Before I dive into Wine-Book Wednesdays, I feel like I should explain exactly what this is all about.
While I’m not sure how the practice got started, one common practice at a comic book convention is that artists might draw a quick sketch for you. It’s an incredibly generous thing to do, really; their art is their livelihood and they’re creating a piece of it just for you. (Some artists don’t feel comfortable with the practice and don’t; others have stopped due to a combination of rude fans and the fact that some slightly conniving poeple have taken their convention sketches and sold them on eBay.) As someone who can’t draw, I’m always amazed at just what people will create.
My initial sketchbook which I began bringing to shows back in 1999 was a “generic” sketchbook; whatever the artist’s fancy was what ended up on the page. But as I went to more and more shows, I began to see some really clever “theme” sketchbooks, where all of the art was centered around a character, or item, or concept, and so forth. I remember seeing some friends’s sketchbooks and just loving what I saw, like Johanna Draper Carlson’s Max Rebo book, or Karon Flage’s nightmares book. So in 2001, I decided I would start my own theme sketchbook. Except, of course, I was missing one thing. A theme.
It was when I was shopping for the actual book that inspiration hit. I like the wirebound sketchbooks because the artist can lay them flat without worrying about the other side flipping back over and hitting them, and they just seem a bit classy. So I’d picked out the book, and was standing in line to pay for it when I saw the corkboard covers in the book and it suddenly hit me.
Corkboard. Corks. Wine. I quite like wine. So why not… a wine-themed sketchbook?
And so, the wine-book was born. I first took it to Mid-Ohio-Con in November 2001, and the book has gone strong ever since then. It’s actually almost full at this point, which both excites and saddens me. I love seeing what people come up with when given the simple request of wine; as you’ll see, over the years it’s gone in all sorts of different directions.
The idea is that I’ll post one or two images every Wednesday (the nice thing about WordPress is that I’ve already cued up all of the entries for this month), and with them I’ll talk about where I got the art and from whom. I hope you like looking at this art as much as I’ve enjoyed receiving it. Because trust me, I treasure every single one of these pieces.
I feel like I should be sipping a glass of wine as I post these, but who am I kidding? I’d be terrified that I would splatter it all over the book.
(For people coming here specifically for the wine art, you can see all of the entries posted to date at any given moment by using this link.)