This weekend there is a local pop culture catch-all convention, aptly named the Pop Culture Expo. It's extremely convenient. Only 5.1 miles from my house (according to Google Maps,) and about half the price to get in the door as the big upcoming Boston Comic Con will be this summer. (And that will be in the city proper, which isn't as convenient.)
I went with one goal - to meet and acquire an autographed print from Ken Kelly.
Ken is very amiable and he was a pleasure to meet. Unfortunately for me, he aimed his stock at the KISS fans (I can't blame him, everyone but me seemed to want the KISS stuff!) He was a little thin on his Robert E. Howard related stuff. So, I came out with smaller prints than I wanted, but that's okay. I was able to get 2, and that might even be easier to space out in the home office.
Here's Ken with the Kull print;
I won't say I made his day, but I brought up the fact that the Baen book Eons of the Night got me started on sword-&-sorcery. "Marchers of Valhalla." He absolutely beamed with excitement! He reminisced how excited and happy he had been to get the Baen Robert E. Howard Library gig. It was his chance to "do it all again" after the Berkley covers in the 1970s. I think he even favors his work for Baen, because with the Berkleys he was still learning. Those Berkleys do feel heavily influenced by his Uncle Frank. His own style comes through much more distinctly on the Baen covers.
If he comes this close again next year, I might see about contacting him beforehand (if possible) for something specific. But I'm pretty happy with today's take.