I have a show starting at Centre Communautaire de loisir de la Côte des Neiges this Friday. I’m having a bit of opening fatigue, so this one will go openingless. Still, there will be a large selection of all original paintings on display.
J’ai une exposition qui commence au Centre Communautaire de loisir de la Côte des Neiges ce vendredi. J’ai eu un vernissage récemment alors je n’en aurai pas cette fois-ci. Il y aura quand même une grande sélection de peintures originales exposées.
Dates: From November 28th to December 18th. Du 28 novembre au 18 décembre.
Location: Centre Communautaire de loisir de la Côte-des-Neiges, 5347 ch de la Côte-des-Neiges, Montreal. http://www.cclcdn.qc.ca
I just got back from Quebec City where I attended my first Boreal convention. Boreal is a French language literary convention with a focus on science-fiction, fantasy and other speculative genres. It has hopped about to different cities in Quebec, but this year it was in Quebec City.
Weirdly enough, due to my heavy networking on English language forums and attendance of events like Illuxcon and the IMC, most of my art and publishing contacts are American, or at least, not Quebecers. We have a thriving local industry and I wanted to learn more so I signed up! I also volunteered to take part in the programming and I ended up participating in three panels.
There is a side of me who feels like a fraud whenever I’m put in a position like that, but I manage to rationalize it. It turns out I had a ball. I really enjoyed myself and I was lucky to have fantastic co-panelists. One of the subjects was touchy (the one about misogyny) but I felt that there was respect all around, both at the panel table and in the audience. I also got to see Christian Sauvé’s conference about being a critic and a variety of panels, I visited the exhibitors room and met great people. I also had two original paintings with me, one of them being a cover for Solaris winter 2014, so I was told be a lot of people that they had recognized it, which always feels good, the other one was Un Bon Cygne.
It’s a fairly small scene but a lot of my fellow con-goers and all the staff and volunteers went out of their way to make me feel welcome.
As usual, my tips for anyone thinking of going to a small to medium-sized convention are the same:
- Do it.
- Wear your name tag, make sure it’s visible.
- Bring a portfolio and business cards, take them everywhere with you.
- Don’t be afraid to approach people and introduce yourself.
- When it’s lunchtime and a lot of people are milling about, it’s ok to ask perfect strangers if you can join them. Eating with someone is a great way to get to know them.
- Be nice and non-creepy.
Illuxcon has been over for a
few many weeks now and I have yet to write anything about it. Not because it wasn’t great, but I came back completely exhausted and overwhelmed. So here I am, making a very late attempt at a summary.
There were many firsts at Illuxcon this year. It was the first time the show lasted 5 days (Wednesday to Sunday,) it was the first time it was held in Allentown (before it was in Altoona, PA,) it was the first time I had a travel companion (I went with my buddy Sybiline, whom I met at a different convention – see? conventions are important,) first time there were other french speakers I got to hang out with.
The whole lasting 5 days thing came with its lot of changes as well. There is now two parts to the main show, one that lasts the whole five days and a weekend salon that was also juried but was only held on Saturday and Sunday. The life drawing and live music events were merged together and held on Thursday night. The showcase which used to last 4 hours was now twice as long, Friday and Saturday evenings.
I was on the waiting list for the showcase and only learned that I had a table less than two weeks before the show so I had a lot to prepare. Traveling across the border with paintings is a problem because while there is no duty on art, I’m not allowed to work in the U.S. and selling art would be working (weirdly enough, I’m allowed to have a booth and to take orders for sales, but not to actually give the art to the buyer, even if it’s already painted.) So I only brought Pink! as a display piece, and some prints as “promotional material.” Had I had more time to prepare, I could have shipped the originals to the show in advance. I’ll know for the next year. Two nights of showcase is a lot, the artists in the main show have to man their table for much longer, but finishing at midnight twice in a row takes its toll. And after 11p.m. there aren’t that many visitors doing the rounds.
As usual, the art in the main show was stunning. The new venue offers much higher walls than the old venue and some of the artists really took advantage of it. Michael Whelan and Donato Giancola had massive pieces that would have never fit in Altoona. I’m always overwhelmed by how nice almost everyone is at such events. I have a problem recognising faces and I’m often embarrassed to be recognized by people whose face I don’t remember (wear your name badge people!) The embarrassment is compounded by how much some artists get out of their ways to explain their techniques, answer question, review portfolio and offer precious advice even when you are obviously not in the market for their paintings.
When youhad the weekend salon to the main show, you get a gigantic event. A lot of new faces there and also artists who had been in the main show in the past. The weekend salon is a lot less work, the artists only have to be present at their tables for two days instead of 5. The down side is that it was very hard to hang around the weekend salon because the space was smaller than planned (apparently the museum floor plans were not very accurate!) and everyone was there at the same time, since there was only two days to see everything and there were still lectures and demos going on. I was very glad to see friend of mine have tables i the salon, it was a great way to introduce new artists to Illuxcon.
Lectures and demos
As usual, there is so much good programming that I had to make very difficult choices. I mostly went to demos and practical lectures: Nonie Nelson on anatomy, Jason Cheeseman-Meyer on perspective, painting demos by Jeremy Wilson (I found his way of working very alien, I guess that’s a good thing) and Armand Cabrera. I also went to the Schindehette/Ruppel talk about concept art vs illustration and the M:tG panel, and the Hildebrand talk about colors (which turned out to be about anecdotes and Michael Jackson and not so much about color theory.) Overall, I felt more rushed than other years, like everything was crammed together and I never had enough time to see what I wanted to see but I really enjoyed what I got to see.
Of course, there is even more to Illuxcon. Meeting new friends, catching up with old friends, meeting people I had known online for a long long time for the first time, seeing some I had not seen in years. Talking to heroes and discovering new inspirations. Of course, no convention is complete without swag and this one is no exception. Aside from a crapton of business cards, I bought two great sketchbooks. I really like books that have process pictures, either just drawings or drawings with finished pieces.
Here lie links.
The only upside to being so slow is that a ton of other people have already posted about Illuxcon and I can make a list of posts. Ha!
Armand Cabrera’s painting demo
Recap by Eric Super Villain on Massive Fantastic , with a video
Review by Juan Carlos Barquet, IlluXCon Student Scholarship winner
Mike Burns’s notes from the lectures and panels.
Jane Frank’s superlative and glowing review. Jane is an art dealer specialised in speculative art and has given very interesting lectures on business at Illuxcon over the years.
A lecture by Jane Frank at Illuxcon, posted by Drawn Today podcast.
Jon Schindehette, art director extraordinaire’s Illuxcon review.
There is going to be a small Anime and Comic book Expo on December 4th 2011 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm at Place Bonaventure. It’s by the same people who organise Montreal ComicCon in September, but much smaller and I don’t expect any line ups. There weren’t any last year, at least. I’m not sure there is going to be much in the way of panels or activities, but there are going to be around twenty artists tables and a hundred exhibitors. I will be there, sharing a table with EveChat so drop by and say hi.
They are also going to announce the guest for the big even next September and there is going to be a big Innistrad M:tG tournament organised by Carta Magica.
Admission 5$, free for kids.
Il y aura une petite exposition d’Animé et de BD le 4 décembre 2011 de 10h à 17h à la Place Bonaventure. Elle est organisée par les même gens qui font Le ComicCon de Montréal en septembre, mais c’est beaucoup plus petit et je ne m’attend pas à des files d’attentes. En tout cas, il n’y en avait pas l’an passé. Je ne suis pas certaine qu’il y ait des panels ou des activités mais il y aura une vingtaine d’artistes et une centaines d’exposants. J’y partagerai une table avec EveChat alors passez me voir!
Il y aura aussi l’annonce des invités pour le ComicCon de l’an prochain et Carta Magica organise un tournois de M:tG Innistrad.
Admission 5$, gratuit pour les enfants.
If you are looking for life drawing sessions in Montreal, here are a few suggestions:
Dr.Sketchy, Montreal chapter
With it’s quirky monthly events and costumed models, Dr.Sketchy Montreal has mostly shortish poses in a festive ambiance. Good for unlimbering fingers and having fun, but not for producing very finished and polished pieces.
Now I’ve never been to a GA event, but they look very interesting. They had a shibari event and one with people dressed as urban ninjas or something. They also have art demos. As far as I can tell, they have space to paint and longer poses. They are also geared towards video games but I don’t think it makes much of a difference as far as life drawing is concerned.
Centre Georges Vanier
This is where I used to go when I lived in St-Henri, a nice quiet session with poses from 1 to 20 minutes (at some point they did 45 minutes but some people started shuffling and making noise in the middle so it went down to 20.) They had nude and costumed models but I think they are always nude now.
Never been to this one either, but we have passes at work so I’ll try to go sometime. I don’t know much about them but they have untutored drop in sessions and drawing classes.