Thoughts and Observations on Kids Read Comics 2010: Day 1

Kids Read Comics 2010

This weekend, I attended “Kids Read Comics”, a free and open comic advocacy event for kids and teens that took place at Dearborn Henry Ford Centennial Library. There were workshops held throughout the day, hosted by professionals within the animation and comics industry. My workshop, “Brainstorming Character Design”, was filled to the brim with enthusiastic children and their parents. The energy of KRC was upbeat, and the variety of comics (from genre to style) was quite impressive.

The highlight of my trip was meeting my long-time virtual comics buddies: Jerzy Drozd, Mark Rudolph, and Kevin Cross (hosts of the amazing Art and Story Podcast. I made a lot of new friends at the event, too, including Sara Turner, Kevin’s wife Laura, Roger Langridge, Ryan Estrada, Brandon Dayton, and Zach Bosteel. The camaraderie was evident right from the get-go, which bode really well for the rest of the weekend.

Friday evening we attended the art auction at Green Brain comics. Green Brain was an AMAZING comic shop. No lie – it’s the BEST comic shop I’ve ever visited (and I’ve been to many, many stores). Sure, there were super-hero books, but what really blew me away was the amazing selection of indie books (min-comics, webcomics, ashcans etc.) on the shelves. The owner of the store, Dan Merritt, was friendly and jovial – making us all feel right at home.

Kids Read Comics 2010

Above is a photo we took just outside of Green Brain. To my right are Jerzy, Kevin, Mark and Sara.

Mark Rudolph with bandana:

Kids Read Comics 2010

Kevin Cross strikes a pose:

Kids Read Comics 2010

Below are a few photos taken from the art auction at Green Brain:

Kids Read Comics 2010

Kids Read Comics 2010

Kids Read Comics 2010

After catching a couple of hours of sleep we made our way to KRC around 9AM Saturday morning. The Dearborn Henry Ford Centennial Library was a really majestic place – spanning three floors with a beautiful spiral stair case connecting them all. The workshops took place on all three floors, while the artists and guests had spacious tables on the third floor.

The event itself was very well organized. I was particularly impressed by how much care and attention we were all given throughout the show. I didn’t get a chance to take photos during the event, but I’ve captured a few during the first day’s set-up before the show opened.

Below: Sara Turner puts the finishing touches on her table.

Kids Read Comics 2010

Eisner nominated Roger Langridge chatting it up with a fan.

Kids Read Comics 2010

A better look of the top floor:

Kids Read Comics 2010

My table set-up:

Kids Read Comics 2010

Kevin Cross setting up:

Kids Read Comics 2010

There were two volunteer photographers who captured the entire show. I’m hoping their photos will make it online soon. Here’s a pic of one of them with his very own copy of “Rebootus Maximus”!

Kids Read Comics 2010

After setting up, I had a few minutes to walk the show floor before participating in my first panel, “The Future of Comics”, which should up on the ‘nets soon. Immediately after the panel, I gave a workshop on “Brainstorming Character Design”, which was packed full of enthusiastic children and their parents. The hands-on activities went really well, with parents taking a particularly active role by participating with their children.

Sales at the show on Saturday were brisk, picking up as the day came to a close. Almost all of my sales were to people who were unfamiliar with my comics. Many of these folks had previously attended my workshop. As the afternoon progressed, I had the pleasure of talking with Kurt Sasso, the notable and super-friendly podcaster behind TGT Comics. Kurt interviewed just about every artist at the show – look for those interviews to appear on his site in the weeks ahead.

Saturday evening, many cartoonists gathered at Mark Rudolph’s abode for some dinner and drinks. Laura Cross took care of preparing the food (it was awesome!), Mark grilled, while Kevin and I attempted to do our best making the garnish for some portabella mushroom burgers. We had about 15 or so Storriors gathered together – setting a world record of sorts. :)

The party continued until the wee hour of the morning. It was an evening of interesting conversation and good times. And that concludes my summary of events for the first day of KRC. Day 2’s write-up will happen later this week. Enjoy!

-Krishna

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About the author

Krishna Sadasivam creates custom comics and illustrations for organizations, magazines and companies. A champion of comics advocacy, Krishna speaks, blogs, and writes articles on illustration and sequential arts techniques and the importance of the comics medium in both education and brand awareness. His clients have included Microsoft, Mashable, Other World Computing and EE Times. His work has been featured on many notable websites, including TechCrunch, Gizmodo and CNET. His portfolio can be found at krishnadraws.com.

These beautiful and intelligent people wrote

  • Kurt SassoReply
    June 15, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    Looking forward to Day 2’s information. Plus I’m working away on the interviews and they are going alot better than I expected.

  • Jose GonzalezReply
    June 15, 2010 at 6:35 pm

    Man… am I jealous of all who attended! And so so glad you guys pulled that great event so successfully! I made it a point to tell my local comics contacts so they take note, and maybe inspire them to put something like this together. Congratulations to the crew!
    Can’t wait to see your day two coverage, hear about it from TGT, and read/listen to everyone’s comments. Kudos!

  • Zach BosteelReply
    June 16, 2010 at 9:19 am

    Hey Krishna,
    I had a really great time hanging out with you at KRC and after parties! I still owe you a picture of me and Rebootus Maximus doing somethinng awesome together. Hopefully we’ll get to hang out again soon! Let me know when/if you’re going to be in Chicago, ever.

    • krishnaReply
      June 16, 2010 at 9:33 am

      Likewise, Zach! KRC was super fun and hanging out with you and the gang at the Saturday night festivities was a blast!

  • Javier HernandezReply
    June 16, 2010 at 11:25 am

    Nice write-up, Krishna. The library looks like a great venue. I like how the tables are lined up in a circular pattern. Glad it went well. And….for some reason, I got real hungry reading about the barbecue!!!

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