This was my third year running at Nan Desu Kan, and this year was probably my most eventful one. The insanity started well before the con, because just before the convention I got a horrible ear infection right on my birthday. For three days I was running a really high fever, as well as being super dizzy and not being able to hear. I was getting a little worried that if I didn't get better I'd have to skip NDK! Oh Noes! By Friday morning I was still running a fever and had a hard time hearing, but I was feeling well enough to make the trek. And it was quite a bit of a trek indeed. My friend Linh had work on Friday and wasn't able to make it to the con until much later, and I wasn't able to find anyone else to give me a ride, so my mom and I took the RTD down to Englewood. It took a bus and two trains, and it was snowing that morning (yay, Colorado weather) but we made it down to hotel without losing anything or destroying any merchandise. It was an interesting experience for my mom because she had never been to a con in person and had never experienced con culture, but she found it a lot of fun. She didn't stay because she didn't have a badge. This year my neighbors were the amazing Sarah Stone and Finni Chang :, two super amazing artists and wonderful people. Sarah was nice enough to help me with my table display a bit and we'd watch each others tables so that was super helpful. And it's always an honor to be surrounded by such talent! Also got to hang out with my Denver Comic Con neighbors Sarin and Stephanie Kao . The nice thing about doing Artist Alleys is after a while you start to get to really know one and other and it starts being like a nice big happy family.
Friday started out pretty rocky but I met a lot of wonderful people and some amazing cosplayers. I was happy to see a lot of Kill la Kill costumes and a LOT of Legend of Zelda stuff. It's funny to see what trends come and go every year. By the end of Friday evening though I had totally lost my voice, I mean, like I'd try to say something and all you'd get is a squeak. My body does this dumb thing where when I get sick with one thing, I always end up with a sinus infection and that was what was causing most of the problem. It's funny because I think a lot of people came under the mistaken impression that I am a quiet person. Boy howdy is that off. I am actually a gargantuan, sarcastic smart ass who pretty much makes fun of everything. Later in the day Linh came to pick up her badge and catch up so I was able to take some time to people watch and photograph cosplayers even though I was effectively mute.
And by Saturday my voice still hadn't come back! I had to do most of my business by writing what I wanted to say and gesturing a lot. In addition to selling my prints and books, I was also trading away a bunch of Protean Froakie I had bred as my random act of kindness. Despite the communication gap business was still really good. But I think I can understand a lot of frustration many deaf and mute people must feel. I think after this experience I'll look into seeing if I can learn some basic sign language to help bridge the gap. Despite not being able to speak I still had a blast on Saturday. I found a Vincent Valentine figure in the Dealer's Room that made me more than a happy camper and I finally got to get an autograph from Chuck Huber (the English voice of Professor Stein in Soul Eater). He had come to NDK two years ago, but because of the line fiascoes that year I was never able to get into any of his autograph panels. I was so sad about it that I've pretty much not bothered trying to get into any panels at all because it was such a headache. Then on Friday I was communicating with someone who bought one of my Soul Eater prints and had told me that Chuck Huber was actually in the Artist Alley, like, 20 feet away from me. When I stood up I could actually see the back of his head! So on Saturday during one of my little short breaks I stopped by his booth and asked him to sign my DVDs. And he was nice enough to oblige. The coolest thing was was on Sunday a girl bought one of my Soul Eater prints and asked if it was okay if she went and got it signed by Mr. Huber. I told her not only was that perfectly okay, I asked if she would come back afterward so I could photograph the signed print. It was so cool to see someone's autograph on a piece of my artwork! And by Sunday my voice finally came back though right now I'm just trying to recover and not contract any additional con junk.
Overall I had an amazing experience. Sold a lot of books and prints, did a quite a few commissions, and gave away a lot of business cards. Big thanks to Yuki, the world's most amazing Artist Alley head, and to the con security for being so helpful. Only real downsides of the weekend were I missed this really, truly amazing Priest Seto cosplayer as well as a brilliant Skeksis from Dark Crystal, also people using the disabled/handicapped stalls as changing rooms. This happened last year and it happened twice this year. Guys, if you cosplay, do not use the disabled stalls to change. Change in your hotel room or on the main floor of the bathroom. NDK is one of the safest cons I've ever been to, so regardless of gender or sex it's not a big deal to change out in the open. It is a big deal, however, when people like myself, who use canes, crutches, walkers and wheelchairs can't use the bathroom because you are being inconsiderate. We can't use the smaller stalls, that's why the handicapped stall is so much bigger. So please, please don't use those stalls to change!
And a last bit of housekeeping news. Just a reminder that there won't be able webcomic updates this week because I'm recovering. I know I promised on Facebook that I'd have Queen of Games pages up, but like I said, ear infection and near-black out dizziness. They'll go up for sure next weekend. And thanks again for checking my work out!
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