Weekend update - FenCon

K. and I woke up bright and early Friday morning (5:15 a.m.) and were out on the road by around 6 a.m. up to Dallas (Addison, actually).  It was a good thing there were two of us in the car: we could drive in the HOV lane.  Traffic going into town was a bit heavy.  The HOV made it bearable.  I had trouble navigating the exit from HOV and back onto 45 north, but we finally made it.

We stopped in Fairfield for breakfast and then in Corsicana for a stop at the Russell Stover's factory.  During the drive in, K. looked up the details for the convention and discovered that the Artists Guest of Honor was Donato Giancola, someone I've wanted a piece by for a while, probably since LACon 3 or 4.  After my recent splurges at WorldCon, I'd pledged not to buy any art until Worldcon next year.  With knowledge that Donato was at FenCon, I knew I was unlikely to hold to that promise.

 Dallas traffic was not too bad and we made it to the convention hotel by around 11 a.m.  Too early for our room to be ready.  So, we split up to our respective areas for the con and got to work.  K in the con suite, me in the Art Show.

The art show was assembled already, so I was assigned to hanging some of the mail-in art, and my own.  Jimmy said mail-in art submissions were down for this con, so there was not too, much art to hang.

K and I got together for dinner and football viewing at Snuffer's, just up Midway a bit.

Saturday was more of the same, with art auction prep involved as well.  I'd seen a piece of Donato's in the charity auction and had determined I could bid on that safely.  However, late in the afternoon, Donato had some free time and came into the Art Show and started a sketch based on a photo of someone who looked a lot like Gandalf.  The piece I remember most of Donato's from LACon was a pencil and chalk drawing of Gandalf in 3/4 profile.  This piece was of Gandalf sitting and smoking a pipe which, to my mind, was more representative of Gandalf than the other.  I was excited and hoped Donato would put the piece up for sale or auction.  When he was done, he told Jimmy to put it in the charity auction.  I was doomed, I knew the piece had to come home with me.

Jimmy brought pizza in for dinner for the folks working the art show/auction and we started organizing stuff by bidder and entering the pieces into the computer.

I stayed doing that until late in the auction, I did not want to miss my chance.  I was going to bid on the pencil and chalk sketch of Boromir and the Gandalf piece.  Prices and the order of the pieces coming up would determine what, if anything, I would come home with.  The Boromir piece went up first and bidding was lively.  I dropped out at $250, showing some fiscal sense although it was a steal at that price.  A few pieces later, as the last piece in the auction, the Gandalf piece went up.  I ended up bidding against a friend and fellow artist and art show worker.  She bowed out when she could not justify any further bids and I ended up with the piece.

K and I met up around 9 and thought about going to grab a bite to eat, she decided to turn in for the evening.

We were up early in the morning and worked until around 4 p.m., packed up and headed back home.  We stopped for dinner in Fairfield at this bbq/gas station.  Not bad, but not great.

We made it home around 9:30 to a big greeting from the pups.

I did manage to sell one piece in the art show, a spalted maple bottle stopper.