Fan Expo was four whole days this year, which is why I’m only just now – almost a full 24 hours after it ended – rejoining the human race. Extremely tiring, but very rewarding!
Here’s a photo of the booth, shared with the lovely (and, in this case, highly blurry) Yien. (Karen was also there, helping us man the booth. Thanks, Karen!) Yien had prints and shirts, I had prints and bookmarks.
*Not actually this blurry in real life
I had one last-minute new piece: fanart of Tali from Mass Effect, done essentially in one night.
It was kind of an experiment – I used brushes/layers set on Dissolve, so at full resolution it looks like it was done by a particularly patient user of MSPaint. (All Photoshop, though.)
Printed out at 300DPI, it’s a pretty neat effect. I have no idea if it has any real application in professional work, but fanart is my playtime anyhow.
At the beginning of the show, after incredibly stressful prep, I’d decided not to do it again next year. Selling fanart is a little legally iffy, and none of the work I do here can be put in my portfolio, or really used to promote my professional career. But I had a fantastic time, and was reminded why I do it in the first place – it’s really about a love of fandom, and connecting with people who love the same things that I do, through art. It’s great to have somebody who’s a huge fan of something I love just go crazy seeing a print of their favourite character, something that they’d never found through official merch. And I met and reconnected with a huge number of awesome people, at that – people from school, from online… It’s stressful, and if it was about the money there’d be far more productive ways to spend my time. It’s about the love of fandom, though, and I do sure love fandom.
Oh, and the highlight of my congoing experience – I went to a watercolour workshop by the fabulous Jill Thompson, whose work I adore. The demo itself was fabulous; learned a lot, and feel inspired to go back to watercolours for a bit. (They were really the only traditional medium I ever felt a real connection to, and I do kind of miss them.) At the end, she decided to give away the demo to whoever had the closest birthday – and mine was the next day! (That’s the 3rd year running I’ve spent my birthday behind a Fan Expo table. I am now 24. Happy birthday to me!) She also got a look at my sketchbook, and liked it – between those two things, my day, birthday, and entire weekend was made. I was shaking for a good hour or so afterwards. Best birthday gift possible!
Jill Thompson original, aaaaaaaaaaaa