Thursday, March 27, 2014

A Perfect Day In Toronto

On Monday of this week Vicki and I headed to Toronto for the day.  I had been asked to get a high resolution scan of my Watchmen page for inclusion in an upcoming over-sized hardcover book of Watchmen artwork being published by comic company IDW.  They periodically release "coffee table books" featuring original art that's of particular interest to fans, and Watchmen certainly qualifies in that category (it's often referred to as "the Citizen Kane of comic books").  The editor of the art book, Scott Dunbier, had put me in touch with Toronto comic artist J Bone, whose work I'd recently enjoyed in the Spirit/Rocketeer 4-issue miniseries from IDW, and who had a high-res scanner that I could use.  Since we were going to Toronto to get that done, we invited Tammy and Ryan to meet us for dinner later in the day, and just like that: we had a day-trip planned!

I wasn't sure what to expect when we got to the artist's apartment, as I'd never met him before or even read an interview with him.  Any concerns we had, though, were completely wiped away in the first few minutes of the visit.  J greeted us at the door with a huge smile and made us feel completely at home.  His apartment was amazing: walls of bookshelves filled with graphic novels, art books, movie DVDs, and action figures of all kinds.  In other words, our kind of place!  Before long, J and I were geeking out on various comic and movie topics, and then he and Vicki realized they had classic Sci Fi books in common, and off they went in that direction.  J turned out to be one of the nicest and friendliest comic pros we've ever met, and we've met a lot in Chicago and elsewhere over the years.

More than an hour after we got there, we all remembered we were supposed to be scanning some artwork, and so we got busy with that.  Then it was more chatting and swapping stories, and before we knew it, we'd taken up two hours of J's time and Tammy & Ryan were waiting for us at the nearby restaurant.  Oops...  It'd been way too much fun and neither of us wanted to leave, but we had other fun to get to and J had artwork to finish for a deadline.  Vicki thought to grab a photo before we took off, though:

And we didn't leave empty-handed, as J very kindly gave me the first 3 issues of his current Image series with James Robinson, The Saviors.  I've since read and enjoyed them very much, and will be picking up all of the future issues at the store as they come out.  Yay: yet another creator-owned Image title for me to happily support!

We capped the day off with a wonderful dinner at a pizza place Tammy recommended, getting to spend a couple of hours with two of our favourite people.  Lots more excellent, non-stop conversation ensued about work, movies, TV shows and whatever else came to mind.

And then we braved a couple of white-outs on the 403 and 401 before making it back here safely, much to Vicki's relief (I was the one driving and yet my knuckles weren't white).

Definitely one of our best days, thanks to J, Tammy & Ryan!

No comments: