MeCAF 2013 is in the history books and I cannot believe how fast it came and went this year. What a whirlwind of a show that snuck right up on me and has left me sort of punch drunk on comics!

The journey actually began late thanks to my failure to set my alarm properly. We meant to leave at 5am, probably was closer to 5:45 when we finally hit the road, the sun slowly beginning to pierce through the morning haze.

Thanks to some speedy drivin’ and empty roads at such an early hour, we actually made it in plenty of time! Woo!

Getting set up was no big deal, by now Jesse Durona and I have this down to a science!

The show itself started particularly slow this year. From ten until around noon it was safe to call the upstairs hall, where we were once again located for the 5th year in a row, dead. Something clicked very shortly after people got lunch however and things were jammin’ right until close from then on. I managed to break my show record by far in terms of both sales and traffic. Despite the tiredness from the rush to get there on time, we all soldiered on and had some really awesome interactions with fans and fellow toonies’ alike!

For me, sketch cards were once again king as I created about ten original commissioned cards during the show, selling a handful of already-finished cards from my back-log as well. I only actually sold 2 of my comics to one customer, but as I’ve only just started out, I’m excited by a lot of the encouragement I received talking about my work with the other artists at the show!

Speaking of the other artists, here’s a few I ran in to!

John Platt is a swell fellow and a great observer of the funny found in every day. His comics are classic editorial style gags and observational anecdotes that are both sincere and hilarious!

Stacey Kardash is a very talented illustrator and sketch card artist based in Maine who I met way back at the second MeCAF back in 2010! She had a gorgeous spread of art on her table and it was such a feast for the eyes!

Dirk Tiede was in attendance at MeCAF again this year, but this time as an attendee! He stopped by the table and we talked shop for a bit, glad to hear he’s recovering from his arm injury and back to work on Paradigm Shift!

Gynn Stella and Rick Silva make up Dandelion Studios. Home to a unique collection of Gynn’s animal-focused conservation and slice of life/observational cat comics to Rick’s fantastical adventure comics with some great female protagonists! Joined by a range of artists and co-writers, these two always have plenty to show at MeCAF every year! Safe travels to them as they pack up for China for a few years!

I always find something new to enjoy at MeCAF and this year it was The Underburbs from Joe Haley and T.J. Dort. Holy CRAP what an amazingly fun, hilarious and super well paced horror comedy! About a girl, Angela, who’s unfortunately timed cold prevents her from participating in her favorite holiday, Halloween, she is witness to the comedic entry of a similarly childish demon Countess named Winifred. All sorts of antics ensue once Angela crosses over to the demon’s world. Fun for all ages, highly recommended if you need a good hearty chuckle and a touch of dark humor!

Tyler James was once again at MeCAF showing off his amazing variety of comic stylings. I of course was attracted to his fantasy piece Tears of the Dragon, featuring art by Koko Amboro. Vivid and colorful, and featuring a Dragon-centric story, it was my cup of tea. His collection of “Heroes at Fenway” has also grown, and while it’s not my favorite ball park (cause I’m a New York Yankees fan) it’s neat to see Baseball and comics coming together. He’s got so much more at his publishing outfit Comix Tribe and you should totally check him out!

Jess Fink is a pretty big name these days where comics accessibility is concerned. Published by TopShelf, her work opens you right up and pours inside you like liquid! Her fluid characters and lush, organic design sense gives all her work a fast readability and you can get drawn in so easily! Hailing from my home area, The Capitol Region of upstate NY, it’s nice to see her occasionally at the New England shows and say hello!

As is tradition, we went to a local Indian restaurant for our post-show shenanigans with the boys and girls from Trees and Hills!

While not as combative as the above picture may look, it was a good, lively conversation and meal to wrap up a good day in Portland Maine! Thanks to Casablanca Comics for putting on a better show every year, Rick and his folks work super hard to make it great and they deserve every praise! I eagerly await next year’s show and leave you with the finishing touch of my evening: A Mango Lassi!