Bumbershoot 2004 and Uptown Stroll

I decided not to sum up the two big events we had this week until today because I wanted to talk about them both at once, each in the context of the other. Monday’s event was Bumbershoot in Comics Biography Theater. As I write this, I’m reminded that in the midst of recovering from an infection I still owe our host, John Lustig, scans of the two pages Scott and I created over our four hour time slot. I’m getting them to you John, I promise. It was a very crowded Bumbershoot Labor Day, and I can’t complain about the response we got from the crowd. Lots of people were eager to tell stories that might be turned into a comics page by an artist, and I really felt terrible that more stories weren’t able to be used. It was particularly sad since Scott and I were the last of the last, but it’s comforting to know that John kept the remaining stories and we may yet see some more of them realized.

It was nice to see that we’d had a few people sign up for our mailing list while our sheet was out on the Last Kiss table, but it was much more interesting to discover that we got a lot more subscribers during our time slot. Especially since, because we were so engrossed in making finished work before our time was up, we weren’t available to chat with our visitors as much as we’d like. Some things I noticed: poor Kevin Brockschmidt arrived woefully late, Roberta Gregory finished remarkably early. Scott’s talent has increased by leaps and bounds even since I’ve known him, and my own cartooning skills leave much to be desired. It’s not hard to see why I’ve moved into writing and post-production and my natural tendencies are illustration and always will be; animation was no place for me no matter how much I might have insisted otherwise.

Uptown Stroll was an entirely different bag of tricks. Bumbershoot had that nice aspect of being something people went to with the expectation of seeing the arts. Uptown was somewhat humorous in that it was a complete surprise to the public. It also appeared to be a shock to Caffe Ladro, which found our presence more of a nuisance than a draw. We sold cards, but primarily to other Uptown Stroll participants who were expecting to possibly buy art, not be ambushed by it on their way to something else. I commented that if a saxophonist had set up shop next to us I would have felt a distinct kinship and might even have laid out my hat. It was, as the song goes, a most unusual day; we were passed regularly by a guy dressed like a giant red key, and personally seranaded by a barbershop ensemble. Three members of Cartoonists Northwest picked up Honorable Mention ribbons in the judging, including us.

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