Tony and I spent Saturday morning trolling the booths at the SPX, the small press expo, somewhere in the hinterlands of Maryland. I've never thought of myself as a "comic book guy." Shameless fanboy, perhaps. But comic books--while I understood how cool they could be--never really created any passion in me. This show changed my mind.
The floor was small but crowded. Almost every booth had a pile of objects to look through. Many were handmade or one-of-a-kind. Styles ranged from exquisite hand painted abstracts, to postmodern pen-and-ink cartoons. The artists were super friendly and everyone had a great story. (And by "great" I mean funny, weird, inspirational, and/or insane.)
I bought an autobiographical book called Shirtlifter from a supremely hot bear artist named Steve MacIsaac. He said it was more "artistic-y than pornographic-y." Having cruised through it last night, I guess he's correct. But it still plenty pornographic-y for me. I'm not sure I get the point of the whole thing, but I think that's commonplace among the small press people: Hold a magnifying glass up to the most arcane, commonplace, or otherwise invisible speck of reality (or surreality) and let it speak for itself.
On the way out, I bought a silkscreen of 16 little line drawings of the same dumpy little man in various states of dress.
I'll let that speak for itself, too.