Now when we say convention, we don’t mean the boring business ones with stale sandwiches and lots of insincere networking. We mean the pop culture kind!
The Big Boss of them all is the annual extravaganza that is San Diego Comic Con, but here in Australia we have our own that book out our convention centres at various weekends throughout the year – Oz Comic Con, Supanova and the like.
With many conventions being incredibly popular, it can be difficult dealing with lots of people and queuing. Here’s our guide to having an excellent convention experience.
- Plan ahead. Research the con online – when and where is it? How much are tickets? Are there different levels of tickets for different VIP experiences? How will you get there?
- Check out the rules and guidelines. Every con will have them – this is especially important if you’re cosplaying with weapons! Is your plastic broadsword allowed?
- Speaking of cosplay, if you’re not participating, be prepared for others to be in costume! Compliment the players whose work you like. They love praise, it makes their hard work worthwhile!
- Be aware you’re not going to be familiar with all fandoms represented. Anime in particular now has so many different shows it’s very hard to keep up. And remember some cosplayers create their own original characters!
- Prepared yourself for queues, particularly if you want celebrity autographs or photos. A lot of others will be patiently waiting for the same privilege.
- Touch anyone inappropriately. Ask permission if you want a photo taken with a cosplayer. Don’t be a creep and be aware all cons now have a strict sexual harassment policy.
- Be a dick. Everyone is there for a good time, try not to be an annoying horrible person to your fellow con attendees!
- Ask inappropriate questions of the celebs. Almost every Q&A I’ve been to has had one – don’t be that guy.
- Argue about the price of anything, particularly with vendors. Many are independent artists who are entitled to charge what they wish for their wares.
At the end of the day, conventions are all about bringing passionate people together. If you’re part of a fandom, you’ll probably get that sense of community, but if you’re a newbie we recommend just sitting back and enjoying the happy vibe.
Have you been to a pop culture convention lately? What was your favourite thing?