Acen was way back in May, so things are a bit fuzzy now, but it was a great time as usual, thanks to the fine people that run Anime Central. Did some sketching as you can see above, alot more naughty sketches than normal, don't know how much of that I can take. :P The most interesting one for me was the Creature from the Black Lagoon commission, I normally don't draw monsters so it was a good challenge. The others are assorted CoH characters, and some naughty pics of Rune Soldier Louie, Gold Digger, and Soul Calibur 3. Naughty Pics somewhat censored, sorry.
This year the con also had a lot more Japanese artists that I've seen in previous years of late. Kenichi Sonoda made a return visit to Chicago, but he was kinda under the weather the first couple days. Also showing up was Susumu Sakurai, a former producer for the translated Raijin Manga Anthology, and big Powerpuff Girl fan. He was instrumental in flying me out to Anime Expo Tokyo back in 2004. Sakurai, and Hiroshi Tada (I think it was), an associate editor at Afternoon (a monthly manga anthology) bought a few PPG and other original pages from me as mementos. Jeff was lucky enough to trade sketches with Mamoru Yokota, an extraordinary artist who just sketches out pretty much anything he wants to without laying it out first. He also sat down and folded up some paper, then cut little sections out of them, unfolded it to reveal a Gundam head. Craaazy!
Mamoru also works in the hentai (adult) game industry, an inspiration to be sure ;p. To twist the knife even more, Jeff got a Yoko (Gurren Lagaan) sketch in trade, one the latests anime series I've enjoyed. Lucky guy!
After the con was over, I was invited to join some of the Japanese guests (no Sonoda) for dinner at the Rosemont Hooters, where they proceeded to eat Mass Quantities(!), sampling wings, oysters, and hamburgers. It was really a lot of food. I humbly nibbled on my chicken breast sandwich... Before we left, they got alot of photos with the waitresses and hostesses (really cute), which I thought they normally didn't allow, but you know, those wacky Japanese tourists get away with anything. ;p
We then returned to the hotel for the Dead Dog Party, a get together for the staff to unwind and get toasty. Mamoru did a bucketload of sketches that ppl just grabbed up, and even I was pressed into service, doing some PPG sketches for some of the staff and the Japanese guests. One I did for Hiroshi Tada, said was going up in the lobby of Kodansha. I hope it turned out okay, because I was kinda tipsy at the time when I did it.
So all in all, a really great time. Many thanks to Mike for inviting us. Great seeing Taka and his ukulele again. I'd have more pics of this con, Hooters and the Dead Dog Party, but I found out that my camera didn't work anymore right before the show.