Since people here were nice enough to notice I was gone to A.P.E., and requested a summary of same, let me put down a few quick thoughts....
1. My favorite con for the simple reason that it most closely fits the sort of work I'm doing. No superheroes, no mainstream genre work (sci-fi, horror, erotica, manga, etc.--and yet elements of all these genres were present in much of the work, but without any of it really qualifying as mainstream). No big publishers like DC/Marvel. No Hollywood. Everyone worked from the same 6' x 3' tables, too, so it's all very egalitarian. No custom big boy booths.
2. Very local-centric. Most of the artists and almost all of the Con-go'ers were Bay Area folk. Which was nice. Many students, too.
3. Most everyone bought something (which, after Rose City, was very refreshing!). Biggest complaint I heard from attendees was failure of organizers to hand them a complimentary shopping bag with their badge and program. People wanted somewhere to dump their purchases.
And the new venue ( at Fort Mason, inside an old military warehouse on a wharf jutting into the S.F. Bay, with stunning views of the Golden Gate and Alcatraz just outside) was great. But up in the air where it will be next year.
Personally I did pretty well, meaning I was pretty dang busy the whole two days, selling steadily (which was a huge relief). Tho' in the end I didn't make much...I covered the costs of my table, but not all of my printing, and nothing of my hotel and meals (but then Blair and I had planned to make a little vacation of the weekend, so I didn't have any realistic expectations of covering those costs...that was in the fantasy, I-sell-everything-plus-a-buncha-drawing-commissions scenario....).
The ad in the program worked great (and Tom, you were right, I shoulda' added some tone); but more than that, people seem to remember The Teen Ellis. I had multiple people stop at my table when they saw my banner and say, "Oh, I recognize him--you had the ad in the program." (experiencing the power of advertising at work = thrilling!) Also, banner was a big success not only for bringing sales, but more importantly, for giving people a good idea of what the comic was all about.
People were very positive on the book. Going into the weekend I honestly didn't know if it would get any play, but people definitely appreciated the art and thought it looked funny. And quite a few bought. Phew!
Met lots of super-cool people, got a lot more names on the email list, and did quite a few fun drawings. Printed 56 FUME comic books, sold about 24 (? haven't counted 'em yet) plus another 7 or so sketchbooks, which sounds pathetic but in my experience is pretty dang good and really did keep me busy the whole time. I took photos of about half the caricature sketches. Had some fun offering to do historical or fictional or musical personages. Wish I had pix of a really funny sketch I did of Homer (the Greek poet, not the Simpson) for a guy writing a novel involving classical figures, and another of two topless girls boxing (!); the guy who requested that one liked it so much he commissioned me to do a large-scale color version with more girls (yipee!).
Best one I think was the Elton John request. I don't really know Elton but this one came to me in a blaze of inspiration and it had the guy who requested it busting up.
Also, wouldn't you know it, last drawing of the Con and I was finally getting my groove going...
I will leave you with a shot of a man we all know and love, Mr. Jason Weezner (so great to see him!!):