Saturday, November 7, 2015

Memorializing a Deceased Comic Book Collection


 

Doug: Today I'm excited to share the fruits of an idea I got when I was only several weeks into selling my comics collection. As I was scanning and scanning (and scanning some more), it struck me that it was sort of cool that even though the books would be leaving my possession, I'd always have high quality images of my books. If any of you have ever used the various online photograph merchants, you also know there are some neat products out there that you can adorn with the photos of your choice. I've used Shutterfly several times to make gifts such as calendars, travel mugs, etc. So it seemed a natural fit to do something with my comics. The end product is a 49-page 8"x11" hardcover book (featuring almost 100 of my cover scans) that is simply wonderful. Enjoy the images... I have!


 




  



















21 comments:

Redartz said...

Great idea, Doug! Your book is a perfect way to keep your favorite covers and pages available, even when you no longer have the books themselves. And being your own images, it's sort of like having your own personal Omnibus...

I too have parted with some of my collection over recent months. One side benefit of scanning the books for ebay is that it leaves you with nice, detailed scans of your books for just such a project as you describe. Some of mine currently rotate as background my laptop!

Incidentally, nice selection of images. You obviously had a fine, comprehensive collection. Very impressive!

William said...

Doug, that is very cool, man. You had an awesome collection, that I'm sure it was very hard to part with. (I feel your pain).

I haven't made a book or anything, but I did make this video in a hotel room in Virginia on my way to drop my Spider-Man collection off at the auction house in NYC.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gVfdCbFMj8Q

Anonymous said...

Wow Doug.....

I just did two Grateful Dead shows this week, so I've been in "flashback" mode, haha, but this post gives me serious flashbacks to some great images from my youth.

Thanks for the memories,
Gratefully,
starfoxxx

Martinex1 said...

Very cool. I like the back cover. How hard was it for you to decide what went where? Are you considering volume 2?

dbutler16 said...

Ah, I get nostalgic just looking at those scans!

RobAnderson said...

Great idea! (Also, great collection...) I've got to do a "covers" book and calendar for myself, for sure. You didn't run into any problems with them flagging it for "copyright" issues, I guess?

Jason Atomic said...

I did something similar when I sold my comic collection & made a collage book out of the comics that were too 'loved' for resale. http://comixstripped.blogspot.co.uk/2012/03/flash-cosmic-savage-ltd-edition-art.html

Doug said...

Thanks for the kind words, friends! I thought you might get a kick out of today's topic and images.

In answer to some questions -- I also made myself a free calendar with many of the same images (some different) for 2016. Shutterfly had a promotion for such (all I paid was S&H, which was around $7) at the time I was going to get serious about this book -- got the proverbial "two birds".

Rob, there was no issue with property rights on any of my latest ventures. However, I can tell you that both Walgreen's and Shutterfly raised copyright issues with my son's wedding photos. We had to provide a letter of use and permissions from the photographer and file it with both companies before they would print copies or allow us to do any keepsake crafting.

William, your video made me want to cry. Seriously, it made me well up. People other than this great little community, and other collectors, wouldn't "get" that. I really feel like extending sympathies. I do. It brought back the emotions I felt back in July 2014 when I pulled out the first 20 or so issues of the Avengers and looked at them -- just a couple of days before I made this commitment. I am not lying -- there was a melancholy feeling that washed over me and lasted until the first sale. At that point it became real, sort of a "no turning back now". Now, my sense is that I'm almost peeved that I can't seem to move the last 200 books (about a longbox and an 1/8th is what's left from 12 longboxes to start). It's frustrating with every relisting. Someday they'll be gone, though.

Martinex, what you didn't say is that you are now the owner of several of the books shown today! Yessir, our very own Mike S. has been a benefactor of mine, and I will say publicly that his purchases have been one of the joys of this venture. May sound silly, but knowing that my books are going to someone I "know" is special. It's been appreciated.

But in answer to your question, the only qualm I have with the book is that neither I nor my wife could manilpulate the pages once filled. Obviously Amazing Spider-Man #s 39 and 40 should be a page sooner in the book. But there was no way I was going to redo all I'd already set in place. So it's just a funny little "duh..." moment when I think about it.

As to the books I chose to use, some are obviously significant. Others I just like the covers. The spread with the Giant-Sized issues was just a love letter to the Bronze Age. And Volume 2? I hadn't thought about it, but I do know if I pursued that I'd have to pick a book style with a different dimension. I guess I'd come up with something to memorialize my Avengers complete run. Trouble with that is that once I hit a certain issue # I started selling them in lots so did not make individual scans -- I used photographs of the lot instead.

Again, thanks for the support and for letting me tell these stories. You all are my water cooler, my LCS crowd. It's therapeutic, as some of you can relate.

Happy weekend,

Doug

Doug said...

Jason --

I like your book! A little "artsier" than mine, but with many smiles. The Spider-Man Halloween costume ad that's featured is wonderful.

Doug

Colin Bray said...

Oh Doug, your scans made me sad for some reason. I think I find it difficult to see such a lovingly built collection being broken up. You are clearly very happy with your decision and that's all that counts but still...

Anyway, lovely books and a great way to commemorate your collection. Thanks for sharing.

Redartz said...

William- I plan to catch your video later; back home with the wi-fi. Mighty tough to part with such a hard- built collection, from one Spidey fan to another. Did you pick up any reprint volumes to ease the loss?

Jason Atomic- cool idea about the collage. I do similar things with comics lacking pages or heavily soiled ( some of my flea market box lots have had some pretty rough books). Going to do comic collage over a bookcase to store tpb's and graphic novels.

Doug- You've told us of some of your Omnibus purchases to 'replace' some of your sold books. Just wondered if you had a few special comics you kept just for the personal value they held...

Doug said...

Redartz --

The only things I've kept so far are prestige format books for which I do not own a reprint (Superboy's Legion, the Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty series I'd mentioned a couple of weeks ago, Marvels (#1 autographed by Alex Ross), etc.). And I've stored away both the complete series of DC's Who's Who and the second volume (with appendices) of Marvel's Handbook. However, since all of that material is readily available online, I may yet sell those off in two large lots.

The only books I really considered keeping were Avengers #19 (my first comic, to the best of my recollection -- however, the copy I owned was a replacement) and Avengers #28 (my favorite comic). But, since they were both in pretty sharp condition I knew I could get a buck for them so I sold them.

While the money from the comics sales has been ongoing, it's of course begun to trickle as I've gotten near the end. It was the original art sales, however, that allowed both my wife and I to make sizeable down payments on new vehicles within the past six months. Off the top of my head, I believe my art sales grossed over $12K.

Oh yeah -- and those shipping costs I incurred from UPS for the Avengers page (with Quicksilver) you see pictured today? You recall -- like $400 to ship the page from the Chicago area to the Los Angeles area? Well, I sold my final two pages of original art (a JB FF page and the Heck Avengers page you see pictured) within the past few weeks and used the USPS -- with insurance, each page shipped for around $50. And both got to their destination in two days, safe and sound. Lesson learned.

Doug

Edo Bosnar said...

I have to say, as impressive as your cover scrapbook is Doug, like Colin I find myself getting a little sad looking at those images (and man, William, that video...) I'm not even sure why I feel that way; it's been ages since I had my own real big collection of actual comic books, and I generally don't feel at all sentimental about my own stuff. I guess it's just knowing what went into making that book, the lovingly compiled collection being sold off (again, the same feeling hit me in spades watching William's video).

Martinex1 said...

Yes that is absolutely true! While Doug's collection shrunk, my FF, Avengers and Giant Size runs grew. I'm not a completist but I was definitely able to fill some gaps. I won some and I lost some, but it's been fun. And I will tell you that the condition of all the comics and packaging was great! Fun times! Still making my way reading through some Len Wein And George Perez FF, and kicking myself for not bidding higher on "Next Men" which I've never really read.

William said...

Thanks Doug (and Edo). "Regular" people really can't understand how attached people like ourselves can become to our comics. Because they are more than just "books". They are memories and experiences, and the stories in them helped shape our lives and make us who we are. When I was growing up, comics were my moral compass, and characters like Spider-Man/Peter Parker, were almost like close friends. So, it can be very hard to part with something like that. In fact, it's impossible to do it without some level of regret and/or remorse.

Retardz, I myself have a large bookshelf jammed full of trade paperbacks, and hardcover collections of not only Spider-Man, but pretty much every comic I ever loved. (Avengers, Fantastic Four, Batman, Superman, Daredevil, Captain America, etc., etc.) That greatly eases the sting of selling off my actual comics themselves.

But the item that helps the most are the DVD Marvel Comic collections from a few years ago from GitCorp. I have every one of them that was released, and they contain digital scans of complete runs of several Marvel Comics series (Amazing Spider-Man, Avengers, Fantastic Four, X-Men, Captain America, Iron Man Hulk, and Daredevil). The scans are the actual comics themselves, from cover-to-cover so it's like having the actual books. I believe Doug has a few of them himself.

I also ended up buying back about 20 issues of Amazing Spider-Man on eBay. They were mostly from the Tom DeFalco & Ron Frenz era, because they were some of my favorite issues, and they weren't available in Trade Paperback format. However, most of them have since been released, and I bought those as well.

Anonymous said...

Neatly done Doug!

- Mike 'don't own a scanner' from Trinidad & Tobago.

Costa said...

Just watched that video William; breaks my heart; could hear your voice quiver as you went through the issues. Almost had to do the same when we were planning a wedding years back but luckily found a 2nd job and worked like a dog to save the dollars. William, you are so right about growing up and learning via comics; that whole Harry Osborne-LSD story-line I read through Marvel Tales and it did get me to look through the encyclopedia (pre-google)to learn what he was going through; could have asked my parents but of course did not. As for building up a vocabulary, I owe it all to Marvel and DC who allowed me to become part of their universe - that's how it felt as a 6-7-8 and even 20 year old.
Great job on the collage Doug; that is a keeper.
Do you guys have children who don't seem to care about your collection nor value it; my boys are 16 and 14 and they of course read today's comics via their ipad and consider THE collection in the same vein as old pictures; makes me wonder if I should put them on sale as retirement is creeping up and perhaps downsizing our home. Thanks for the images; I can't get enough of re-looking at images from my past.

Anonymous said...

Brilliant idea, Doug!

--Joseph

Disneymarvel said...

Another fun thing to do with these images is to make collage mugs. Makes coffee time very nostalgic.

William said...

BTW Doug, those are some truly awesome images you posted. So much fun. If only they still made 'em like that, I'd still be buying them every week.

Anonymous said...

Nice images and a nice idea Doug. A lot of personal favorites in there for me. Thanks for the memories.

Tom

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