Meeting People At Cons!

Generally I feel a little weird posting stuff like this, as if my fan-base were so extensive that I needed a press-release or something, (which it isn’t by any stretch) but I know that some people are much happier having handy guides for this sort of thing, so what the heck. This, while rather long, is as much to apologize in advance for my failures as anything else. *grin*

1) If you’re at Anthrocon, come by the dealer’s table and say hi, by all means! I do not bite, and while I am somewhat shy, meeting fans/readers/friends/etc is a great delight. Talk to me! Don’t worry that you may sound like a weirdo or a squeeing fan–believe me, I’ve probably heard weirder, and a little squee warms the artist’s soul. If you have any question, ask, ask! I’m delighted to talk about art at great length. I may conduct sales during the conversation, mind you, but I’m still happy to talk about art, comics, publishing, etc.

2) I will almost certainly not know who you are by name. I am excruciatingly bad with names. If you shake my hand, and my eyes are blank, mention your LJ handle. Even that may not do it, honestly–it’s not that you’re boring or uninteresting or that I don’t care, it’s that I probably know you as a sort of visual pictograph of LJ handle and icon, and hearing it spoken just doesn’t activate the same parts of the brain. We may chat all the time in the blog comments, I may know exactly who you are, and the arrangement of syllables just won’t ring a bell. I’m very sorry about this, it seems to be neural hardwiring and not subject to willpower.

This ties in to:
2A) I have pretty bad hearing. If I seem to be ignoring you, please consider that I may simply not be hearing you, and I will almost certainly ask you to repeat yourself a few times during the conversation–it’s in no way meant to be rude, I’m just deaf as a post, and the dealer’s room din doesn’t make it any easier. Speak up and don’t be afraid to repeat yourself.

3) I will not remember your name ten minutes from now. Again, this is not a reflection on you, and I’m really sorry, but I am just unbelieveably bad with putting names with faces, and Anthrocon’s kind of a nightmare in that sense. I have a hard time remembering even one or two names-to-faces at a social event–several hundred just overloads me completely. Unless you are exceedingly physically distinctive, while I may have a frantic memory of having met somebody that–looked like you–but was it–?–but–oh, crap, what was her name–?–did we even meet?–shit, maybe James knows–? I probably won’t remember, or if I think I do, I got the name wrong. It’s not that you’re not cool, but my mind is like a sieve. But feel free to introduce yourself several times. I will be happy to meet you each time!

4) If you have a sketchbook, you can skip names completely and say “I’m the one with the chicken sketchbook” and I will recognize you instantly. My memory for faces and names is crappy, but my memory for art is adamantine. The downside of this is that I will know you forever as Chicken Sketchbook. On the other hand, this may not be a bad thing.

5) I’ll sign anything, happily. If you buy art and want it signed, and for some reason I haven’t offered, just say the word. I will be equally delighted to sign a Digger collection or an It Made Sense At The Time purchased over at the Sofawolf table, and I will probably draw a tiny wombat in it as well. Don’t be afraid to ask.

6) Unfortunately, I probably can’t hang out. Again, no reflection on you, but I generally have scads of sketchbook homework to do–this is a working trip for me!–so I’m usually not available for long, and my dinner plans are often made well in advance (quite possibly at a previous Con!) Feel free to ask, it’s entirely possible that I don’t have plans, but please don’t be hurt if the answer is no–it’s not that I think you’re a weirdo, or would sooner chew my own limbs off than talk to you, but I’m gonna be up until 2 AM drawing stuff and my conversation will consist of “Ungh. Huh. Mmm. Shit, has anybody got any sepia?”

7) Fellow artists, I am delighted to do print trades! Swing by and ask! This goes for people who do other media, too–I’ve traded prints for jewelry, T-shirts, etc, and I’m always glad to barter.

8) Fellow artists, I won’t remember your names, either, but if you show me your art, the odds are very good that I will go “OH! Of course!” and things will snap into focus. Or, if I don’t recognize you by name, you can rest assured that sometime in the small hours of the night, I will sit bolt upright and say “SHIT! Was that Spunky, with the sheep!?”* and be wracked with guilt that now you think I don’t like your art.

9) Fursuits don’t freak me out. Feel free to come by while in costume. If, however, you don’t talk while in costume, we will wind up having a conversation in mime, since I find other people’s muteness contaigous. This could be amusing for all involved, granted.

10) If you don’t see the art you like, ask for it. I have CDs full of art, and a printer in my room–the odds are excellent we can get it for you. (I still have a fond memory of the guy who came up to me at a Con a few years ago and rattled off a set of file names. He had his art in less than a minute. You don’t need to do that, but it was funny anyway.)

Whew! Hopefully that helps. I really do like meeting people at Cons, the fans are tied with the art high for the best part of art, and I’m really looking forward to seein’ y’all.

*This is a true story.

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