Saturday will be the first comic-themed con held in Hamilton in many a year. I hope we can make it a success and then an annual event that can be expanded to the whole weekend.
My small contribution will be moderating a panel on Hamilton’s connection with comics and participating with me will be our own inimitable Walter Duralija who grew up with comics in the east-End of our city around the Parkdale area and will share his expertise in that area as well as in the area of retailing and promoting comics in Hamilton. Vince Marchesano, one of our local freelance artists from way back brings with him the experience of collecting comics in the sixties up on the mountain and his involvement in comic fanzines and Hamilton’s first comic show (along with Terry Edwards and George Henderson) in the late sixties. The final member of the panel is Anthony Falcone who also grew up in Hamilton, sits on the Shuster selection committee for the Harry Kremer Award (for outstanding Canadian comic retailers) and brings with him expertise in the comic shops that existed here and, I hope, will say some words on what kind of comic shop Hamilton needs or what he thinks the future direction of comic shops will be.
Myself, besides being a comic collector here in Hamilton for 50 years, I bring some expertise in comic book creators of the Golden Age who originated or were based in Hamilton, specifically Win Mortimer, Edmond Good and Aram Alexanian. Our presentation will begin with a short look at these three creators:
Winslow Mortimer was born in Hamilton in 1919 and drew motivational illustrations while working at the Otis Elevator Plant at Ferrie and Victoria Streets during the war years as well as war-time posters for the government. He also became a solid artist for D.C. comics, drawing many Batman and Superman covers after the war and through the fifties. He took over the Superman daily strip at this time (1949-55) as well.
Edmond Good was born in Salo, Maine in 1910 but came to Hamilton at an early age and set up a studio as a commercial artist. In late 1941 he began to work for Bell Features in Toronto and served as its artistic director for the short period before Adrian Dingle arrived in the spring of 1942. Good created Rex Baxter in Dime Comics No. 1 and was second, only to Dingle, in the number of covers that he produced for Bell.
For background on Aram Alexanian see my earlier post.
It’s a tight timeslot that will vapourize quickly and we will leave a good chunk of time towards the end for questions so, if you want to take a load off your feet for 45-50 min starting at 12:30 sit down and join us for a chat about Hamilton and comic collecting then finish off the rest of the con in the afternoon. Also if anyone reading this can think of something that we should bring out that bears upon comic collecting and fandom in Hamilton, please respond to this post.
Before finishing this week’s post, I want to draw attention to Hope Nicholson and Rachel Richey’s project to reprint the 31 Nelvana stories from Triumph Comics. This is a great initiative and, knowing them, I’m sure that they will come up with a quality product. Follow the project and make a contribution to the crowd source funding drive at: http://nelvanacomics.com.