Sunday, April 28, 2013

Calgary Comic Expo 2013 Impressions

I just returned from Calgary Comic Expo 2013 after a weekend trip down to Cowtown.   While I'm not a big convention attendee I've been down to Comic Expo three years in a row now for just a portion of the Saturday.  The convention organizers really picked up their game this year it was like way better organized this year and way bigger in terms of square footage.  There was a bit of walking, but even exchanging our prepaid tickets for badges and wristbands was easy.
Horses and a lineup for the 10 AM opening on the walkway.
They expected some 60,000 people to attend over the 2.5 days and they've managed to make it a much more pleasant experience.  There were the crowds, but you didn't feel squashed like last year.  Last year with the complete assemblage of the Star Trek casts was just nuts for attendance.
Lego Star Wars
Awesome Iron Man, but it came out blurry (figures).
The crowds
There was an abundance of cosplayers in attendance and you saw them prepping outside of the convention halls and I always wonder what the Stampede staff thinks of this stuff compared with the old wild west persona of the city.  The mayor helped kick off the event in a cosplay parade and that is one of the aspects of Calgary that I like the most.  The city gets behind their major events like the Stampede, the Winter Olympics, and now Comic Expo.  I saw some awesome Batman, Iron Man, Mass Effect, and even Jessica Rabbit cosplayers amongst the many folks who dressed up.
Comics for sale
I checked out a whack of booths on the floor and met a few of the shop keepers who I know from their actual stores in Calgary like the Sentry Box and Phoenix Comics down there.  I didn't realize that you pay for the booth and then you can also pay extra for power and for wi-fi.  There is always a nice mix of collectibles and comics from east and west there and I'm sure that plenty of people go home richer in assets and poorer in cash.
Art Books
I was actually interested in talking to some of the artists with booths there and trying to figure out if anyone did art that was good for a book cover for my Exocrisis Blue series of books.  I made a few contacts and hopefully I'll be able to commission some fancier cover art for my mecha science fiction ebooks.  I can write but I sure cannot draw like these guys and girls.  I met people who were just starting out and trying their hand at manga, students from Alberta College of Arts, to some commercial graphics artists who have graphic novels as a passion.
Bumblebee with Autobot logos to boot!
All in all, it was pretty fun and it is always fun seeing the great costumes and cool things to get.  Crazy thing is that even after leaving the expo, I ran into Bumblebee in the parking lot for a Shanghai restaurant across town.  Transformers are rolling!

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