Welcome to 2015! I started the year at a brand new con in Florida, Shock Pop ComicCon which was located in Ft. Lauderdale, about 3 hours away from Orlando. Once again, still surprised how many cons have popped up in Florida over the last few years and there will be a second new con in Ft. Lauderdale in October, Wizard World.
Though a smaller con, I was able to add a few more sketches and writers to my collection...and even started a few new "collections".
Amazing Spider-man Writers (19 in total so far)
The extreme highlight of this con for me was to meet Gerry Conway, who was the writer that turned me onto comics many years ago. He wrote classic stories for all of my favorite characters as will be evidenced below, including the famous "The Night Gwen Stacy Died" issue of Amazing Spider-man 121 which (in my opinion) changed the innocence of comics. In addition to Gerry's signature (for which I had saved room at the top of the issue cover) I added Joe Kelly to my cover (and he wanted to sign right above Stan Lee).
Daredevil Writers (14 in total so far) I was able to add three writers to the DD Writer collection this time including Gerry Conway, Joe Kelly and Scott Lobdell (who added a quick sketch on the back of the cover).
Daredevil Artists (33 sketches so far)
For my additions to my "Daredevil sketch collection", I was able to only add one artist, Cully Hamner, who I had received just a signature on the cover from a few years ago. He was more than happy to sketch for me and his sketch below (bottom one) has quickly become one of my favorites.
Spider-man "Foes" Artists (12 sketches so far)
No DD villains this con, but I did get to add two villains to this collection. The Spider-man villains are done by Spider-man artists as they sketch their favorite villain (as long as their favorite is not the same as another artist!) or a villain that they have drawn many times over the years. I find consistently that the artists love this concept of being able to choose who they can sketch,
The sketches I received were The Green Goblin (my favorite villain and glad someone finally chose him) by Todd Nauck and a Venom sketch by Spider-man artist Mike Deodato, Jr.
Thor Writers (1 so far)
I was only able to add one Thor writer to my blank "Thor" #1 variant that of Gerry Conway (notice a trend?).
Thor (3 sketches so far)
I was able to add two new Thor sketches to my Thor collection - those of Simon Bisley (the larger one) and Mike Deodato, Jr. who did the quick head sketch at the bottom.
Inhumans (3 writers so far)
With the announced "Inhumans" movie coming from Marvel in a few years, I decided to catch up on the titles featuring this team that have been released over the years (starting in the 1970's). As I have enjoyed this collecting of signatures and sketches hobby, I decided to take the blank variant of the newest series "Inhuman" and have Inhumans past and present writers sign on the inside cover and have artists who have drawn the Inhumans over the years each sketch their favorite Inhuman (a la Spidey and DD villains above) on the front and back. There were no artists in attendance so I started with three writers who have worked on the Inhumans over the years - Gerry Conway, Paul Jenkins and Andy Lanning.
Captain America (1 writer so far)
Lastly, one more classic Marvel hero has been added to my writer and sketch collection, Captain America! Here is another example of a series I have read casually over the years and just got back into it. As a result, I thought it would be fun to seek out these creators. At this con, only one writer, Gerry Conway, was in attendance (again, see I mentioned he wrote a lot). Lots more to come on this blank variant as the 2015 cons continue.
That's all for now...next con will be my annual trip to Megacon here in Orlando in April...more will be added for sure!