So it's been two weeks since the extravaganza gathering of gay geeks, Bent-Con, occurred. The event is so overwhelmingly fun, it takes me at least a week to recover.
Many of you already know what Bent-Con is, but for the benefit of those who don't, I'll explain. Bent-Con is an annual LGBT Comic Convention. It's technically 3 years old, but this is its second "official" year. Bent-Con gives home to artist, writers, directors, and anyone else showcasing queer work that usually is either overshadowed or more often excluded all together from other comic conventions. Fans can enjoy works they would normally miss out on as well as participate in cosplay they would usually not be free to or feel comfortable wearing.
This year's show was packed with so many great panels, it was not easy picking which ones to attend. Celebrities like Amber Benson, Tom Lenk, Christopher Rice, and even Traci Lords got in on this years fun along with Celebrity creatives like Jane Espenson, Phil Jimenez, Wendy Pini, Marc Andreyko, and too many more to list without this looking like one of those linage books of the Bible. Here are a few highlights from the show...
|Artist:Joe Phillips giving Beast realness|
|Fan Boys of The Universe PosterBoy, Rafa, |
with The Gay Comic Geek and Nightwing fanboy
Last year, Bent-Con introduced the "Costume Catwalk " allowing cosplayers to strut their stuff down the runway in friendly and enthusiastic competition with each other. This year's show didn't disappoint. This year's cosplay was fun, imaginative and impressive.
The competition was split into three categories:
Cosplay Prime - Cosplay
CrossPlay - Gender-Bending Cosplay
Anything Goes - Cosplay that didn't fit either of the other categories
The winner of each category won a copy of Justin Hall's new book, No Straight Lines and walked the runway one more time for a chance to win 'Best in Show' and walk away with a brand new iPad Mini.
|Cosplay Contestant: Robin|
|Crossplay Contestants: The Gotham Sirens|
|Cosplay Contestant: The Eye of Sauron|
|Costume Catwalk 2012 Winner|
There were a few new add-ons to this year's show that will become regular occurrences at future shows. Among them was an area devoted to gaming, a bean bag lounge, a Pro lounge - a lounge set aside for special guest and professionals in the industry to chill and network with each other away from the noise and rush of the show, as well as two of my favorites - a life drawing area and a showroom bar!
Bent-Con is a "sensory overload" environment for me. There are so many panels I want to attend, so many people I want to meet, and so many new things to see. The ambience of life drawing occurring on the showroom floor had a way of grounding me - for at least a few minutes. The models were fun and interesting and it was great to see other artist working on something other than a commission. Many of the artist were just folks attending the show. So, for any attendees hoping to get noticed that didn't bring a portfolio...here's your chance to whip something out and get some feedback.
I attempted to sit down and partake in the life drawing. Unfortunately, it was after the showroom bar opened and I had a drink in me. Those who've met me might know I'm a hyper person and a little bit of a light weight when it comes to alcohol. I'm fairly certain I don't have A.D.D, but Bent-Con plus booze = an attention span of 3 seconds for me. I enjoyed those 3 seconds of life drawing, however, and managed to get 1 good quick sketch out of it. Maybe I'll share it in the future, but for now here are a few pics of the life drawing sessions.
|Actor Travis Richey posing for life drawers as Inspector Spacetime|
|Bent-Con's President, Sean-Z and |
The man who orgaized the Life Drawing Sessions,
E. Salvador Hernandez
The greatest thing about Bent-Con for me is the people; meeting other creatives, meeting fans, and most of all - meeting NEW people! Last year I got to meet creatives that I have long looked up to and have since formed friendships with. Bent-Con allowed me to reunite with those people who I don't get to see throughout the year otherwise. This year I got to meet Kyle's Bed & Breakfast creator, Greg Fox, Artist- Saru Bear, and break bread with Class Comic's Butch Mclogic.
|"Officially" meeting Blog Artist, ChoklitDaddy|
|Reunited with my hero, Patrick Fillion|
|Photo opp with The Sexy Diana Terranova|
|One of a few FUN pics with The Gay Comic Geek|
I was initially bummed that I wasn't going to get to show; especially since I've been working so hard this year on so many projects I wanted to "reveal," but ANY bit of self-pity I was feeling was annihilated as soon as I stepped onto the showroom floor.
The buzz, the art, the people, THE SHOW was so amazing that I was grateful just to attend! I am also now appreciative of my opportunity to experience the show from an attendee's perspective as opposed to an exhibitor's.
Bent-Con 2012 was bigger, better and has proven it's here to stay. I can't emphasize it enough - if you are gay, a lesbian, bisexual, trysexual, you used to be a boy or a girl and now something more fabulous, or even if you're the friend or parent of someone who's one of crew I just mentioned - BENT-CON is the convention for you!
Here are a couple of other press pieces on this year's show:
I am VERY excited to be at next year's show!