When you read a company’s About page, or their Mission Statement, it’s usually something they spent months on to help position themselves in a market. They find their space to own, to show how they're different from the rest. Then when it finally comes down to execution, some companies worry too much about what the competition is doing. They resort to copying the competition because, "Well, if it works for them." Then all that time and effort to set them apart is lost and they are just another one.
Comic Con Revolution (CCR) states in their Info page, "Comic Con Revolution was founded on very simple principles. We are excited to celebrate comics and the creative arts. At the absolute core of what we do are the creators themselves. The people who create the comics, games, toys, film, movies and more that we all love. Without their tireless dedication to creating the fantastic worlds we all get lost in events like Comic Con Revolution would not be possible.” After experiencing CCR's first showing, they did just that and lived up to their brand promise. The physical center of attention, and floor, was Artist Alley. It felt like most of the exhibitors were presenting something new of their own creation (a few highlighted here), and the panels where filled with creators sharing tips on how to get to where they're at. From learning more about writing to pro tips on how to shoot cosplay photography to how to start a podcast, CCR kept their focus on the creator, even more, how to be a creator.
Walking around I felt the excitement from the exhibitors to the attendees, it was as if we were all thinking the same thing, "Wow, this is really nice. Like, it's really well organized, this is legit. Are we in on something cool?!" Many of us gave each other that look, there may have been some unspoken high-fives. Speaking with some of the exhibitors who've worked with Atomic Crush Events (ACE), they were not surprised. Because ACE was putting this event together, they said it was a no-brainer to participate. What's amazing is the team put this together in about three months. I'm excited to see what they can do with a full 12 months to prepare and even more room to play in 2018.
With an official count of 5449 attendees, excluding exhibitors and staff, CCR was no doubt a hit. The Inland Empire has a Comic Con of their own and it's something to be proud of. With even better news, CCR has announced, "Comic Con Revolution will grow in 2018 taking over both exhibit halls as well as the Mayoral Ballroom." and staying true to make the show about the creators, "The event will add additional features including a Professional Creator's Summit on Friday, May 18th, play host to the Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles as they complete their Comic Book Artist badge while growing the exhibitor and guest lists."
It wasn't all work for the Convention.Life team. I got to meet my favorite color artist Dean White! (Yup, I follow colorists. A great artist is a great artist) If you like Rick Remender's Uncanny X-Force or the earlier issues of Black Science, you've seen his amazing painterly approach to color. The best part was when we discovered we went to the same small art school in Sherman Oaks, CA at the same time.
I caught The Strength of Independent Comics, an insightful panel, with Ray-Anthony Height, Ron Marz, Karl Altstaetter, Joshua Hale Fialkov, and Hope Larson. Moderated by Beth Scorzato.
I couldn't leave a comic convention empty-handed. Only a monster would do that. I met Derek Fridolfs and picked up the second volume of his and Dustin Nguyen's Secret Hero Society for my son, we had such a great time reading the first one together. Derek was kind enough to sign and sketch it for my boy. If you aren't POP! hunting in any way at a convention, you're not living. I found myself a very rare Chuck D for my collection. And I had to remember this inaugural event with a souvenir pint glass. With that, I raise this cold beverage to you for making it to the end of this post. If you want more on this event, be sure to check out the gallery of cosplayers here and be sure to follow us on Instagram.