Dealers Hall and Artist Alley by Eri Kagami
The dealers hall and artist alley was about the same size as previous years. There weren’t as many Funko Pop vendors. However, I did notice a larger presence of artists and creators on the floor. While my major complaint with modern day comic con dealers halls stems from the lack of comic book trade vendors offering more than just hero comics, Long Beach Comic Con was a great opportunity to meet creators and writers and you could buy their books directly from them. Mad Cow, Aspen, Alterna, IDW, etc had a presence at Long Beach Comic Con and also featured non-hero books offering a wider variety of stories for everyone. I do like checking out unique artists and art at the dealers hall. I picked up some scents for costuming from Duftwerks. I also picked up some tea from Jasmine Dragon Tea Company. I stopped by Cosplay Corner to say “hi” to a few friends, but I’m usually anxious anytime I’m in that zone because there’s a lot of thirsty fanboys in that zone. The celebrity autograph area was reduced and made more room for a geek podcasting zone. The dealers hall had a pretty good mix of stuff. Because the convention wasn’t crowded, you could actually breath and do more shopping.
Latin Horror, Folklore, and Fantasy by Jared the Greek
This panel featured several comic book creators of Hispanic descent talking about Latin American culture and folklore. From myths and legends to Day of the Dead celebrations they discussed how everyone has slightly different versions they grew up with. They also talked about how that aspect of their childhood helped them develop their creative side. The movie Coco was brought up and how it was a great spotlight on Hispanic culture and how they want to see more stories like that in the future. Most importantly, the panelists hoped their work would inspire more Latin-American stories and creatives in the future.
Film Festival: Horror by Jared the Greek
The GeekFest film room had many different panels, but it also featured various film contests. I was lucky enough to check out the Horror short contest. The contest began with a bang featuring the very dark “Goodnight, Gracie” a home invasion movie from the perspective of a child. The second film was the very weak “Body Image” that tried to show how a beautification routine is like self-harm, but just couldn’t quite reach the audience. The third movie got the biggest reactions from the audience. “Wasp-Men from Mars” was done in a campy 50s horror movie, but with enough twists and humor to make it a fun watch. The final film, “Red Ruby”, began with a very David Lynch style, but fell apart near the end when it became a trailer for a generic action movie. The use of bizarre imagery and horror elements were replaced with an action montage and no real resolution to the story. When the show was over people were allowed to vote for their favorites and many people were still talking about Wasp-Men as they left the small screening room.
Directing Your Comic by Jared the Greek
This panel looked at an often ignored subject, that being the ways in which writers and artists communicate ideas. This was taken from the perspective of an original independent comic series. Showing different ways to describe characters and how they dress with the use of real life examples and pictures. Then scene setting using location shots, movie scenes, and room for the artist to experiment. The panelists also brought up the importance of having an artist who works with your writing style. The presentation had the rough sketch, pencils, inks, and color stages of a page to show how things change in the course of creation. It was also used to show how each side of the creative process has input to make a page pop. This is a panel that both writers and artists should attend because learning how to better communicate will lead to a better project.
Disney Cosplayers Meet Up by Eri Kagami
The Disney Cosplay photoshoot took place on Sunday afternoon. It’s a long time tradition at Southern California conventions to have the Disney cosplay meet up on a Sunday. This time around , we had a handful of Pixar related characters in addition to the usual princesses. Because of how the location was set up this year, it was tricky getting from the convention exit and into the stairwell that’s on the left side of the Long Beach Terrace Theater. The unfortunate thing about Long Beach Comic Con and Long Beach Comic Expo, the exact location of the event within the convention center can change things. I’m very happy that Robert T Photography, the organizer, was able to adjust for the 11th hour announcements.