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March 13, 2012
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WonderCon 2012 Banners by nathanscomicart WonderCon 2012 Banners by nathanscomicart
I'm doing a Convention for the first time like ever, at WonderCon in Anaheim on March 16th-18th.

I'm in the Artist Alley section at Table AA-223.=) The 4 on the right are some samples of the really fun 6ft banners I had done up. Kind of cool to see your work blown up to this size.

I'll be bringing some fun new prints and posters with all of those awesome shiny colors everyone seems to like so much, as well as some limited edition sketchbooks and some very COOOOOL FREEBIES.:w00t:
:icongrin--plz:
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:iconstacyraven:
StacyRaven Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
WonderCon was so fun this year! It sucked going so far though, I hope it's back in the Bay area next year. Going to the LA area once a year for ComicCon is enough time spent in SoCal for me. heheh It's just too expensive. It was sucky I didn't get to see you at WonderCon though. Will you be attending ComicCon this year?
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:iconsilentboardwalk:
silentboardwalk Featured By Owner Mar 19, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Would love to have been there. How'd it go?
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:iconnathanscomicart:
nathanscomicart Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Hey what's up dude!:highfive: Had a lot of fun for my 1st convention. Nothing but positive and super friendly people the whole event. Plus I had 2 of my buddies there with me to help out the whole time, which made things much, much easier.
I was fortunately too busy to walk away from my table so I did miss out on the panels and seeing the majority of the Con, but really good times all around.:icongrin--plz:
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:iconsilentboardwalk:
silentboardwalk Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
You are writing to a jealous, jealous man. Glad you had fun, homie.
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:iconcehnot:
cehnot Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
In the future, never place your website at the bottom. People will never read something 2 feet or less tot he floor. I am a designer and the basic rule of thumb is keep banners in the top two-thrids of a banner for visibility.

Are you going to any other shows?
fun banners.
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:iconnathanscomicart:
nathanscomicart Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Very true,:nod: but for some weird reason no one was looking at the name or the website.:laughing: Still not sure as to why.
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:iconcehnot:
cehnot Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Most people do not even notice the name, unless it was somebody famous. Most the itme people still ask who you are even if your name is right behind you and spans 2-3 feet across the banner. Always introduce yourself and say hello to strangers walking by. Most the time they say hi back and sometimes they feel welcome and approach your booth. If you do not say hello, you are more likely not to meet that person and/or sell anything. Don't brood either. Get up early enough to have your coffee or other fix to wake up and get to the show. I recommend showing up 1 hour early to setup your booth and walk around before the show doors open. I find this relaxing and it gives you enough time to think about how you want to sell yourself or even calm your nerves before the rush of people dodge past your booth heading to somebody famous. I tend to be 70-80% businessman and 20-30% artist. If you spend too much time sketching or looking down you just missed your next potential customer. I have met several well known artists who sat directly next to me and didn't even know how to handle a crowd. I think having a checklist of what you want to accomplish, inventory list and a ledger to write down sales and receipts is the best advice I give anybody new in the business. If you make more than $500 then you have to claim that on taxes the net year and claim it as a hobby. If you want to do it for a business then you need to be doing a sole proprietorship and begin doing quarterly taxes.
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:iconnathanscomicart:
nathanscomicart Featured By Owner May 10, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks Chris! Sorry for the late reply. It's all great and really helpful/dead-on advise.:thumbsup:

They really need to have a memo like this on all of the convention sites for the artist to look over before going to any event. It'd really help out a ton of people.

Fortunately or unfortunately however you wanna look at it, I also fall under that same category of being more business-minded than artistic. As a result the last couple of shows I attended(just as a spectator), I walked around taking notes and reverse-engineering the whole thing to figure out what works and what doesn't.

I had also enlisted 2 of my friends for the event to act as like "carnival barkers":laughing: to greet people, give away handouts and let people know what I was selling. I was standing for basically all 3 days doing this as well which was wonderful because it meant there was always someone at the table looking over the prints, or talking with one of us, or buying things. (Downside was I didn't even get a chance to have restroom break all day Sunday.) It really helped as well having the extra hands and additional sales people, that way if I was signing(was kind of shocked to find out everyone wanted their items signed including the large free postcards we were giving away.) someone else was still greeting people and the other would be selling people on additional prints. As result we didn't have any actual downtime.

I'm always shocked at how soooooo many artists are spending all of their time with their heads down doing commissions/sketches during the actual show, and never even looking up to great people who walk up to their table. Really off-putting to any potential customer or fan.
On the flip-side you have some artists that are smiling and talking with fans while signing/sketching and having like their friend or spouse helping out with sales. With sketches, I kind of knew from the start, only do them if your at your publisher's table and they've set some time aside for you to do just that. Otherwise just have them contact you afterwards through your site and set it up that way as more of a simple commission. Trying to do that at a show with everything else that's going on is just too much to try and juggle all at once.

Giveaways or samples* Having fun non-offensive small handouts(or in my case 6x11 double-sided high-gloss full color postcards)was a great way to constantly introduce ones' self and entice people to come over to look at what you have for sale. And the higher quality it is, the more people enjoy getting it for free.

And yes, take some business classes or at least speak with a CPA to find out all the legal requirements/taxes you need to know about/address before jumping into something like this. I know at least for the Comic-Con organization you have to provide them with BOE forms and sellers permit so at least that gives some people a heads up on "Hey you might have to pay some taxes on this."

Thanks again for all the great info Chris, and best of luck to you at any and all the shows you've got coming up.

By the way, great work on your Fallen cover you did with David! :iconxd--plz:
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:iconfeline927:
feline927 Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2012
COOL!!
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:iconnathanscomicart:
nathanscomicart Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks!:w00t:
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