VACANT Bits #5 – Conventions and Half-Life 2

Vacant Bits

A new podcast joins the hallowed halls of the mighty AudioShocker! Heather and Michelle Nunnelly start off the VACANT webcomics talk by discussing Hayze’s hot body with their special guest, James Atwood.

James talks a little bit about his work, and then they roll over to VACANT being translated into french, along with The Luminary’s fashion.

Next up, the crew chitchats about comic conventions from a creator’s perspective, sharing tips on how to feel confident, organize your table well, and not scare costumers off with puppy eyes.

Starting at 38:15, Half-Life 2 takes over part 2 of the podcast!! The characters, the environment, Gordon Freeman’s dopey personality, and more get the VACANT Bits treatment. ALSO: The Half-Life drinking game explained! AND: Get hip to Half-Life: Full Life Consequences.

Wanna send Michelle & Heather a question to discuss on the show? Email Heather!

10 Responses to “VACANT Bits #5 – Conventions and Half-Life 2”

  1. 1 Brian John Mitchell

    If you need some buttons I can do 100 buttons of up to 15 different designs for you for $25. –

    My experience is that height & color & stuffed animals attract people’s attention. I know how to get people’s attention, but my sales pitch of not talking to people & hunching over behind my display drawing probably doesn’t work.

  2. 2 Heather Nunnelly

    Good point, Brian. I do think height helps which I always have a problem with because there just isn’t a lot of space on the tables. Michelle and I have been trying to figure out a way of putting posters up without crates, because they take up too much space, or pipes. However, I can’t figure out a cheap solution.

  3. 3 Brian John Mitchell

    I saw a guy with fishing line, clothespins, & two sticks clamped on the table that didn’t look nearly as horrible as it sounds.

  4. AudioShocker Shoutouts!

    Wet Moon comics

  5. 4 nick marino

    I enjoyed hearing your perspectives on what you do and don’t like as con-goers. When I’m behind a table, I’d rather be having a conversation with another artist or something else like that, but sometimes there’s nothing going on and I’m just sitting there staring off into space. WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO THEN???

    I feel like drawing in my sketchbook is too engaging for me and then I ignore people, but if I’m not doing anything except for sitting there then I feel really awkward!

    I’ve done a buttload of cons at this point and I still feel pretty stumped about what does and doesn’t work. I’ve had super-organized layouts with lots of clear signage and had shitty sales. Other times I’ve had sloppy layouts and but still sold a bunch of comics.

    To me, it’s less about the state of your table and eye contact and all of that stuff, and more about the tone of the convention. If the attendees are excited to find original content and new things, I tend to do well. But if the con-goers only seem interested in corporate stuff or stuff they already know or other convention spectacles, then I tend to do little or no business regardless of how good my table looks and how on point I am with my sales style.

  6. 5 Heather Nunnelly

    Yeah, I hear you Nick. Sometimes there is no control at all when it comes to sales. When that happens, it’s frustrating. With your work, since it’s very different and new, it may depend on if the person wants to try new things or not, like you said. it all depends and sometimes it’s hard to get a good grasp on what works.

  7. 6 Brian John Mitchell

    Yeah, some cons are about people buying Batman sketches & commissioning Batman sketches (or maybe Adventure Time ones) & while I understand that’s what some people want, it’s not something I feel comfortable doing for a half dozen reasons (respect for intellectual property & inability to draw being chief among them).

  8. AudioShocker Shoutouts!

    Dinogeddon webcomics

  9. 7 nick marino


    @Brian: Yeah, sketches and prints. I have so many feelings about them and the con culture surrounding them. But to be as diplomatic as possible, I think the best thing I can say is that I know I’m more of a writer than an artist because I have no interest in doing prints or sketches.

  10. 8 Heather Nunnelly

    Couldn’t agree with you more, Nick. More people should read weird stuff!

  11. 9 kaylie

    really good points, guys! i totally feel you on people being too aggressive or guilt-tripping, that really scares me off!

    James is awesome, you should have him back! :)

  12. AudioShocker Shoutouts!

    Wet Moon comics

  13. 10 Heather Nunnelly

    Glad you liked him! We’ll probably ask him to come back on sooner or later.

  1. 1 The Comics Podcast Network » VACANT Bits #5
  2. 2 Vacant - VACANT Bits #5 – Conventions and Half-Life 2
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