Lineup for Fanexpo 2011
FanExpo is the biggest fan related convention in Canada and this is my 4th year atttending. The con covers a variety of genres including: Comics, Gaming, Horror, Sci-Fi, and Anime
FanExpo is not fan run, instead it is operated by a company so you notice the efforts to grab your money. I spent the most of the convention catching up with Toronto cosplayers and photographers. I also participated in the masquearde and got some great results.
FanExpo Highlights: LINEUPS!, barriers, lack of anime, lack of cosplayers, not cosplay friendly, and delivering the goods at the masquerade ;)
Day 1 - Thursday
I didn't go to the first day of the con due to travel arrangement so I spent that time packing and getting ready. I heard it was easy going and most people used their time to browse after getting their badges.
Day 2 - Barrier Con
Real Steel movie statue
I wore Karako from Deadman Wonderland for the first time. A few people recognized me. Too bad there weren't any other Deadman cosplayers around.
What was once dubbed lobby con, for the vast amount of cosplayers hanging out in the lobby and the surrounding area, is no more. FanExpo implemented some serious security updates including barriers all around the convention centre and one directional traffic through much of the venue. It does help with crowd control but it is a pain to navigate with the great crowds.
The badges are florescent yellow bracelets instead that you can't take off and are expected to wear all weekend. This is a cosplayer pain. Say goodbye to good photos unless you can squeeze your hand out.
On the bright side there are some cool setups in the dealer's room.
Spent the night at Buskerfest. It was a lot of fun seeing the street performers. I watched a great contortionist show. She fit herself and a basketball in a 16x16x16inch box!
Day 3 - Lineups & Masquerade
CN Tower view from the lineup
Started off the day with a quick shoot with JamesParkPhoto the foggy Toronto habour with my Tia Dalma. I then ran off to the con to register for the masquerade but was met with a line-up of a lifetime. It was a long wait in the sun and I thought for certain I wouldn't get in on time.
I got a spot in the masquerade once I finally made it inside.
The day was mostly spent hanging out with friends in the halls and the dealer' room.
I went to the Veronica Taylor panel. She is the voice of Ash Ketchum from Pokemon, among many others. It was a interesting experience seeing her fan ask questions they have been wondering about for ages. It was also nice to hear Ash's voice in person. Ah my childhood.
My Tia cosplay got a good reception from people at the con. I'm surprised at how many people recognized me and remembered the character's name. Thanks for the compliments, everyone.
I have noticed that there a so few people in costumes this year. Fanexpo in general is more a fan than cosplayer convention to begin with, but I find that the percentage of cosplayers is down. There are also fewer large costumes which isn't that surprising since it is a trek to get into the convention alone and it is hard to navigate trough crowds in plain clothes.
Usually the wait in the greenroom for the masquerade is long and boring but luckily this greenroom was nicely organized. The only downfall was that the greenroom wasn't a room at all but rather a section of the main hall next to with the dealer's room and the mini food court. I find it took away from the mystery of the masquerade. All the acts were out on display.
The backdrop of the stage speaks to the commercialism of the convention. It was a banner with "FanExpo" and the names of the main sponsors repeatedly printed on it. I find it distracting from the costumes and skits.
The masquerade went smoothly. No audio problems with my skit. I didn't trip on my lines or on my skirt. I got a good reception from the crowd. I find out tomorrow if I won anything. *Fingers crossed*
Best of luck to my den mates as well! They were all lovely people. Very friendly. For some it was their first masquerade.
Here's a video of my skit.
Day 4 - The Short Visit
The convention opened at 10 and I had to leave at 11 so it was a very short visit. I was stuck in another lineup up until the convention opened. The were so few people in the dealer`s room on the last day it was refreshing not having to dodge and weave through a crowd.
I said goodbye to the few people that were there. I briefly got to chat with Marie-Claude Bourbonnais at her Heroes of the North booth. She is such a lovely person and it was nice catching up with her.
Awards: I found out the good news that I won Best in Class - Master and Best in Class Workmanship - Master. The FanExpo curse has been lifted!. I have always had bad luck in the masquerades. My music wouldn`t work or I would fumble on stage. So this is the first time that I win anything that FanExpo. The only award left for me to win is a Best in Show. That will be my goal for next year.
Congratulations to all the other participants and I hope everyone who attended the last day had a fun time.
MeltingMirror's Cosplay Blog
Learn more about my experiences in the cosplay world, from conventions to photoshoots and everything in between.