Despair for Layman
Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Beanworld by @LarryMarder, SDCC 1992.

Another selection from the Layman sketchbook: Beanworld by @LarryMarder, SDCC 1992.

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.