As I always do after a convention, I want to take the time to thank everyone who stopped by my table and showed their support, especially those who picked up a copy of Chadhiyana; I hope you enjoy it. Though I wanted to do something a little different this time. I had taken some time over the weekend to walk around the convention a bit and meet other industry professionals (as I often do). This time around, I have to say, I think it was the best experience I’ve ever had with it and, as such, I have a few additional people to thank.
First, my thanks to Tommy Castillo who gave me some great advice and encouragement on finishing the Chadhiyana graphic novel and continuing my pursuits of telling my own stories. I’ve talked to Mr. Castillo a few times at various conventions (though, of course, he doesn’t remember it), and it’s always been a pleasure, but this time it was informative as well. He had a lot to say, and I did my best to take it all in. It was great to hear some different approaches to storytelling and some of the experiences he’s had in telling his own stories as well.
Also my thanks to Mark Texeira, who’s work I’ve been an admirer of since his days as the artist for Ghost Rider (in the 1990s, that is). Although the first time I ever met him (in 2007) he gave me a harsh portfolio review, it was a great experience talking to him this weekend. His encouragement was wonderful, as well as his positive response to my work, and I was all too happy to talk art with another artist who works traditionally (Mr. Castillo as well, incidentally).
And last but certainly not least, my name-doppelganger, Mr. J. M. DeMatteis. If I only had enough time to write about all the times people came up to my table at a convention and thought I was him, never mind the many people I’ve worked with who have almost introduced me as him and had to correct themselves. That said, I’m very happy to share my initials with this man. He is pleasant and genuine, and it was a pleasure to chat briefly with him and laugh together about the confusion some people have. I appreciate that he accepted a copy of Chadhiyana (and enjoyed it, as he’s already told me). It was great to finally meet him.
So, overall, the show was a great experience, even more so than last year. I look forward to attending again at next year’s convention: a three day show, according to the rumours.
Stay tuned for more Chadhiyana news in the coming weeks. Cheers!