Baltimore Comic Con: Around the Floor

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Published on: September 12, 2014

Baltimore Comic Con 2013 LogoThe 2014 Baltimore Comic Con expanded to three days, adding Friday to the schedule and relocating to a larger space in the Baltimore Convention Center.  The show opened at 1:00 on Friday and Joe K and I were there early, picked up our credentials and hit the floor with no game plan other than to have fun.  And we did.

With school in full swing and many people working on a Friday, the convention floor was not packed and combined with the larger space, the aisles were large and uncramped (even on Saturday with the larger crowd).  It was very easy to browse through the vendor booths and look at all the product that was being offered.

Baltimore Comic Con Artist AlleyArtist Alley was once again impressive with a huge roster of talent offering various styles of artwork with most, if not all, doing commissioned sketches during the show.  Shopping is fun but Artist Alley was our first stop.  Being early in the weekend it was easy to stop and chat with artists about their work and to browse through their portfolios.  And if you read our Artists and Sketches article from Wednesday, you get a glimpse at just how incredible the artist’s work can be even in a short amount of time.

Archie ComicsThe small press booths were generally together at the front of the hall and this year Devil’s Due, Archive Comics, Avatar, Boom Studios, Valiant and Zenescope were among those showing off their current and upcoming titles.

As I mentioned, the expanded space for this year’s convention allowed larger aisles between booths on the dealer floor and it was much appreciated.  Not only was it easy to walk through the aisles and see the booths from the outside, you could stop and rifle through pegs of toys or boxes of comics without feeling like you were impacting the flow of traffic behind you.  It was even easier to stop a cosplayer to get a picture without holding things up.

Pop! Vinyl by FunkoThe dealers were offering a lot of comic books, both new and old, and it’s great to actually see comics at a comic convention.  Half priced trade paperbacks and dollar bins were in abundance as were pages of original comic art, Golden and Silver Age, graded and not, a little of everything.

Collectibles ran the gamut from action figures and toys to busts and statues, 1:6 scale action figures, cosplay items, jewelry and clothing.  One of the popular range of collectibles were Funko’s Pop! Vinyl.  There were serveral booths with large selections from common releases to show exclusives, and they were selling very well.

Peter MayhewPeter Mayhew attended the show and held a panel on Sunday afternoon.  While there was no talk of Star Wars: Episode VII, Peter did speak about moving from his original career choice, as and engineer, into acting and how that came about.  He had some fun stories of filming not only the Star Wars movies but also Sinbad and the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special.

The Baltimore Comic Con is still small enough that you can easily see the entire dealer floor, Artist Alley and autograph guests in one day but with the panels added in, keep you busy for three days.  The added space made it feel less crowded but much easier to shop and take pictures without feeling like you were in someone’s way.  Plus, with the third day, some things felt less rushed and allowed us more time to meet up with friends and take a lunch break without feeling like we were missing something.

I think I had more fun this year than last, loved Artist Alley and had an excellent weekend in Baltimore.  Here’s looking forward to next year when the convention runs from September 25-27, 2015.

Baltimore Comic Con Cosplay Part 2

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Published on: September 11, 2014

Here is the second part of our Baltimore Comic Con Cosplay coverage.  All images courtesy of our photographer, Joe Kersavage.  The convention goers really brought their A game this year.

Baltimore Comic Con Artists & Sketches

Categories: Art, Baltimore Comic Con
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Published on: September 10, 2014

The thing that amazed me the most last year was the size and attendance of Artist Alley and the 2014 Baltimore Comic Con was just as impressive.  Now that the show is three days, the convention has expanded into a larger part of the Baltimore Convention Center and while I didn’t compare this year’s list of artists to last, there seemed to be more booths this year.  Another bonus of the larger space is that the aisles seemed less packed making it easier to approach booths even with people stopping to take photos or just look through portfolios.

We had an early start on Friday and my first stop, after walking through most of Artist Alley, was GW Fisher.  I’d seen his work before and had his card from last year so when I found him available, I commissioned a sketch.  I have a list of characters in my book and ask the artists to choose what character they’d like to draw, and it’s even more fun if I don’t know who it will be until it’s done.  GW picked the Punisher and the results are below.

After picking up my book from GW, I browsed through several more booths before finding Sajad Shah.  I wasn’t familiar with his work but after looking over his portfolio and speaking with him, decided to hand over the book and he drew an excellent Gambit.

On the last day of the show, Adam Hughes had a 10:30 open sketch time and Joe Kersavage and I took advantage of our early entry to line up.  We had the opportunity to speak with his wife, Allison Sohn, about her work and upcoming projects (including Celebration Anaheim) beforehand.  If you’ve met him at conventions before, you know that Adam only does bust profiles in pencil and marker at shows, but even for a quick drawing he’s able to nail the character.  This time around, he sketched the Yoda seen below.

All three sketches turned out well and I was very happy to have each artist work on my book.  If you enjoy the art, be sure to follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

Baltimore Comic Con Cosplay Part 1

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Published on: September 10, 2014

I’m going to kick off coverage of the 2014 Baltimore Comic Con with photos of the excellent cosplayers that attended the show.  We have two parts to this so look for more photos later in the week.

Peter Mayhew Attending Baltimore Comic Con

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Published on: August 26, 2014

Peter MayhewBaltimore Comic Con has just announced that Peter Mayhew will be attending this year’s show.  He will be attending all three days, signing autographs and taking photos with fans.  He will also be holding a panel on Sunday.

The full press release can be found on the BCC website.

Baltimore Comic Con: September 5 – 7, 2014

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Published on: August 18, 2014

Baltimore Comic Con 2013 Logo

Baltimore Comic Con 2014 is just over two weeks away and this year the show has expanded to Friday making it a three day event.

Joe K. and I will be there again this year covering events from the floor and possibly a panel or two.  The list of announced comic professionals is huge with the likes of Tommy Lee Edwards, Garth Ennis, Gail Simone, Herb Trimpe, Jim Starlin, and Adam Hughes attending.  Artist Alley is packed and sure to be a hit, I know I was blown away last year by how large it was.

The Baltimore Comic Con official Twitter account posted on Friday that the show floor is larger this year to accommodate all of the guests, artists and vendors.  Keep an eye on the official site for updated lists of guests and programming and stay tuned to our site for updates from the floor once the show kicks off.

Baltimore Comic Con: Around the Floor

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Published on: September 13, 2013

Baltimore Comic Con 2013 LogoThe Baltimore Comic Con has been on my radar for the last year or two, I kept hearing good things about it and this year it was finally time to go.  That was a very good decision.

I think the two main things that stuck out when I first hit the dealer floor were that there was a good mix of comics and collectibles and that Artist Alley was incredible.  Unlike other shows, Wizard World for example, Baltimore Comic Con sticks closer to the comics and collectibles surrounding them rather than expand into the multimedia realm with multiple autograph guests.

The one possible exception to that was the appearance of Kevin Smith, Jason Mewes and the personalities from Comic Book Men.  Saturday saw two panels featuring the View Askew crew with the first hour and a half being a Q&A with the Comic Book Men and the second being a viewing of Smith’s new animated film, Jay and Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie, followed by Q&A with Smith and Mewes.

The movie was hilarious, extremely politically incorrect and exactly what you’d expect from the mind of Kevin Smith.  The Q&A sessions from both the Comic Book Men and Smith and Mewes panels ranged from general comic questions to movies to how to grow a podcast following.  I wasn’t able to stay for the whole session with Smith and Mewes, but the handful of stories they told were hilarious and solidified my respect for them both.  I was surprised by the Q&A at the Comic Book Men panel, however, as they had some fun insights to comics and movies and several fun stories about actually working at The Stash comic book store.  The humor on the show seems to be genuine as they were all hilarious in person which made the panel extremely fun to sit through.

If you saw my earlier post featuring cosplayers then you get an idea of how passionate the fan base was that attended the show.  Both days of the convention were well attended and we did see a report that this year’s attendance was a record.  It was announced during the course of the weekend that the 2014 show will expand to three days by adding Friday to the lineup.  But even though there was a huge attendance, the show didn’t feel too full to move around in.  Navigating the aisles was easy and even when people paused for photos of cosplayers, it didn’t hold things up for long.

I didn’t attend the show with a list of things I was looking for which seemed to make it more fun to look through the booths just to see what could be discovered.  The majority of the toys and collectibles at the show centered around comic books with Marvel and DC superheroes being well represented.  Video games, movies and television shows were not left out, with Doctor Who having a large presence.  Mixed in with Hasbro and Mattel superhero action figures were releases from Neca, McFarlane, Toy Biz, Hot Toys and others.  There were not a lot of vintage toys but we did spot a few nice Star Wars items including a sealed Early Bird kit and some 12″ figures in various states of completeness.

Comics were a large draw and you could find back issues for as little as $0.50 to hundreds (thousands?) of dollars.  Trade paperbacks and graphic novels were around, sometimes for up to half off, and several booths had the latest variant covers from the likes of DC and IDW.  Silver and Golden Age comics were on the floor for those in the market and there were at least three booths that had original comic artwork available for sale.

Several small press comic publishers, including IDW and Valiant, were at the show as were artists working for them.  Several big names in comics, including Neal Adams, Mark Bagley, Adam Hughes, Mike Mignola, Jim Starlin and Herb Trimpe were also on the floor and had artwork available or were signing books.  Artist Alley was so full of talent that it was hard to narrow down your choices if you were looking for a sketch or a print.  What was incredible, however, was that it seemed most all of the artists had people visiting their booths and purchasing items.

The Baltimore Convention Center was laid out well for a show this size.  The show floor was on the ground while the third level hosted the panel rooms.  Other than a few small improvements in communication for line management, the event organizers did a solid job of keeping things moving.  There were volunteers and staff all over the center if you had a question and picking up badges was a breeze.  The Convention Center, being downtown, is also centrally located for plenty of non convention shopping and dining.  We had lunch across the street on Sunday and even with an Orioles game kicking off, we had no problem getting seated, served and back to the convention in short order.

If you live on the East Cost and are looking for a fun, laid back convention to attend, I can highly recommend the Baltimore Comic Con.  This is especially true if you love comic books and the artists that work on them.  The list of talent at the show was very impressive and can only believe it will get better in the future.

Baltimore Comic Con: Sketches

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Published on: September 12, 2013

One of my main goals for Baltimore Comic Con was to add a couple of sketches to my book and I was able to have my two top choices of artists do just that.

I first noticed Shawn Alleyne at Wizard World Philadelphia back in June.  I wasn’t able to get to him as I only had one day at the show, but when I noticed him on the list for Artist Alley at Baltimore, he was my top pick.  I gave him a list of characters and asked him to pick who he’d like to do.  He chose Marvel’s Iceman and knocked it out of the park!  Check out Shawn’s work on his Facebook page and if you spot him at any upcoming shows, I’d recommend getting something done by him.

My second choice was Chrissie Zullo.  Chrissie is a member of Station Studios along with Sara Richard, Christopher Uminga, Matthew J Fletcher, Mike Choi, Billy Fowler and Kevin Kirk.  After showing her my list of characters, Chrissie immediately picked out Lara Croft and applied her unique style to fierce looking Lara.  The sketch is done in a soft blue color that I couldn’t seem to capture well in the photos I took, but it really pops on the page.

Baltimore Comic Con: Cosplay

Categories: Baltimore Comic Con
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Published on: September 11, 2013

This past weekend we attended the Baltimore Comic Con and while we have a couple updates, we thought we’d start with the cosplayers we saw around the con floor.  There were a lot of really fun and cool costumes, including a lot we saw but didn’t get a chance to photograph.

It’s always amazing to see the time and work that people put into their costumes so check them out.

Additional photos courtesy Joe Kersavage.

Baltimore Comic Con Panels Posted

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Published on: September 1, 2013

Baltimore Comic Con 2013 LogoThe panel list for Baltimore Comic Con is now online and looks packed for both days.

We’ll be attending the “Jay and Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Event” on Saturday and the IDW: The Big Panel on Sunday afternoon.

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