Monday, August 29, 2011

FanExpo 2011

Before I begin to describe my experience at FanExpo this year I would like to show off a project I managed to pull off just in time to exhibit at the show. During my commutes to my summer internship I have been reading Tolkien's "The Hobbit", fairly early on in the book I was inspired by a scene of 13 dwarves, Gandalf and Bilbo scrambling up tall pines in an attempt to take refuge from hundreds of wargs and goblins. Gandalf magically lit pine cones and tossed them into the threat bellow. It was a scene of absolute chaos described in a humorous way. For anyone interested, flip over to the chapter titled " Out of the frying pan, into the fire".

At one point I realized that the huge stacks of concept sketches used for this illustration had further potential. I began to refine all the separate dwarf sketches, I stayed true to their personalities, ages, and family tree associations and came up with these portraits designed to be printed onto beer coasters.

So after many sleepless nights of preparation, one of my favorite events of the year..

Fan Expo

For the second year in a row I was exhibiting with my friend and classmate Danielle, here is a shot of our set up, her work on the left, mine on the right. We were surrounded by some amazing people! Tony Moore(the artist behind Walking Dead), Nimit Malavia, and Bobbie Chiu (including the imaginism studio staff were sitting directly behind us. Just across from us were friends and Classmates Taryn and Jori, and to our right were Fearless Fred from the Edge and Teletoon along with his crew at "Big Sexy Comics" promoting their new project "Teuton".

To anyone who hasn't been, FanExpo is a four day long clusterfuck of easily over 80,000 attendees made up of hardcore comic book hero, anime, sci fi, horror and video game fans, thousands of scantily clad fictional Japanese characters, overweight super heroes, both brilliant, and washed up celebrities, well endowed booth babes shoving cheap swag in your face, plenty of security and tons of amazing artists. I could keep on listing but I'll let some of the following photos speak for a small fraction of the event that I managed to capture with my camera.

the view from our booth,

life size Lego Hagrid,

One of my childhood heroes,

this set of beautiful custom made armor imported from Japan,

I always appreciate the effort one puts into the costume of such an obscure character, from a French film "Brotherhood of the wolf" in this case,

The actual Thor,

and oceans of comic books,

A beautiful bust of the Red Skull that I hope to some day afford. Followed by two of several pages completley filled with observations, ideas, overheard things as well as information from the many interesting people to would stop by and chat.

It was a another interesting and lucrative year. As the show came to an end I ran around through barrages of things that I wanted to buy, so I end off with a shot of some of the treasures I came home with.


  1. Aw, you got that sick illustrator book!! I ordered mine from Amazon the week before FanExpo, but it still hasn't come in! Only the American website has it. Love the Hobbit piece, really awesome.

  2. Ya the book shop near the food court had some amazing stuff, and he cut me a deal on it too!, you'll love it for sure, has process work and explanations. They also showed me a compilation of 1930s Mickey Mouse comics, one of which he keeps trying to commit suicide in some pretty ridiculous ways after Minnie left him.

  3. Hahaha, that's nuts!
    Yeah, I can't wait to receive mine, I really hope it ships soon! I first saw it at Kagan's, because he picked one up at San Diego. He has another book along the same lines, but it was published about 30 years earlier, and it looks just as awesome. It has more discussion with the illustrators themselves, though, I think.