On the Monday following DenverCon, I made my way across to Pasadena for the convention there the following weekend. It was really different being able to say, “well I didn’t get such great shots at that panel, but I’ll have another chance in a week.” Usually you have your one shot and then it’s months before the next. I did try not to use it as an excuse to be lazy, or complacent in Denver though!
PasCon was a standout for me in so many ways. There were so many people I knew there, I got to see so many friends and familiar faces. My good friend Michelle, who I first met when I sat next to her at BurCon two years ago, was kind enough to drive us around for the few days before the con started. The weather was perfect. I love California.
As far as my photography goes, the standout for me was both Karaoke and the Louden Swain Saturday Night Special. Anyone reading these blogs will know that I am extremely critical of my photography, but both of these times something in me clicked and I just felt it all really working. I don’t know how else to explain it. You know those images that show what happens when a key fits into a lock properly and all the tumblers move into place? It was kind of like that.
Again, it was the Saturday Night Special that I truly found the most challenging and the most rewarding to shoot. I thought it would be especially bittersweet because it was the last of the year, but instead it felt like a huge celebration, an acknowledgement that they have found this amazing event that they want to hold onto and share into next year. Of course I cried, but that was a given.
PasCon was also the first time I got to properly photograph Briana Buckmaster and Kathryn Newton, and I fell for them both. So lovely and funny!
2015 was a big year for the Supernatural conventions. It was the 10th anniversary, there were more dates in different cities, bigger venues and the Louden Swain Saturday Night Special truly became a big monster event of its own. But at its heart, these were still the same conventions that they have always been. Some things will change, get bigger, get smaller. But some things will always be the same.
It’s the waiting in the lobby when you check in to your hotel wondering who else is there for the same convention, until you spot someone with a Family Business shirt and you know you’re in the right place. It’s your room at the start of a weekend, an explosion of schedules and highlighters and different coloured tickets and lanyards and cosplay and phone chargers and SD cards for cameras. There’s the same nervous excitement waiting around for the doors to open before Karaoke late on a Friday night, laughing about being Friday People even though your feet already hurt and you could probably fall asleep if you sat down long enough. There is still the feeling of the sound of your heartbeat almost drowning out the music in Chris’ photo op room while you watch other people pose for photo ops and you wait your turn. There’s the butterflies when you wake up each morning and try desperately to force in breakfast because you know it’s probably the only decent food you’ll have all day. There’s still that feeling when your last autograph is done on a Sunday, and you start to see people leaving and you wonder if you’ll ever get used to what that feels like.
2015 was a big year, but 2016 will be bigger. The same but different. I think I’m ready for it.