Toronto Comic Arts Festival: The exhibitors

Sorry, this isn’t a review of people who streak at comic conventions (you’re thinking exhibit-ionist).

These are a few of the comic creators who will be hawking their work at the Toronto Reference Library for the TCAF 2011. All the profiles were featured in National Post, which is very cool of them.

Gabby SchulzMonsters (read the full interview here)

Q: Who are you? Why are you here?
A: Gabby Schulz, also known as Ken Dahl — I’m coming to TCAF to once again sell everyone a 200-page comic book about herpes, at the Secret Acres table.

Q: What kind of stories have you heard about TCAF?
A: I heard once that TCAF doesn’t even style its hair. It just wakes up every morning looking that good.

Q: What’s your most anticipated comic of the year?
A: Well, I still haven’t read Paying For It — but I’m starting to see some very worrying looks on the faces of people who have.

Angela Melick, Wasted Talent (full interview here)

Q: If you could spend a day with another artist attending this year’s TCAF, who would it be and why?
A: We’ve never met, so it would be really creepy to just demand that she spend the day with me, but I’m really hoping to meet Faith Erin Hicks. She’s from Halifax and I’ve been admiring her work for a long time. She’s bringing her first-ever self-published book (Superhero Girl) to the show.

Q: Do you attend many comic festivals and conventions? Why are they so important?
A: I usually attend between 5-7 shows per year, mostly the West coast circuit. Comic-focused festivals are important because 1) they are SO MUCH FUN. Comic shows are the only time I get to meet my readers face-to-face and it’s important to me to put faces and stories to the twitter-names and web-stats.  I think it’s important for readers, too, to have the opportunity to meet creators whose work they appreciate. You can meet novelists and actors at signings, and you can meet musicians at concerts but it’s always an arm’s length affair – at comic festivals it’s a relaxed atmosphere where you can walk right up to an artist and say hi. 2) Artists can meet each other! Drawing comics can be lonely and I’ve made lots of friends through conventions. It’s always exciting when I can meet someone new, too! 3) It’s the best way to discover new comics, support the arts directly and thicken up your bookshelf with unique things. (Mine is overflowing :/)

R. Sikoryak, Masterpiece Comics, Action Camus (read the full interview here)

Q: There’s a lot to see and I don’t have a lot of time, so why should I come to your table on Saturday or Sunday?
A: I’d recommend the two Carousel cartoon slide shows.  There’s one for kids (Saturday at 4 pm) with readings by Dave Roman, Raina Telgemeier and Colleen AF Venable.  I’ll present a special 3D segment as well (glasses provided).  There’s another one for adults (Sunday at 4:10 pm) with Kate Beaton, Jess Fink, Jason Little, and Jeffrey Lewis.  I’ve been hosting Carousel for years, and these two shows will have a lot of variety in content and presentation styles.

Q: This summer we’ll see Captain America, Thor, and the Green Lantern on the big screen. What comic should next make the leap to film? Who should direct it?
A: Hmmm…  Jason Little once suggested that Wes Anderson should direct a movie about The Marvel Family (featuring Captain Marvel, Mary Marvel, Captain Marvel Jr., Uncle Marvel, etc.)  That’s a movie I’d love to see.

Mike White, Amity Blamity (read the full interview here)

Q: What’s your most anticipated comic of the year?
A: Probably the Bone One Volume hardcover. Bone is my favorite comic and success story. I keep a copy of the B&W One Volume beside me when I work and I would love to see it all in color in a nice packaged slipcase.

Q: What will have to happen this weekend for you to consider TCAF a success?
A: If I could cover my travel costs — that would be awesome for me to have a successful TCAF. For TCAF to be a success for TCAF, it’s already a success. It went from once evey two years to now an annual show, so it shows that people dig it.  There is a lot of support from creators and people attending, so really it just has to exist.  The fact that it exists and people come is awesome. People get to see that comics are so much more than buff people in sights flying around fighting crime, or dark tales of grit and violence. TCAF supports creators, literacy and gives people a chance to showcase their work where they may not have the opportunity elsewhere. It makes for a healthy market, good business, lots of opportunity to learn and grow both as individuals and for the medium.  I consider TCAF a success for just happening.

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