Like last year, I split my time between hitting the convention floor and helping set up/run the Battle Babies/ ManOrMonster? Studios table in Artists' Alley. Arriving early on Thursday afternoon, we were able to start setting up. Seeing a convention before it opens is a fun experience because it's an amazing transformation from a floor filled with half-erected wireframes and closed longboxes to a full-fledged bustling convention floor. This year, Shelton made the decision to make the convention double the space. Seeing it on Thursday, it seemed vast and empty, but by late Friday morning, we were thankful for the breathing room. (Having walked it several times each day, I can tell you it was still vast.) The extra space seemed to be a mixed bag--some artists and retailers said it helped their business, while others said it hurt them. From both sides of the table, I would say it was better overall. Artists had more breathing room, and convention-goers had more space to move.
|John Hairston, Jr.'s incredible art|
|Daniel Clowes Picture Disc|
|'70s Marvel Hand Puppets|
Of course, like any convention, there's a ton of merchandise to peruse. Vendors were selling everything from vintage comics of every condition and price, new comics and graphic novels, and vintage and new toys. One toy line that seemed to be everywhere was Funko Pop! I was beginning to think that was a requirement for vendors this year. Seriously, the majority of vendors had those things. It was a lot of fun to see. Things that stood out to me were things like this Daniel Clowes picture disc. Sadly, it was out of my price range to bring home, but it was incredible. Another booth had some great vintage items, like the vintage hand puppets. This guy's booth was amazing--he had 7-11 Slurpee cups, these hand puppets, tiny Marvel comics, and Dr. Doom and Darkseid vintage costumes. (I managed to grab the Darkseid, some Marvel finger puppets, a tiny Thor comic, and a Red Sonja cup from this booth.) Of course Heroes is also a great resource for comics, and the selection was incredibly varied this year. My collection is random, and I was able to find some Thor comics, some vintage underground comics, Masters of the Universe, even a New Kids on the Block comic!
Every year I've attended, HeroesCon has had some kind of comic-related exhibit, and this year was no different. This year it was "The Art of Akira" and featured art related to the famous manga and anime.
|This Adora was awesome.|
|Skelly was a lot of fun.|
Just like any geek convention, Heroes had its share of cosplayers. You couldn't go very far without running into a Harley Quinn or a Captain America. Though I appreciate the comic-related cosplay, my favorites this year were TV/movie related.
In addition to all the convention goodness, HeroesCon had a lot to offer at night. On Friday night, we attended the Drink and Draw. All proceeds from this event went to Team Cul de Sac, a charity related to Parkinson's Disease. We got drenched trying to get to the event, but that wasn't enough to dampen our spirits. We bought a few pieces drawn at the event, but I had more fun watching artists crank out sketch after sketch. The atmosphere at the event was very relaxed and lighthearted. Then we headed to the Westin bar, where many guests of the show head to unwind after a long day on the convention floor. Saturday night was the annual art auction, which is always a lot of fun. Sunday after the show ended, we were lucky enough to make it to the Dead Dog party and hobnob with our artist friends (and make some new ones).
All in all, this year's HeroesCon was my favorite thus far, and I think a lot of it has to do with actually venturing out and doing things. In the past I've missed the Drink and Draw and never headed to the Westin bar, but doing so led to some pretty awesome conversations and great memories.
Special thanks to Rico Renzi and Shelton Drum for allowing me to attend the show. I promise I'll do my write-up sooner next year! :)