Despair for Layman
Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Concrete by Paul Chadwick, SDCC 1992.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Concrete by Paul Chadwick, SDCC 1992.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Cerebus brick wall by Gerhard, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Cerebus brick wall by Gerhard, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Sandman by Mike Dringenberg, San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Sandman by Mike Dringenberg, San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: From Gilbert and Mario, Los Bros Hernandez, San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: From Gilbert and Mario, Los Bros Hernandez, San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Blue Beetle by Darick Robertson ( @darickr ) , San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Blue Beetle by Darick Robertson ( @darickr ) , San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Swamp Thing by Tom Yeates , San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Swamp Thing by Tom Yeates , San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Enemy Ace by George Pratt ( @GeorgeHPratt ), San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Enemy Ace by George Pratt ( @GeorgeHPratt ), San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Cow by Bill Sienkiewicz ( @sinKEVitch ), San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Cow by Bill Sienkiewicz ( @sinKEVitch ), San Francisco Cow Palace, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: A signature from Howard Chaykin, with a story to go with it. Long Beach, circa 1987.I was a freshmen or sophomore in college at Long Beach State, 18 or 19 years old, and Howard Chaykin was going a Saturday morning signing a local comic book store. Chaykin had just done Blackhawk for DC, and I waited in line with my sketchbook and some books. When I got to Chaykin for a signature he refused to sketch or sign. He said, proclaiming loudly enough for everyone in the store to hear, that he could tell I was not a “real” comics fan, that this was a “phase I was going through,” and he could tell I would not be reading comics within six months.I stood there, flabbergasted (along with everybody in the comics store— nobody really knew what to make of it.) I was also stoned, which made it all the more scary and confusing. I don’t think I said a word, I was just opened-mouthed with shock. I think maybe I wanted to cry. After a moment or two of my standing there stupidly Howard grabbed my book and wrote “See you in hell, pal,” handed it back to me, and I just kinda staggered out of the comic book store and away from the place.I was hurt and confused by that for a lot of years afterwards. I threw out my Blackhawks, and admit I have not sought out a lot of Chaykin to read in the years and decades since. Nowadays, I can see some humor in it. I’ve have no occasion to interact with Howard Chaykin since. I imagine now if I saw him I’d tell him the story and we’d both get a bit of a laugh out of it.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: A signature from Howard Chaykin, with a story to go with it. Long Beach, circa 1987.

I was a freshmen or sophomore in college at Long Beach State, 18 or 19 years old, and Howard Chaykin was going a Saturday morning signing a local comic book store. Chaykin had just done Blackhawk for DC, and I waited in line with my sketchbook and some books. When I got to Chaykin for a signature he refused to sketch or sign. He said, proclaiming loudly enough for everyone in the store to hear, that he could tell I was not a “real” comics fan, that this was a “phase I was going through,” and he could tell I would not be reading comics within six months.

I stood there, flabbergasted (along with everybody in the comics store— nobody really knew what to make of it.) I was also stoned, which made it all the more scary and confusing. I don’t think I said a word, I was just opened-mouthed with shock. I think maybe I wanted to cry. After a moment or two of my standing there stupidly Howard grabbed my book and wrote “See you in hell, pal,” handed it back to me, and I just kinda staggered out of the comic book store and away from the place.

I was hurt and confused by that for a lot of years afterwards. I threw out my Blackhawks, and admit I have not sought out a lot of Chaykin to read in the years and decades since. Nowadays, I can see some humor in it. I’ve have no occasion to interact with Howard Chaykin since. I imagine now if I saw him I’d tell him the story and we’d both get a bit of a laugh out of it.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Daredevil by John Romita Jr. Somewhere in California, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Daredevil by John Romita Jr. Somewhere in California, 1991.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Miracleman by Chuck Beckham (aka Chuck Austen.) Somewhere in So. Cal„ circa 1986.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Miracleman by Chuck Beckham (aka Chuck Austen.) Somewhere in So. Cal„ circa 1986.

Etrigan by Matt Wagner, 1986. I have no idea where this was done. 1986 was a hazy year for Poor Old Layman.

Etrigan by Matt Wagner, 1986. I have no idea where this was done. 1986 was a hazy year for Poor Old Layman.

Sergio Aragones’ Groo in the Layman sketchbook. From a store signing in Long Beach, 1986.

Sergio Aragones’ Groo in the Layman sketchbook. From a store signing in Long Beach, 1986.

From the Layman sketchbook. Rocket Raccoon by Mike Mignola (@artofmignola.) Circa 1985. Somewhere in the Bay Area.

From the Layman sketchbook. Rocket Raccoon by Mike Mignola (@artofmignola.) Circa 1985. Somewhere in the Bay Area.

Another early sketchbook selection. Gumby by Art Adams. 1984, some con in the Bay Area. 

Another early sketchbook selection. Gumby by Art Adams. 1984, some con in the Bay Area.