Saturday, September 13, 2014

Tampa Fanboy Expo!

John and I took a day trip today (er, Friday) over to Tampa for a little local con called Fanboy Expo. It's one of those small cons that remind me why I love small cons. No crowds! Small panels! Friendly people! Amazing "junk" bins full of cheap toys & collectibles!

So if you're here in central Florida, try to get out there today or tomorrow. Jewel Staite is there, PLUS... James Hance. You know, the artist behind Wookiee the Chew? And this is his first convention EVER, and he brought SO MUCH STUFF, and it is all SO CHEAP.

 My very own original James Hance! Of Sir Didymus & Ambrosius from Labyrinth! Ah! [faints]

So I spent the afternoon being THAT fangirl. You know, the one who kept coming back? And buying more stuff? And finding new people to bring over, and then upselling THEM on his stuff? Yeah. Awk. Ward.

Hance was crazy sweet about it, though, even trying to give me some free stuff for the give-away board here. (But I still paid.) And he was wearing a black Ghostbusters jumpsuit with HANCE embroidered on it, so... yeah. THE COOLEST.

The rest of the shopping at Fanboy is fantastic, too. John and I spent more money in 6 hours there than we did in 4 DAYS at Dragon Con. And it wasn't all to James Hance, I promise.

For example, John got this adorable killer bunny - which I've already displayed next to his "it's just a flesh wound!" Black Knight mini-painting by Katie Cook, because how perfect are they together?? -  from The Monster Cafe. The monsters are handmade by two sisters, who also make GIANT fluffy versions over two feet tall, and I want them all.

(Pictures of John's newly renovated Man Cave will be coming soon, btw. I have a hunch you guys will approve.)

And finally, I have to show you our favorite convention souvenir, which seriously made me a little teary.

What started as a joke with our friend Charlie - "wouldn't it be funny to start an artists' version of Telephone? Where everyone sketches for five minutes before passing it on?" - turned into a real thing, as Charlie immediately started drawing. Then he passed it on to Danny. Who passed it on to Nathan. Who passed it on to Bianca.

Bianca brought it back to us, at which point there was much squealing, and then John & I took over, quickly enlisting more artists to fill in the remaining spaces. 

Aaaannnnd... here it is:

Now I want to do this at every con. (What have you done, Charlie?!)

A million thanks to all our artist friends - some of whom we just met today! - for doing this. If any of you go to Fanboy today or tomorrow, give 'em all a smooch for me... but say it's from John. ;)

And here's a list of everyone who contributed:

Epbot - Charles Thurston
Claptrap - Danny Haas
Wall-E & Eve - Nathan Szerdy
Iron Giant - John Pinto
R2 - James Hance
Batteries Not Included - Bianca Roman-Stumpff
K-9 - Kate Carlton
Portal Turret - Josh Dykstra
Dalek - Victoria Gedvillas
V.I.N.CENT & B.O.B. - Andrew "Drone" Cosson

Ok, nerdy weekend projects are calling my name! Happy Saturday, everyone!


  1. Here's a collaborative art idea: Imagine the canvas-page separated into regions (for instance, think Brady Bunch squares). Create a collection of "matte" overlays, each with a cutout that reveals only one of the regions ... with a bit of overlap into neighboring regions. Have an artist do something wonderful in the exposed region, making sure that something reaches at least a little into the overlap. Then give the canvas to another artist, using a matte that exposes a different region; the new artist will only get to see the previous artists' works in the overlap areas, and she'll get to try to make her work blend with its surroundings ... without knowing what those surroundings actually *are*.

    Of course, there's no reason the matte cut-outs have to be uniform squares or rectangles. You can make them all different sizes and shapes. Grid-squares have an advantage in that you can reduce the overall number of matte overlays by exploiting the grid's symmetry; for instance, you can do a 4-up collaboration using a single "L"-shaped overlay that you set down on the canvas in different orientations.

    Could be interesting. Could be disastrous. :)

    1. That sounds like a neat idea, but of course it takes a lot of preparation.

      I do love the little robot collection! So great! And all the different approaches! *squeeeeeee*

  2. ha ha why don't you do a portrait of a giant golf ball! you could design a system where they automatically fire back @ YOU! baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! hahahahahahahahahaha!

  3. That just made morning!! Squeee n.n I am on love with the colab art. And I need to tell my friends to go there this weekend I think they would love it!!

  4. I'm jealous! When I've been to small cons, the art waz almost non-existent. Yay for internet :)

    That collab is such an adorable piece!

  5. This makes me so giddy and even more excited to go on Sunday. :D

  6. A James Hance original??? GUH. I'm dying just imagining. The entire expo sounds like so much fun, wish I lived closer to all those smaller cons!

    1. I live waaaaay out here in IL. There are NO cons around here. :-(

  7. Is it incredibly nit-picky of me to correct you in that Sir Didymus's noble steed was actually named Ambrosius, not Ambrosia?

    1. Egads, no, it is your geek-bound DUTY to correct me, Kristy! Thanks - off to fix!

  8. Oh love that compilation!!! :) That's so fun.

  9. That collaborative drawing? I squeed. Loudly. Because it is all kinds of brilliant. :D

  10. Seriously jealous of your proximity to smaller cons! The collaborative art is amazing!

  11. Oh my goodness, the end sketch is so fun! Jealous of your being able to go to what sounds like a delightfully intimate con. :)

  12. I love reading your blog! It reminds me that I'm totally normal to love all the movies and characters that I do. I teach third grade so my bookshelf behind my desk has a plethora of characters that I have fallen in love with over the years. Of course I'm not as lucky to have anything from Labyrinth yet, but that just means I need to look harder. I have a son who is 5 years old and I think it's about time for him to start his love affair with Labyrinth and Ludo. ;-) He is already a hardcore Star Wars fan that came naturally! Thank you for providing me with 2 awesome blogs to read during my limited downtime. There are 4 blogs I read on a regular basis and you account for 50% of them! Woohoo!

  13. Ahhh!! Thank you so much for posting this same day! I'm local and didn't know James Hance was going to be there. Apparently I live under a rock. So, I headed over today. Small but interesting, and it was awesome to see James. He's so nice!

  14. That James Hance R2. And V.I.N.Cent and BOB. And (once again, I thought I was the only one who remembers) Batteries Not Included! And every other amazing robot and artist included!!!
    This has to be the single most spectacularly awesome work of art in the known universe. I can't wait to see what amazing way you arrange to display it. :-)
    I'm going to stop typing now; there's something in my eye... :'-)

  15. Also at Fanboy Expo, Jewel Staite and Sean Maher helped my friend Adam propose to my friend Jessica while she was dressed as female Joker.

  16. That collaborative art piece is priceless! So cool! :)
    Also, Labyrinth is one of my absolute favorite movies!! Pretty jealous of you right now.
    So glad you had fun!

    --Piper P from Washington State

  17. Dude, John Pinto is my dad's name. Unless my dad has just been sneaking out to cons as a super-talented artist.

  18. Ah man, I am in Central FL and am bummed I missed Kaylee :(

  19. Jen, I just wanted to say thank you for showing me the brighter side of the internet and also exposing me to some amazing artists, including yourself!


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