I noticed I had started a draft but hadn’t posted about some of the conventions I had attended around town last year- or even some from the year before, so I figured a Flashback Friday would be a good way to catch up.¬†The Delta Fan Fest was September 17 & 18, 2016 at the Landers Center in Southaven, MS.

Guests included actors Dean Cain (“Lois and Clark”), Katrina Law (“Arrow”), Walter Jones (‚ÄúPower Rangers”), voice actress Trina Nishimura, and artists¬†Tom Nguyen and¬†Jeremy Clark¬†(there was also an actress from The Walking Dead¬† I’m not familiar with and a couple other guests I can’t find their info now.)

I had seen that Ernie Hudson and John Schneider had both been announced as guests, but both had to cancel their appearances. Not sure why Ernie had to, but¬†John had lost his home and studio in Holden, LA due to flooding less than a month away from the show. He had over three feet of water in his 100+ year old home thanks to the¬†Tickfaw River and torrential rains.¬†He had moved to Louisiana in 2014 to build John Schneider Studios– the largest film studio in Louisiana, but in 2016 suffered 2 floods in less than a year. Throw in a costly divorce and a cancelled Dukes of Hazzard reunion show on the Hallmark channel and personal¬†appearance tour with former “Dukes”co-star Tom Wopat¬†(who was¬†arrested for indecent assault and battery) and it was hard times for ol’ Bo. Hopefully Earnie’s reason was because of his appearance the 2016 Ghostbusters: Answer The Call movie or other work!

But back to the show. Admission at the con was only $20.00 (Sat) and $15.00 (Sun) for adults ($25.00 weekend pre-reg.), and $10.00 for kids (6-12) each day ($15.00 for weekend pre-reg.). Kids under 6yrs old free with a paid adult, plus there was free parking. The Landers Center is located just off of Church Road and I-55.

I had an artists alley table at the con right near the entrance (that’s it behind me). It was nice to have a con so close to home- actually the closest one we’ve attended so far. It was so close that I was able to set up, then run home to pick up my prints I forgot to pack, and make it back before the show opened.

 

I loved the space and had a great spot- even got some drawing done over the weekend. I’m usually not fond of drawing at a con- usually horrible lighting and really cramped working space. The lighting here was actually pretty good for a convention space, and I actually had some room behind the table to draw. I worked on my Reb Brown/Captain America sketchcover. Nicki didn’t really get why I was drawing it. I told her he was cool- he had a motorcycle and and a van and rode around like Evel Knievel. She said, “No- no he’s not cool.”I love the old cheesy TV superhero shows that were on when I was a kid, and still do.

  

I did a cartoon Reb-Cap painting for my friend Ken Murphy and actually got to meet Reb Brown last year at Ken’s¬†Cape-Con in Cape Girardeau, MO. I gave Reb a sketchcover that was more cartoony like the painting.¬†My buddy Marc Meeker stopped by the Delta Fan Fest as the new movie Captain America to check out what I was drawing at my table.

I finished this sketchcover after this show and sold it first thing at the Memphis Comic Expo a few weeks later. I’ve had a few people ask me if I still have that cover, including Ken- which is why I ended up doing the painting for him.

  

At the Fan Fest I also did a quick Harley Quinn sketchcover for my friend Eric Crimmins, who is a toy dealer at shows like this one. I love doing sketchcovers- you can see more of mine and how I do them here.

Eric’s got a few of my art pieces now. He’s a huge horror fan, especially Halloween/Michael Myers.

I didn’t sell a lot at the show that weekend, but later at the Memphis Comic Expo downtown, I had a lady walk by my table and recognized my samurai tee design from my set up at the Delta Fan Fest. She said she wanted to get some for a belt testing at their dojo, but wasn’t sure about sizes. She asked me if I would be there tomorrow (Sunday) and said she’d be back. 99% if the time you never see them again. This time the 1% not only came back, but bought 6 t-shirts! I sold a lot to a martial arts demo group at AniZona in Phoenix several years back, too.

  

Since we had some periods of down time Nicki and I took turns walking around the con and checking out booths like the TN Ghostbusters and some of the dealers and artists.

Our friends Martheus (Antone/Wonton), Janet, and Anakin Wade were artists guests and set up just down from us next to¬†Walter Jones (Zack/Black Power Ranger from¬†Mighty Morphin Power Rangers¬†.) They’re local comic artists who do the Tales of the Toshigawa” and “Shinobi: Ninja Princess comic book series, and Antone is a graphic artist for the Memphis Redbirds baseball team.

 

Antone and Walter were both wearing similar hats so we kidded about Antone being Walter’s stunt double/stand-in for the weekend.

 

We got to see Walter again at the Memphis Comic Expo a year later at the Agricenter. I did some art for¬†Donald Juengling, the show’s organizer. He had Walter sign it and it went into the “DonnieCon” art auction. I did it in Copic markers, Prismacolor pencil, and Pigma Micron and Gelly Roll pens. Walter seemed to have a great time at both shows.

Katrina Law seemed to be having a good time as well. She was very outgoing and energetic! She played the daughter of Ra’s al Ghul on¬†Arrow and had attendees exercising and doing the “Chicken Dance”. She was definitely a fan favorite.

On Saturday at the Fan Fest I got to take some time to sit down with the guys from the¬†KillPop Culture podcast. They were doing interviews and commentary on the show both Saturday and Sunday. You can listen to my interview and one with the¬†Doctor Who¬†cosplay group “Cosplay Kasterborous“on¬†Episode 53 (Pt1). Artist Tom Nguyen did and the TN Ghostbusters¬† did interviews, too. You can also listen to them on Episode 54 (Pt2) here.

 

Tom’s and awesome artist, and I first met him many years ago in Metropolis at the Superman Celebration. He was working for DC Comics. Really enjoyed seeing his and¬†Jeremy Clark‘s work, and buying a couple prints for my collection.

  

Even though the crowds were light over the weekend, a lot of the folks who did show up also dressed up.

  

George, who runs this show also runs the Anime Blues Con and Anime Blues Con Winter Remix show. Cosplay is a really big part of both of those shows. (George also ran the Animax anime/manga store in Memphis.)

  

I was surprised I didn’t see more of the ABC show regular cosplayers at this show, but we did see some familiar faces at the con, and all the cosplayers who did attend seemed to have a great time.

  

On Sunday I decided to dress up as well and cosplay as the War Doctor. (You can see how I made my costume here and here.) I brought along an old “Alien face-hugger¬†as a prop (fans of John Hurt will get the connection). I had to have my photo taken in front of the¬†Cosplay Kasterborous¬†TARDIS, and with the Flash and Supergirl at the CW Memphis booth. The¬†Cosplay Kasterborous¬†group also had a Dalek (Chad) on display as well.

  

I love TV/movie vehicles and there was a fun replica Mystery Machine van parked next to the CW booth.

They were raising money for local animal shelters. Had to throw a few bucks their way.

They had lawn chairs behind the van and a TV in the back of it showing cartoons that attendees could watch.

Unfortunately, attendance was really light and I’m not really sure why. Maybe the lack of attendance was because of a few other cons happening around the Memphis/Southaven area within a month or so of each other- Mid-South Renaissance Faire, Memphis Comic Expo, Memphis Comic and Fantasy Con. Those are the ones I can think of off the top of my head, plus there were a couple others in Jackson and Nashville around the same time. Sometimes Memhians see Southaven and DeSoto County as a foreign country and won’t make the drive over the state line, even if it is only a short 10-20min drive or so from Memphis- if that long. It was like that when the Memphis Riverkings moved from the Mid-South Coliseum to the DeSoto Civic Center/DCC (now the Landers Center) in Southaven and became the Mississippi Riverkings. The ABC Winter Remix at the Landers Center is the only convention event I’ve seen that Memphians tend to make the drive for.

We really enjoyed the show and it’s a shame it was a one and done convention. It had great guests, artists, vendors, cosplay, lots to eat nearby, and sooooo close to home for us. I just wish more folks would have joined in on the fun there. I guess you can catch ’em all!

   

Since we were already in Southaven for the show, we stopped by Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken on Saturday night after the show. It was the next exit up towards Memphis on Goodman Road. We don’t hit it s often as we used to before my heart surgery, but when we do it’s a nice treat!

My next¬†convention appearance (and as far as I know my last) will be at the Dyersburg Comic And Pop Culture Con in Dyersburg, TN on March 16th. I’ve always been busy with MidSouthCon at the same time and have always had to turn show organizer Alvin down. This year on¬†that weekend in March I’ll be passing on MSC and heading north up Hwy 51 for a Saturday day trip. Looking forward to finally getting to check it out. More news about the Dyersburg show to come!

Lin

 

Comic Convention with Fantasy, Horror, and Sci-Fi programming

Delta Fan Fest (DFF) was created with the idea of taking all genres of geekdom and packing it into 2 days worth of professional panels, special guests, and of course, excitement!