Comic Con Survival Guide For People With Anxiety

If you haven’t noticed from this site and my Twitter, I’m heading to both Denver Comic Con and San Diego Comic Con this year. I hit up DCC every year, but this will be my very first time hitting up the craziness that is SDCC.

I’ll be real honest with you guys: I’m super intimidated about attending SDCC. I’ll be attending as press, so I’ll be working (read: running about the con like a crazylady), which will certainly help keep me focused and less overwhelmed. Still, it’s such a GIANT event with TONS of people everywhere. I’ve got anxiety (and I’m also a stone-cold introvert) and conventions can be a lot for me. So here are some survival tips I’ve learned that can hopefully help keep convention season fun for you (and can help make SDCC a bit less intimidating for me).

Take Your Meds

meds

I mean, this one almost goes without saying, but if you’re on meds, be sure you take them. If you’re travelling out of the city or out of state for the convention, be sure you pack them, and be sure you have some sort of an alarm to remind you to take them when you’re supposed to during the convention. Seriously. Time can be hard to keep track of in a convention, so don’t rely on your memory when it comes to your medication. Keep a water bottle with you (for hydration as well–cons are hot and you will get thirsty) so you can take your pill when the time comes, regardless of where you are.

Bring Headphones

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It doesn’t matter how big or small the convention you’re attending will be. There will be people milling about everywhere, and feeling like you’re trapped in an endless stream of humans with no power over your own movements can be a lot. While you can’t control the crowds, if you have headphones you can give yourself a mini-break by popping those bad boys in and listening to some music or relaxing sounds while you’re waiting in a line or walking to a panel. While you need to make sure you’re still aware of what’s going on around you (headphones don’t mean you get to stop being spatially aware), they can help keep you calm if the crowds are getting stressful. Having headphones is also good if you need to just take a break from the convention entirely and have a moment to yourself. Which brings me to my next point…

Find Yourself a Safe Spot

Sit-Here-Quietly

You may not ever end up needing it, but try to scope out a place that you can go if you need some space and quiet. Of course be sure that your spot is in line with the convention rules (so don’t pick a “quiet spot” in a restricted area), but it’s nice to know that if you’re feeling particularly spent or anxious that you have a place you can go to calm down a bit. Depending on the size of the convention, a quiet (or less noisy) spot may be hard to find. But don’t be afraid to tell the people you’re with that you just need to take a bit of a break if things get to be too much.

Set Up a Signal With Your Friends..and Don’t Be Afraid to Use It

signal

If you’re going with a group of friends or family, set up a signal that you can use if you either need help (like you’re stuck in a conversation with someone and you need out) or you need a break from everything. Whether its a hand signal you flash across a room or something you send via text, make sure they know that it means either “rescue me” or “I just need a minute”. You won’t always be right next to your group, and trying to let your friends know what’s up without any sort of previously agreed upon signal when there’s a sea of people between you is a PAIN. So create a signal, and don’t be afraid to use it! Conventions are a blast, but if you’re stuck somewhere trying to fight an anxiety attack, you’ll be miserable. So set up something from the start with your group, and take care of yourself if you need it.

Stay Open To New Experiences

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While it’s good to have all of these avenues of self-care in the midst of convention crazy, it’s important to go in with the attitude of having adventures and new experiences. Sure, your comfort zone might be the absolute opposite of the convention scene, but cons are a ton of fun. Expect to push yourself and try some new things, and while you should always feel safe to back away when you need it, be ready to expand your horizons a bit!

Do you have any other tips? Share them in the comments, and be sure to follow me on Twitter and come back here to see my 2017 convention adventures! 

YOU Could Name the Official Denver Comic Con 2017 Beer

Denver Comic Con 2015 Official Beer

It’s that time again! Time to enter the Denver Comic Con beer naming contest for 2017! As always, this contest is sponsored by the amazing Breckenridge Brewery. The exclusive DCC beer is one of the most fun and unique pieces of Denver Comic Con, and this year the mastermind behind the con beer could be YOU! Past cons have had amazing names like Hulk’s Mash and Snape-ricot (last year’s brew that I found particularly tasty), and I just know that some of you fine folks could think of some other fantastic names. So while you get your creative juices flowing, here are the contest details:

WHAT:

The annual “Name the Denver Comic Con Beer” contest starts March 21. This is the sixth year Breckenridge Brewery has brewed a special beer exclusive for Denver Comic Con (DCC). The 2017 DCC official beer is a Bohemian-style Pilsner. It’s delicate and well-balanced, light yet complex. Saaz hops, a classic pilsner ingredient, impart a pleasant, earthy aroma while giving spicy flavor characteristics and a crisp, dry finish. Past winners of the “Name the Comic Con Beer” contest are, The Fantastic Pour, The Caped Brewsader, Brews Wayne, Hulk’s Mash, and Snape-ricot.

WHEN:

March 21 – “Name the Denver Comic Con Beer” contest starts
March 23, 5:00 pm – Deadline for name submissions
March 24 – Final four names announced and voting period opens
March 29 – Official name and winner announced
April – May – Stay tuned for more info on final artwork and beer release date

HOW:

To submit an idea for a name, comment in the section of this Facebook post here by 5:00 pm on Thursday, March 23rd. Check back on Facebook, Friday March 24th to vote for one of the four select entries decided on by Breck and DCC.

WHY:

This year’s winning name will be illustrated by a local comic book artist and featured on this year’s DCC pint glass. The winner receives a custom prize package from Breckenridge Brewery that includes free beer for a year and a Denver Comic Con beer tap handle.

So get to naming, nerds! The hero behind this year’s brew could be YOU! And if you haven’t bought your passes for the con yet, be sure to get yours ASAP! Are you attending DCC? Let me know if you are, or your other convention plans in the comments! 

Image credit: Breckenridge Breqwery

2017 Convention Plans!

ECCC just wrapped up, so I think it’s safe to say we’re officially starting into the spring and summer convention season! Last year I kept my convention plans pretty chill, and I don’t have a zillion cons planned this year either. However, I am hitting up some pretty exciting conventions, and I cannot wait! Here’s where you can catch me this year:

Denver Comic Con, June 30-July 2

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I go to this convention every single year, and every single year it’s better than the last! DCC 2016 had several amazing from The Hillywood Show, to Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Alex Kingston and Jenna Coleman, Hayley Atwell, and WAY more. In this year’s convention it looks like the guest list is going to be even more kickass. Right now they’ve got appearances announced from people like Felicia Day, Khary Payton, Weird Al, Finn Jones, Caleb McLaughlin, Billie Piper, and TONS more.

So will I be seeing you there? If you haven’t already bought your tickets, jump on it! The speed passes have sold out already!

San Diego Comic Con, July 20-July 23

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Guys. This is a big one. For the first time EVER, I’ll be attending San Diego Comic Con. I have wanted to attend this con FOREVER. Usually, I’m chilling at home covering the news breaking from the convention, so I’m so incredibly stoked to finally be able to be in “the room where it happens”.

This is the biggest convention ever, and what makes it even more fun is that there is not only a ton of stuff to do and see within the convention, there are loads of rad things to hit up outside–one being the wonderful Nerd HQ. I cannot WAIT to see what this convention has in store for me. If you want to go, be sure to register for a Comic Con Member ID to be sure you can get a ticket! They go fast!

Will I see you at either of the conventions? Let me know in the comments! I hope to see you there. As always, I’ll be covering the conventions here on my blog and on my Twitter, @Kendall_Ashley

 

Loot Crate and Her Universe’s #Loot4Fangirls Crate

I recently got the chance to write over at Nerdist about Loot Crate and Her Universe’s awesome Loot4Fangirls crate that was being released exclusively for this year’s San Diego Comic Con. While I didn’t go to the con this year, they were kind enough to send me a crate of my very own.

Loot4Fangirls

I was so excited, and I wanted to show you guys IMMEDIATELY all of the awesome swag inside, but I wanted to keep it a secret until the convention. After all, the crate contains an exclusive Her Universe dress, so I wanted to keep the secret until at least a few other people started doing unboxings of their crates.

You guys, I could rave for quite a while about all of the awesome stuff in this box. It was utterly fantastic, and is filled with stuff that any fangirl would love to have.

All the swag

The first was this adorable, exclusive little Wonder Woman figure based on DC Bombshells. The figure itself is so frakkin’ cute, but the little tin it came in is also really adorable.

Wonder Woman

The crate also included some adorable fangirl stickers (I’m OBSESSED with stickers), and a cute fangirl coloring book:

Stickers

And, of course with Star Trek heading to theaters and the 50th of the original show, they included some Enterprise-worthy gear with an adorable little makeup bag. What made it awesome was clearly Uhura-inspired. The bag is red, just like Uhura’s uniform, and the bag also has a little keychain with a few tribbles and an image of the Uhura herself (Nichelle Nichols-era Uhura, not Zoe Saldana).

Star Trek Bag

I’m not much of a makeup girl, but I’m SO excited about this bag, you guys.

They also catered to two of my faves: The Walking Dead and nail wraps. The Walking Dead wrap bracelet they included is simply wonderful. It’s cute and subtle, but it’s perfect for any TWD fangirl. Plus, I’m a sucker for bracelets, y’all. And the nail wraps are Borderlands-themed, and THEY GLOW IN THE DARK. You guys, I didn’t realize this when I applied them (even though I’m certain the packaging was pretty clear about that–I just don’t pay attention) so I got a big surprise the first time I was in a dark room after applying them!

Miscelleny

Of course, the biggest surprise was the exclusive Her Universe dress. Ashley Eckstein promised the dress would be awesome and empowering, and boy was it!

HU Dress

The dress featured some of my FAVORITE women from Marvel comics with my girl Captain Marvel right there in the front. It’s a light and airy dress, and even though it’s black it’s cool enough for summer and will work well under layers when it gets cold. I’m so happy that I got a chance to get this dress. I’m not sure if Her Universe will be selling this dress outside of the crate later on, so I’m glad I got my hands on this bad boy!

Of course you don’t have to be at SDCC to grab yourself one of these amazing crates. If you want in on the Loot 4 Fangirls action, you can order one for yourself online. Just don’t wait too long!

Have you ordered one of the #Loot4Fangirls crates, or did you pick one up at SDCC? What do you think of it? What do you hope to see in any future crates like this? Tell me about it in the comments! 

Denver Comic Con 2016: Sunday Panels

Over the weekend of Denver Comic Con 2016, I loved, loved, loved, spending Friday on the exhibition floor and freaking out over my panel, and I loved spending Saturday with the likes of John Barrowman, Cary Elwes, and Hayley Atwell. However, the Sunday panels were hands down my favorites. In DCCs past, Sunday was always more of a slow day to help you wind down from the con craziness. Not this year though. Sunday had people from Supernatural, The Walking Dead, Marvel, Doctor Who, and my favorite internet ladies, The Hillywood Show. It was a great day, but by the end of the day I was EXHAUSTED! Here’s how the day shook out:

Jeffrey Dean Morgan

JDM

I was soooo thrilled to hear that Jeffrey Dean Morgan was coming to Comic Con this year. His appearance was a bit of a late announcement, so it made me even more excited to see him at the con. I didn’t have time to save up to get a photo op with him, unfortunately, but getting to see his panel was treat enough. So what did he have to say about Negan’s role on The Walking Dead? Nothing. He said that he gets to laugh a lot as Negan, which in turn upsets Andrew Lincoln, which makes him laugh more, and he said that waiting for an answer to “who met Lucille” isn’t the worst thing in the world. But apart from telling us how much fun it is to play such a twisted bad guy, we didn’t really learn too much–which is unsurprising. What I really loved was hearing him talk about Supernatural, and his feelings towards Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles. He talked about how seeing them “all grown up” made him feel incredibly proud, and he liked to think he had a small part in that–even though he’s only ten years older than Jensen Ackles. He also mentioned that he’d love to come back to the show, especially if it was for the series finale, and if Jensen directed. I’m all for that. He was also asked a question by a girl in genderbent Comedian cosplay, which he thought was so rad that he brought her onstage.

JDM and Comedian

JDM hasn’t been doing the convention circuit for long, but he seemed to be pretty comfortable onstage (his wife–who he met through Jensen Ackles, btw–and adorable son were in the front row, which I’m sure helped him out) and he put on a super fun panel. He was funny, sweet, sincere, and you could tell how much of a genuinely fun time he has working on and talking about the shows he’s a part of. Papa Winchester didn’t disappoint, you guys.

JDM.gif

Of course that was only a fraction of the day. Next, we took things over to the Marvel ‘verse…

Clark Gregg

Clark Gregg

What makes a Clark Gregg panel so fun is how much of a fanboy he is IRL. If you didn’t know, this guy is essentially Coulson himself. He loves comics and the heroes from Marvel just as much (though I don’t think he has vintage cards like Coulson–although Coulson doesn’t even have his cards anymore), and when asked if he was Team Cap or Team Iron Man, he full Coulsoned everyone, calling the question-asker “young lady” and asking how the Sokovia Accords would affect the Inhumans in his charge. It was THE BEST. He also spoke about life after Coulson died in Avengers. He happened to see the #CoulsonLives Twitter campaign while running his wife’s (Jennifer Grey) Twitter while she was on Dancing with the Stars. After that crazy campaign and seeing the Marvel fans flock to bringing Coulson back, we got a living, breathing Coulson and the amazing show Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. So can we expect to see him back on the MCU? Or what about his feelings of bringing in some of the other Marvel TV characters into the MCU? Coulson–I mean Clark is game, but he’s okay with waiting. Obviously, he’s got to figure out a gentle way to let the Avengers know he’s still alive. You know, in a way that won’t make any of them so mad they kill him…but more than that he’d love to see the Marvel shows (he named Matt Murdock specifically) mix with the MCU, but in the right way. He thought having some brief, blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo wouldn’t be the best, but if they could blend the worlds in a natural and awesome way, he’d love to see that. So we can hope our future will hold some rad crossovers.

Alex Kingston and Jenna Coleman

Alex Kingston and Jenna Coleman

I wasn’t able to stick around for this entire panel, but I did enjoy getting to see these two together. The biggest thing I felt from this panel is that when Jenna originally took the job as Clara on Doctor Who, she had no. idea. how much this would change her life. To this day, I feel like she’s still trying to understand Whovians, convention culture, and why the heck a bunch of randos are paying upwards of a hundred bucks to take a picture with her. Still, it’s obvious she loved the show, the characters, and her fellow actors, which I always love seeing. Alex Kingston, on the other hand, is ALL ABOUT this kinda thing. She totally seemed to feed off the crowd, and was a lot more vocal than Jenna (introvert vs. extrovert, basically). When Jenna asked if she would be coming back to Who–especially after Peter Capaldi made some cryptic remarks about her–she shrugged it off as Peter being Peter and trying to create buzz. She also said that she’d only just left, and Pearl Mackie was starting her run as companion that very day. So even though she seemed to make the answer seem like a solid “no, I’m done”, she never officially said her days in the TARDIS were over. She just didn’t want to take the spotlight from Pearl. Alex Kingston also made some controversial remarks saying that she wasn’t on board with turning the Doctor into a woman in a future regeneration. We’ve seen with two other Gallifreyans that a gender change in a regeneration is possible–The Master/Missy being the most notable–Alex thought that since he’s always been a guy, he should stay that way. I love you, Alex, but we’re gonna have to agree to disagree there.

The Hillywood Show

Hillywood

I actually got to interview Hannah and Hilly (an interview that will be coming out on Geek & Sundry, so stay tuned for that), but I also couldn’t wait to attend their panel. While I’m pretty sure they were in Hilly!Dean and Hannah!Cas cosplay the day before, their Sunday panel was in Dean and Cas casual cosplay (sporting their Hillywood Supernatural parody beanies, obvs). These girls are so sweet and just a ton of fun. They were encouraging to members of the audience who wanted to start their own show on YouTube, and they were so grateful that they had the opportunity to create the show thanks to their Patreon supporters (you can support the show here if you are so inclined). They also watched some of their parodies with the audience, namely their Lord of the Rings Parody, the Walking Dead Parody, the Doctor Who Parody, and their Supernatural Parody.

Hillywood Shake It off.jpg

When I first saw the Supernatural parody, I was by myself and had to fangirl with friends online. So it was really fun to get to watch it in a room FULL of other fans and Hannah and Hilly themselves. Their biggest encouragement to the audience was create something original and don’t try to copy what someone else is doing. You’ll only gain a following and stand out from other YouTubers if you are providing something that only you can give an audience–that’s what people want to see, not a knock-off. These girls are amazing. I was so impressed that they not only did zillions of panels and took the time to not only do photo ops, but they also manned a booth and spent individual time–and the occasional selfie–with each fan who came through to buy some merch.

Of course the unsung hero of the convention is also the lovely Clare Kramer, who was the moderator/interviewer for most of the mainstage panels. She was busy the ENTIRE weekend, and helped make every single panel awesome. I have no idea how she was able to stay energized for it all, but she did a great job. If you haven’t checked out her or GeekNation, you totally should do that. She’s fantastic, and helped make all of the panels amazing. She’s hosted mainstage panels for a while at Denver Comic Con, and I’m always impressed at how she handles the panels–even as they’ve grown significantly over the years. Seriously, Denver Comic Con had record attendance this year, and I know that a huge part of that is because they put on some truly impressive panels. I’m already getting excited for the adventures in store next year!

Have you seen any of these folks at a convention? What question would you like to ask them if you could? Tell me about it in the comments!

Denver Comic Con 2016: Saturday Panels

Friday was a day that, apart from my own panel, not much else happened for me. I got to explore the exhibition floor–which was SPRAWLING this year. This is just the Pop Culture Classroom area:

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But on Saturday, I attended panels galore. In previous years, the big “main stage” panels were held in one of two (maybe three) ballrooms. You had to line up outside for FOREVER in a different ballroom that was essentially modeled after Crowley-run hell. This year, they had one giant theater for the big main stage events that didn’t clear after each panel. So, in theory, you could stay there from the first panel to the last. So on Saturday, I really just parked myself in the main stage room and enjoyed some of the amazing panels–they really got a pretty amazing lineup this year.

Hayley Atwell

Hayley Atwell DCC

I was so. excited. for the Hayley Atwell panel. Though I’m painfully behind on Agent Carter, I love her and the entire Captain America story in the MCU. You guys, if you are ever in the position to see a panel with Hayley on it, GO SEE HER. She is full of energy, and you can tell she has loved every second she’s gotten to play Peggy. Of course she touched on some of the more painful things happening in the Peggy-verse these days. She addressed the show’s cancellation, letting fans know that she hadn’t given up hope just yet. When she was asked if Peggy could fit in well with the darker tone of the Marvel Netflix shows, she smiled and said, “Peggy could handle it.” So it’s unclear what Peggy’s future holds, but Hayley seems up for whatever opportunities Marvel gives her. Of course, she also spoke about the infamous Hydra Cap situation. Of course, Peggy Hayley wasn’t entirely convinced he had gone full dark side.

So hopefully Cap’s story is one that will be redeemed. If Peg has faith, so do I. But that wasn’t the only Cap scandal she covered. She also mentioned that kiss Cap shared with one Sharon Carter–Peggy’s niece. Of course she made headlines when she said the relationship was a bit messed up, and while she still stands by the fact Cap dating Sharon is wrong, she reminded fans that it’s all in good fun. After all, it’s comic books and superheroes. They should be fun, right? The panel also touched briefly on her episode of Black Mirror, which she called just a long crying session for her (which is fair, because that’s what it’s like to watch Black Mirror), as well as an answer to her interest in playing the Doctor. Her one stipulation? Her companion has to be Billie Piper.

atwell piper.gifI think the Doctor Who fandom would be more than happy to see a run of Hayley Atwell’s Doctor travelling around with Rose Tyler, amirite? These two are such a huge IRL BroTP for me anyway, so I’d love to see them having adventures across time and space in the TARDIS.

So if you need me, I’ll be campaigning for an Atwell/Piper season of Doctor Who.

Cary Elwes

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You guys, I had no idea Cary Elwes was so great. I mean, I love most of the stuff he’s been in, but this guy is HILARIOUS. He does some of the best voices, and spent his panel impersonating everyone from Andre the Giant to Rob Reiner to Cockney British actors. He also spent a huge chunk of his panel telling us stories from the set of Princess Bride, like the fact that he severely broke his foot just two weeks into shooting after going on a wild ride on Andre the Giant’s ATV. It’s so bad that Elwes says you can see him occasionally limping or hopping about in some of the scenes on Princess Bride. Even better, they had to postpone all of his sword fights until the very end of filming just so he could be standing on a solid two feet. And though he started out his panel really trying hard to not say “as you wish”, calling them “those three words that I say”, he obliged when a fan finally asked him directly to say it. That movie was such a huge part of my childhood, so it did my heart good to not only say his most iconic line from the film, but also to hear how much fun the cast had together.

John Barrowman

Barrowman Outfits

The last panel of the night was John Barrowman–who I got to interview with his sister over at Nerdist, btw–and his panel was NUTS. John basically feeds off of the energy of a crowd, so his panel was tons of fun because he was just amped the entire time. He came out in genderbent Cas cosplay (he loves Supernatural, and would love to be on the show), and then changed mid-panel. But his panel was full of fun hijinks like that. He brought a fan up to dance with him and his husband, and at one point he crawled over all of us (I was thisclose to touching his ankle when he went past me, but I deemed that creepy) to answer a fan question up close and personal.

Silly Barrowman

Of course no Barrowman panel would be complete without talking about talking about Torchwood. He and his sister Carole are bringing us new Torchwood adventures with the new Torchwood comic. Of course, its up to us to keep more stories coming, so buy the comic, you guys!!!

You guys, I was so impressed about how amazing these panels were, and the sheer size of the event was astounding. Denver Comic Con has grown so much over the past few years, and I’m so happy to get to be a part of the convention. If you want to see another perspective, check out my buddy Amelia’s recaps of day one and two over on Geekly Planet!

Did you go to Denver Comic Con? What was your favorite part of the Saturday panels? Tell me your thoughts about the panels or any other Atwell, Elwes, or Barrowman panels you’ve seen in the past in the comments! 

Denver Comic Con 2016: What I Learned From Being On a Panel

Denver Comic Con came and went over the weekend, and I had a complete blast. There was so much to digest, but the biggest thing for me was, of course MY PANEL.

WiGi

As I previously wrote, I was asked to sit on a Women in the Geek Industry panel along with two other women. The entire experience was crazy and overwhelming (seriously, I got an anxiety migraine after and had to go home early), but it was ultimately amazing. I am so thankful that Denver Comic Con allowed the spotlight to get put on women within the “geek industry” (I’m still not sure what the geek industry actually is, but I’m glad to be a part of it).

I also realized how severely I underestimate myself. As I was sitting there on the panel, I remember looking at the other two women sitting on the panel with me and thinking, “Oh my gosh, they are so much more knowledgeable than I am. I don’t know anything at all. What am I thinking, sitting on a panel like this? All of these people are gonna realize I’m one big, fat, fraud and boo me out of the con!”

Of course this didn’t happen, and the more I talked, the more I realized I actually know a thing or two. Sure, I don’t know everything, but I’ve been doing this for several years now.

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The most shocking thing that came from my panel was getting a taste of the kind of impact I can have on people–even in my own small corner of the internet. After the panel, a little girl came up to me and asked about being a writer, and I got to give her some tips on becoming a writer for a publication you love. After that, a woman walked up to talk to me and told me how she’d read all my stuff, and that she was into gaming because of things she read that I wrote.

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Crazy, right? I didn’t even know how to process those last two. In what universe do I get to be the one encouraging the writers of tomorrow, and inspire another human to try gaming because of my words. I was caught between being a bit teary and speechless after those two came to talk to me, but it ultimately made me feel incredibly thankful for the jobs I have with Geek & Sundry and Nerdist.

Ultimately, the panel was tons of fun, and the questions from the audience were thoughtful. I was nervous the entire time, but I think the panel went pretty darn amazing. I was so honored to get to be a part of such an important panel, and I really hope that we inspired the women in the audience to chase after whatever their dream role in the geek industry might be.

I’m still blown away that I actually got to sit on an actual panel at comic con…

If you want to see my panel, I’ve got some video of it here. I haven’t watched it (I hate watching myself on camera), but I’ve heard the audio isn’t the best in places. Regardless, it’s here if you want to check it out:

And if you weren’t at Denver Comic Con, I live-tweeted every single panel I attended, so you can head to my Twitter to see what went down. I try to use my #KenAtTheCon hashtag, but eventually I just stuck with the convention’s #DCC2016 hashtag. Not into reading live tweets? Never fear though, I’ll be writing about the panels–with pictures!–in more detail this week. Stay tuned!

Women in the Geek Industry Panel at Denver Comic Con

I’ve been not-so-subtly hinting at it for a while, but now I’m officially ready to make the announcement: I’m gonna be on a panel at this year’s Denver Comic Con. I’ll be on the Women in the Geek Industry Panel at the con this year to talk about my slice of the geek industry. Specifically, my writing for Geek & Sundry and Nerdist (in addition to the zillions of other places I’ve written through the years). Here’s the rad, official Women in the Geek Industry logo:

WiGi

This panel seriously inspired me a few years ago, so I’m honored to be featured as one of the “women in the geek industry” this year. We’ll each talk about what we do and answer any questions audience members have. It will be an awesome panel celebrating women in the industry, and will hopefully inspire you to chase after whatever goals you have in geekery. Heading up to Denver Comic Con this year? I’d love to see you there! The panel will be on Friday, June 17 at 2:45 in room 607, and in addition to me the panel will also feature cosplayer Tiffany Wangerin, comic book retailer Alice Lexx, and will be moderated by Kirei.

Are you coming to Denver Comic Con? Have you ever been on a panel before–let me hear any tips you have in the comments! 

Outfit Lineup for Denver Comic Con 2016

Alright, kids, it’s official. I’ve landed on my what I’ll be wearing at Denver Comic Con this year, and I’ve officially decided that this year’s Denver Comic Con will be the Year of the Fandom Shirts. I have zillions of shirts that celebrate my favorite fandoms, and comic con is the PERFECT place to wear them. So here are my outfit plans for the week:

Friday: Wayward Academy

So this isn’t the most recent Wayward Daughters shirt (if you’re interested, as of right now you have about six more days to snap a #waywardaf shirt), but it still shows your wayward pride. Also, I may or may not be appearing on a panel this day (stay tuned!!!), so I wanna rep my girls.

Wayward Daughters Academy

 

Saturday: #TeamCap

I don’t even want to hear about your “Hail Hydra” nonsense…

#TeamCap Style

 

Saturday: Always Keep Fighting

Okay, so I know I talked a big game about wearing my Hamilton shirt, but then I remembered that I also owned *this* shirt. A con is the perfect place to wear some SPN family swag.

Always Keep Fighting

 

 

How do you style your favorite fandom shirts? Let me know in the comments! And of course, be sure to pick up your tickets to Denver Comic Con if you haven’t already. Let me know if you’ll be at the con this year. I’d love to say hi! And remember, stay tuned because I’ve got a fun panel announcement to make this week! 

Interview with Cat Staggs

When Supergirl came to TV, I think we all knew it was only a matter of time before they re-introduced us to Kara in the comic book world. The Adventures of Supergirl has been rocking the comics world since January of this year, and I had the opportunity to chat a bit with Cat Staggs, the artist behind the amazing cover, who’ll be providing the interior art for the latest chapter of the book, which releases digitally TODAY.

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Image credit: DC Comics

What I love about Cat’s work is how beautifully and realistically she’s able to recreate faces that we’ve seen in real life (you can head to her website to see some of the art she’s done for the Smallville and Orphan Black comics), so I couldn’t wait to talk to her about her work on The Adventures of Supergirl! Take a peek into our conversation!

Kendall: How does your process differ between working on an interior and working on the cover? 

Cat: They’re two different things. In one I’m working closely with the writer to create the interior art, and when I’m working on a cover I’m trying to tell a story without giving too much away.

K: I’m always just blown away when I see how well you’re able to not only create original art, but also draw the faces of real people like you’ve done with The Adventures of Supergirl as well as stuff like Smallville and Orphan Black. Do you prefer drawing real people over creating something from scratch?

C: I don’t really prefer one over the other. Regardless of what I’m drawing, I like to draw people to look realistic. I like to focus on conveying emotions rather than drawing these stiff-looking figures. I really work hard understanding what the character is feeling so when I draw someone it looks emotional rather than someone just opening their mouths or something like that.

K: How did you get into comics to begin with? 

C: I did a lot of knocking on doors after getting laid off from another job! No, but really it was all about meeting people and getting the my work out there. I went to a lot of cons to get my stuff seen, working on trading card art, as well as working with Lucasfilm on a lot of Star Wars art. Then one day Jim Lee offered to give me a shot, and that was Phantom Lady.

K: The Adventures of Supergirl isn’t your first run with Supergirl. You also got to redesign her costume in 2013. How do you feel about the costume she wears on the show (and, by extension, the comic)? 

C: I love the costume in the series! Honestly, I think it’s one of the better Supergirl costumes that we’ve seen in a live-action adaptation. It really holds on to the source material.

K: How do you feel about the Supergirl you worked on in 2013 versus the current Supergirl?

C: I mean, they’re from different worlds, and really almost different characters. One is more defiant and rebellious than the character we see in the show, but I think they’re both awesome characters. I don’t know, put them together, maybe? Then I guess you’d get Wonder Woman, though…

K: Do you have any advice for people looking to get into comics?

C: Ultimately you’ve got to get your work out there. There are so many ways for people to get exposure these days. Getting on Twitter alone can be a great way to showcase your work and reach out to people in the industry. Going to shows and conventions is so helpful to get your work in front of people’s faces and to get the opportunity to do some face-to-face networking. You’ve just got to make it and get it out there! I mean, you definitely have to put in the time and the work, but there are so many great tools to help you get yourself and your work in front of real people.

K: Any last words on what we can expect from the latest installment of The Adventures of Supergirl?

C: I just really hope people like it. It’s a pretty emotional chapter.

Thanks so much to Cat for taking the time to chat with me. Be sure to grab yourself a copy of Chapter 10 of The Adventures of Supergirl. The chapter is available for download Monday, today, via the DC Comics App, Readdcentertainment.com, iBooks, comiXology.com, Google Play, Kindle Store, Nook Store, and iVerse ComicsPlus. Here are a few images from the interior to whet your appetite for new Supergirl content!

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Also, if you’re heading to Denver Comic Con this year, you’re in luck, because Cat Staggs is going to be one of the fabulous artists in attendance! Be sure to check out her Twitter and the Denver Comic Con page to see what she’ll be up to at the con. And be sure to let me know your thoughts about the The Adventures of Supergirl in the comments!