ape2016

APE, APE, APE…

Christopher Uncategorized 0 Comments

So let’s talk about APE.  I think you can tell by the previous post how excited we were for this show.  That being said, APE this year was a massive disappointment.  There were far less exhibitors than last year, the space of the show floor had been cut by about a third, there were less rows and even with all these cuts, there were still empty booths. Attendance was significantly reduced compared to last year as well. So, as you could expect, our sales were about half of last year.  Are sales important?  Well… kinda?   We don’t expect to get rich at these shows.  But, we’ve spent money on printing, paying artists, paying letterers, paying colorists, shipping, travel, hotels, food, gas, tolls, etc.  Plus, we’re giving up our weekends, going to work exhausted on Mondays, and typically standing all day on hard, concrete floors trying to keep positive energy up and talk to people about our products.  So sales not only help offset some of these costs, they also tell us how engaged people were with our products.  It’s good to feel liked.  It helps those early Monday mornings, those long Sunday night drives back from shows.  So yeah, pretty disappointed by APE.  But here at Ghost Thunder, we don’t like to be negative, so here are some ways that APE can be saved.

  1. PROMOTION!!!  Advertise the show, hire someone with experience to promote it.  
  2. GUESTS!!!  Tied into promoting the event, have some big name, indie creators there to draw a crowd.  Regular cons have wrestlers, actors, mainstream comic names there to bring in attendees.  It works.  Spend a little money, bring in some creators that people want to meet and attendance will improve.
  3. CURATE!!!  I shouldn’t see ‘Pixel Art’ and ‘Wall of Prints’ type booths at APE.  Just no.
  4. VENUE!!!  A giant, half empty building does not set a good mood for a show.  And when you have panels off site, it gives people a reason to leave the con floor, and they may not come back.  Also, don’t have the show the same weekend as NYCC, which has one of the best artist alley experiences of any of the cons in the whole country.  That’s just dumb.  San Jose can host a terrific and well attended con (see SVCC), it’s not the city, it’s what you do with it.

We really hope something changes with APE, we do love this show.  But as it stands now, we will not be back unless there are significant changes made.

-David

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Ghost Thunder @ APE

Christopher Uncategorized 0 Comments

APE!

No, not warning you about King Kong.  It’s Alternate Press Expo time!  We absolutely love this show.  It’s the one show, all year, that’s tailored exactly to what we do here at GhostThunder.  The entire show is pretty much all indie creators.  What that means is you won’t see Deadpool prints, almost no cosplay at all (even though we LOVE cosplay–see our store for proof!) and none of the big 2 books.  That stuff is cool, but having a con where all the attendees are there specifically for the things you do…that’s amazing.  It’s inspiring!  We’ve met a ton of friends there and actually earned a couple of fans.  The only bad thing about this show is how much money we end up spending on books, prints and goodies that the other exhibitors are selling.

-David

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SFCC Wrap-up and CrockerCon!

Christopher Uncategorized 0 Comments

This are a whirlwind here at GhostThunder HQ so this blog is going to do double duty!

First: San Francisco Comic Con wrap up. Man, what a great show! After some initial load in issues (seriously, 200 bucks to cart our stuff to our booth?!), the show went well. Tons of engaged fans and positive energy all around. It helped that our booth mates, Dave and Nicole, are both energetic and positive people. They kept things fun and feisty. When you are exhibiting, it can be very draining, especially for a three day show! We really appreciate every single sale we make and even every person who says “that’s cool” as they walk by. So thank you SF, see you next year!

Second:  Crocker Con. Oh boy, this one means a lot to us. If you’ve never heard of it (and let’s be honest, you probably haven’t) it’s a small, local con at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento. On a Thursday night. For 4 hours. I know what you’re thinking, “Dave, what’s the big deal?”. Well, Crocker Con was GhostThunder’s first convention. So this marks our anniversary. Our third! Wow, the time flies!  And it’s a terrific show, full of people who wouldn’t normally go to a convention, but are genuinely interested in art and the artistic process. And there is booze. It is also a curated show focusing on local, Sacramento creators so it’s a great place to network, find a support group of other local comics folks. We really love, love this show! If you’re close to Sacramento you NEED to get to this show!

-David

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Ghost Thunder @ San Francisco Comic Con!

Christopher Uncategorized 0 Comments

This upcoming Labor Day weekend we’ll be tabling at the inaugural San Francisco Comic Con.  I know what you’re thinking, big whoop GhostThunder, I’ve seen you guys at every freakin con in the last two years!  Well, hold the phone!  We have some very, very special booth mates.  The AMAZING Dave Baker and the TERRIFIC Nicole Goux!  They are both talented creators who have produced multiple comics together and separately. In addition to comics like Suicide Forest and Teenage Switchblade (which recently had a smashingly successful Kickstarter) they’ll have buttons, stickers and other goodies.  We’re honored and excited to be sharing our booth with such a great creative duo.  So now there is double to reason to come visit GhostThunder at San Francisco Comic Con.  See you there!

-David

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Stockton-Con Wrap up

Christopher Uncategorized 0 Comments

So, it’s the Monday after Stockton-Con and to fight the post con blues I’m going to go over the highlights of the weekend. Even though sales weren’t exactly what we expected, there were a ton of positives about the show.

  1. The con itself. This show gets MAJOR foot traffic. Lots of people to talk to, cosplayers galore…it’s a building full of energy. The show is very well organized and staffed. And the volunteers! Constantly bringing water, offering to watch the booth if you need a break. I’ve never experienced that at a con before and it was a real pleasure. It also runs like a big show with panels and guests (especially if you’re into wrestling), signings and photo ops. But it doesn’t price gouge like the bigger shows (*cough wizard world cough*). We’ve been as attendees before and can tell you from experience that it’s a fun show to attend.
  2. Jon Williams. No, not that one. This one: https://www.instagram.com/beefymcstudley. Jon is a good friend of GhostThunder and he shared our space doing sketches, selling prints and generally increasing the awesomeness of the weekend. Keep an eye on him, that kid is going places!
  3. Old and new friends. Cons are always great places to meet fellow creators and catch up with others that you’ve known for years. People like Ramon Villalobos, Eben Burgoon, Felicia Ann, Yosiell Lorenzo and new friends like Matt Harding and Jay Fabares make cons a much more enjoyable event for us.
  4. Wrasslin! As you can probably tell from the items in our store or if you follow us on instagram or Twitter, wrestling is a pretty big deal to us. And this show had some of our favorites of all time as guests. The Wolfpack! Honky Tonk Man! Too sweet!
  5. Tacos! So, here at GhostThunder we’re pretty big on traditions. One of which (and my personal favorite) is that as the day is winding down during a con, Christopher starts researching where our post con meal is going to be. We really don’t eat while we work our booth, we’re focused on talking to as many people as possible and hopefully selling a couple of things. So by the end of the day, we’re all pretty starving. And Christopher takes his job VERY seriously. It’s not just what is close, he’s doing some real internet forensics, digging deep into the comments, finding the truth! It’s as close to a superpower as I’ve ever seen in real life. And last night he rolled a natural 20, leaped over all the tall buildings and hit one out of the park (so many metaphors!). He led us to a place called Tacos Chapala and it truly ended the con on a high note. Perfect selection of salsas, delicious meats with excellently prepared beans and rice. I can’t stop thinking about the food! Makes me want to go back to Stockton today. A great meal let’s you forget if you had a bad day or celebrate if it was good one. That’s how we do it at GhostThunder!

So that’s Stockton-Con. Hope to see you there next year!
-David

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Ghost Thunder @ Stockton-Con!

Christopher Uncategorized 0 Comments

For the first time Ghost Thunder will be tabling at Stockton Con! The convention is celebrating it’s fifth year and it’s not slowing down!

We’ve enjoyed Stockton Con as attendees in the past, but this time we’re behind the booth and ready to art and sell.

Joining us will be artist Jon Williams selling his Lil Beefies collection and dishing out great comics talk!

Come by and see us at booth AA50 and AA51 (2 booths!)

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What’s Ghost Thunder?

Christopher Uncategorized 0 Comments

“What’s Ghost Thunder?” That’s probably the question we hear the most at conventions. Well, the “who” is easy, just check out our bios. But, the “what”, is harder. What are we trying to do with GhostThunder? What are we trying to achieve?  In the simplest, most distilled form, we’re trying to make cool stuff. Things that we are passionate about. Whether that be art prints of wrestlers or Pokémon, comics about relationships or space battles, tee shirts we’d love to wear or pins we’d be proud to display. We’re going to make stuff we think is awesome. Then, hopefully, you’ll dig it too.

So take a look around, let us know what you think about what Ghost Thunder is.

-David