February 11, 2021


Sal Abbinanti Talks The Hostage, Alex Ross, Bill Sienkiewicz and more!

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Kenric Regan John Horsley
Sal Abbinanti Talks The Hostage, Alex Ross, Bill Sienkiewicz and more!
Spoiler Country
Sal Abbinanti Talks The Hostage, Alex Ross, Bill Sienkiewicz and more!

Feb 11 2021 | 01:05:16


Show Notes

Kenric got to sit down and talk with the incredible Sal Abbinanti about his new kickstarter The Hostage, working with Alex Ross and Bill Sienkiewicz and so much more!

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Interview scheduled by Jeffery Haas

Theme music by Good Co Music:


Sal Abbinanti Interview

Kenric: [00:00:00] All right, guys. We’re back in today on the show. Well, it’s Sal  and you may not know Sal’s name, but you know his cohorts and you’ve been around him, especially if you are a con person, like, you know, we are here and you’ve gone to San Diego Comic-Con and you’ve gone to New York Comic-Con and you see those big displays of Alex Roswell sounds a big part of that.

[00:00:23] And he’s got a amazing Kickstarter with one of my favorite countries in the whole wide world. Brazil and it’s called the hostage and I sipped seriously implore you to go and Kickstarter put in the hostage, put inside and it’s going to come right up and check it out. Cause it looks fantastic. Sal, welcome to the show, man.

[00:00:45] Sal: [00:00:45] Thank you. Thanks for having me, man. Yeah. You know, it’s just, this is like our little thing with comics, man. We gotta look out for each other.

[00:00:54] Kenric: [00:00:54] Yeah, exactly. So you got. The hostas going on right now, I’m going to bring it up on my side so I can see it and talk better about it. , where did this come from?

[00:01:05] What’s it about? And how were you inspired?

[00:01:08]Sal: [00:01:08] I w I, the hostage in a nutshell, it’s just, it’s, it feels with the homeless kids, like the street kids that live in Rio de Janeiro and the favelas. What. That for Vela is what they have to go through. There’s no place to eat. There’s no place to sleep. They, they sleep in, you know, in the streets, they live in the garbage, it’s just, it’s a terrible existence and yeah, they’re being murdered daily by the, by the killing squads that are kind of organized by the locals.

[00:01:35] To eradicate these carrots. And so I, it was inspired by some time I spent in Brazil when I was in college and I saw, you know, these kids firsthand and it just, it just some things I just could not see and it it broke my heart. And so I just, I combined it with, you know, you, you, you see the different varieties of religions that are practiced in Brazil, crumble bond to the Bluetooth and all this stuff from the indigenous tribes.

[00:02:01] And. The African religions that were brought there from the slave. So I felt there was a story there that I wanted to tell without creating this American superhero narrative of LA. I know I’ll put it in the favela and have it be ghostwriter only in Brazil. I mean that, wasn’t my, my motivation. My style was not, I wanted to go into front door and it wasn’t going to happen.

[00:02:27] So my style was not the house style at Marvel and DC. It was more of an indie style. Right. So the only way I was going to put a book out was to do it myself. That’s awesome. And when I knew I wanted to do a book, I, you know, I said, look, man, you got to do something personal. If it’s gonna resonate. So this was something that was near and dear to me, my experience in Brazil.

[00:02:49] Kenric: [00:02:49] That’s awesome. When did you tour the favelas when you were there?

[00:02:54] Sal: [00:02:54] A little bit. I mean, I got, you know, I went there just, you know, the full of shit college kid. We went to drink and have fun and it was going to be like, You know, I was going to be like Fred stair, you know, and run along the beach and it was going to be all that.

[00:03:09] And you know, you know, Brazil is all those things. It’s great for people at the sun and you know, but there’s also an underbelly to it. There’s a lot of homeless kids. There’s a lot of poverty. There’s very, there’s, there’s not a lot of middle class in, in Rio is where they’re wealthy or there’s poor.

[00:03:28] And so living in living with this family, I got a chance to see firsthand these thousands and thousands of homeless kids all under the age of 10. Right? I mean, we think of homeless rates and it’s like either, you know, a chemical dependency or you’ve got some people that are down on their luck, but they’re usually grownups, right?

[00:03:48] You don’t see a lot of little kids

[00:03:50]in five years old. There’s thousands of them living in the streets are real. And they they’ve got that thousand mile stare when they look at you, you know, they’re there, their life is an honed. Their survival skills have been sharpened from having to live on the streets. And I just, I, it just spoke to me.

[00:04:09] I just felt I carried this thing around with me for a lot of years and I needed to get it out.

[00:04:15] Kenric: [00:04:15] Do the favelas are no joke. And my ex-wife was from Brazil and they didn’t have a Vela as she had, obviously those were Vallas in her scifi and stuff. Nothing like what is in Brazil, in Rio? There’s just not a comparison.

[00:04:32] I think the average, I think the average lifespan of a young man in the favelas in Rio is less than 21 right now.

[00:04:39] Sal: [00:04:39] Yeah. It’s 123. I mean, that’s just insane. When we went there, I went there with two or three of my friends buddies and they were like, Hey, come on. No, we’re driving around. We went into the favelas off of just North of the Copacabana region over near the port.

[00:04:58] And we need to get permission to go in this one neighborhood because it was there, there were these drug Lords and these drugs are that had these spiders, these canaries, these kids that, that, you know, watch for the cops. And I said, what’s going on? And it go weird where the guy said we’re okay, we got permission.

[00:05:18] And we could go in. And I was like, wow, that’s that’s, it’s like the wild

[00:05:23] Kenric: [00:05:23] West. It’s insane. It’s insane because the government has no control of what’s going on there. And they just build like, people just build on top of each other. There’s no, Hey, can I get a

[00:05:33] Sal: [00:05:33] good zone? We pipe their own electricity. They tap it off of the private.

[00:05:38] I mean, the wires is incredible, you know, and. It just, it was just going there to the American kid. I just, I had never seen anything. Like it I’d never experienced anything like my time in Rio, I mean, it for better or for worse, it was a real kick in the ass.

[00:05:55] Kenric: [00:05:55] So what is your comic? How does it convey the message of what you’re trying to do?

[00:06:00] Is it because obviously I’ve looked over the Kickstarter, but you don’t, you know, I’m not reading it yet and I’m, I’m actually Pledging for the hardcover edition, if there’s any left.

[00:06:10] Sal: [00:06:10] So there’ll be some way we’re going to do it right now. Actually it was, it was, you know, I just felt that I wanted to tell the story of these kids, but not in a condescending way because these kids are not, they don’t see themselves as victims.

[00:06:25] They see themselves as survivors see themselves as that’s the only way they survived. They’re not looking for your pity. They’re not looking for your help. And I just felt that just, you know, when you’re on the beach, when you go walk down the beach and you see these religious offerings, you know, on the beach, they they’re scared shitless of those things.

[00:06:44] I mean, they’re scared shitless of the bond out, you know, and the different religions that, that leave their offerings in the sand. And I thought, man, they’re, they’re scared. And I said, what is this stuff? And when I talk to people, There are these religions that they’re there to ward off evil spirits and to protect you from your enemies and things like that.

[00:07:01] So I thought, well, what about these kids? You know, do they have, so the hostel is kind of that, that dream, that every kid has, that he has these evil spirit that protects them in that rises to kind of avenge them or, or, you know, ward off whatever his predator is. So the hostage only rises when the blood of a murder child enters the soil of Brazil.

[00:07:24] And so the country itself, you know, it literally rises to protect these kids and that’s in a nutshell what the hostage is about.

[00:07:34] Kenric: [00:07:34] Oh, that is awesome.

[00:07:35] Sal: [00:07:35] Filter through my experience there, you know, and then chapter two is there is the kids that are confronted by the SWAT teams that entered constantly to, you know, to do battle with them and the shootouts they have with them.

[00:07:49] So that’s a little different. And then chapter three is kind of a short epilogue of. My motivation for the book and how it came about and what inspired me to kind of have the, through this story. What

[00:08:01] Kenric: [00:08:01] did you think did you watch the movie city of God? What’d you think of that when you

[00:08:05] Sal: [00:08:05] watched it? Sure.

[00:08:08] No, I mean, I found it fascinating. I found it, it was, you know, it was great because of the, the locations they shot it on location in Rio. Yeah. It captured a lot of the essence of the way these kids live their daily existence. I mean, they lived their whole life in 20 years and you see, you know, you see kids that are 12 years old at that look in the eye.

[00:08:28] When you walk down the street that, you know, you know, they’ll cut your throat for, you know, for your sunglasses. Yeah. So, you know, it’s a, it’s a re it’s a formidable place. Beautiful yet formidable. And it’s just kind of one of those things that it wasn’t what I expected. I mean, it was, it was  the dichotomy was incredible.

[00:08:49] I mean, the people, the food, the beauty carnival and Copacabana and the nightlife, and yet, boom, you turn a corner and there’s 30 kids sleeping in a doorway. You know, using newspaper as blankets, sleeping nine, the sidewalk where they’re they’re the sores on their back from sleeping on the concrete for, you know, for years has just kind of, you know, created these scales on them.

[00:09:14] So it’s hard to walk through it and not have it right. It’s mind blowing, you know what, okay. It was, it was, it was life altering for me. I came home and I was like, man, I’m worried about like, you know, Where are we going to go eat?

[00:09:29] Kenric: [00:09:29] No matter how bad, no matter how bad the things in Chicago goes, you think this is nothing compared to what happens in Rio.

[00:09:37] Yeah. I

[00:09:37] Sal: [00:09:37] mean, we, you know, kind of, you know, our definition of rich in this country has, you know, you watch a rap video and if you don’t have, you know, playing in a rolls Royce, you think, Oh, I’m not rich. It’s like, trust me. If you’ve got a roof over your head and clean water and food and a place to sleep, you know, we’re pretty damn good.

[00:09:53] I may compare it to the rest of the world.

[00:09:55] Kenric: [00:09:55] Yeah. Yeah, it’s, it’s a, it’s a weird, so when I was up in  and I went down to Zapata Tinga, which is a very small town, it’s a very small beach town, but you would see as you’re driving through the country, we got to drive through the country, which was really cool because you saw parts of Brazil that you normally wouldn’t see, but you would see these little shanty towns that would just spring up overnight.

[00:10:18] And they were leading on the side of the road and they’re just made out of straw. Straw houses one after another, after another. And there’d be like a thousand people just living there and they’re just nomadic and they just go from, they just go until somebody kicks them off that area.

[00:10:32] Sal: [00:10:32] Yeah, no, there’s a lot of, I mean, in the name of the hostage came from these kids mostly sleep during the day.

[00:10:43] They’re preyed upon more at night. You know, by locals and by people literally drive by in a throw a brick Adam or, or, or literally trying to eradicate them and murder them at night. So they usually stay awake at night or, or take turns guarding each other at night and they sleep during the day. But when they sleep during the day, you know, from Brazil, how bright it is.

[00:11:04] They, they take their t-shirts and they wrap them around their, their eyes, like blindfolds. Yeah. So when you walk down the street and you’ve got like 30 kids all intertwined into each other to keep warm and they’ve all got like blindfolds on. And I said, my God, they look like hostages. You know what? They look like, they’re kidnapped and they’re being held hostage.

[00:11:23] So that’s kind of, that’s where the name came from the title.

[00:11:28] Kenric: [00:11:28] That’s a great way. That’s. Yeah, that’s, it’s a hard subject to talk about because it almost feels like the people have gotten to a point of feeling pity to resentment. And is that where the killings are coming from? You think that there’s disorienting, that you’re even on the

[00:11:45] Sal: [00:11:45] street?

[00:11:47] It’s a lot of resentment. It’s a lot of not knowing how to deal with it. It’s a lot it knowing how not, how to deal with your daily life yet turning your back. On these kids. Cause they keep coming down from the favelas and it’s motivated by poverty. It’s motivated by they’re. They’re tired of getting the shit kicked out of them by their parents.

[00:12:08] They’re tired of, you know, they’re hungry. So they come down and they’re like, they got nothing to lose. The alternative is worse to them. They usually, if you talk to any of them, usually motivated by they’re tired of their father beating them. And they’re tired of, of living in a favelas or not, you know, their mother telling them.

[00:12:25] Hey we don’t got enough room for you, or, I mean, every, every one is a different story, but it was a deep dive. It was a tough subject to, to confront daily. You know, when I was, I did a lot of research with, with amnesty international and with, with referencing over the years, but you know, it’s not. For everybody.

[00:12:45] But then again, my style was not for everybody. You know, you seen by my work, it’s just not Mark Bagley. You know, I’m not, I was not a mainstream comm like artist, which is what I want it to be. So when I knew my style was, was disturbing as some vertical editors called it, I thought, you know, I, I’m going to do, you know the hell with these guys, you know, I’m going to do what I want and I’m going to do something that.

[00:13:10] Meant a lot to me and was a strong subject in my mind of the kids. You know, I just couldn’t get these kids out of my head. I kept going back to these kids, you know, and I did an indie book Atomico about six or seven years ago, which was a Soviet superhero. And it, because I wanted to do a Kirby ask American superhero and it was fine.

[00:13:29] And I, you know, but yet my mind, it was not. Personal is not something that was, that I felt strongly about. And the hostage was something that I just felt, you know, my time in Brazil. I, I, I think of it every day. I’m sure as you, I’m sure your time there, you, you, you know, it changed who you are as an American.

[00:13:50] Oh, cause you experienced things wouldn’t have experienced in the U S yup.

[00:13:53] Kenric: [00:13:53] Yup. Yup. 100%. So I was always

[00:13:56] Sal: [00:13:56] grateful, you know, I always was grateful to Brazil for that.

[00:14:00] Kenric: [00:14:00] Who was your influence artistically. And writing-wise when you’re, when you’re sat down to do this book.

[00:14:09] Sal: [00:14:09] Oh, it started as a straightforward narrative.

[00:14:12] You know, where, where, you know, I grew up where, you know, I was I was a jumbo semah guy. I was a Kirby guy. I was a Gil Kane guy on Romita. You know, all those were my guys, you know, I mean, but what I got most from Kirby was. Did you know, comics are supposed to be exaggeration. They’re supposed to be a product of your imagination.

[00:14:33] You’re supposed to take whatever you’re feeling in that, in that particular narrative and that particular shot. And, and you evoke it. You don’t go get reference for it. You know, if Kirby drew a car, he made up. A car. Yeah. You know, and that like a kid does. And so, but I, but I also learned a lot from Bilson Kevin Milson cabbage was, was what I got from bill was that.

[00:14:57] Constantly, try to surprise yourself, constantly try to push what the narrative is or what people think of as the narrative, because the audience doesn’t know what they want, or they be an artist, you know, I mean an artist you’ve got to kind of give them what you want and they don’t know what they want until they see it.

[00:15:14] Right.

[00:15:15] Kenric: [00:15:15] And then all of a sudden they know exactly what they want. Yeah.

[00:15:20] Sal: [00:15:20] And I had nothing to lose and I didn’t have an editor to answer to because none of them would hire me. And I put out indie books to spite Marvel and DC because Marvel and DC was never going to hire me. And that’s what I told. You know guys ask me all the time, how do I get into comics?

[00:15:37] I’m like, don’t ask me guys, because I couldn’t get into comics, mainstream comics, but desktop publishing isn’t yeah.

[00:15:44] Kenric: [00:15:44] Make comments. That’s how you get into comics.

[00:15:46] Sal: [00:15:46] You can put out a comic now, you know, you could do 50 copies. You could do 20 copies of your book. Now most of that is going to have to come from your perspiration.

[00:15:56] You’re going to have to sit down and, and do the work, but we need indie comics and indie creators more than ever. Yeah, because Marvel and DC are coming narrower and narrower to where they’re becoming like the chip aisle at the grocery store, you know, you’re getting Fritos ruffles and the poor grinds are getting pushed out.

[00:16:15] And there’s a lot of people that still like Funyuns and pork rinds, you know? So I told that we need, we need those indie titles. I mean, it’s tough. You’re going to have to get out there and hustle. But, you know, I mean, it’s like, what are you, what are you left with? You’re left with just the two big publishers telling you that

[00:16:35] Kenric: [00:16:35] Batman.

[00:16:36] Right?

[00:16:38] Sal: [00:16:38] It’s just, all our Warner brothers is going to do a stay on the Batman tent for the next day, 10 years, easy and marble has become, you know? Yeah, yeah. I mean, yeah. They don’t want to even acknowledge, you know, when, you know, it’s the same. It’s the sign. It’s a bad sign is, you know how, at the beginning of the Marvel movies, they show that during the credits, they got that flipping of the images where it says Marvel films, they used to be images of comic images.

[00:17:08] And now they’re images of the actors. You know, captain America is not the Kirby captain America. It’s it’s the, the actor. So they don’t even want to acknowledge that the comics exist anymore. You know, they don’t wanna give credit, you know, they don’t want to give, yeah. Most people don’t re who love black Panthers.

[00:17:27] Don’t realize that he was created by two Jewish guys in the sixties at Marvel. You know, they think he just, he just was the Mae, you know, Hollywood came up with them and throw them out there. And it’s like, they don’t even want to acknowledge that the comic book characters, they, these, these characters all have a history.

[00:17:44] Yeah. You know, they all have a mythology isn’t there.

[00:17:48] Kenric: [00:17:48] Yup. That’s where people

[00:17:50] Sal: [00:17:50] get embarrassed. Yeah. Why are they embarrassed of them? Why are they sh gamed of them? I mean, it’s like, you shouldn’t be, I mean, you know, soap, operas and comic books are like the original American media, you know, I made, you know, American creations and I don’t know about soap operas, but I know comic books are like in Europe, my God, they’re revered.

[00:18:10] You know, they love them, you know, comic book artists. So good.

[00:18:12] Kenric: [00:18:12] I do my favorite indie artist right now. Well, my favorite writer and he’s the, his writer is Stephan, Frank. I don’t know if you’ve seen his stuff, but silver and then his new work Palomino. Amazing. Amazing. And it’s so it’s like, yeah, you’re right.

[00:18:27] I mean, if you don’t have an, having a platform like Kickstarter to allow these indie books to get the money they need to, to distribute in a larger scale, I don’t think you could do without it. You know, well, it’s,

[00:18:40] Sal: [00:18:40] it’s, it’s tough. I mean, when I did, when I put Tamika up the the way you put out an indie title was really primitive.

[00:18:49] I mean, we put an ad in document and you know, you wait and you hope you get your orders from the comic store owners and most comic store owners never get to the intersection. Right. They don’t. Yeah, they don’t order Indy commons because there’s no brand loyalty there. When you go into a comic store and you’re like, cigarettes, do people have their brain loyalty, Superman or Batman they’re Wolverine and their spidey, and then there’s everything else.

[00:19:16] But with Kickstarter, when I was going to put out the hostage, it was pre COVID. I was like, what am I going to do? Go through diamond again. And it’s nice, but it’s not. Terribly scientific. Right. You know, I’m going to wait around those comic stores. They’re not going to order the hostage. There’s no way they’re going to give it a shot

[00:19:34] Kenric: [00:19:34] right now, unless you’re calling them and telling them how awesome it is.

[00:19:38] Sal: [00:19:38] Well, like, you know, when I saw with Todd McFarlane was doing and what Brian Polito was doing and what Jimmy Palmer Yachty were doing, and even boom was doing with Keanu, Reeves and  and all that. I thought these guys are motivated by the money because Todd McFarlane doesn’t need. Yeah. You, you know, to support it, he’s doing it because it’s a, it’s a more direct way to talk about your

[00:20:00] Kenric: [00:20:00] product.

[00:20:01] Snyder came on and talked about nocturia one and he did a Kickstarter for it to go over the development of nocturia one, you know, and that’s what you get is all this stuff they built up to for the image release of nocturia one it’s genius, and he’s doing it because he loves it so much.

[00:20:17] Sal: [00:20:17] Well, and not only that comic fans, you know, they liked the interaction with the creator.

[00:20:24] That’s, what’s so great about what artists dally used to be. Artists daily unfortunately, has gotten drained because you know, the gal from Katie gack has to Pendle her ass, her and sell her autograph. And the guys from walking dead have to sell their autographs and the cosplay people are there. And so now people don’t even know.

[00:20:42] Get to artists dally anymore because they just don’t buy it. Yeah. And most people go to comic shows. They don’t buy comics. I mean, I tell people, yeah, it’s great. You’re going to a show. There’s 150,000 people. I go, yeah. Guys, buy some comics.

[00:20:56] Kenric: [00:20:56] Yeah. I was so excited to get there. When I go to thing I’m excited to see Ben temple Smith, Mike, all red, you know, just all those guys that just wrote these things and drew these things.

[00:21:07] Well, yeah,

[00:21:09] Sal: [00:21:09] because you’re, you know, you’re a comics guy and you appreciate the art form. Most guys go to the cons now because they want to take a selfie with, you know, the, the cast, you know, of the wonder years, or they want to meet Ralph Macchio or, you know, they w they want to take a picture with 2d from the facts of life, instead of like going, Hey man, you know that there’s some cool artists too.

[00:21:31] Yeah.

[00:21:33] Kenric: [00:21:33] My honest opinion, when it comes to comic book art, I. I feel that it is no difference than Picasso. Or any of those high-end, you know, hanging in the, in the, in the gallery guys, I just don’t. I think they’re putting in the same amount of work, they have the same ad expression and the same amount of love and

[00:21:52] Sal: [00:21:52] everything to it Rockwell in his, in his lifetime, he was frowned upon because he did covers for the Saturday evening post.

[00:22:00] He was seen as a commercial artist. That’s just wrong. I mean, Bob. Peak. I mean, there’s a lot of great artists, drew Struzan, and you know, there’s a lot of great artists who are like seen as commercial artists and now they look even for Zetta and his day, you know, early on, he was seen as, Oh, he’s a fantasy artist that doesn’t count it’s fantasy.

[00:22:18] It’s it’s, you know, it’s a right. You look at it now and go, what the hell? Well, you’re talking about, you know, Andy world with the Brillo pads and the tomato cans. That’s hard, but yet for Zetta doesn’t know what the fuck he’s doing. So I’m like guys don’t peddle that was copying what

[00:22:34] Kenric: [00:22:34] a lot of the comic artists were already doing when he did those, that soup camp.

[00:22:38] It’s amazing.

[00:22:39] Sal: [00:22:39] Jack Herbie is the, is the, one of the great artists of the 20th century. Yeah. You know, so when people go, Oh, come on, who’s a girl. And I’m like, can you say Jack Kirby to go really? You know, he’s a comic artist. Like, no, no, no. I mean, he’s an artist. Yeah. I mean, it’s like, you’re going to be looking at current work a hundred years from now.

[00:23:00] Trust me now you’re going to look at it and go, Oh man, what the hell were we thinking? Yeah. And we said, he’s a comic artist, you know? Well,

[00:23:07] Kenric: [00:23:07] I think that’s the, the, I think that’s the downfall of current generations. When I say current generations, I mean, people that live in the lifetime of the artist. You know, because if you look at van Gogh, no one thought of him while it, during his lifetime, it was when he was dead, a hundred years later, they were like, this guy was a genius and that’s, what’s going to happen with the Jack Kirby’s and right.

[00:23:29] I mean, I would even say like Eric Larson and

[00:23:32] Sal: [00:23:32] hope so because unfortunately comics have, you know, like I said, there’s this whole. You know they don’t want to acknowledge it kind of thing. I mean, every movie, every television show that’s been based off of a comic. I mean, take your pick, whether it’s the walking dead or road to perdition or any of those data won’t even acknowledge the printed word.

[00:23:50] They won’t even acknowledge the data came from a comic book. Like that’s an embarrassment that that’s some kind of a weak form of the creative process. Like, Oh, it came from a comic book, like that’s supposed to be. So what, because it’s not, wasn’t written by Shakespeare. That means it’s not a cool story and it’s not a great narrative.

[00:24:08] I mean, it’s just, it’s one of those things where. That’s why I tell people all the time. I’m like, guys, if you can’t get in the front door and Marvel and DC don’t want to hire you. That’s okay, man. You know, put your own book out. But you know, because you know, in doing an indie title, being a comic artist is like running off and joining the circus.

[00:24:27] You know, you gotta do it. You did the circus. Don’t need you, man. You need to circus. Yeah. You know, you gotta, you gotta be an artist. You don’t have a choice. I need the money. Well it’s I got to be an artist.

[00:24:40] Kenric: [00:24:40] I asked Eric Larson the same thing I said, how did, how does a new person today break into the comic book world?

[00:24:46] He’s like, well, don’t go to cons and show me splash pages of one person over. Show me a completed set of books that you’ve made. Show me the work that you’ve done. Yeah. You can tell a story and then you can draw

[00:25:00] Sal: [00:25:00] it. If you tell a story, you gotta tell a story

[00:25:03] Kenric: [00:25:03] and if it’s really good and people love it, they’ll come to you.

[00:25:07] Image Marvel, DC. They’ll come to you if they, if they want you.

[00:25:10] Sal: [00:25:10] But at the beginning of it, whether you’re whether it’s music or dance or writing or architecture, whatever it is, anything creative, you know, you’ve got it. You’ve got to do it because you just, you, you have no choice. Yeah. You know, I mean, I wanted to draw a Luke cage.

[00:25:26] I wanted to draw devil dinosaur, and I went to every, you know, And there was, I stood in every portfolio line. I met with every editor and it just wasn’t happening. I mean, it just was not happening. And then it was, and it broke my heart because I thought, well, shit, I can’t be a comic artist, but then I thought, well, yeah, I can, I just can’t do it the way that I wanted, but I had no choice.

[00:25:50] I had to keep going. I mean, so I thought, okay, The hell with it. I’ll put it out myself now. Shit, you, you know, when I did a time ago, if you wanted to do full color and you wanted to do a book, I mean, it was 20 grand right out of the gate minimum order of 50,000, the printer said, Hey, I only print 50,000 minimum because the hell am I going to do with 50,000 comics?

[00:26:13] When, you know, you’re lucky if you sell 6,000 through diamond and whatever you go to cons, you know, but now. You could do it online. You could do it, man. If you can do pimp. Yeah. You could get people to help you. You’ve got social media to get it out there. You can make your own advertisements. You can, you know, you can promote yourself.

[00:26:34] Now it don’t get, I’m not going to bullshit you. It’s a lot of work. You know, you got to get out there and be willing to put skin in the game. Waiting for him tap on the shoulder, you know, it ain’t happening, Eric Larson’s right. I mean, you know, you got to sit down and you got to really put in the miles.

[00:26:54] And when I put a time of God, I thought my God, the offers were going to be rolling in

[00:26:58] Kenric: [00:26:58] right. Nothing, nothing. There were

[00:27:01] Sal: [00:27:01] crickets. I did 12 shoes and I had an Alex Ross cover and I thought all I’m in and I’m yeah, I’m the next, you know, I’m the next championship.

[00:27:11]Right. You know what I mean? I thought that I had it. I was made in the shade. Yeah. Did that’s enough. So it just, you, you got to keep plugging, man. You got to

[00:27:21] Kenric: [00:27:21] keep running. Your art is fantastic on, on these, on your previews and on your Kickstarter. I mean, it really is. I do the color. Did you do all the coloring at yourself as well?

[00:27:34] Sal: [00:27:34] Wow. Yeah. Yeah. I love the color. And that comes from necessity that came from, I just got tired of working with colorists and you know, or, you know, when you do an indie title, you find the more people you get involved, the more chances you get for excuses and they missed a deadline. If it’s not your baby, they’re not going to care about it as much.

[00:27:56] Right. It’s

[00:27:57] Kenric: [00:27:57] just not going to happen. Right. Yeah. That’s, that’s always tough.

[00:28:04] Sal: [00:28:04] You know, you got to get in there and you gotta be willing to like really go to bat for your own subject matter because free other guys, aren’t just, they may lie to you and go, Oh, Sal, we’d love to help you do most of it yourself.

[00:28:18] I mean, letterers my God. Dave sharp helped me, you know, did the lettering and he’s a great letter, but you can get letters now, you know, you can get a guy to letter your book now for a couple of hundred dollars. It’s not the end of the world. There’s lots of guys out there looking for gigs. Right? You can find colorists.

[00:28:33] Tremendous color it’s that that’ll help you color your book for, you know, minimal amounts of money, a page, because they want to stay and things like that. So,

[00:28:43] Kenric: [00:28:43] but does it hit the marks that you want?

[00:28:46] Sal: [00:28:46] Well, yeah. You tell them what you want, right? I mean, you know what, you know, going in what they do, you know, going in what you want and don’t be afraid to say, Hey, you know what?

[00:28:56] This is, this is this, but it’s a little mailed in and then they go, okay, kick it in the ass,

[00:29:02]dude, get some pages that you can tell her, like, wow, they did a great job. And then you’ll flip to the next page and you go, Holy shit. What was he like? He was, we wanted to go to bed early, you know?

[00:29:13] Kenric: [00:29:13] W one too many drinks before you started what happened? Right?

[00:29:18] Sal: [00:29:18] With the hostage? I just said, you know what, man, my style was just what it was.

[00:29:22] So I said, I’m going to just, I’m going to do it all myself.

[00:29:24] Kenric: [00:29:24] It kind of reminds me a lot of this reminds me of the old, like seventies and eighties, like heavy metal rock albums. The

[00:29:36] Sal: [00:29:36] artwork. Yeah. I mean, I was, I was of the, the Filipino wave of guys that came into seventies, Alex Nino and Tony  and Rudy neighbors and those guys, and, and I, you know, with the flowing lines and, and lots of, especially Alex Nino, I mean, when I discovered Alex Nino, I was like, wow, this guy is, you know, yeah.

[00:29:58] And I just, and built-in cabbage. I have to honestly say that, that, you know what I learned, I learned a lot as an artist from Bilson cabbage was again, just, just stop being afraid to try new stuff, being afraid to stretch,

[00:30:11] Kenric: [00:30:11] dude, the, the, the scene with the car going across and you got the the faces underneath and the hand, Oh, dude, this looks amazing.

[00:30:20] Thank you.

[00:30:21] Sal: [00:30:21] It’s what I tell people. I tell people, look, man, whether it’s for you or not, it’s not like anything you’ve seen before. So, which is why it was Kickstarter was perfect. You go to the page, you could check it out. If it’s not your cup of tea. Great. If you just want to order the PDF because you want to read it, I offer it in English and in Portuguese, you know, for the Brazilian comic readers, if they want to check it out.

[00:30:46]I knew that with Kickstarter, I didn’t know a lot about Kickstarter. I, I asked around and a lot of people were, were great in helping me Frank over at Aspen and, and Jimmy  and, and people were like really cool giving me some, you know, what you got down. Well, you gotta have the stretch goals. You’ve got to offer the, the, you know, the extras, the perks.

[00:31:08] And so I, you know, since cabbage was nice enough to, to do a piece, so it was Alex Ross and, and, you know, Eric Powell is a great guy. And he, you know, we became friends over the years. He Eric’s awesome.

[00:31:22] Kenric: [00:31:22] We had him

[00:31:22] Sal: [00:31:22] on just the other day. He’s fantastic. Such a nice guy, Eric, since like the Coon first came out and you know, Are

[00:31:31] Kenric: [00:31:31] you hoping to do more in this vein of the hostage or is one shot we’re done?

[00:31:37] Sal: [00:31:37] I mean I mean, we’re doing, we’re doing really well right now is to the book is, is funded. And I th and I, I think I would like to do another, you know, another volume, but I got to see, you know, I mean, I I’ve gotten debt when I started to put all my notes together, because one of the perks is you get a PDF of.

[00:31:55] Or, and a printed version of my skip, my hostage sketchbook, which has all my notes and all my storyboards. And I had other stories, you know, the Candalaria massacre and some different, you know, other stories of, of. Do these atrocities that happened in Brazil over the last 20 years. And I thought, man, I left a lot of that in the book, in the note book, because you know, the hostage was only meant to be, you know, 130 pages long.

[00:32:19] It wasn’t gonna be a phone book. Right. But I think I’d like to do a second volume, but I got to see how this

[00:32:27] Kenric: [00:32:27] should go. Already funded on your way to even more and you’re funded by quite a bit over. So it’d be awesome to see another one come out. I, I think it’d be

[00:32:38] Sal: [00:32:38] no. I mean, it’s, it’s a labor of love.

[00:32:39] I think so. And, and it’s I, I, it, again, it’s a tough dive, you know, it’s a tough subject matter to have to approach these kids because you of kind of get in there and you got to give them There do you got to show the reality of it? I won’t patronize them and give them a dog or a little cat or do some stupid, you know, Hollywood narrative, you know, just to, to, to soften it up.

[00:33:02] But on the same token, I’m not, I’m not Googling it up either. Just for the sake of effect. This is what’s going on. I mean, this is, this is the reality of what’s going on.

[00:33:11] Kenric: [00:33:11] Do you, you’ve mentioned Bilson Kevin a few times, and man, I got to tell you his covers. Of the new mutants back in the eighties and early nineties.

[00:33:22] Oh my God, that changed the way I looked at how art can be done for comic books. Like, I didn’t think that was, you know, you’re just so used to seeing, you know, just the standard, all those guys were amazing, but he changed it. That’s what I’m

[00:33:37] Sal: [00:33:37] talking about. Yeah, you can learn. You can learn a lot from an artist from not like, Hey, what’d you what’d you what’d you learn from, you know, Jack Kirby, what’d you learn from Bilson Kevin and it’s not a physical thing.

[00:33:49] Like, Oh, I draw hands this way because of bill or I draw arms this way, because it’s, it’s a philosophy. It’s more of a, an abstract kind of approach towards how you go. All right. There’s a guy running down the street and there’s a guy chasing him and there’s and then you go, all right. This is, this is how you would do it.

[00:34:06] If it was a storyboard built in cabbage would go in from the point of view of the highlight and your insight, the car and the car is become a lion. And the lion has got fire coming out of his ass. I mean, and those are all metaphor. Yeah. That’s what you get from bill. If bill draws the joker. 10 times to joker never looks the same way.

[00:34:26] Any of those times work time. It’s just a puddle with a flower in it with, you know, next time it’s a row of teeth the next time. It’s the point of view of the green hair. You know what I mean? Right. So you learn it. It’s like there’s no, you know, singular way to tell a store, be he just an artist you’re supposed to make the shit up

[00:34:45] Kenric: [00:34:45] constantly challenging yourself.

[00:34:48] Sal: [00:34:48] Well, anybody who’s, who’s never seen my favorite. One of my favorite bill works of all time. It says illustrated, Moby Dick, if you’ve never, Oh, I’ve got to check that out. I haven’t seen that. That is anybody who, who who’s familiar with bill. I mean, voodoo child is great obviously and straight toasters and, and like you said, Newtons and everything he’s done, but yeah.

[00:35:10] He did he did an illustration, an illustrated book of Moby Dick. That, that for me was my Bible. When I looked at it, I thought, Holy shit. As a comic artist, this, this to me was like broke all the rules. It was like, wow. It shows you what you can do, you know, as an artist with Moby Dick. You know, and, and, and anybody who’s not familiar with it.

[00:35:32] I mean, they’re always on eBay and I’m sure they’re there at Amazon and we’re trying to work with a a European publisher now to get it back in print. Now that’d be awesome because for me, it’s

[00:35:44] Kenric: [00:35:44] fun. I want to check it out. It’s one of the best when people ask me what makes a good you know, what I think is good art?

[00:35:49] I, that one, I always pointed to the new mutants covers that, that he did. And then the other one is the Bernie rights and Frankenstein card collection, which is just incredible, you know, I, yeah, yeah. I

[00:36:03] Sal: [00:36:03] love that stuff. Or just Bernie Rikers, Bernie writes in the first 10 issues.

[00:36:09] Kenric: [00:36:09] Oh God, that number eight cover where he’s doing that.

[00:36:12] Oh, my God. It’s so

[00:36:14] Sal: [00:36:14] cool. It’s hard for Bernie, for Bernie it’s everybody it’s Frankenstein, obviously, but, but like I said, th th those that run that little short run on swamp thing for Bernie, but, you know, as a comic art for me was, was, was fantastic.

[00:36:30] Kenric: [00:36:30] What was your favorite thing when you started working on the hostage?

[00:36:32] What would you like when you think back now? You’ve got this completed work. You’re ready to go to print soon as Kickstarter’s done, send everything out. But you had to sit down, you had an outline, you had to write it, you had to pencil it, ink it, color it. Was there anything that like really stood out to you?

[00:36:47] Like, wow, I didn’t know I was going to love it this much, or is it really just the whole experience?

[00:36:53] Sal: [00:36:53] It’s it’s, it’s kind of like, you know, you, you see it coming together, but you can’t really tell. And then in your mind you’re always kind of, I don’t know, are they going to want this? And I approached it from this point of view, I’ve done a million cons and I’ve, and I’ve set up an artist alley a million times and every indie guy I know.

[00:37:16] And a lot of the mainstream guys all are the same. They’ve all got one thing in common. They all talk about this indie project that they’re going to do. Right. And I’ll run into you 10 years later and you’re still talking about it. And that was me with the high. So I decided. I’m not going to say another word about the hostage until it’s finished, because was Alex Ross.

[00:37:40] He would ask me every once in a while, Hey man, you still working. And I was so embarrassed that it wasn’t done that. I said, you know what, I’m going to sh I’m going to shock the shit out of him. Yeah. And, and not say a word. And when finished a hundred percent and I said, Alex, I got something I want to show you.

[00:37:56] So I was, I was glad that I kept my mouth shut and I just finished the damn thing. And at some point, you’ve got to let it go. You’re going to always go, Oh, I mean, I still look back at some of those pages and go, Holy shit. I wish I would’ve fixed that or fixed this, or that’s terrible, but it’s done. You got to get it out, man.

[00:38:15] You got to just say, all right, enough already. It’s done. So I’m glad that I kept my mouth shut. And finally just said, Hey. Take a look, let me know what you think. I need fresh eyes to look at it. Cause I can’t tell anymore right now. I really can’t tell anymore.

[00:38:31] Kenric: [00:38:31] Yeah, it’s so true. It’s like somebody who is constantly writing a book or somebody who’s done a billion movies or, you know, they’ve done the same genre of movies.

[00:38:40] And then it’s like, after awhile, you’re like, dude, you need a step away. You gotta let somebody else take that baby from you. Well, you know,

[00:38:49] Sal: [00:38:49] it’s important to just, you know, a lot of times we, we, we, we have it in our heads so much that almost it replaces actually physically doing it. Yeah. So, you know, with the us things, there were some sequences that I’ve already met that in my head.

[00:39:03] So many times that when it actually came down to drying them out, I was like, Oh my God, it was, there were second nature. But with, with the hostage, I thought it was, there was no happy ending. I didn’t want to be the ugly American to just say, Hey, I’m going to have this, this situation or this narrative that solves the problems of these kids.

[00:39:23] Cause it’s still going on. And it’s actually a lot worse than when I was there. I was during the eighties. It’s a lot worse now. And yeah. I thought, you know, and then the epilogue came from, I didn’t want to write out a page just to say, Oh, thank you, Brazil and blah, blah, blah. I want it to kind of give the reader a real strong idea of like now guys, there was, there was something about this that just, you know, it really just kicked me in the ass.

[00:39:48] You know, there was something there that I needed to tell. Yeah.

[00:39:52] Kenric: [00:39:52] Well, it’s, it’s, it’s some beautiful works out. It really is. I’m not blowing you smoke. I, I, I seriously, can’t wait to be able to get it in my hands and read it. And physically read it. I, I do like the PDFs, you know, sometimes people come on and they, they send us a PDF and especially if it’s something for image or Marvel and then we get to read it and that’s always nice, but there’s something about having it in my hand.

[00:40:14] That is just a different experience. I agree. I

[00:40:17] Sal: [00:40:17] I’ve tried to read comics online and I gotta be honest with you. I am. I like the textile feel and I have to read a comic in person. I don’t know how people read comics digitally if they do. Terrific. Fantastic. I can’t even watch a movie on, on an iPad. I mean, I like to see it.

[00:40:34] Television is kind of as far as I’ll go, but with comics. Yeah, no, man. I need to turn a page. I need to feel, I need to smell of it. You know, I need that. So.

[00:40:43] Kenric: [00:40:43] I got Marvel spotlight number five, and it came to my house cause I ordered off of eBay and it was in a slab. And the first thing I did was crack, crack, crack, crack, crack.

[00:40:51] Cause I got to read this. I’m not here just to stare at it on the wall. I want to read it and I open it up and it just smelled like 1972, you know? And I was just so excited to see it.

[00:41:01] Sal: [00:41:01] Yeah. The zipper tone, the yellow, you know, it’s got the smell. I mean, there’s nothing better than that smell. And I that’s, what I love about eBay is I.

[00:41:10] I buy reading copies. I don’t care about the CGC. I’ll buy a whole runs. I bought a, you know, Conan, I bought the whole running on any other day for like $6, you know? No, and yeah. Or iron fist or, you know, the internals or J you know, Kirby’s run on new gods, you know, demon, you know, and it’s like, they got those smell, man.

[00:41:32] It’s got that. That’s good stuff since memory your back. Why you did it, why you got into comics was because, you know, I loved it. And it was like getting bit by a vampire.

[00:41:43]Kenric: [00:41:43] I think that’s a perfect place to end this. So good luck on everything. I appreciate you so much. Please. Come on. Anytime you have something going on or if you just want to come on and bullshit comics, I can tell you. And I would, could probably sit for another two hours and just talk about comic books.

[00:41:59] Sal: [00:41:59] Any any time. I mean, I’m as big a comic guys. There is a fan I’d

[00:42:06] Kenric: [00:42:06] love to have you come back on and talk about your, your work on the cons sometime because you’ve had a very interesting work life with the Comicons. I think a lot of people would be interested in because like Alex Ross is the last few times I’ve been to cons and there’s been an Alex Ross.

[00:42:21] Section he’s taken a very different approach than all the other con all the other artists, very much more of a gallery style feel to me. And I’d love to get your, your, your thoughts on it and how, how that came about.

[00:42:36] Sal: [00:42:36] Yeah. It it’s, it was just, you know, doing San Diego for 20 years. It just became louder and louder and louder.

[00:42:44] Visually everybody was trying harder and harder to get your attention. It was like Vegas. When you’d walk down to the main fire lane of San Diego and I felt your, what guys. We can’t, everybody was overlapping. It was turning into 10 pounds of shit in a five pound bag. And I said, you know, we got to pull back and we’ve got high, a place to rest because it’s just becoming ridiculous.

[00:43:10] So I kind of stole the idea from Apple. It’s kind of the Apple store mentality of let. Your eye rest, let it cool and create the gallery of fact for you to, you know, people like to come up to the art and look at it. They like to see it close up. They like to walk through. They liked that, you know, the carpeting, the book and art is all about lighting.

[00:43:31] And presentation, you know, if you don’t have the right, you could take a tremendous piece of art. And if it’s laying on a table in a Tupperware band, like a lot of the original art dealers got the stuff strewn like shit or hung up there with duct tape, it looks like shit. And to me it always was like, it was sacrilege.

[00:43:48] So I got. Step back a little bit, man. Like let’s put it in a, you know, give it it’s proper to put it in a frame, have a certain type of lighting that all of it, obviously, but you know, take this stuff seriously, you know, it’s it, to me, it was, it was treated with such disrespect and I haven’t gone on to cons.

[00:44:06] My whole life. And you remembered as this stuff was thrown on tables and yeah, it was strong like, shit. I mean, it was like you’re at a swap meet and they were selling shoes or sandals. So I told Alex, I said, look, man, I want to try something a little different. And there was some pushback at the beginning.

[00:44:28] And, but I said, w well, what do we got to lose? You know, we can always go back the other way. And so it’s more work. I mean, it’s definitely

[00:44:38] Kenric: [00:44:38] nicer.

[00:44:40] Sal: [00:44:40] Well, you know, it’s also, to me, I think, you know, I, I love to stuff. I Revere this stuff. And so you put us out like, so we kind of see eye to eye that way. And I did the same thing for bill.

[00:44:49] I told bill, I said, bill, we don’t. You’re going to piss off some of your fan base because a lot of people like it, bill, you know, in artist alley would, you know, drawing spilled everywhere. He’s got paint on a floor and that’s great. That’s who bills that builds DNA. That’s who he is. But I said, bill, there’s nothing wrong also with having your own white walls framing some of your work and putting some lighting and you could sit there and do your do your thing, man.

[00:45:17] Yeah. But people need. I need people to see your work, who don’t care, who you are, but they just see it and go, man. That’s cool. You know, I don’t know who that is. I don’t know where that character cause bill, it doesn’t matter who the character is. You can look at it and go, man. That’s cool, but it doesn’t have to be bad.

[00:45:33] Kenric: [00:45:33] I think sometimes though it makes a difference in effect of that 20 year old that might be with their parents and the dad has, and this is just. Totally financial, but the dad has money in the 20 year old doesn’t, but he loves that he loves the art, but then the parent that has the money, sees it in a gallery, sees it in a way of their presentation of how it should be displayed with the lighting, the frame.

[00:45:57] And they’re like, I could pay that. No problem for something like that, that looks amazing. And they’re willing to put that money down that, that. You know, a lot of people just don’t have it there, but the people that do and they see it, they’re going to go for it. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that,

[00:46:12] Sal: [00:46:12] but see, that’s why with Alex, I mean, we got a bad, you know, we, we got a bad rep.

[00:46:17] Would Alex have everything was too expensive, but it’s like, look man, with the, with Alex Booth, we’ve got it. We’ve got stuff that starts at like 10 bucks. We’ve got posters. We’ve got lithographs. We’ve got your clays. We’ve got original art, but. People will say, Hey, you know, I can’t afford an original piece of art.

[00:46:32] It’s like, well, shit, neither can I, you know, I mean, you don’t go into a Ferrari dealership and say, Hey, why don’t you make a cheap Ferrari? It’s like, nice. You know, it’s, it’s, it’s apples and oranges, you know? I Inova, what can I tell you? I mean, you don’t need it Ferrari to go to work. So I, that’s why we created all the different tiers.

[00:46:54] I mean, we’ve got that signed books. We’ve got CGCS, you’ve got the sketchbooks. We, we created, you know, we tried to create products for everybody. Now. You’re always going to get people that are pissed. But that’s what a con con is people pass. Yep. Yeah, no. I mean, with cons, if you don’t have bowls of free shit, people are pissed at you.

[00:47:12] You know, that’s kind of the number one Mark Kerr of the day was, and Detra DC had to get rid of the buttons because people used to just come and pour the whole bullet buttons in their bag and walk away.

[00:47:24] Kenric: [00:47:24] No mine are free. Some people don’t understand how much it costs for that artist to even be there.

[00:47:29] They think it’s like, not all those artists are, you know, aren’t people who get invited. Most of them are paying to be there and it’s not cheap for them to have to pay for the ride, the hotel and do everything that everybody gets invited, you know? And when you get to the loud house, you’re fine. That’s what it is, what it is.

[00:47:49] That’s what you need to pay.

[00:47:51] Sal: [00:47:51] As an exhibitor, we don’t, you don’t get anything for free. You know what I mean? If you’re an invited guest and you’re an artist alley, or you’re an invited guest here, they’re terrific. But as an exhibitor, the shows are tremendously expensive. First of all, start at the beginning.

[00:48:05] Yeah. I mean New York. Comicon is probably the worst. There is, well, the one in San Francisco used to be worse, but they don’t have it there anymore. But near common kind of San Diego are, are tremendously expensive shows. They charge you for everything. Carpeting, padding, electricity, your Teamsters, your hotels, your staff, your food, your travel.

[00:48:24] I mean, it goes. Well, it’s endless. I can’t even hang my own art in San Diego because it’s, it’s a union job. It’s the Teamsters. So I have to pay these guys hundreds of dollars an hour to hang the art while I’m standing there. I can’t hang my own art. Once you go in, you realize, Hey guys, I’m not here. Like, you know, just because it’s a last week and that I got nothing better to do.

[00:48:47] I mean, I’m here as an exhibitor. And so you understand that you got to sell and it’s important, but you know, when people cry, all sell, why is this? Why is that? I’m like, guys, I’m just telling you that I’m an exhibitor. I’m not here, you know, to kill an afternoon. Yeah. Well, it’s tough.

[00:49:05] Kenric: [00:49:05] It is tough.

[00:49:06] Sal: [00:49:06] I’m not an art dealer in the sense that most art dealers buy the work from the artist and then they sell it.

[00:49:13] Kenric: [00:49:13] Oh, I didn’t want, I didn’t realize that’s how it worked. I always thought it was a commission

[00:49:16] Sal: [00:49:16] base. Well, some of them, some of them do it on consignment, but most of them like go to the artist and artists alley or, or, you know, straightforward. We’ll go to, you know, Pick one, Eric Larson, Mike NOLA, or whoever.

[00:49:28] And they buy the art from them directly for whatever they, you know, they, they decide to pay or they buy, you know, 20 pages,

[00:49:35] Kenric: [00:49:35] right. They’re buying in bulk. They’re going to get a good deal.

[00:49:38] Sal: [00:49:38] Yeah, they Mark it up and they sell it. So it belongs to them. See, and I don’t, I don’t work that way. The art, I have belongs to Alex and belongs to bill and I, and I go shit with them.

[00:49:50] I say, Hey guys, what do you, how do you feel about this piece? What do you want for this piece? Or where are we at? So I’m not an art dealer. You know, I’m like Tom Hayden in the godfather. I got like one client. I got just one guy, right. When guys yelled at me and everything is negotiable. Any art dealer that tells you stuff is not negotiables full shit.

[00:50:11] So if you come up and it’s a purse, you’re not happy with just say, Hey, you know, how about, or what are you happy with or how you feel about, and you find common ground. You just

[00:50:20] Kenric: [00:50:20] don’t be disrespectful though in your. And your offer?

[00:50:24] Sal: [00:50:24] No, no, it’s okay. Look, you’re going to get all types at cons and you want them for 20 years.

[00:50:30] The only thing that annoys the shit out of me is when they always think I’m Alex Ross. That’s the only thing that I realized are you going to come

[00:50:36] Kenric: [00:50:36] up and talk to me? Are you gonna come up to MSA a hundred times? A hundred times a day,

[00:50:41] Sal: [00:50:41] a hundred times and go, Oh my God, I’m your biggest fan? Well, that’s what I looks.

[00:50:47] So you bought the hostage if they think that if they, they think, Hey, it sounds terrific, but usually when I’m at the Alex Ross booth, it’s always, Hey, and then the next question is, why isn’t he here? Yeah. How is he here? Why isn’t he here? And I’m like, guys, he’s just, he’s a workaholic. He doesn’t like to take a week off, you know, to go to Comic-Con.

[00:51:10] He’s just all, he’s a machine. He’s always paint. You know, his work is dependence. You’ll see bill, their bills, always their bills, you know, he’s he reads it like he’s at Woodstock. He’s always

[00:51:21] Kenric: [00:51:21] there. When the cons are back. Do you guys come up to Emerald city?

[00:51:26] Sal: [00:51:26] We did Emerald. I started doing Emerald con back God when it was next to the baseball stadium.

[00:51:33] Yeah. I mean regional. Yeah. Before reading, I started doing it and we loved Seattle. And then I forget what happened. I don’t know if it was the timing of it or it was too close to something else, but then they moved it to downtown. And it blew up. I mean, it became like, you know, but Emerald was always one of my favorite shows because Seattle is such a great town.

[00:51:56] They really support the arts. Yeah. Oh. And when I, when I was, when I came out with a Tamika and I did it, it’s, it’s, it’s the greatest town for like indie titles. You know what I mean? It was like, there’s a, there’s a great outpouring of people that love independent comics in Seattle. So probably I think that’s what I, I’ve been telling people that when we look ahead to 2022, because this year’s forget it, it’s a wash and it tells you.

[00:52:22] There’s going to be cons this summer is, is right. But I think that, you know, Emerald is what, in this, in this

[00:52:29] Kenric: [00:52:29] early spring and late spring out. And usually it’s in March.

[00:52:33] Sal: [00:52:33] So look at a year from March, that’ll be kind of the first show of the year, in my opinion. So I, I really look to Emerald to be the comeback show of the con season for 22.

[00:52:46] That’ll be the first one. And then you go into MegaCon in Anaheim, and then obviously you got San Diego, but I’ve seen Reed has planned Chicago for December.

[00:52:58]Kenric: [00:52:58] They have Emerald going in December this year, too, but they’re planning. We’ll see,

[00:53:04] Sal: [00:53:04] get out. I bless you, but I don’t see it happening because nobody wants to travel.

[00:53:08] Yeah.

[00:53:09] Kenric: [00:53:09] Well, I wouldn’t go unless I’m vaccinated and the numbers are super low.

[00:53:14] Sal: [00:53:14] Right? See, because you go to cons cause you want to enjoy yourself. You know, you want to see trade. Those are about this. It’s about shooting Sharon and being friends and talking to people and shaking hands and, and the comradery when you lose that.

[00:53:29] Nobody’s going to go, right. That’s right. Reed is talking about doing something in New York in the fall, and you’re doing something here in, in December, but God bless you, but I don’t know who the hell wants to come to Chicago in December. Right. That’s 20 below zero, two weeks before Christmas. And w w maybe we’ll have a handle on it, you know, maybe.

[00:53:51] Yeah.

[00:53:51] Kenric: [00:53:51] I don’t know. Summers in Chicago are hard to beat. Yeah. New York.

[00:53:57] Sal: [00:53:57] The Javits center, which is, is thunder dome. Anyway. So now you’re going to take thunder dome and the pandemic to it. It’s like, not now, not until, like you said, our numbers start to.

[00:54:09] Kenric: [00:54:09] Yeah, well, in, in New York was hit so hard. I mean, it was like a ghost town and, and the, the hospitals had, you know, I remember seeing the pictures of just bodies.

[00:54:20] You know, wrapped up outside the hospital. I mean, they went through hell and I just can’t see, I could see them being more gun shy than a lot of other con a lot of other cities,

[00:54:30] Sal: [00:54:30] because that show is always too crowded. Yeah. The rabbit center, I love new. I always tell people I love New York, but I hate the Javits.

[00:54:38] Cause it’s they put 10 pounds of shit in a five pound bag. It was let in way too many people there’s no bathrooms. The food situation is, is, is like. We’re in a third world country. I mean, there’s piss two inches of piss on the floor in the bathrooms you got to run, you know, there’s no way to get a cab and it’s just, it’s.

[00:54:58] The Javits is a disaster. Now in fairness to New York, that neighborhood has changed. The lot, the Hudson yards neighborhood around there, they’ve done a lot of buildings. So there’ll be more restaurants. There’ll be more venues, but not this year. How about some bathrooms? And I don’t have to go on the loading dock and piss in a Folgers can like I’ve done some years, you know, to get it through.

[00:55:23] Oh man. Well,

[00:55:25] Kenric: [00:55:25] man, if I say one more time, if I ask you one more question, I feel like we’ll be talking for another 20 minutes because. Yeah. You were a two peas in a pod here. I’m having a lot of fun. How do I get you back on? I’ll just have Jeff reach back out and we’ll

[00:55:41] Sal: [00:55:41] just

[00:55:41] Kenric: [00:55:41] share it, reach out to me at the time.

[00:55:43] Cause I really, really want to come back.

[00:55:46] Sal: [00:55:46] You got my contact info and you know, it’s, it’s no problem.

[00:55:50] Kenric: [00:55:50] Oh, that’s awesome. Well, I really appreciate you coming on,

[00:55:52] Sal: [00:55:52] man. No, thanks for having me and giving me the hostage a shout out it’s   a labor of love. I mean, it means a lot to me, so yeah.

[00:56:01] Kenric: [00:56:01] So people listening and get out there to a kickstarter.com and just do a quick search for the hostage, or you could probably just go straight to it. And we’ll put it in the show notes and have that ready to go. And you guys can go right to it. Check out all the rewards that he has. He has some great rewards for you guys and Get your copy, because  once it goes, it’s going to go, it’s going to be gone and then you’re gonna be looking for it and it looks fantastic.

[00:56:24] All right. So we’ll see

[00:56:25] Sal: [00:56:25] you soon. Thank you. All right, man. All right.

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