All photos are copyright 2007 by Patrick Sun. Unauthorized use without written consent is prohibited.
Heroes Con typically takes place in Charlotte, NC, on Father's Day weekend at the Charlotte Convention Center downtown, and this year was a return to those roots for its 25th Anniversary. Heroes Con is a nice friendly place to take the whole family to enjoy comics, card games, Heroes Clix, etc. This year I made an effort to take even more photos, and so I did. This year's photo album has over 900 photos.
Since I took so many photos, I had to split them up into quite a few sets which are now hosted on Flickr (click on the area's photo):
The BLVD Party
By uploading the photos to Flickr, I could maintain the original resolution, 2592x1944, and Flickr allows the viewer to pick out various sizes for each photo if they want to see a smaller size, or the max size. I tried snapping a photo at each guest's table, so that's why I took so many photos of them this year. This year I am using the Canon A610 digital camera for the close to medium shots, and my older Canon S2 IS digital camera for the long-range shots (like in the art auction). Also, the art auction photos vary in quality due to lighting conditions.
Here's a mini-con report (if I get some time, I'll try to fill in some details of the panels):
If you are into meeting some of the comic greats from the golden and silver age of comics, you'll always be surprised by who shows up at Heroes from year to year. This year's guest list was not as packed as the previous year, but with another con in another city on the same weekend, that was to be expected. All in all, still one of the best times you can have if you're a comic book fan.
On Friday, my friend Patrick and I rolled into Charlotte around 1:30 p.m. on Friday, but didn't seem to miss too much early on except for being early in line for some of the sketch lists from the in-demand artists. I managed to get to the DC Nation panel, and Dan DiDio is always an entertaining spokeman for DC and gets the fans excited for upcoming changes and events. Countdown was a topic, as was the cancellation of The Flash after just 13 issues in this current incarnation (which would be buoyed by Mark Waid doing the writing on the next Flash title called All-Flash). There was this one guy who had duffel bags of DC t-shirts and would pull them out if he had an appropriate t-shirt to display. Dan invited him on to the front to show off the DC t-shirt collection when the time was right.
Grabbed some late lunch with Patrick and Kevin at the Mexican restaurant near Fuel. Had the big burrito plate and it was muy filling. Also dropped in on the Michael Golden panel later in the afternoon. Michael Golden was always a childroon favorite artist of mine, and it was nice to hear him talk about his past and present projects. Did some photo-taking at the panels, and went back into the main convention floor with the dealers and creatively talented guests. Met up with friends (both in the industry and just fans) as well. Glad to see Jeff Parker (now busy writer for Marvel) make his triumphant return to Heroes Con this year after a few absent years in between. I also picked up from Jeff Parker the hardcover edition of Agents of Atlas, and the Alex Toth Doodle book, and I still owe him $5. Jeff was nice enough to deface the hardcover with a nice sketch of a gorilla on the inside of the cover. Heh.
Later in the evening I checked out the screening of "Descent", an indy film produced by Rosario Dawson (she also played the main female lead), the price of admission being a donation for some charitable funds in the same inspirational vein as the Friends of Lulu. The film was pretty intense would easily get a NC-17 rating from the MPAA, but it's an unflinching look at pain begetting pain. It gave me a strange nightmare later that night. Also bopped over to the party next door being thrown by The BLVD folks, and it was late and a mini-head-sketch party was taking place, led by Phil Noto and Cully Hamner, on the drink coasters. Snapped a funny photo of Tommy Lee Edwards boogeying on the dance floor.
Saturday came soon enough, and it's aways the busiest day of the convention (though Friday seemed to be a better day for the dealers as the Saturday crowd makes it harder to shop at the booths). I knew a friend, Brian, would be at the early "TwoMorrows Comics" panel (Roy Thomas being the lead guest on the panel), so I checked it out. Then did a lot of photo-taking of folks on the convention floor (missing the 2nd DC panel, but I figure I had gotten as much info for upcoming stuff from the Friday panel), especially of all the artists painting and drawing the pieces that would end up in the art auction later that night. I wandered in on the 2nd half of the O.C.T. panel (with Rosario Dawson, David Atchison, Tony Shasteen and Gus Vazquez). The Marvel panel, moderated by Newsarama's Matt Brady, consisted of quite a few current writers on Marvel titles. I am not all that hot on Marvel these days, so I bounced after about half an hour into the panel. Went back to the convention floor, talked to some folks, watched many more artists put the finishing touches on their artwork for the auction. It's really cool to see the process in how a blank canvas or poster board gets transformed into something nice and worthy of hanging on a wall.
Since the art auction was slated to start around 6:30 p.m., Brian and I grabbed some pizza across the street at Fuel (Brian was very hungry from having to get up early to make the early panel), while my friend Patrick ate with Casey Jones, Jeff Parker and Richard Case and families at Loupe's; and friend Kevin had other dinner plans as well. After finishing dinner, we then discovered that the auction was late in getting started, like maybe due to the eating schedule of many of the participants pushed the start time to near 8 p.m., I think. I'm not sure why they even listed a 6:30 p.m. start time when the convention floor closes at 6 p.m.
The art auction is always a lot of fun, just waiting to see what piece of artwork will make a big splash amongst the bidders. Gus Vazquez and Rosario Dawson reprised their roles as auctioneers and did a nice job keeping things moving. Gus even did some push-ups in honor of Phil Noto's contribution to the auction (last year, Phil's artwork went for a record $4400). Phil didn't quite get to that level this year, but didn't do too shabbily. Adam Hughes's Ben Kenobi ended up getting the highest winning bid ever at Heroes Con: $5000! In this day and age where artwork coloring is produced via computer-aided coloring, it's very rare for artists to be painting from scratch on regular art boards and canvases, so these pieces command the prices due to the limited availability in the open market these days.
One of the crazier bidding episodes happened for the "Wonder Woman in a beret" painting where Shelton's lady would not take "No" for answer in terms of bidding, she was adamant on winning, and I think the piece went for $1700. She was mightily happy to have won it. At the halfway point, there was also a nice cake brought in to celebrate the 25th anniversary for Heroes Con.
Sunday was pretty relaxed as I mainly shopped until I dropped, but there were still one main panel of interest, which was the gathering of past and present members of Gaijin Studios. This panel was the funnest and funniest panels at Heroes Con this year. The stories that were told about Dave Johnson were hysterically funny, as were favorite memories of past Heroes Cons (Brian Stelfreeze's story was a riot). I returned to the main convention floor, finished up shopping and saying a few goodbyes to friends, and then watched some of the artists finishing up the final convention sketches for the lucky few who managed to get one. A friend named Shannon showed me a sweet Captain America sketch he got from Michael Golden, I was impressed by the pencil linkwork and overall detail in the sketch. Color me envious.
The evening was capped off by seeing Fantastic Four: The Rise of the Silver Surfer at the AMC Pavillion 22.
Feel free to email me for corrections on guest identifications, etc.
FYI: My Dragon Con Links: