gencon 2011 – art show

Here I am finally getting around to doing a bit of GenCon recapping. I’ll start off with the art show. The art show is basically just a large section of the exhibit hall where tables of artists, both amateur and professional, display their art, sell prints, take commissions (stuff like signing playmats, doing custom alterations to TCG cards, etc.), and meet their fans. Being a Magic player, I generally bring a bunch of Magic cards to get signed, since there are 10-15 artists known for Magic work at GenCon. Since I am a huge fan of Wayne Reynolds (Magic, D&D, Pathfinder), I brought a ginormous stack of cards to get signed. On Thursday, I picked out the ones I definitely wanted signed (I brought like 300 cards), about a stack of 80, to Wayne’s table. Wayne is a pretty cool guy, he’s pretty relaxed and mellow. When I brought my stack, he laughed and commented on how it was his largest stack yet (although that was still day 1 of the convention). While he was signing, I brought up that this was only a small portion of the cards I brought, with art by Wayne, and I could show him the rest of the giant stack if he’d like. He paused, then told me how there was some sort of underground artists bet to see who would get the largest stack of cards to have signed on Saturday afternoon. He urged me to bring the stack on Saturday instead.

I amiably complied, bringing the rest of the 200+ cards on Saturday, at which point in time he laughed again. Now, I wasn’t actually seriously expecting him to sign them all, so I thought we’d have a good laugh and then move on. However, Wayne looked to the sides furtively, then asked me, “With your permission, would you mind if I did something a bit fun with these cards?” Interested, I said “Sure,” and he smiled. “I’ve probably seen stacks of cards larger than this, and every time, I just wanted to say to the kid, ‘Oh, you want me to sign all these? You want ’em all signed? OK, well I’m going to sign them all just like this!!!'” and he pantomimed turning the pile of cards sideways and signing all along the side of the pile. I thought this was hilarious, and gave him the OK. So, here’s my giant pile of Wayne Reynolds-art Magic cards, all signed!

So after the show was over, Wayne said he wanted me to leave my e-mail and mailing address and he’d send me a little token of his appreciation, for letting him get a little publicity out of my cards. Guess what! That just arrived today!

Wayne sent me one of those thin card binders made for every set. This one was the Shards of Alara binder, with Ajani Vengeant on the front and Vein Drinker on the back.

Inside the front cover, Wayne also put a little doodle, which was pretty neat:

This was probably the highlight of my GenCon this year. The only other story of note was that, while waiting at Matt Stewart’s table to get cards signed, the guy ahead of me asked him to doodle on his Windwright Mage playmat. He had gotten a bunch of other dragon/demon mugshots drawn from other artists, and there was just one obvious spot left to get filled in. While watching Matt draw another demon head, I looked at the table and saw a sign saying “Doodles/Alterations: $5-$10.” After he finished the drawing, the kid gave him a ton of praise, “Aw man, this is so cool, thank you so much!”… and then walked right off. Both Matt and I turned our heads and watched him leave for about 10-15 seconds. I asked him, “So uh, wasn’t he supposed to, you know, pay you for that?” He’s like “…Yeah. This stuff happens from time to time, can’t get upset every time it does.” I gave Matt a tip for signing my cards in the other kid’s place :/ Sucks for Matt.


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