Monday, August 04, 2008


<- My first sketch of the con was Atom Weaver from ZERO G for this great guy. Last year I sketched him quite a nice Grace from the Innocents. I was really flattered that he remembered me.

I hear a lot of people complaining that their art isn't getting the recognition that it deserves.

I have a theory on that.

I believe that society is constructed in such a way as to be a filter for dedicated and skillful artists. It's not a perfect filter, but it's pretty damn good one. Bear with me here.

When most people come home they sit in front of the tv, console or computer and watch tv or play games. They become consumers of ideas. A minority take up an artistic hobby and pursue that in the evening to great personal satisfaction and happiness. A minority of that minority find their lives driven and ultimately directed by that activity. And they are those that become our artists or creators. For the sake of this theory, whether it's racing motocross, writing or painting, I consider you an artist.

<- Future Hiro! This time I remember his damn soul patch.

Our society then acts as a filter to weed out those who don't have the passion and commitment to pursue their art as far as it will take them. How? The very media we hope to master can also be our downfall. Emotionally it is much easier to be a consumer than a creator. It is a lot easier to just sit down and watch, read and play than it is to do or create the things that are watched, read or played. And every night the artist gets home from work, it requires an extraordinary amount of discipline to rise above and hone their skill or idea than it is to sit back and consume. Even when you're so tired from a full day of work, you're still driven to give and to create.

<- Evelyn Sanchez from Zero G. This was a signing for ZERO G so my awesome writer, Alex Zamm was sitting next to me. I always lamented that writers sit there with nothing to do, so I asked Alex to write speech balloons for the Zero G sketches.

And if you can make it through the exhaustion, the distractions, the peer pressure, the missed opportunities, social events and moments... Just maybe you might rise above.

They are like every one of us, but instead of going home and switching off, they not only switch on, but switch up a notch.

<- Another Atom Weaver for this great gentleman.

And before you artists get all high and mighty, filled with the air I'm blowing up your butts, before you chuck your noses in the air and scoff at the... little people, remember one thing; No one is an island. Without them there is no you. Without an audience there is no celebration of your ideas. While the true artist creates artwork only for themself, the commercial artist thrives on an audience for feedback, energy, enthusiasm, critique, support, commitment and sometimes inspiration. A fanclub, fansite, someone standing in your line, or even a kind word can sometimes mean everything.

<- This lovely lady wanted something non-human. I wanted to draw an alien, then realised how detailed they were! So I hid him in shadow but brought a tiny black marker and spent ages colouring the damn thing in.

San Diego Comic Con is possibly the greatest celebration of artistic passion. We're not just celebrating great ideas, we're celebrating the passion of those people who have pushed through everything to get their art and ideas out there. Some of the ideas have been stolen, some have been perverted. But on the other hand, some have been sold for great profit, and others have been evolved by collaboration.

So because I wasn't tied to any one booth I found myself with time to spare to truly enjoy the con. And this is the insight that I was inspired by.

<- A very blurry Hiro. I jacked myself up on coffee and forgot to have breakfast. I was probably out drinking really late too. My hands were shaking so badly I probably had my own Richter Scale reading.

So thank you to everyone who came and said hi. Thank you to all the familiar faces and all the kind words.

One of the things that totally knocked my socks off happened on Facebook. A friend started a Jason Badower fanclub which was awesome and flattering. Then I noticed 76 people joined! WTF?!! I am SO knocked out by this. If anyone can think of anything I can do to help the fanclub, please lemme know.

<- Peter. Always a tough one for me. Especially because I forgot to bring my reference to San Diego! EEediot!

Finally, apologies for the lack of bloggage. My computer has been absolutely devastated by a virus, and while I got rid of it, it's left my computer in shambles. Brutal. Just brutal. So what have we learned from reading Jason's blog, kids? We've learnt to keep your portable hard drive duct taped to something and to wander around the internet without some sort of protection at your own risk. Always use protection kids. Always. Who says I don't help?

<- My last sketch for the Zero G signing. Claire!

<- This poor gentleman waited ages for a sketch and then my signing ended. I headed over to the eating area, found a table and whipped up this Cap for him.

Ok, now this is totally awesome. I had just finished drawing Cap, when this dude seated opposite me on the table goes, "Are you Jason Badower?"

I was stunned, it was fellow HEROES artist Ryan Odagawa! What an incredible coincidence. We had such a great chat. Unfortunately, Ryan has moved onto other endeavours, but we all have his HEROES legacy to go back and read endlessly.

Next up my HERESY signing and some celebrity stories.


Lee said...

Now I feel like a slothful consumer who is distorting the very fabric of existence by not indulging creative consciousness that I too often keep locked away in a tiny box. I swear I'm going to add motivational speaking to your list of vocations.. excuse me whilst I go dust off my writing hat.

As for what you can do for your Facebook fan club, I would think a handwritten note of gratitude and an original artwork personal portrait of each member should just about cover it. :)

Alexandre Togeiro said...

Hi Jason! Wow. You came back with a bang! Your theory seemed to be an insightful, accurate portrait of what it means to be an artist. Thanks for this text and congrats on the fan club!

Anonymous said...

ya know jase, this blog is just so, so right. The real artists are the ones that draw even when they don't feel like it, they just keep driving and driving themselves forward.

As one of those lazy and unmotivated people you refer to, you're so right it hurts!

- darren c

Anonymous said..., for your fan club: lotsa pics of events you attend, stories, video, comic pages and contests like you had on 9th Wonders! the Mascot, this sounds about right =) .... you deserve the fan earned it by being 'Supes' ! ..thanks for everything you do, and for who you are, and the inspiration you can take a bow now Lol

Flawedprefect said...

Jason - since you gave up the personal training, I notice in your photos one forearm is getting bigger than the other.

Must be from all the signing you're doing!!

Question: will you be at next year's comic-con? Topless (and framed) Pete Pretrelli needs a friend.

Or a jumper... Might just see you there!

jasonb said...

lee: You?! A slothful consumer? Hardly. There's this little thing called the SARMY I heard about, which (to me) is the greatest embodiment of altrustic fan (or any) energy I've ever seen.

Alexandre: Thanks man! I appreciate your comment.

Darren: It's your choice my friend. Let it not be said that it's talent that stands in your way.

Anon (noo?): Ok, ok. As I do stuff I will upload it there. It's just that most of my time is spent in a dark room drawing. We could web cam that, but given it's physically not very interesting you may as well just take a photo and use that.

Paul: I make it a priority to hit SDCC every year. If you need a place to stay in LA, just lemme know, mate!