(Dear readers: This post is very long, but I’ve tried to keep it as entertaining as possible. Come with me on an epic journey of extreme nerdiness!)
Last weekend, my dad drove Hubby and I to the airport and off we went to Toronto. We flew on a Porter plane and sorry if this sounds like an ad, but if you ever have the choice between Air Canada and Porter, go with Porter, they are great! Unlike the miserly bastards that run Air Canada, with Porter food is included and the flight is much more comfortable. Of course, flying in general is incredibly expensive either way. They advertise great deals, but then sneak in “fuel surcharges” and you end up paying out the nose. So we won’t be flying again for awhile. Still, it was a half hour flight vs five-six hour car ride, which was great.
Anyways, we arrive at our hotel and right off the bat, you can tell which guests are Fan Expo attendees and which aren’t-Someone wearing some crazy costume (Fan Expo), someone giving strange looks at said costumed person and clutching their luggage (not Fan Expo). I was excited, it was my first time! The next day, we get up bright and early, pay a ridiculous amount for breakfast at the restaurant in the lobby (There were no other restaurants nearby open at 8am. WTH??) and after triple checking that I had our advance passes, camera and my purse, we lineup. As we waited in line, I snuck some pics:
My brother-who has gone to many Fan Expos-warned me that the lines are long and slow and the food is overpriced. So I pulled out an issue of Sandman and smiled smugly at the snacks at the bottom of my purse, no overpriced nachos for us! After waiting in this line, we were ushered into another line, and then another, and then forced to wander inside one of those metal barricades that are set up like a maze, everyone wondering why. Maybe for the organizers entertainment, who knows? Then we finally reach it-The gates of the Expo. We stroll around:
There is an area called “Artists Alley”, in which comic book artists display their wares and you can chat them up. Or at least that’s the idea, the ones manning their booths seemed to be their friends or Fan Expo employees. Weird. After walking around some more, we lined up to meet Jeff Smith, artist, writer and creator of the beloved “Bone” series. If you haven’t read it or are looking for a nice piece of literature for your children, I recommend it! It is a very funny and sweet series that is safe for all ages!
After waiting and waiting (The guy at the front of the line droned on and on..), we met him and he was very nice! I asked some questions about how to get into the industry and his answers, while a bit general, were still appreciated. I know it seems like a long shot, but I would love it if he came to the monthly Comic Jam! I think he could come up with some pretty cool stuff! Ah well, a girl can dream right? After a short break, we went upstairs for a mini Comic Book workshop. It was fun and the instructor gave some very useful tips, not just for making comics, but pretty much art in general. The only problem was this one annoying 16-year-old kid who kept raising his hand and blabbing out long winded answers in his squeaky, nasally voice. Clearly the kid thought himself very smart and wanted to prove it to the instructor-and the rest of the class. Personally, I wanted to smack him! People were there to learn from an industry pro, not some know-it-all teenager, particularly since the class was only an hour, but eventually I just learned to ignore him and focus on what was being taught.