When WonderCon left San Francisco for Anaheim, local fans and convention goers needed a new event. They found one in BigWow! Comic Fest, which has actually been around 15+ years. The show was built around comic art; the display, collection, creators of it, and has grown to encompass all aspects of current comic book pop culture. Last year, the guest of honor for BigWow! was none other than the Generalissimo himself, Stan Lee.
I myself have been involved with the show for about four years now, and watching the event grow has been amazing. In 2014, they have quadrupled the size of the con since the first year I attended, which is incredible and almost unheard of. The offerings range from cosplay gallore, an artist alley diverse and prestigious, popular media guests, and photo ops unlike any other. (Such as the internet-famous Harley’s Joker strutting his stuff high above the con floor, Storm Troopers playing Rock Band in 2013, Gotham’s finest of every era, monsters, heroes, villains, etc.)
Some of the panel offerings this year were things like a live figure drawing session with Frank Cho, “They Say You Can’t Cosplay” lead by Ivy Doomkitty where different bodytypes/skin color ladies talked about the challenges of putting yourself out there in costume (I was a panelist on this one), “Heroes of Cosplay” with a majority of the personalities from the SyFy series talking about the show, “The Greatest American Hero” spotlight with William Katt, meet and greets with Jessica Nigri, “Men of Cosplay” which was a FANTASTIC panel I have an audio recording of I’ll get up this week, several tech/crafting panels, and even a health and fitness panel hosted by two male cosplayers known and respected for their physiques.
BigWow! is also becoming a destination for cosplay photography. The event that happens the weekend AFTER BigWow! is Fanime, which boasts upwards of 30,000 visitors cramming into the San Jose Convention Center over four days. Which I have to say, makes it almost impossible to find space/time to either be the photographer or be the subject of a photo. But with BigWow!, there is room to breathe and space out for some fantastic shoots. Some of the photographers we had visiting this year were Francous, Geri Kramer, Thymehadder Photography, Eurobeat Kasumi, Pat Loika, Corpus Photography, Subversive Photography, Arian Hormozi, Matt & Dale Tolosa, Kevin Green, and many others that I’ll do my best to update as the photos roll in. Here is a small sampling of photos I myself was in (or took) over the two days of the convention:
This event continues to grow in both offerings and audience enjoyment, I cannot WAIT to see what 2015 holds.