The show is over and I am still reeling. What an incredible weekend!
Now I knew, from talking with hundreds of people this year, that the Supernatural Conventions were unlike any other. I also knew that there would be only a few other vendors at the show. I was told by someone to expect a lot of downtime since people spend most of their time at panels, autographs and photo ops.
No big deal. I figured I would paint to pass the time.
First off, I have to say that Creation runs an amazing show. I had friends who were attending and they would stop and share their experiences with me throughout the days. Visitors are truly treated to a world class experience. I can say this because I’ve been to a fuck ton of cons and there’s nothing to compare to this. Nothing.
I spent a few days packing my paintings and gear up before heading into Toronto. Anxiety was high. I wrote a whole other post about that here. Packing helped me get my ginormous butterflies under control. Once packed, I shot a photo of my van and then discovered I had forgotten some pretty hefty boxes. Oops. LOL
Normally I have a driver for shows. And by driver, I mean my booth babe does the driving. Let’s face it, putting art out there to be judged is somewhat akin to laying my soul on a table and showing it to everyone. It’s a pretty vulnerable time. Maybe less so now that I’ve done a lot of shows, but there’s still that vulnerability and stress there. I love driving highways, but I hate city driving. And we won’t ever talk about how much I hate parking. I’m horrible at it. So when I have someone else drive me and my stuff to a show, it reduces the stress right away. This is a good thing.
Anyway, we got there and set up and waited for the doors to open. Everyone working the vendor room was awesome. I was set up next to my friend Christina from Icy Jewelry. A con friend, since we met at every ComicCon and managed to have nice visits each time. This is the beauty of working ComicCons; we run into friends at each show. The audience doesn’t see it, but the creators and artists tend to be the same group from show to show. It’s pretty awesome once you get going.
Okay, so now we get into the incredible part. Every single person who stopped to chat was incredible. I’m serious. From the cosplaying people to the people who had intense reactions to my work. And everyone who wanted to talk about Sam’s hair. LOL
The mother who brought her teenage daughter over so I could look at her awesome art. And it was awesome. They were back a few times. The mom even offered to get me lunch and/or coffee. I loved that! Thank you!
The artists who came up and showed me their work. From line drawings to shaded sketches to photographs. I was completely blown away by the talent and skill in the fandom, and by the trust they had showing me, a complete stranger, their art. I saw a drawing of demon Dean split with human Dean. I saw anime drawings. I saw stunning photographs. I saw amazing portraits. I saw hope and love and expression.
The beautiful woman who shared her difficult story with me, but honestly it was a story of triumph. And we cheered together because she is going to have a fantastic life now. Thank you for sharing with me.
You are all awesome.
And I experienced an acceptance that I’ve never, ever had, with my work.
Surprised? Because it’s true.
ComicCons are a mishmash of fandoms. They cover all the bases. And they attract people who prefer comic styles of work. Sure I have some fans (I looooove you all!!!) but a lot of my time at those types of shows is spent being passed over for less fine art style work. It’s fair enough. And there are a few exceptions as always.
But SPNtor? Holy fucking mackerel! It was like coming home. I knew very quickly on Thursday night that I was part of something magical and incredible. A fandom that is beyond special. And I had found my people.
With my soul laid out on the table in my paintings and on the grid walls behind me, all I got was love. I got moving stories. I got connections. I got so many hugs and high fives and energy. I can’t even find the words.
When Rob Benedict came over to look at my painting of him, I was blown away. He was gracious. We talked about the moment I painted “We Should Probably Talk” and his work. We talked about other things. He finished with a hug.
When I got to fangirl over Jason Manns, who was sitting across the room from me, by himself. I died. His voice is a gift and the album, Covers With Friends, is one that I paint to. That was incredible just casually chatting.
When I met a few other Creation people and got to talk designs and more with them.
When I met the computer engineer and we totally geeked out over Google and Connected Car and server security. It was incredible. I’m a programmer by trade, talking at a high level with someone who gets it is a rare beast for me.
When I chatted with the wonderful people from IamAlive.org . These people who made sure everyone was in a safe place, had whatever support they needed. And they did it was a level of caring professionalism that blew me away.
And finally, notes like this one here. I woke up to this Facebook post and I have to share it because it nearly reduced me to happy tears.
I am a fan who paints. I paint Supernatural because I’m a fan, not because it’s my job. Had I even thought, while I was painting, that the guys would see, touch and comment on my art I think I would have been the proverbial deer in headlights. Completely unable to paint.
If you bought my art and had it signed, please share. Seriously. You will make my day/month/year/life.
A big thank you to everyone who stopped to chat, share, hug, nerd out and buy my work. I had always heard that Supernatural had the best fandom out there, and now I know for sure that this is true. SPNtor 2017! Watch out! VanCon 2017! I’m coming your way! And if I can get the border stuff sorted, I’m heading to a few US shows too. I’ve found my people and they are awesome.