Two of my favourite times of year come around in May and October: yes, it’s comicon!
There are so many reasons why I and many others love it, but this article is not to explain why we do it: it’s to explain how to do it well. There are so many things I could think of, but I’m not a veteran, and for this job I needed to go deeper.
So this time, instead of just giving any old advice from what I’ve experienced, I drafted the opinions and advice straight from the source, and offer up to you…
THE COMICONERS DOS AND DON’TS FOR LONDON’S EXPO 2015:
From Jaide Spilhaus, we get these wonderfully put pieces of advice:
“Take your own food and water for deffff…and wear comfortable shoes, try to incorporate shoes that you know you can wear all day into your cosplay… regarding keeping travel money, ive found that I have no self control so if I wabt something im like OH ITS FIIINE I CAN GET HOME WITHOUT EMERGENCY FIVER and that is sometimes not the case.
put it in your shoe. bear with me here.
put it in your shoe beneath your foot, its too gross/inconvenient a place to whip it out to buy a dope plushie so you are less likely to spend it as I would.”
From Daniel Nkwocha-Dyer:
“Buy a priority ticket”
From Tes Lord:
“Bring friends, I think my friends make my expo experience what it is.”
– this is a particular favourite of mine.
From Alden Leeke we get quite a few good tips:
“Make sure you take loads of water, take breaks, get a program to make sure you are aware of what talks and panels are happening during the event. Keep a little bit of money spare for travel home in case you loose tickets or anything. Be respectful to people in cosplay. Don’t be rude or feel like you have to rush and see everything straight away. Take your time to enjoy the stalls and stuff they will be there all weekend. Try to find some info on meet ups of your favourite fandom as that’s always enjoyable.”
From Emily-Katja Roubicek (her wonderful cosplay page is EmilyStrange cosplay):
“Always bring a bag and lots of water!”
From Kez Collins:
“Try to remain respectful of others and their personal space boundaries, but don’t be afraid to approach people to ask for photos of their cosplays. Also recommending commissioning artists in the CV – it’s really enjoyable to come away from an Expo with a piece of unique art work, and it also helps the artists too grin :)”
From Rachel Sellens:
“For the day. Don’t bring a ton of clothes like I did my first time. A drink, energy bars, plenty of cash and empty sd card.”
From Clogs Hogwood:
- “Plan your day out well, like take notes on your phone of anyone you’re meeting or meet ups so you don’t forget~
- Bring hand sanitizer, post con flu sucks
- Don’t spend all your money all in one go, look around the venders hall for the cheapest price
- Keep up personal hygiene pls
- Bring makeup to top up on, especially if your costume requires heave makeup
- Charge all your electronics, even bring an extra phone battery
- [and again, this is a popular suggestion] Bring water and snacks, you don’t wanna waste the majority of the con waiting in line for food”
From Kirsty Prongs Crawford (and another great page Characterisational Cosplay):
“Budget wisely; have a set amount you know you can spend on each day, and on top of that have a spare tenner to have as emergency money. Also if you need to take public transport then make sure you know your train times and exactly how to get from the station to the convention centre…wondering round big cities in full costume is not always as fun as you might think! And one final thing; wipe your phone memory and make sure to take lots of picture! 😀 this is such a good idea!”
From Emily Pardoe-Billings (and another fantastic addition from ASK Cosplay):
“Have fun! Don’t be afraid to go up to people and be sociable – especially if you want to tell them they have an awesome cosplay (just be respectful of sitting down, eating, photo shoots). You can make some great friends that way! If you’re cosplaying, carry stuff for emergency repairs like safety pins, glue etc”
From Richard “Optimistic” Rebel comes another few of my favourites:
- “Haggle. JFC, Haggle.
- Then don’t accept that.
- They mark the price up because there’s so many idiots that will pay it. They know enough people will ask for a discount, so they mark that price up too, just to take it back off and have you think you’ve got a bargain.
- The dealer isn’t in control, you are, all it takes is for you to walk away and they’ve lost the sale. They know this, and they’ll try to keep your attention for as long as they can.
- Seem disinterested and bored. It will scare them into trying to get a quick sale, and may cause them to drop their prices more quickly in order to avoid losing you…
- Don’t keep all your money in your wallet.
- People on here have been pickpocketed in the past.
- Losing your money, return train tickets, Oyster card, bank card and any chance of getting home, short of illegally riding a train, in a single move doesn’t sound like much fun.”
From Jordan Rhodes:
“Carry on drinking through out the day…The mornings won’t feel as bad…Take way more money then you want to spend, if you come back with money left over you’re winning.”
From Mikey Andrew Barrow we get a good few:
- Take your own food
- If you’re buying stuff use a bag that fits with your Cosplay
- Have places to meet if you split up
- Be polite and don’t barge past
- Say thank you if someone comments on your outfit
- Don’t be offended if someone doesn’t know who you are
- Have a good time!
And last but not at all least…Hannah Meyers:
“Bring your 3DS to find people :D”
I really feel like these are all so incredibly positive! If you haven’t been to ComiCon, I really suggest you do, as this is an example of the kind culture and community you’ll be dealing with.
I hope to add some more ideas as time goes on, but thank you to everyone who helped to put this together, I hope you get some new likes and shares for your amazing cosplaying pages and see you all in October!