CAKE + the ALA

the ALA (American Library Association) convention in Anaheim was sizable but pleasant, and i met many nice librarians who showed plenty of enthusiasm. it was also good to see my publishers and editors, even though i hadn't expected to see any!

above- sarah at candlewick, blue apple books
Traci Todd (VIZ) + me
moderator gene yang with
raina telgemeier, derek kirk kim
faith erin hicks + thien pham
 i tabled near the graphic novel stage and got to hear lots of the panel discussions. i even got to be on one! Eva Volin (see yellow sweater) gathered some of us to discuss women in comics, day 3 of the convention.
our panel moderated by Eva Volin with
Robin Brenner (as Effie), faith erin hicks, gina gagliano,
me (i didn't really need to duck!), jen wang + cecile castelluci

Jen Wang and i shared a table at the convention
then hit up Umami Burger, Proof, Bigfoot Lodge
and the Cat Sanctuary at Santé D'or after

a lot of the OG artnight crew were there, so we took a group photo!
from the left back-clockwise: jason shiga, gene yang
derek kirk kim, lark pien, jen wang + thien pham


the week before ALA i was in Chicago for CAKE, a new and really terrific indie comics fest. 
i flew out with comiker and publisher Rina Ayuyang, who graciously shared her luxurious room downtown. i also got to stay with trubble town papa Jeremy Tinder and his awesome artist wife Rachael Niffenegger later in the week, and BOY! was it fun!!!

Rina and i with our pretty plates
at Blackbird restaurant, worth every penny

our handmade anthology Lollygag debuted at CAKE
Chicago Alternative Comics Expo

the elevator vestibules at our hotel were ginormous.
i felt like i was in a aronofsy/ truffaut film, in bad color

we had just a tiny time to go out and see some sights. we made it to the art institute and millenium park. rina wanted to go on the boat tour, but we just couldn't squeeze it in. i blame my fixation with the Euro Cup. i was looking for TVs harder than i was looking for boats.

chicago public art is great - you don't even
have to see the art to know it. just look at how engaged
people are.

the bean! (the Cloud Gate by Anish Kapoor)

in the evenings we had some really good eats. we had BBQ by Quimby's with Calvin Wong Hellen Jo and co., pub burgers with Dan Zettwoch, Leslie and Kevin Huizenga. i drank an awful lot of templeton rye. Thai food on the last evening was questionable but we were in excellent company (a group too long to list, but my nearest neighbors were Gabrielle Bell, Tom Kazyinski, Anne Koyama and her cousin Robin).

after the CAKE festival, rina had to say good-bye and return to the west coast. it was a sad moment. i spent the next few days going to the zoo and seeing cartoonist friends. i met Trubble Clubbers Laura Park, Nate Beaty, Aaron Renier, Lille Carre... so many people who think in pictures, it's great!!! it may seem that i am verbally articulate, but in fact it takes great effort for me to put thoughts into words (for example, an average blog post takes half a day to construct). thinking in pictures is a lot more comfortable for me.

it was very hot at the Lincoln Park zoo. still, some
animals managed to make the best of it. 
Aaron Renier at his drawing table
a man happy at work
my favorite Trubble Club jam

Jeremy and Rachael were the best, it was so nice to meet them and spend time in their neighborhood. They showed great me great curio shops, as well as good eats (Svea and Hopleaf). their place was inspiring: filled with books and art. Rachael talked about contemporary work (punching concrete!) and residencies. Jeremy talked about teaching, being a Trubble Clubber, and making installations. Right before my flight to LA they walked me down a pretty architectural street in their neighborhood. they lead very un-boring lives, these two.

Jeremy and Rachael at Svea

my own time in LA-

the ALA was in anaheim, but i stayed in silverlake when we weren't on the clock. jen wang and her boyfriend generously made space, and their visiting cat Stella even slept with me the first night (yay!). we had a great evening at the Observatory at Griffith Park on the night of the summer solstice. another night we got a bug in our bonnet and made a really good team dinner - curried veggies, baba ghanoush, arugula salad from the garden. let me tell you after eating just meat for a week, this was the best meal EVER. 

that said, we still had burgers at Umami, pastries at Proof, drinks at Bigfoot. i need to wear a tent now. with jen always feels like a real vacation, but is also like being home. thanks, jen. you're the best.

tasty treats from Proof bakery

Dan and Jen at one of my favorite stores, Skylight Books

after being with Stella my cat Eames
back at home looked super tubby.

i'm back in the bay area for a week and then it's off to san diego and my residency just outside of sequoia national park. just enough time to watch a few more euro cup games and catch up on computer projects. it's been a good summer so far.


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