Monday, June 17, 2013

CAKE 2013: Indie swag is the best swag

This past weekend was the second annual Chicago Alternative Comics Expo (or CAKE), and it was awesome, a great collection of amazing cartoonists from the Windy City and parts beyond. I met a lot of people and had a great time, and here's the massive pile of comics paraphernalia that I came home with:

The contents of that picture are, starting from the upper left and proceeding across the back row:
Second Row:
Third row, starting below the Project: Ballad comic:
That is a lot of comics, but it's only a fraction of everything that I saw over the weekend. In addition to these, here are several creators that I would love to learn more about:

  • Mardou, who was debuting Sky in Stereo #2.
  • Rachel Foss, whose minicomics I regretted not picking up.
  • Sarah Morton, who had, among other comics, an interesting-looking book about her grandfather's Mormon missionary trip to Japan in the 60s.
  • Zachary Garrett, whose webcomic Doom Carousel is about man's effect on nature.
  • Veronica Graham and Jesse Eisenhower, who produce some weird, diagrammatic comics that I don't really understand, but still find kind of fascinating.
  • Ezra Claytan Daniels, whose digital comic Upgrade Soul is an amazing use of the Ipad as a medium for comics completely separate from both paper and regular desktop/laptop computer screens (he was also a killer emcee for the comic art battle that took place at Quimby's the night before the show).
  • Ed Luce, whose Wuvable Oaf looks like a great series.
  • Kinoko, who is in the midst of serializing a comics adaptation of The Epic of Gilgamesh, among other works.
  • Leigh Luna, who has a super-cute art style, often featuring animals.
  • Sam Sharpe, a local artist with a cool style.
  • Emi Gennis, who had, among other books, an anthology she edited called Unknown Origins & Untimely Ends.
  • Lucy Bellwood, who has a fun-looking nautical-themed series called Baggy Wrinkles.
  • Bernie McGovern, another local artist with some serious chops and a nice sense of the surreal.
  • Tyrell Cannon, who was selling a nice-looking fantasy comic called Victus and a comic about the Green River Killer called Gary.
  • Dakota McFadzean, who has several cool comics, as well as a webcomic with the appropriate title of Drawing Every Day.
  • The Cartoon Picayune, a regular journalistic comic featuring a number of talented contributors.
  • Evan Palmer, who has several great-looking comics, such as The Feast.
  • Laurel Lynn Leake, who displays a nice variety of art styles on her tumblr, but settles on a cool semi-realistic style with some lovely naturalistic shading for her series Deep Forest.
  • Cody Pickrodt, whose series Reptile Museum looks pretty wild.
  • Tony Breed, who has a cute webcomic called Hitched, about a married gay couple.
  • James the Stanton, who has some weird, goofy comics both for sale and online on his site,
  • Jaclyn Miller, who has a style that's cute and simple, but also nicely expressive.
  • Luke Howard, who had several cool minicomics in his "Dosey Doe" series, with each issue containing two stories that share a back cover, instead of being a flip book.
  • Mike Freiheit, who had a neat autobiographical comic called Monkey Chef, which is about what it sounds like.

Even with all that, I'm sure there was much more that I missed, but I had a great time nonetheless, and I'll be writing about as much of it as I can over the next week or so. Good comics, good times, good people, what a great show.

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