TCAF 2009!

Tue 5/12/2009

BAM! I'm back from my first ever trip to Toronto! TCAF was in an awesome space this year (as you can see in this photo by MK Reed), it was well attended despite some rain, and all of the staff were super friendly and helpful. Toronto itself was really cool too!

I once again relied on my shutterbug friends to document the trip. Check out the following Flickr sets to get some idea of what I was up to this weekend:

There are some great photos in there, which I will link to in my synopsis below.

The night before my departure from Vermont, I discovered that I could not find my passport. ANYWHERE. I spent a total of about 8 hours searching every single square inch of my apartment. It was totally maddening, and it was made worse by the fact that I was sneezing every few minutes because of the dust I was churning up (Sneezing still feels like getting SHOT). Finally I found it, tucked inside the map of Paris, which was IN TURN tucked inside my Paris guide book. Man, I should have looked there first...

Well official documents in hand, I hit the road early the next morning with Joe Lambert, Chuck McBuck and Melissa Mendes. It was a seriously fun roadtrip. We drove up to Montreal to get some lunch and then we headed west along the northern edge of Lake Ontario. It reminded me of road trips of yore and since I can't draw or read in a car without getting carsick, I just watched the scenery go by and talked to my friends, which was really relaxing and fun.

Once in Toronto, I split off from my CCS gang to meet up with Greg whom I was staying with, and tabling with ('natch!) We wandered around Toronto looking for good vegetarian food and then hit the hay pretty early.

Like I said, the show went very smoothly the next morning. I got to meet John Martz (who runs the incredibly inspiring Drawn illustration blog), I finally got my hands on a real copy of the new Syncopated Anthology which has an all-new Dvorak comic of mine in it, and I laughed until my rib hurt listening to Dustin Harbin turn on his southern charm every time someone walked by his table. (Dustin organizes the Indie Island section of Heroes Con, which I will be attending later this summer in Charlotte, NC).

But the best part of the first day, by FAR, was when I sold two copies of Phase 7 to a well dressed, 65-year old Japanese-Canadian woman. I don't know why, but the thought of someone's grandma sitting there reading my minicomics makes me really really happy.

On Sunday I was very kindly invited to attend a big author-breakfast hosted by FirstSecond Books. I got to sit across from Scott McCloud which was kind of mind-blowing for me. Even besides that whole "forever changing my life" thing, he has got to be one of the coolest, smartest people I have ever met. I can not wait to see what he comes up with for his forthcoming graphic novel. Let it never be said that FirstSecond does not treat their colorists well.

Sunday night Greg and I were totally tuckered, so we chickened out on all the post-con shindigs and went and saw Star Trek, which was SO fun. I don't get to see movies in the theatre too often, so it was a real treat for me.

The next morning I met back up with my CCS gang and we all went over to The Beguiling, which has got to be one of the greatest comic shops in the world. We sold them some of our comics, and I picked up chapters 3 and 4 of RASL, in which Jeff really kicked the story up a notch! I'm excited to see where he takes it next...

Then, as we were leaving Toronto, we drove by Michael Cera filming a scene of the new Scott Pilgrim movie on the streets of Toronto! It seemed like a fitting end for an awesome visit to that fair city in the north.

We arrived back in White River Junction at about midnight. I was pretty worn out from the trip, but I had to stay up to 6am finishing an illustration. I got a few hours of sleep and then I had to get back to work. The CCS Graduation ceremony is on Saturday so I've got a lot of stuff going on this week, to get ready for the big day!

Well thanks to everyone who came to TCAF and said hello to me, or checked out my comics. It was great to visit Canada again. I can't wait to come back again soon!

4 comments on this entry

Me and MK were having breakfast right by Honest Ed's on Monday morning while they were filming! It was so cool and definitely the best possible way to end the trip. All that fake snow was so weird!

Liz B. May12

It was nice meeting you at TCAf, Alec. I'm glad the festival treated you well; it was a lot of fun to be a part of .

Jason May13

You realise that Scott McCloud actually MENTIONS YOU in his May 11 blog entry, right ?

Delphine May13

Delphine - I DID see! Pretty crazy, right?!

Liz - I think we were right around the corner, eating breakfast when you guys were at the Beguiling. I saw you walking back to your car, but I couldn't yell loud enough to get your attention!

Alec May13

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