words: about 290; time: 5 minutes
the small press expo (spx), held in bethesda, maryland, has showcased (展示) independent comic artists and publishers since 1994.
in this year’s festival, artists selling and showing off their art in booths (摊位) will be widely seen. people who attend — even kids — sometimes bring artwork and sell it to other artists they meet.
unlike larger comics exhibitions, the small press expo focuses on (集中于) d.c.-area artists and publishers. but the festival has grown so popular that people attend from across the country.
cartoonist matt dembicki of fairfax, virginia, is a long-time spx exhibitor. he has brought his sons adam, 12, and roman, 9, to the festival for years. roman and adam go to spx to sell their artwork but also to get inspired (受启发的).
adam said, “i just enjoy walking around and looking at the different types of ideas people have, which inspires me a lot.”
one artist at the expo who may be especially inspiring to kids is cartoonist tillie walden.
walden, 21, has been drawing since she was very young, but she started seriously focusing on comics at 17. walden has earned many prizes — including spx’s ignatz award for outstanding artist — for her comics and novels.
“what the small press expo does is just show you how many possibilities there are in the industry,” she said. “especially something like spx, there are so many kinds of creators making so many different things, and yet they all come together and all find success there.”
walden and dembicki mentioned the sense of community that is shared by artists at the small press expo.
“everyone i know who goes to spx and these sorts of exhibitions says the same thing — they go to spx and leave feeling more encouraged to draw and create,” walden said.