Note from the Mayor: Rocky Mountain Con 2014 is October 25-26.
Okay, I’m just going to go ahead and admit it – I’m a bit of a geek. It’s not a full-time gig for me, but I dabble in Geekdom. Raised on Star Trek and various British sci-fi shows, such as Red Dwarf, there was no way I could have reached adulthood without having a little geekiness rub off on me.
The thing that sealed the deal, however, was marrying my husband, Ryan. He’s not your stereotypical geek – he doesn’t work on computers all day and he loves to watch and play sports, however, he’s a child of the 80s. He spent a lot of time in the mall’s arcade as a kid, he’s a brilliant artist who spent most of his time in school sketching fantasy characters, he spent time playing Magic (the card game) as a young man, he absolutely adores game of all kinds, from video to table, Lord of the Rings is his favorite book, and I think you get the picture.
I have always liked geeks (a bit obvious since I married one). Geeks are smart and tend to be highly creative people. I consider myself both of these things, and while I’m not really a serious gamer and I only play the occasional board game, I am currently listening to “Ready Player One“ on Audible (narrated by geek god, Will Wheaton) and years ago I was briefly addicted to Baldur’s Gate on PlayStation.
So that long introduction explains how Ryan and I ended up attending Rocky Mountain Con this past Sunday. We’ve always wanted to check out a con, and somehow always miss the big Denver Comic Con, so when this one popped up on my radar we decided to check it out.
The brand new Rocky Mountain Con is a gaming, comic, anime, toy and science fiction convention in Denver, Colorado. It was established as a way to raise money for the Aurora movie theater shooting victims through AuroraRise.org.
We arrived on Sunday, the second day of the two-day con held at the Crowne Plaza Denver International Airport Convention Center. We didn’t attend any of the workshops, although from reading their Facebook page, these were well received.
The convention floor was huge and there were a large number of artists displaying their works. The first fascinating conversation we had was with Arthur Suydam, an accomplished artist who seems to be the king of zombie art. He’s currently creating covers for The Walking Dead.
We spoke to big time artists like Suydam, and artists who are just starting out in the business. Self-publishing seems to be popular with this group. For example, George Wassil of Oh Hell Comics, has his entire comic available free online at OhHellComics.com.
In addition to chatting with various artists at the con and meeting R2D2, the Cosplay Competition was the highlight of our day. We knew about cosplay, having watched a little of Heroes of Cosplay on the SyFy Channel, but we’d never seen the real thing.
Cosplay is short for “costume play,” and is performance art in which participants wear costumes and accessories to represent a specific character or idea.
There were quite a few entries in the Rocky Mountain Con Cosplay contest, and honestly, I didn’t recognize many of the characters represented, but the costumes were all really cool. A lot of cosplayers make their own costumes, which is impressive since I can’t sew on a button.
The main stage had a catwalk so that the contestants could show off their duds to the audience and the judging panel. The judges were famous Cosplay Gals, Ivy Doomkitty (I assume that’s not her real name – or her real boobs), Erin Card and Destiny Nickelsen.
One by one the cosplay contestants, both male, female and child, made their way on to the stage. Some simply pranced on and off the catwalk, while others rattled off a line or two of narrative that fit their character’s persona. One of my favorites was Lady Loki, who ended with “kneel before me!” See video here.
Rocky Mountain Con, and I assume cons in general, are a chance to escape reality for a bit and spend time in an alternate universe; one where all things are possible, and where weapons and tails are standard issue. I’m definitely looking forward to attending more cons in the future. My husband, who builds furniture, has a line of gaming tables that he should be marketing to this group, so we may have a booth at a con one day.
Who knows where our shamble down the geek garden path may lead? While I don’t see cosplay in my future, if the outfit involved sensible shoes and no tummy or breast exposure, I might consider it.
Another Note from the Mayor: This year (2014) Ryan Schlaefer Fine Furniture will be showing his game tables at Rocky Mountain Con on October 25-26.