Ever fancied comparing notes with a Power Ranger or meeting the artist behind your favourite comic book? Well, this summer you can, as the third annual Van Isle Comic Con swings into town.
The event is described as “an opportunity for artists and creators to network, learn from professionals working in the industry, showcase their work and just have fun.”
Josh Kully, Van Isle Comic Con co-ordinator, says the organizers look forward to the event as much as the visitors do.
“The majority of us are all comic book enthusiasts. We’re all of the culture, so we’re either artists, cosplayers or like comic books ourselves,” he says.
The show is open for one jam-packed day June 9, with 85 exhibitors, an on-site food court, games tournaments and interactive displays on tap. For those interested in the art behind the icons, a creators corner of artists at work will be set up, as well as interesting panels and special guests.
Blake Foster from Power Rangers Turbo and Michael Copon of One Tree Hill will be attending, and this year’s keynote speaker is Nick Kondo from Sony ImageWorks. Kondo was part of the creative team for the Oscar-winning Spiderman into the Spiderverse. Two of the visiting artists are Renee Nault and Ken Steacy, who both collaborated with author Margaret Atwood to create graphic novels.
A big part of Comic Con is cosplay, where fans and devotees dress up as their fictional heroes and anti-heroes. The organizers believe this year will be bigger and better than ever.
“The last two years we’ve had an amazing turn-out,” Kully says.
“The costumes are so professional and detailed that it’s cool to be able to give them a platform to showcase their talent.”
The cosplay judging part of the show has become a key part of the event looked forward to by participants and the public alike. This year, there are a number of prizes, in different categories, ranging from $100 to $450. There will also be prizes for the best kids’ costumes.
Kully says the aim of the event is to make it as fun as possible. Asked if he had any advice to newcomers to the scene, he says they should “jump in anywhere,” as “it’s the most accessible and friendly time to do it, follow what you enjoy and you’ll find your place somewhere.”
Van Isle Comic Con takes place at the Mary Winspear Centre on Sunday, June 9. Entrance is by donation.