Thanks everyone for supporting the show during its run, but I feel it’s time to officially close the Facebook page and website for the Paint & Pixel Festival.
The show was mainly my own personal and financial endeavor to bring a top-notch artist-centric show for comics and book illustration to the Pioneer Valley. Sadly, after the first two years, the original venue space in Northampton became unavailable. I also found my free time waning, and as a mostly one-person show, I lacked the time to continue to produce and grow the festival. Fortunately, there are now several other shows to fill the void, and I hope you will continue to support these shows and artists in Paint and Pixel’s absence.
I am especially grateful to Michael Dow, Colin Panetta, and Sean Wang who were instrumental in the festival’s success. Michael Dow runs the local comic store Modern Myths and secured featured guests. Colin Panetta of comics duo Mysterious Transmissions ran the education initiative that brought comic professionals to classrooms across the Pioneer Valley and produced the very popular series of children’s comics workshops at Modern Myths. While I am sad Colin is moving away from this area, I am excited for the next chapter in his life. Last, but not least, comic artist Sean Wang helped with every logistical aspect of the show including creating the logo, posters, floor plans, and the awesome show booklets that profiled every artist at the show.
Though Paint & Pixel was rooted in the idea to showcase the talent in the immediate area, it was humbling that artists from other states were enthusiastic about exhibiting as well. Con season continues and you can still catch fine talent at these shows:
- Bing Con – August 23 – Springfield, MA (THIS SATURDAY!!!)
- Granite State Comicon – September 13-14 – Manchester, NH
- M.I.C.E. – October 4-5 – Cambridge, MA
- Vermont Comiccon – October 25-26 – Burlington, VT
Next year, consider visiting the mixture of big conventions and smaller artist-centric shows throughout New England such as Boston Comic Con, ConnectiCon, Hartford Comic Con, Maine Comics Arts Festival (MeCAF), and Rhode Island Comic Con. Don’t just visit the main retailer floor—walk Artist Alley and get to know the person behind the art you admire, whether you were a fan before the show or a new convert. In my experience, and one of the reasons I love the comics community and wanted to produce Paint & Pixel, you’ll find the artists friendly, open, and accessible.
Don’t forget Free Comic Book Day is the first Saturday in May and if you’re interested in a career in comic illustration, check out The Center for Cartoon Studies in Vermont where some amazing artists have emerged.
Heartfelt thanks to Michael, Colin, Sean, the numerous sponsors, show volunteers, attendees, exhibiting artists, and special guests for helping Paint & Pixel thrive. It was a true honor to bring together the fans and our small, super-talented comics and book artist community.
I’m sure I’ll see you at a comic convention near and far.