Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Recap: Awesome Con 2016

This past weekend was the fourth Awesome Con on June 3-5, 2016. It's hard to believe Awesome Con has only been around for four years. Early on Sunday I was able to walk around at several segments of the DC Convention Center. The second year's main floor event location (with the small balcony section) is now used as a holding room for crowds. The registration area was the place where the first Awesome Con was held. The show has grown leaps and bounds and I don't see it stopping anytime soon.

This show is the most fun I've had in a few years and has rejuvenated my excitement for conventions. Awesome Con had everything: inventive cosplay, guests, comics, video games, merchandise, etc.,  but the most important element of the convention is consistent energy. Every second of the show was pumping, down to the last minute.

On Friday, Joe moderated the Jeremy London Q&A, then later in the evening Joe and I were lucky enough to be able to record a live podcast for the Carolyn and Joe Show with special guest Phil LaMarr! You might know him from Pulp Fiction, Mad TV, Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends, The Pee-wee Herman Show, and many more. I can't wait for you to listen to the show. It will soon be available -- along with all our panels -- at

On Saturday, we had many more panels! I moderated the Will Friedle & Grey DeLisle Q&A and it was so fun! I was most nervous about this one, because I had talked to Phil LaMarr before and could jive with him, but I had never met Will or Grey before in-person. I had been asking Ben from Awesome Con to bring in Will Friedle as a guest for the past two years and this year the stars aligned to make it happen! I've always been a fan of Boy Meets World, Batman Beyond, Kim Possible, and more recently Girl Meets World. I already knew Will was awesome, but was not as familiar with Grey, in fact I'd never heard of her until her being asked to moderate the panel (crazy, right?). I'm so impressed with her and completely educated with her talents now. I've been questioning myself why I didn't know her name because I've heard her as Frankie in Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends and as Black Canary in Batman: the Brave and the Bold (check out the song "If Only" in Mayhem of the Music Meister). Big thanks to Will and Grey for such a fun time onstage -- I attempted to start a hashtag #WillGreyQA with audience members so look that up on Twitter, Instagram, etc. for more photos and excellent quotes.

Directly after #WillGreyQA, I walked across the hall to a panel I was asked by Heidi MacDonald to be a panelist on called "How To Break Into Comics (and Survive)" with Bryan Tillman, Amy Reeder, Justin Jordan, and Shawn Martinbrough. We discussed our successes and methods that work for us -- it was amazing that everyone had a different style, path, and approach to our careers.

Meanwhile, Joe was moderating the Summer Glau Q&A. I'm sure we will be able to hear his take on meeting her on the podcast soon.

On Saturday afternoon, I lead an art seminar in the Kids Zone called "Create Your Own Superhero Symbol." This is always fun for children and their parents -- even some adults without children joined in. I had collected Peanuts, Iron Man, and Captain America posters from random places in the past (last year's NCS convention and the friendly neighborhood movie theater) and gave them away to all people who completed their own personalized superhero logo.

Later at night, Joe lead the "Awesome Filmmakers: Making It Happen" panel. As with all the speaker panels, we have audio we will be releasing week-to-week on the podcast.

On Sunday, we only had one panel and were able to enjoy the show at the table most of the day! "The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators" is a panel we had hosted at New York Comic Con for a few years and are glad to bring it to Awesome Con for a second time. We had some new panelists because we like to mix it up and learn from several exhibitors each time we host this panel. This year Bryan Turner and Chris Flick joined Joe Carabeo and I! Chris Flick filled in for Dawn Griffin because she had a knee injury and unfortunately could not make it for this year's Awesome Con. Bryan and Chris brought a great dynamic to the panel and I loved the discussion!

Now that the show is over, I'm still riding off the high it has created in my mind. I know eventually it might wear off, but what a great feeling to know we had a fun time with fans, friends, and other exhibitors. Thanks so much to Teresa Roberts Logan for watching the table while we were gone at panels and thanks to the Awesome Con staff and Brute Squad for organizing a prime event in DC. In addition, thanks to everyone we talked to at the Curls Studio table -- even if you didn't buy anything and only took a promo postcard -- thank you for stopping by. We hope to see you at our next shows this fall -- Baltimore Comic-Con, Small Press Expo, and New York Comic Con.

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