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This Saturday and Sunday at 10 a.m., Sacramento's Scottish Rite Center will open its doors for Indy Euphoria, "Sacramento's Vinyl Toy, D.I.Y. & Indy Comix Show."
The event will feature live art, a charity auction, film screenings, hundreds of vendors, celebrated comic book guests, seminars and workshops.
"Indy Comix" is an umbrella term for projects that fall outside the realm of mainstream superhero comics. According to Indy Euphoria founder, Anthony Leano, it encompasses comics that are "alternative, underground, independents or small press, self-published, new brow, and low brow." The art represented by Indy Euphoria steps away from the mass-produced and toward that of a singular, handmade, self-taught and do-it-yourself culture.
Sacramentan Leano has been working at comic conventions and shows since he was a young teen and has witnessed the evolution of the Sacramento comic scene.
"It is quite a thriving scene these days," he said. "There is a local Drink & Draw meeting every third Thursday around 8 p.m. at The Fox & Goose downtown where several comic creators meet and get inspired."
Leano co-writes the comic book "Brains" about the town of Creepsville and its mad inhabitants. In extension, Leano founded From The Land Beyond publications to unite horror and science fiction-inspired minds in celebration of the genres' representations in films, novels, magazines and comics.
"I have a deep love for these mediums and want to share it with my community," Leano said.
Indy Euphoria's guest speakers include several winners of the Ignatz Award, a significant recognition of achievement in the comics and cartooning world. Many Sacramento area creators will be in attendance, including Mike Hampton and Dan Brereton, who will be hosting a "Hot Zombie Chicks/Homicide Girls" drawing session with live undead zombie models on Saturday at 4:30 p.m.
"I'm excited to see all of the workshops!," Leano said. "Most of the guests are either friends or extended family. I am just happy to see them all under the same roof."
Creative displays will range from film to plush monster-inspired childrens' accessories. There will be over a hundred booths at Indy Euphoria, with showcases from local vendors and those who made the trip from Portland and Los Angeles.
Local talent and creator of Top Shelf webcomic "The Blue Kid," Jed Alexander, is one of the guests showcasing prints and mini-comics this weekend.
"Indy Euphoria has its share of Sacramento area artists like Dan Brereton, but Jim Woodring and Jeffrey Brown are well known in the alternative press, and Nate Powell is an up-and-comer," Alexander said. "It looks like Indy Euphoria is making a serious bid to take a more prominent role in the national alternative comics scene. We're particularly fortunate to have Jim Woodring, who is among that small group of cartoonists who came on the scene in the late '80s and early '90s who were great inspirations to my generation of cartoonists. Jim's amazing."
Event workshops include "How to Silkscreen Your Own T-Shirt" (participants are encouraged to bring their own), vinyl toy customization and painting techniques, and "Design Your Own Comic or Mini-Zine," with more panels to be announced. There will be film screenings of artist and DIY culture documentaries as well as film adaptions of independent comics. A charity auction in support of Save Our Water Sacramento begins Saturday at 3 p.m. with art pieces up for bid.
Webcomic artist and creator of Pocket Kitten Comics, M.Niels, got involved in the scene after attending local comic artist events posted on Empire's Comic Vault's website.
"I decided to involve myself with the local art scene," Neils said. "When I went to the Sacramento Comic Con in December, a few artists told me I should get a table at Indy Euphoria. So I said 'Why not?'
To potential attendees, Leano had this to say:
"Take your time and enjoy the show to its fullest," he said. "There are hidden gems at each booth that are easy to miss. Take the time and appreciate the guests by checking out their artistic flare. Oh, and wear deodorant."