined, superhero and Manga influences in his illustrations of X-Men and Spider Man. I've also started collecting young Pilipino comic illustrators, representing the third wave of the Pinoy invasion of American comics, this one headed by Whilce Portacio, and a host of very talented young artists like Leinil Francis Yu, Gerry Alanguilan, Wilson Tortosa, Philip Tan, and others. Interestingly, the artist responsible for the original first wave of Filipino comic illustrators, Tony DeZuniga was also a guest at this convention. My collection of DeZuniga's were hidden away somewhere, and I have boxes and boxes, together with the Redondos, Alcalas, Carillos, Ninos, Nebres and other Pinoy illustrators from that first wave which I first started collecting when I arrived in Los Angeles in 1979. There was no way I could dig out those early DeZuniga's in time for the convention. However, I just recently bought the 500 page b&w compilation of Jonah Hex and House of Mystery. So armed with these and comics by DeZuniga, Scott-Campbell, Ramos, Whilce Portacio, Tim Sale, and others, I set out to go to downtown Los Angeles, where the Convention Center is located. There's two ways to go downtown from Burbank, where I live: take the car and pay the $15 parking fee or take the subway which was only 45 cents, and free parking at the station. I picked the latter and parked my car at the North Hollywood station which is only 2 or 3 miles from home. I exited at the 7th/Figueroa station and the LA Convention Center is a short walk from there. You come out from the station under a skyscraper, typical of the buildings in downtown Los Angeles. Here's a picture of the buildings with the 10 oclock sun behind them as I walked down Figueroa Street.

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