RVSD July 2008 : 29

’CON AND GET IT! Last year’s Comic-Con might have been celeb central (with everyone from The Rock to Scarlett Johansson swanning about S.D.), but this year, the A-list returns to its rightful owners—the nerds! To celebrate, we caught up with new S.D. resident Ben Templesmith, an Aussie comic artist who inspired the zombie flick 30 Days of Night, worked on Star Wars, and signed with S.D.’s own IDW Publishing for a book series called Wormwood. He lays down the bylaws for Comic-Con, happening July 24- 27 at the Convention Center. –Troy Johnson SITTING PRETTY: Encinitas singer- songwriter Tristan Prettyman. [ON THE VERGE] VOCAL HERO NorCo singer-songwriter Tristan Prettyman is used to the Jack(ie) Johnson comparisons, but the week her new album Hello (Virgin) came out, she was pitted against an unlikely, saccharin rival: Mariah Carey. “I thought my iTunes was stuck; I kept refreshing it,” says the Del Mar-raised, Encinitas-residing Prettyman on her album debuting at number two on the media player’s digital albums chart. She surfs in Cardiff and had a brief stint as a Roxy model, but don’t call it surf rock: Her sophomore offering is bluesy, folksy, and was recorded in London. “I rolled tobacco on the Tube, and we had ‘Mexican nights’ when I made fajitas and tacos,” she says. With a Jay Leno appearance already to her credit, Prettyman tours with G. Love & Special Sauce later this summer. Without giving the exact address for stalkers, where do you live? I live Downtown, a couple blocks from the ballpark. We go to The Field quite a bit, Fleming’s when we want to be all posh and almost daily I can be found grabbing my life-sustaining coffee from Cafe Noir on 9th Avenue. What do we have here that you can’t get in Perth? Vice versa? Lemonade. In Australia, we SCULPT FOLLOWING: Downtown artists Ruth Seeger and Randy Perkins kick off S.D.’s first Phantom Galleries this month. COMIC RELIEF: Ben Templesmith gives the rules for Comic-Con survival. Right:Art by Templesmith. [CULTURE VULTURE] PHANTOM MENACE! Squatting has never been so au courant. This month, following the lead of San Jose and L.A., S.D. joins the latest art scene juggernaut—the phantom gallery! The MO: Young-gun artists take over vacant storefronts for temporary exhibitions that quickly become magnets for hipsters and high- rollers alike. For its first Phantom Gallery, S.D. Fine Arts Society will showcase the sculptures of German-born Ruth Seeger and California-raised Randy Perkins inside a taco-shop-turned-studio Downtown. They transform marble (ranging from Colorado to Carrera) into graceful odes to the waves, the beach, and male and female forms. Don’t miss the opening on July 31 at 7PM! 1433 Market St., Downtown; www.sdfas.org and www.studio-michelangelo.com. call lemonade what you’d call Sprite or 7UP. I love real lemonade. Also: functioning internet. Australia is still in the Stone Age, thanks to a private monopoly holding up any upgrading. As for what they have that the U.S. doesn’t? Functioning, efficient public transport. How to get into the VIP parties at Comic-Con? Well, I’ve never seen anyone in a Princess Leia Slavegirl outfit turned away from a party. This may only work for females, though. Give me five “rules” for surviving The Con, from your veteran perspective. Number one: Bathe. You’d be surprised how many people at Comic- Con still seem to forget this basic thing. Number two: Do not harass editors or creatives at The Con in the bathrooms for jobs. Number three: No, the ladies dressed as Princess Leia Slavegirl from Return of the Jedi do not give lap dances. Number four: The aisles are not places to sit down and read comics. Or for lightsaber fights. Number five: Don’t touch your face after shaking too many hands at The Con without washing them first. JULY 2008 > 29 TRISTAN PRETTYMAN PHOTOS BY SASHA EISENMAN; BEN TEMPLESMITH PHOTO BY LORELEI BUNJES; PHANTOM GALLERIES PHOTOS BY WES DRIVER

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