Geeky fun

Unleash your inner geek: Comic artists, animators and podcasters assemble for STAPLE! expo

Unleash your inner geek: Comic artists, animators and podcasters assemble for STAPLE! expo

Austin photo: news_ryan_staple expo_feb 2013_poster
Austin photo: news_Ryan_staple expo_feb 2013_steve niles
Comic artist Steve Niles
Austin photo: news_ryan_staple expo_feb 2013_bernie wrightson
Artist Bernie Wrightson
Austin photo: news_ryan_staple expo_feb 2013_poster
Austin photo: news_Ryan_staple expo_feb 2013_steve niles
Austin photo: news_ryan_staple expo_feb 2013_bernie wrightson

STAPLE!, The Independent Media Expo, is now in full gear for its 9th annual event this coming March. On Wednesday, the expo announced its 2013 lineup of comic book artists, animators, podcasters and many more as guests and exhibitors.

The expo at Marchesa Hall celebrates independent artists from a wide range of creative media, whether they work on pulp or in the digital world. Over the course of the weekend of March 2-3, attendees and fans will get a chance to meet their favorite artists in interactive panels, check out exhibits and even be entertained by a collection of nerdy yet cool performers.

This year’s gathering will also have an added emphasis on indie table-top gaming, web TV, animation and pop culture podcasting. Even then, the spotlight likely shine on the huge collection of autonomous comics.

Some of the top names for comic artists will include James O’Barr, Steve Niles and Bernie Wrightson. O’Barr is well known as the creator of the incredibly popular independent hit The Crow, which would spawn films, television shows and novels. Niles is known for 30 Days of Night, another comic that was adapted to the screen, and the continuing series Criminal Macabre for Dark Horse Comics.

Bernie Wrightson is a legend among comic artists with his years of creating horror cover art, whether co-creating the comic character Swamp Thing or illustrating Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. He has collaborated many times with Stephen King to illustrate his works and has also worked as a conceptual artist for films, including Ghostbusters, Galaxy Quest and Spider-Man. He lives in right here in Austin as he continues to work on new projects.

Beyond the world of comic books, there is no shortage of fascinating panelists and artists, including local ones, like animator and painter Dax Norman and game designer and developer Marc Majcher. Slobs, a sketch comedy and film collective based in Austin, will be represented by Sara Reihani as a panelist in the web TV category.

Austin-based Mongrel Studio Productions will be in attendance to discuss its upcoming projects, including a web TV series for the Random Access Web TV Podcast, another locally based production.

If attendees need a break from the constant panels and sea of exhibitor tables, they can also find time to be entertained from a plethora of performers, including the After Midnight troupe and nerdy musicians DJ LD, Bad Barry and Run/DMG.

STAPLE! creator and producer Chris Nicholas says the expo has plenty of offerings for a variety of attendees. “STAPLE! is conceived as a dynamic assembly of ideas, artistry, practical publishing tools, and just a building full of great independent media. It will be a smörgåsbord for the casual and advanced fans alike.”

Tickets are on sale now. Take the time to peruse the full list of guests and exhibitors to create a plan for how to best spend your time and unleash your inner geek.