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  • Hate, Hate, Hates: eBay Vultures and Cell Phone Drivers.

    Colleen Coover was just showing me the thing most artists dread to see- someone eBaying a quick sketch she did at the New York Comicon for free (he’s got a bunch! Under “Wolverine Original Art Sketch”) Yeah sure, it’s yours to do with what you want, but when you clearly got a lot of them like it’s your favorite character and then just happen to auction them when the Wolverine movie hits theaters, you blow. Especially since these are usually done at the signing booth cattle-call style, and the artists only have time to dash off a quick image to keep the line moving. We all love seeing our most haphazard work online, and being peddled no less when we didn’t charge you for it. “But I paid to get in!” is the defense, I expect.

    While I’m ranting, can I please ask everyone to consider not talking on a hand-held cellphone while driving? Not only because it’s always someone like this who nearly hits me when I’m biking, but this morning as I was taking my daughter to school, I stopped at a crosswalk to let a whole group of parents and kids cross on their way as well. But the pedestrians had to jump back as two other cars coming the opposite way blew through the clearly marked crossing, and yes, both were babbling away on phones and never noticed all the context clues like me stopped, the kids in strollers and bikes, so on. And at the same time, the woman in the car behind me was surprised to have to notice my car and stop- because she was on her phone.

    It’s not like I don’t use a cell phone, but if I absolutely have to take a call while driving, I pull over or I put it on speaker and lay it down. Most people just cannot focus on their environment when holding the cell, it’s not comparable to talking to a passenger or listening to the radio. It hogs too much brainspace. Luckily, they seem to be close to outlawing it here in Oregon.

    Okay, I’ll post something non-ranty and more pleasant next time!


    Comment from Chris McAree
    Time: May 7, 2009, 12:07 pm

    It is outlawed here in Ireland, along with a ban on smoking in the workplace! Both of which, despite my dislike of our government, I am very much in favour of.

    Comment from Declan Shalvey
    Time: May 7, 2009, 12:58 pm

    Agreed! (About the mobile ban and smoking ban in Ireland…. strict policies both, but i’m glad those laws are in place)

    Laws aside, people still nevertheless talk with hand held devices. Those people are called idiots. And there’s lot of ‘em.


    Comment from Jonathan McNally
    Time: May 7, 2009, 2:35 pm

    Given studies like this one and anecdotes like the one above, I don’t much care for the idea of talking on a cell phone behind the wheel, be that phone hand-held or handless. Scary!

    To those whose defense is, “But I paid to get in,” my retort is, “Get a job.”

    Grumble, grumble. Grouse, grouse.

    Comment from Denis
    Time: May 7, 2009, 3:23 pm

    Gotta agree with you on the phone issue. It should have a blanket ban everywhere, with severe penalties.

    And I’m surprised about hearing about the art stuff… though, I guess I shouldn’t be. I’m from Ireland too (hi Chris!) and travelled all the way to SDCC 08 last summer where I had an absolute blast, and managed to fill a whole sketchbook and then some with awesome pieces from a huge variety of people.

    I can only say that I was honoured and amazed at the number of artists willing to sketch something for me for nothing! I could hardly afford to pay $50 for a sketch, nor was I willing to stand in line for an hour when I could walk about and meet 10 other fantastic people in that time.

    That sketchbook and the sketches within are mine, and I would never dream of posting a single one on eBay or anywhere similar. My children will be bored to tears of me retelling my amazing holiday when I met all these talented and wonderful people!

    Comment from Tromeritus
    Time: May 7, 2009, 4:29 pm

    That sucks for Ms. Coover. She seems like a nice lady, too. How are you going to ask someone who thinks you’re a fan to draw art on the spot, then sell said art?

    Comment from Brian
    Time: May 7, 2009, 7:17 pm

    Colleen did a sketch from me at Emerald City & I’m not selling it to anyone.

    Comment from Chris McAree
    Time: May 8, 2009, 3:57 am

    Hi Denis! I’m extremely envious of your trip to the SDCC. Although I did get to meet the man who shoulders the brunt of the responsibility for indoctrinating me into the world of comics in the first place, Mr Simon Furman, at the Dublin Comic Con, and my tattered and bruised signed copies of the original issues of Target:2006 are going nowhere!

    Comment from kjchen
    Time: May 8, 2009, 4:12 am

    Whenever an artist asks me to whom they should sign a sketch, I politely ask “Could you sign that to eBay?”

    (kidding, that’s a joke from Futurama — all my sketches are in bound sketchbooks, including some character called Interman from some up-and-coming kid named Parker)

    As for cell phones, I’m a Luddite, partly because I’m not interested in being constantly accessible, but mostly because I don’t want to turn into That Guy.

    Comment from Caroline
    Time: May 8, 2009, 7:21 am

    Sorry to hear that about Colleen’s art. I met her at NYCC and she was kind enough to sit down and do a Marvel Girl sketch for me on the spot, and she wasn’t even at a table at the moment. Of course, I treasure that sketch and would never part with it. Sorry that more people don’t “get it.”

    While I’m here, I wanted to mention how much I enjoyed the ending of ‘X-Men First Class: Finals.’ The XMFC series started coming out the same week I started buying weekly comics, and it’s been a continual treat. I especially love Jean in this book, and I thought it was perfect for the story to come back to her hopes and fears for the future. It seems like, all too often, even in ‘modern’ comics, the women get cast as auxiliary characters without their own dreams and goals and desires. Showing Jean as the character who subconsciously wished she could fight all the team’s battles for them was a great twist on the norm, and a great use of the character in general.

    I’m looking forward to everything you do in the future (enjoying the hell out of ‘Mysterius’ and ‘Exiles’ and ‘Agents of Atlas’ already) but ‘First Class’ will always have a special place in my heart — thanks so much to you and Roger and Colleen and the rest of the art team. I’ll stop gushing now!

    Comment from Parker
    Time: May 8, 2009, 9:49 am

    I’m just glad I can help unite Ireland through comics.

    Comment from Patman
    Time: May 8, 2009, 12:58 pm

    How about commissioned pieces showing up on ebay? I’ve seen that happen as well. Some artists insist on personalizing commisions (or freebies), probably to try and ward off the ebay listings. But then again, I do buy a few pieces here and there off ebay from time to time, so I can understand the demand/supply dynamics at play. And sadly, times are tough, and people have been listing a lot of original artwork on ebay of late just to raise some cash. Perhaps artists should write “Free sketch” on the free sketches they provide their fans and “fans”.

    Comment from Parker
    Time: May 8, 2009, 1:14 pm

    If they’re old commissions, I assume that someone inherited them or as you say, hard times. And then maybe someone should provide a “dedication removal” service. Or just paint it out themselves.

    Comment from Preston
    Time: May 8, 2009, 9:50 pm

    I live in Califronia where it is now against the LAW to talk on your cellphones and yet I don’t ever drive anywhere without seeign someone holdign a phone to their ear while driving to drive. It’s ridiculous.

    Comment from odessasteps magazine
    Time: May 9, 2009, 4:55 am

    Until lots of people start actually getting tickets for talking on their phones, I doubt people will curb the behavior even a little.

    95% of the time, I turn my phone off when I’m driving.