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  • Writer's pictureArthur Ball

Dallas Comic Con & Stan Lee, AGAIN!

Two weekends ago I attended the Dallas Comic Con! Boy, oh boy it was fun. The best part was I got to see my two very best friends in the whole wide world, Dan and the better Dan. You guess which Dan is the better one. I've known them both since we were teenagers.

Dan P. (The one on the left.) is shown here prominently displaying his crotch to the world. (He's so proud.) I've known him since middle school. Dan L. (The one on the right.) looks crazy while I look as if I'm dreaming of Kate Upton. I've known him since high school. I'm not related to either of them, but they are like my brothers and this convention was a happy excuse for us to get together for the first time in roughly five years. I wish I took more pictures of us. So yea, I got to see my friends, but I also got to experiment with my convention delivery system (CDS). That's a fancy name for me carrying as much of my @#$% to a convention 3 states away as possible. Turns out I could have brought more, but American Airlines is the Devil!

This make shift white box covered with duct tape is about fifty two ponds and has excruciatingly sharp edges. Despite those qualities, I was able to get it along with the heavy backpack and moderately light gym bag from Dallas International Airport to the Dallas Convention Center by walking, train, crying and sweating.

Why didn't one of my best friend pick me up at the airport you ask? He was busy. (Picture→)

He picked up the other Dan though, so don't worry about him. He didn't show up all out of breath and sore at all. Shit happens, but I made it to the show.

Enough of my friends. Stuff about the show.

I drew this for Riddle (@Ridd1e), a famous cosplayer who was at the show. (She's really nice.) I got the image from her Instagram feed. (I'm a fan.) As you may have noticed from the above pictures of my table. I got a fancy new table cloth that says "I do sketches." I feel this really helps clear up the question of my willingness or ability to do sketches for people while sitting in Artist Alley at a convention. I was drawing all weekend. I love drawing on the fly. The challenge of it, the nervousness, the rush and the getting paid up front is the absolute best part of a comic book convention for me.

I saw this girl dressed as Daria and about lost it. If she had round glasses, she would be just perfect.

I got the opportunity to draw for and/or meet a bunch of really Above Average people. Including some amazing cosplayers. I feel like conventions are my place to be really social because in my day to day life I'm really not social. I'm not weird or anything. I just have a lot of things to work on and people tend to get in the way. I like working and solving problems on my own. At conventions though, I'm super outgoing and I try to have as much fun as possible with the strangers I meet. My friends gave me crap for wearing overalls, but gosh darn it they are comfortable and the pockets, SO MANY POCKETS! The portable storage possibilities are endless. This is the only pair I have, but I wish I had more. (I accept gifts.)

I got to draw a lot of sketches. A couple were for kids. I love drawing for nice kids. Snotty kids can go play in traffic, but nice polite children are great. This one little blond kid asked for a sketch of Mangle from Five Nights of Freddy. Some horrible scary video game that weird children seem to like. If I was this kid's parents I would be scared out of my mind. I had nightmares after drawing it. I got a request for a raptor. That was unexpected, but welcome. It was a secret gift for this dudes girlfriend who apparently likes terrifying, stomach slashing bird lizards. I hope they work out. This other blond kid wanted a Flash. A Barry Allen, Flash. I'm more of a Wally West guy myself, but that's just me. This kid was not nearly as scary as the other kid, but maybe he just covers it up better. Then I got a Piccolo request and I was so excited. I really love Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z. I'm super stoked for Dragon Ball Super. I hadn't drawn the character for years, but I used to draw him all the time. Plus the voice actor who played him and Vegita was there, Christopher Sabat.

Speaking of Christopher Sabat (@Chris24_Sabat), I got to meet him and he wanted my Say No To Pandas Shirt. I sent him one, but never heard back from him. I hope he got it. I did get this cool video of us yelling OVER 9000! in his Vegita voice. Always a fun thing to yell in public.

Saturday night my friends couldn't come get me (AGAIN!), so I walked back to his apartment. I had an adventure along the way. First, before I left the convention center I ran into Wonder Woman. It's actually a really Above Average cosplayer by the name of Methyl Ethyl. She made this entire costume and it looks like she stepped off the set of a movie. It's no surprise she won the costume contest. Plus she looks like she'd kick some ass if she lost. I'm sure that helped with the judging.

After that heavenly encounter I started walking. I was drawn off course by some large stone buildings. While I was gawking at some architecture I noticed some people just gawking at something else. I went over to see what it was and turns out I'm were John F. Kennedy was shot. The people were all looking at a plaque and I was just thrown back by the weight of it. This guy who really had an effect on history died here. It's just weird. I'm not the type to visit a Kill Spot. All the tourists around me seemed kind of morbid, but I'm glad I stumbled upon this little piece of history I was able to walk through. I hope I can effect history in some way, but not get shot for it.

I continued on my walk until I came across my favorite restaurant in the world. HOOTERS! I stopped off at the bar where I had some boneless wings (Daytona Beach) and a strawberry lemonade. My waitress was really nice, but kept arguing with this customer who was coming off as very rude to me. What I did next may or may not be rude also, but I'll leave that up to you.

I was still feeling the artist vibe from the day. Before I left, I pulled out this very small sketch card I had made and I meticulously drew, inked and colored my waitresses butt. I really wanted to match the skin tone right. I've been drawing stuff on these little cards, signing them and leaving them places. I don't take pictures of them or anything. It's just a little gift from me to whomever finds it. It's up to them to show the world. I left it with my waitresses tip. I tipped her a 50% tip just in case she was mad that I drew her butt. Then I went outside, took my picture between two giant Hooters and walked back to my friends apartment to go to sleep. This is the weird thing that happened that weekend. I drew Stan Lee like seven times. He was a guest of honor at the con. As I understand it, he has a little art gallery that he brings with him and adds to at all the cons he attends. (He attends a lot.) He also sells a lot of Stan stuff. He's got a small group of people who run it.

One of his guys came by with a couple blank comic book covers. He asked if I could draw Stan as Wolverine. I said yea and I did. Then every time I finished one he would come back with another. These are pictures of Stan I was drawing for Stan, so I felt a little pressure to draw them more Above Average than I normally would. My favorite one was the Howard the Duck one. I kind of know how to draw Stan by heart now, so that's cool.

I asked several times if I could meet him, but apparently I am still not worthy to be graced by Stan Lee's cosmic rays. He's gonna be at Heroes Con this weekend. Maybe I'll finally get to talk to Stan and say thanks for all the characters and stories he's given me. Probably not though. Well all and all I had a great time with my friends and drawing. Please let me know in the comments below if you have any Dallas, Texas stories or have questions about mine. If you are Stan Lee, then please come say hello sometime.

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