Posts tagged convention

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GeekGirlCon 2011

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I used to go to WonderCon every year when I was younger. Anyone who goes to Cons regularly, knows you have your “Con Posse” (not to be confused with “clown posse” like Harley Quinn will now have with her new ICP-esqu costume… but I digress). When I was younger I was the one girl in a group of many dudes. After I had my son I stopped going, in the past year I have been back to attending. And have added more cons to my list of must see. In the time that I was away a major change happened. The con posse I’ve joined is 99% GIRLS! This is pretty phenomenal for a gal who has grown up getting the stink eye from the dudes (and gals) behind the counters at comic shops.

It’s not too surprising that we now have our own convention. GeekGirlCon –located at the Seattle Center and EMP– was a slightly bittersweet event for me. I was on the staff, one of the original members, first person to buy a pass, etc. I was the Vice President and Operations Director, filed the incorporation paperwork opened the bank account, yada yada. No one ever really cares about “Operations,” it’s the department that does all the behind the scenes work that allows the more creative types to do the shiny stuff. I had to leave the organization because of the huge amount of time it required. Since the staff is 100% unpaid volunteers I was essentially working a second full time job for no pay; and I have a husband and child. So it finally got to the point of having to choose, GGC or child. Obviously my child had to win. So the sweet part was how AWESOME of a time I had, and how amazing it was to see that both days sold out. The bitter part was that I was seeing it from the outside.

I do have to say it was a bit nice to not have to be working this weekend and was able to just enjoy the convention as a panelist/attendee. I got to romp around with a posse of amazingly talented and fun folks. I stayed out too late, drank too much (though oddly didn’t once get drunk) and was introduced to the most amazing alcohol I have ever tasted by the lovely Stephanie Thorpe.

I drove up Friday night with my “fake niece”, who is the 16 year old anime obsessed, blue haired daughter of a friend. Stopped by the airport to pick up a few friends then checked into our AH-MAY-ZING hotel the Marqueen, on Queen Ann St in Seattle. After that I met up with friends for drinks, a walk up a monstrosity of a hill and dinner with more friends.

"Token Dudes Panel"

Saturday morning I got up, had breakfast at Mecca Café, if you go to Seattle you MUST try this place. They have awesome bacon, great waffles; you get a mini pitcher when you order iced tea and the receipt showed that our server’s name was “BAT GIRL”. I attended the very fun “token dudes” panel. That night I attended the unofficial CheeseCon at The Melting Pot – go to twitter, look up the hashtag #CheeseCon to see the hilarity—which was one of the most fun dinners I have ever been to.

Every panel I attended had one common theme; Women need to support one another and act as the “elders of the internet” to support the younger generation. The vendor room, while small was diversely filled thanks to the hard work of Dixie Cochran. I only peeked my head into the gaming room but everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves.

It was nice to see so many little girls dressed in cosplay. There was one family who had I think 3 daughters, all dressed up as different versions of Princess Leia. Most people I saw were smiling and having a good time. Sunday I was the assistant for Miss Bonnie Burton’s craft panel. The creativity of the attendees was awesome. We had Yoda, Tardis, Doctor Who and even… GASP… Star Trek puppets made.

Really the only negative thing I can think of was the fact that it was spread out between the Northwest rooms and the EMP. This would have been fine if panelists weren’t scheduled for back-to-back panels on opposite sides of each other. It is about a 10 minute walk between The NW Rooms and the EMP so if your panel ends at 4 and the next one starts at 4 there is no way to make it on time. But being a first year con I am sure they will keep that in mind for next year. There are some doubts as to whether the NW rooms will be available for 2012 but I am sure they will announce the location when it is secured.

All in all I am happy with the changes to convention culture that have occurred since I first started attending them. Girls are having more and more panels aimed at them, and hopefully, sometime soon, we won’t NEED to have a GeekGirlCon because all cons will be equally targeted for all audiences. And I look forward to seeing my Con Posse as soon as I possibly can. They are a group of individuals who inspire me to push myself and go for my dreams and I love them all in special and different ways.

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A Steampunk Nerd Assembly of Awesome

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I shall endeavor to extend my deepest greetings to all of you. Sure has been a while huh? Well, let me tell you what I’ve been up to.

This past Memorial Day weekend, here in the U.S., I was with a very large assembly of amazing people. Amazing people who all love Steampunk. I personally don’t know how we legally got away with letting such a large group of nerds/geeks/enthusiasts from all over the World congregate in one place for four days, but I love it. I attended the 2011 World Steam Expo! This is the second year for the fledgeling exposition, and they did not disappoint. I also attended the first year and I like the progress they’re making. After getting the program and moving to wait in line for the Opening Ceremonies (you have to get in line early for these things, you know) my friend and I started to plan out our weekend. It should be noted that the Expo runs for four days, but I was only allowed to attend three.

The schedule was packed with many things to do and see. Panels galore with amazing presenters, an amazing Dealer’s room, bands to listen to and get autographs from, and the first traveling steampunk museum exhibit. The Charles River Museum of Industry & Innovation was set up in it’s very own room displaying the country’s first steampunk exhibit, Steampunk, Form & Function. Computers, projectors, even Flash Drives had a steampunk flair and function. I also can’t forget to mention Sparkticus. You rub his horn for good luck. I did. I think that’s how I was able to meet Steampunk Boba Fett and get a thumbs up, and he even called me sassy! I think that means he won’t kill me, at least right away.

My weekend was packed, but there were many things that I missed out on. But let’s not focus on that, let’s focus a little more on the presenters and panels that I saw. I encountered the International Anti-Piracy Squadron, or the IAPS, the most, there were very busy presenting panels, arresting poor unlawful souls, and drinking while telling salty tales. Salty tales of the sky, that is. Apart from the various fashion, etiquette, and grooming panels, my favorite had to be the Multiculturalism in Steampunk panel, co-presented by the wonderous G.D Falksen. Miss Kagashi of the Multiculturalism for Steampunk blog came dressed in her own Native American Steampunk outfit, and displaying her Turkish Steampunk outfit. I highly recommend looking up the entire Squadron, they are a hoot and a half, and full of really good information, if you can catch them at a good time when they’re not grappling with airship pirates.

I can’t leave out G.D. Falksen who is one of  the most recognized faces of Steampunk. When he isn’t writing novels or serial stories, he’s helping to create of the first Steampunk MMO’s, AIR. I wrote up a review of the exclusive preview of the game and you can check it out over at the TCPS (To Continue Press Start) blog, here. The Vagabonds taught us about Steampunk in the media, and Gears, gadgets and doodads. The Royal Ladies’ & Gentlemens’ Experimental Madness Society talked to us about turning out wardrobe into everyday steampunk, and not just costumes, and talked to us about the sounds of steampunk, along with The Clockwork Dolls. I have so many bands and artists to check out now, and hopefully to add to my steampunk music collection. Ring of Steel showed us the art of the whip. (Note: If you had thought about wanting to meet me in real life, please dismiss that notion now, for after this panel/demonstration, I am now going to buy a whip, like Indiana Jones. Fear me.) Girl Genius, the webcomic and now novel, created by Prof.’s Phil and Kaja Foglio, know of it? Well they were there too! Here I’ll prove it with this picture. (Kaja said she liked my Obi belt.) Well, not only were they there but they did a couple of panels, and the Girl Genius Radio Plays! I remembered them from last year and endeavored to get to this this year, although I did sadly miss the auditions to become the narrator.

I seemed to have mentioned music and performers, and oh they had concerts and performers there. There was even comedy, from the likes of English comedians Andrew O’Neill and Marc Burrows, both from the band The Men Who Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing. Hi.Lari. Ous. The wonderful bagpipe and drum band, Tartanic! I’ve seen/known them for almost three years now, I might have to have them play at my wedding now, they’re a bunch of wonderful hams. The gypsy band Frency and The Punk, formerly known as the Gypsy nomads. A very hilarious, very dirty and raunchy Irish band called The Bawdy Boys. They have several different shows, but they’re obvious specialty is the Dirty Show/Bawdy Boozer. They get drunk with you, and then sometimes they’ll sing for you, too. A couple of them went through two 6 packs of Guinness beer. They were easily vying for the top spot of favourite event of the expo, and they’re really fun to talk to, I got a picture and a button. And, of course, no steampunk event would be complete without Abney Park. I was almost at the end of the line waiting for them, but some how ended up near the very front of the mosh pit, getting some decent pictures. They put on a great show, and had a sesnse of humour, joking about an “act of God” clause in their contract in response to the tornado that happened 40 miles away. Speaking of mosh pits, steampunk mosh pits are some of the most polite pits you’ll find. We’ll knock you down, but we’ll help you right back up before knocking you down again. Quite good fun. There were more bands and performers there, I just wasn’t able to see them all.

There are two performances that I’ve left out, one of them Very important. Some of the bands performed at The Midnight Carnival, and Pop Hayden was there! A man not born in this century, but he came here with his magic and his medicinal wares, and generously shared this with everyone. And then, my personal favourite of the weekend, Miss Hayley Jane of Tick Tock Tease, an amazing, young, burlesque performer. She gave a panel about burlesque and then performed with the Bawdy Boys, and on her own, complete with wardrobe malfunction! For someone so young, she is really accomplished and talented.

That was just a little taste of what’s at the World Steam Expo, and even I had a hard time making up my mind about which panels and performances to go see. I was having nerdgasms at the amount of awesome was there this year, and the fact that I got to show off some more of my costumes, this year a slightly Japanese inspired steampunk bounty hunter named Sakura “Saki” Kade. (I got some Really nice service at the registration desk because my named had alcohol in it. 😀 ) I can’t recommend and encourage everyone to attend this expo more. i had more fun here than I had at Gen Con last year, and I think that’s saying something, this expo pulls in a couple thousand because of a smaller venue, The Hyatt. It really is amazing, and I’m already planning a costume theme for next year; Steampunk-ed Video Game Characters. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go make some waistcoats and design some skirts and pants, I’m moving into a steampunk lifestyle.

 

All 175 pictures that I took at the expo can be seen at my Flickr account, here. I took some video too, those will be posted soon on my youtube account, here.

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Lights, Camera, ACTIONFEST!

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A guest post by Jack Eagen

 

This year I had the opportunity to attend ActionFest. I didn’t just get to go as a film-goer, but I volunteered myself to what turned out to be a surprisingly amazing experience. I have not had so much fun at a film festival ever. I genuinely believe that this is a unique film festival that rivals to entertain patrons more than any other. I heard about the event when a friend mentioned he was going. A film festival fan, he had purchased a package to see every single film. I asked what was playing and discovered that some of my favorite film makers had projects playing. Namely, Takashi Miike, and Jackie Chan. The festival included a stunt show on Sunday. As I represent a production company, including a stunt and fight choreographer, Billy “Wylde” Wolcott, I emailed the people listed as being the organizers. I received a quick response and was please to get Robert Bradley and his Ghost Town Gun Fighters involved. Billy was able to participate and I got to work with John Cann, who was in charge of supplying the stunts. He brought his one-of-a-kind, state-of-the-art, crash bag completing two jumps, one downtown at the ARCADE as a pre-show buzz builder. He brought his air ramp and was set on fire by Buddy Joe Hooker.  They included motor cross stunt bikers that came with their own ramp, doing jumps forty feet up, in front of the Carolina Theater front marque. There was a martial arts exhibition from Ho Sin Sool Dojang, Traditional Martial Arts Center, and to my excitement my friends from Robert Bradleys Gun Fighters kicked the entire show off with a classic Wild West show comedy bit. Robert Bradley himself did an impressive death roll back on pavement and the under taker to one to the keaster.

The highlights this year at the screening was the winner of best film, A Lonely Place to Die, and the new Film by Miike, 13 Assassins. Lonely was an excellent twist on a climber story, by a British director (Julian Gilbey) and company. I had a chance to speak with Gilbey and he was kind enough to discuss some of the difficulties he had. He mentioned they shot on the RED One camera, and that some of their most expensive shots were entirely due to a safety cable crossing in front of the lead actresses face during key moment. They digitally removed the cable, hence the cost increase on their shots. The final product is a triumph for any director on the independent scene.

Colin Geddes and Peter Kuplowsky are doing a fantastic job, and can use all the volunteers they can get. Colin is an organizer from the Toronto Film Festival, and his experience is paying off. Peter not only ran a tight ship but I appreciated that when he spoke before the final screening, 13 Assassins, he mentioned Gozu, a not often referenced film by Miike. A sign that he is a true fan, and film lover. With guys running the show that have such a personal connection with the screenings, the festival is about love for the films. This is a festival about fun. Something often lacking in film festivals.

Because ActionFest is focused towards the Action, it seems to draw out some interesting visitors. Chuck Norris came to the first year, and it was gonna be tough to top that this year. Buddy Joe Hooker, Stunt Man Legend, stepped in to fill the shoes with no problem. Again, this is a good sign because people who are Action Buffs, or Film Fanatics know the name Buddy Joe Hooker. The easiest way to explain is to say he one of the members of Stunts Unlimited, he holds the record for the most rolls in a vehicle (22), and most recently infamous was his driving in Death Proof by Quinton Tarantino. Listing out everything else about him would take forever, but I seriously recommend anyone who claims to love film to make sure they know these names.

The Life Time Achievement award this year went to Russel Towery, who absolutely deserved it. He was the stunt stand in on all the Robo Cop films, a Fight Choreographer on the Pirates of Caribbean films and Machete, but mostly he was a very nice guy that was extremely approachable. Other visitors included the fighter choreographer for Troy and Sherlock Holmes, Michael Jai White who played Spawn and Black Dynamite, and Larnell Stovall who is the fight choreographer for Bunraku and the newest in the Mortal Combat films. All three of which where on a panel with guest writer, specialist, film consultant, Kung Fu “know it all” Ric Meyers, who was attending the festival to promote his new film and book “Films of Fury”. Ric was also someone who I got the chance to talk with on multiple occasions. Besides knowing more about the history of Asia, Martial Arts, Martial Arts Film, and Kung Fu than anyone I have ever met, he is also a brilliant writer. I bought a copy of his book and can’t put it down

If that isn’t enough, when I was talking with him about the difficulties of getting so much important information into a 2 hour movie when the book is over three hundred pages, I mentioned a DVD I have watched many times. I got it in a bundle with something else, which I can’t recall.  It is called The Art of Action. It is hosted by Samuel L. Jackson, and until Films of Fury, I have never seen a more in-depth and enlightening review of the history of Kung Fu films. It has wonderful interviews that opened up to many interesting details that never seem to get covered in film school history classes. Turns out that was one of Ric’s first attempts to getting this information out in front of the public. He was a consultant on that very same DVD. The new film, Films of Fury, is as Ric described it, an attempt to do something more entertaining for an audience that might have no interest in Kung Fu films, but also to more respectfully cover some of the most important topics. Ric Meyers seemed fairly pleased with the screening, which he pointed out he had not yet seen. Previously they had shown him a rough cut of the film which he hadn’t been ecstatic with. It is a long, complicated topic to try and cover in front of an audience with an increasingly short attention span.

Mostly, I would say that this festival is the little, big secret. It is a big idea and they are just getting started. The turnout seems small compared to the massive space they cover, opening the parking lot up for the stunt show. I expect the word will pass quickly and the turnout will expand exponentially over the following years. The theater is wonderful and although the Carolina is not positioned close to the downtown area, it really is the perfect space. Besides having a layout including a good VIP room and concessions including alcohol, they also have a private parking lot that allows them to meet all safety and zoning needs. This is very important when you are setting people on fire and throwing them off platforms over 35 feet up. I will definitely see you all there next year and those who missed out this year, don’t stress, ActionFest is here to stay.

 

Jack Eagen, Story Teller

Webcomicry and Promotion, or Get Some Frakking Rest!

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As I’ve mentioned before, one good way for any artist to network is to hit the convention circuit.

I’ve been sticking fairly close to home, but not every craft fair, convention or comic event is located in Connecticut, so I often go out of state.

I’ve had positive experiences overall, however, I have had long drives, and for any of you that taken long road trips, you really start to feel the cramps in your rear and even your leg after a certain point. Sometimes, the trip itself can drain your energy more so than any activity at the convention proper.

At times, the check in process, getting to your booth or table can get trying, especially if you are in a bigger venue and you don’t get a map. If this is a high volume event, you’ll likely get a lot of traffic at your table be it sales, questions, or an admirer wanting to talk about your work. Doing this nonstop throughout the weekend can give you bursts of adrenaline, but I and others have joked about the amount of caffeine and sugar required to keep going.

As we all know, caffeine will lead to a crash of the body’s internal servers eventually.

This past month, I’ve had two back to back conventions, both involving long drives. I attended one this past weekend and will attend another at the end of the month. My sleep cycle has not been the best, especially since you may have to replenish your stock of merchandise….not always so easy when you’re more on the fiber arts side of art.

My advice is this: Learn to pace yourself. Get a sense of how much merchandise you’ll need. Keep coffee on hand, but don’t overdo it, especially if you’re driving.
Most importantly, try to get as much rest as you can, before, during and after the event.

If you start to dream like L in this piece of fan art I created for a small series, it may be time to lay off the sweets and stick to healthier snacks during the convention!

L's Pastry Dream from my

What do I do with my webcomic idea: Promotion

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You have your web comic opus ready to upload and publish to the world. You’ve decided on the web space you’re going to utilize to get it out there.

You’ve uploaded and published. Now what?

The World Wide Web these days is what it sounds like. World wide, and very highly populated. Now that your comic is out there, how do you wish to promote it if you want to go that route.

There is nothing wrong with starting small. Tell your friends, be it via word of mouth, or even through your favorite online community or social networking site. Even if you don’t like Facebook invites, and I often don’t in excess, don’t be afraid to make a page for your comic and invite friends to join. Some may recommend it to others. In that vein, you can also put a small button to ‘like’ the comic, but it would only take the reader to the Facebook page.

Join like-minded communities and forums online. Accounts are usually free, and you can promote, and even learn a few things through online discussion. I’d advise against too much promotion of your own work if it detracts from a different topic or just as basic netiquette. Some are ranking sites, such as The Webcomic List and Top Webcomics where comics are judged by member votes or by site hits. Some will allow members to become featured comics for a small fee. It’s worth looking into if you want a little extra exposure starting out. There are web comic groups on Facebook among other social networking sites or the option create one yourself as well.

With convention season starting for me tomorrow at Genericon, I have to point out that people like to see a face with the artist. Go to Comic and Anime conventions in your area. Depending on the event and venue, purchasing table space is not too cumbersome. If you want to cut costs and start out small, attend smaller conventions, many of which originated and grew from college anime clubs. In some cases, registration is included with your table space, and inexpensive at the smaller venues. One thing I’ve noticed at Genericon and conventions like it is a very relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff. From there, you might to venture to a larger venue such as Otakon or Comic-con. If you want to vend at conventions, do a quick search for events in your area via Google. Wikipedia also has listings. From there, look at the convention website for artist information. It may take a little searching, but most have what you’re looking for or a contact email.

When it comes to promotion, the most important aspect is knowing your product. Don’t be afraid to talk about your comic, what inspired you to create your story and characters, be it online or in person.

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GeekGirlCon Craft Day!

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To quote the wonderful Dina Kay, “Think geeks, Pac Man, and fun. It’s practically like a scene from Scott Pilgrim, amirite?”

GeekGirlCon is picking up major steam and if you happen to be lucky enough to live in Seattle you should definitely join them for this event.  I mean, who doesn’t love fun, nerdy holiday ornaments? And you can learn how to do it on your own so that next year you’re all set to do DIY ornaments for friends and coworkers.

In case you missed my previous posts about this event, you can click over to their awesomesauce website to find out more information.

“GeekGirlCon is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting awareness of and celebrating the contribution and involvement of women in all aspects of sci-fi, comics, gaming and related Geek culture through conventions and events that emphasize both historic and ongoing contribution and influence of women in this culture.” The best part about this organization, however, is that it is not exclusive to women participants.  The idea is to celebrate an aspect of geekdom that does not get nearly enough attention, namely to show that women have an important role in this culture also.  In other words, dudes are more than welcome to volunteer/help out also!

Summary: Sunday, December 5th at 2:30 p.m. at the Summit at Madison, 1730 22nd Ave E, Seattle, WA 98122 and to RSVP BY DECEMBER 3RD by emailing graphics@geekgirlcon.com.

If you don’t live in the Seattle area, there are other ways to support the convention.  Check out the website and, if nothing else, donate a few dollars to the cause!

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The Anatomy of a Convention

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Guess which one I am? I aim to misbehave.

Everyone has heard of a convention, but they don’t necessarily know what happens there or what is available. The word convention itself simply means ” a meeting for particular purposes”.

What I’ll be talking about in this post are “fan conventions”. These gatherings are meant for the purpose of bringing together people with an interest in a particular film, TV show, comic book, genre, etc.

They are extremely large in the amount of attendees so they typically take place in hotels or convention centers.

I don’t consider myself the biggest convention attendant. I’m sure there are people that have been to more than I, but after visiting three of the nerd persuasion, here is what I’ve grown to accept as commonplace at conventions.

My friend Casey? Kinda a big deal.

1. AUTOGRAPHS and PICTURES! : When you go to a convention, one of the main things that draws you in is being able to see people that have been in things you like. They set themselves up at a table and then sign pictures of themselves or DVDs or breasts or replicas or… you know what? I’m pretty sure they’ll sign anything but a baby (and if you would ask someone to sign your baby, please call DCF). There are also typically replica cars sitting in front of the entrance. During events, you are often asked to pay for autographs and donate in order to have photographs in replicas like the Delorean, the General Lee, the Batmobile, Batcycle, etc.

Q&A with the cast of The Boondock Saints

2. EVENTS! : From Q&A’s to sneak previews to concerts, any good convention has a bunch of stuff for you to do. Hopefully, the ones you want to do don’t all coincide and you have to choose one. Because chances are, if you choose the “wrong” one, you miss an eye stabbing. Who doesn’t love an eye stabbing? The only downside is that if you go to a Q&A for the same topic at different conventions, you start to have the ability to know what questions are going to be asked and you could answer them verbatim. So mix it up! Who cares if you don’t know a darn thing about Green Lantern. Go to the screening/Q&A. You might become their newest fan!

3. VENDORS! : When you go to one of these things the way I do, you go completely unprepared. (“Wait… Deanna Troy is gonna be here? All I have on me is a checkbook. Uh… Will you sign this Boris Karloff check for me?”) Enter my salvation: VENDORS! If you have never been to a convention before and have no desire to, I’d say try it once. I would suggest getting a one-day pass if there is one near you just to look at the stuff that is sold. Some of it you can buy anywhere and for a lot less, but there are some rare and remarkable finds like a complete collection of TMNT trading cards, or a cardboard Archie record in near mint condition. Be prepared for sensory overload. Vendors pack their tables as full as they possibly can to provide the most product in hopes of turning a profit (vendors pay for space).

Sweet sounds of psychos

4. COSTUMES! : If you go to a convention, don’t be surprised if you are asked to be pulled into a picture (especially if you dress like my friend, Crissie). Many people dress up to go to conventions in costumes from their favorite shows, mangas, books, movies, comic, etc. Many conventions have a costume contest as well. You can have yourself and Lara Croft, Scarlet Witch, a Predator, a Ghostbuster, Doc Brown, Shaun (of the Dead), Ash, and Flo from the Progressive commercials all in one snapshot. It is amazing to see the time and dedication that some people have put into their costumes.

5. SMELLY PEOPLE! : Yep. Had to bring it up. For the most part, I figure that the costumed people after the third day in a row of wearing a costume are going to be a little rank. So don’t hug a costumed person on the second or third day. I’d suggest multiple costumes, but that’s only if they are made out of a porous material like lycra, spandex, and cloth. I wouldn’t expect someone who has built custom Fett armor to have a set for each day. Maybe the stuff fitting under the armor should be replaceable. But they’re not even the most notorious smellies out there! Honestly. If someone doesn’t dress in costume for the weekend, they should lather up daily. They are staying somewhere that there is a bathroom. Most of the time, they’re staying at a hotel, so the hotel provides soap and shampoo. All you need to remember is deoderant and breath mints. There are hundreds or thousands of people within close proximity to each other. The temperature rises drastically due to the amount of warm bodies thrust into one location. If I can’t stand next to someone without gagging, there is a problem. I have paid just as much to get into the venue, yet I am clean. Oh! And slathering on cologne fools no one. You just smell like butt and cologne. Blech.

So these were the things that I could think of when trying to explain to my mom what a convention was and why I had gone to so many in a short timeframe.

What do you think of when you think of a convention? What do you expect and are disappointed with when they don’t deliver?

[[The pictures are all from the latest convention that I went to. Please ask if for some reason you want to use them. ]]

ShadowHawk Property Of Image Comics and Jim Valentino

Loving The Anti-Hero

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ShadowHawk Property Of Image Comics and Jim Valentino

Recently I attend the NC Comicon (for a review of that con, see my Fandomania article). While there, I attended a panel led by Jim Valentino of Image Comics. Among other things that were discussed, he mentioned a new-to-me comic character that I have got to check out! That character would be ShadowHawk and was described as ‘what Batman would be if he wasn’t a pansy who kept letting the bad guys, namely Joker, get away.’ Finally! Someone who understands me!

I grew up on Batman. I have never missed a movie and I’ve even sat through some of the not-so-good animations. One thing I’ve always been frustrated over was Batman’s continual morals that never lets him kill those that deserve to be killed, else he be no better than the criminals who run the streets. Yeah, well, I disagree with that theory. That may be why my favorite vigilante anti-hero in the Batman universe is Jason Todd aka Red Hood. He has his own morals, along the lines of ‘those that deserve to die will die.’ He’s also the rejected middle child of the Batman family, so he has his own set of problems to deal with.

But until this past weekend I had never even heard of ShadowHawk. In my defense, my exposure to comics was always limited to the big two of Marvel and DC, so I’ve just recently been trying harder to branch into all the other presses. That’s why I like attending comic conventions, since the independent market abounds there. And the characters I’m drawn to are often the anti-heroes. Magneto, Rorshach, Wolverine, and Jason Todd are just a few that have filled my shelves over the years. Their sanity might be a little shaky, but their determination is never questioned. Morals are all well and good, but sometimes bad guys just need some killing. I’m hoping ShadowHawk can join my long line of comic loves.

Best.Thing.Ever.

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Yup, this is pretty much the most amazing thing ever. I just wish I could be in Seattle!

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