The Stumptown Comics Fest 2011 will be held on Saturday and Sunday, April 16th and 17th, at the Oregon Convention Center. It will be their 8th annual appearance in Portland, Oregon. Billed as “the Northwest’s Largest Creator-Focused Comics Festival”, it will feature over 200 exhibitors and artists with more than 40 hours of panels and workshops planned. One day passes are $7.00 and weekend passes are $12.00, both available through TicketsWest.
Compared to the cost of attending the San Diego Comics Con or the recently held Emerald City Comics Con in Seattle, this event offers an economical opportunity to meet creators contributing to industry leaders such as Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, Image and Oni Press. Company representatives from Dark Horse, Oni, Fantagraphics and Top Shelf will also have exhibits showcasing their respective lines of titles.
This years’ lineup has more than its’ share of industry stars. While traditionally printed comics are well represented, Stumptown Comics Fest 2011 also features a number of well known talents from the booming world of web comics. I’ve highlighted several attending creators from both mediums in the profiles below:
Eric Powell is best known for his long running creation, “The Goon”. Published by Dark Horse Comics, the much beloved series melds humor, horror and adventure, highlighted by his beautifully dark artwork. Dark Horse has also utilized his talents in their licensed properties, “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, “Angel” and “Conan”, and in “Hellboy”. His work can also be found in DC titles such as “Action Comics”, “Green Lantern” and “Swamp Thing”. USA Today’s profile of the “The Goon” offers a closer look at this unique character.
Rick Remender is a very successful, “A-List” comics writer and artist working out of Portland, Oregon. He’s done extensive work for all of the big publishers. Beginning with his well received early work on “Fear Agent”, “Gigantic” and “The End League”, he’s since added high profile runs on “X-Force” and “The Punisher”, and numerous other Marvel properties, to his resume.
Paul Tobin has been a prolific writer for Marvel Comics since 2007. He was a driving force behind Marvels’ all-ages “Marvel Adventures” line, particularly on the “Spiderman” and “Avengers” titles, and continues to craft tales for a number of Marvel characters. A member of Portland’s Periscope Studios, his work can currently be seen in Marvel’s “Spidergirl” and in “Gingerbread Girl” (a collaboration with his wife Colleen Coover, also scheduled to attend) from publisher Top Shelf.
Carla Speed McNeil
McNeil became an indie favorite for her self-published creation, “Finder”. Further recognition later resulted from her work as an artist on Greg Rucka’s “Queen and Country”, a complex spy thriller centered on agent Tara Chase and her teammates in Britain’s SIS (Secret Intelligence Service).
Randy Emberlin is a Portland artist with an extensive resume of comics titles. He is best known for his work on Spiderman, contributing artwork on both “Amazing Spiderman” and “Web of Spiderman” for many years. Other notable works for Marvel Comics include a “GI Joe”, “Doctor Strange” and “Alien Legion”. His work for Dark Horse includes “Ghost”, “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Dark Horse Presents”.
Martin’s many titles for DC include stints on “Action Comics”, “Doom Patrol”, “Blue Devil”, “Booster Gold”, “Green Lantern” and the “Who’s Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe” series. He’s also the author of both volumes of “The Art of Comic-Book Inking”, published by Dark Horse.
Erika Moen’s webcomic “Dar! A Super Girly Top Secret Diary Comic” had a long and well regarded run from 2003 to 2010. She’s also done a number of guest strips for the likes of “Penny Arcade”, “Diesel Sweeties” and “Girls with Slingshots”. Her current project, “Bucko”, is a collaboration with popular Marvel Comics writer Jeff Parker. Erika works out of Portlands’ own Periscope Studio.
Ethan Nicolle’s (a former resident of Coos Bay, Oregon) early success came with “Chumble Spuzz”, published by Slave Labor Graphics and nominated for an Eisner award. This was followed by the current sensation, Axe Cop, a collaboration between Ethan and his seven year old brother Malachai. Beginning as a web comic, it subsequently found a home with Dark Horse. The comic has been praised in sources as diverse as Entertainment Weekly, Newsarama and GQ magazine.
Phil is best known for his very popular web comic, “Girl Genius”. He’s also done work for DC, Marvel and Eclipse, among others. Fans of the “Magic the Gathering” card game may also be quite familiar with his work, having completed numerous illustrations for them.
Scott Kurtz has also found great success in the world of web comics, creating the iconic “Player Vs. Player”. This translated into both published collections of the strips and and a lengthy run as a monthly title in the Image Comics line.
The Oregon Convention Center is located at 777 NE ML King Blvd. in Portland, Oregon. Directions can be found here. The Jupiter Hotel will be hosting the official after party for the event. They are also offering special room rates for convention attendees ($89 for a single bed or $99 for two beds, before taxes). Information on the Jupiter offer can be found here.
References: Beyond the creator sites linked above, promotional material from Stumptown Comics Fest 2011 was also referenced. These pages on Comics.org were also utilized: 1,2,3