When it comes to attendance, Fanime is a little bigger than SakuraCon, but not by much. At the same time, the venue Fanime is in is smaller than SakuraCon. Keep that in mind!
Number of Panel - This is what I can't get over. THERE ARE ONLY THREE PANEL ROOMS. This meant the hallway would get crowded fast with having to have lines wrap around themselves. Panels would often fill up and so it wasn't always easy to get in. I just. I can't. Three?! THREE?! ONLY THREE ROOMS?! Wow. Then the obvious with three panel rooms it meant less panels going on. Plus side? Rarely any ever difficulties which can't be said for SakuraCon.
Registration - Registration is never fun, but I really need to take a moment to point out Fanime's. I was Pre-Reg. I was in line for several hours for PRE-REG. The regular registration line for people who didn't Pre-Reg? A lot shorter and a lot faster.
Walkway - I was immediately impressed when I noticed the big hallway that connects the Artist Alley, Dealer Hall, Anime Viewing Rooms, and Panel Rooms had tape on it with arrows to try and keep foot traffic flowing. Then I was sad when I noticed there were tables along one side of it with promo-post cards and flyers and so people kept stopping to read and pick it up and basically made this walkway not work the way it should have. YouTriedStar.jpg
Concerts - There were none. Sad.
Panel: Comedy Stand-up: Um. Hmm. This panel was so-so, but I feel like it better fits in the negative over the positive. People doing stand-up basically. Hit or miss and the people who missed were terrible. One guy even got boo'ed a bit. . .but ya know. Being racist isn't funny.
Artist Alley -OH MY GOODNESS. This was the first place we walked into. I looked around a bit and then we began walking some aisles. I started to wonder when we would get to the Dealer's Stuff and then realized. . .that entire room we were in? That room was all for artists. It was huge. HUGE. I've gone to SakuraCon for several years and have seen the AA grow in size as they try to figure out a good location for them. AA at Fanime? I can't.
There were so many artists and such a good mix of talent and art. Wow. I am still in awe of the AA there. Some people I recognized from SakuraCon and others I hadn't seen before. There was one artist there who I followed for a while on deviantArt! (Yuumei) She also had my favorite picture of hers for sale and so I bought it immediately and talked to her a bit.
The artist alley was simply amazing!
Panel: Character Design: Went to a panel on character design led by XXXXX. He did design work for StarDriver and other animes. He was very entertaining and made some interesting points I hadn't considered. Also gave a little insight into some design elements from Japan. Like how hair shows whether or not someone is an introvert, extrovert, or even hiding a secret or struggling to overcome something. It was pretty enjoyable!
Panel: UC Gundam vs Other Gundam: I didn't really want to go to this. I was a bit unsure about it, but all the people I was hanging out with kept nudging me to go and so I did. I was worried it would just be a why one is better than the other or bashing other franchises. It wasn't that at all and I am super glad I went!
It had a little bit of history on how Gundam began. It talked about what is UC Gundam, the timeline of it, and why it is different from other franchises. It felt unbiased to me and instead of saying, "You have to watch UC if you haven't!" it was more of a, "If you enjoy other Gundam franchises and look into UC Gundam, this is what you can expect." I found it pretty helpful and interesting.
Panel: Art Portfolio Do's and Don'ts: I feel like there is definitely a bit, "NEVER HAVE ANIME!" in your portfolio attitude out there. So, I feel some anxiety over the thought of ever having my anime-ish art in my portfolio even though I want to get into coloring comics. This panel was incredibly important to me and it was fantastic! Some things I knew and a lot I didn't. Helped build some confidence and gave me an idea of what I need to do for my portfolio. One thing that was encouraged was showing progress pictures which I do for fun!
Panel: Building Armor with Wonderflex: YES! OH MAN.. Tutorials I have read online made wonderflex sound interesting, but also complex. Seeing it in person? Amazing! This was an incredibly awesome panel. Also, Wonderflex seems amazing!
Panel: Death by Fanfic: Fanime brought SakuraCon's "Where Fanfic Goes to Die!" to this con! First time doing it and only me and two other people knew what was going to happen. It was amazing and I scarred my friends for life. As needed. One person left the room before leaving (while laughing.)
The Hotel: The hotel was nicer and cheaper than the one in Seattle. True fact! They also had a "Raid Our Pantry!" room where you could get free fruit, cookies, and make your own sandwich at 10pm until I think 5am!
Something I found interesting in relation to SakuraCon is the fandoms represented at Fanime in both AA and cosplay. At SakuraCon there definitely feels like every year one or two fandoms dominate the cosplay scene. At least to me. At Fanime I didn't feel like that was the case with the exception of Homestuck. There was a good and interesting mix which I enjoyed.
AA also navigated toward different fandoms when compared to SakuraCon. So, it was kind of refreshing and neat to see! I couldn't believe how much Oh! My Goddess fanart there was at AA. No complaints! I got some to support artists. One was a cute exchange, "Belldandy is difficult for me to cut out, which is why she is more expensive." "She is totally worth it!" "She is!" Ha ha ha. Plus her art was fantastic, so the price didn't phase me one second!
Stuff I Got
Reborns Gundam model, Practice Safe Zechs Wear a Gundam shirt, Angels Print, Union patch, three Oh! My Goddess stickers, Belldandy Magnet, Nyan Cat magnet, Eevee magnet set, Tiger & Bunny miniprint, Princess Tutu sticker, Princess Krahee sticker, Hawkeye sticker, Gumshoe and Edgeworth buttons, Graham keychain, Graham and Billy button, Larry and Gumshoe cutouts, Devil Gundam figure and Gundam Virtue figure.
The Fluttershy I found dropped in a panel. I asked around and couldn't find who lost her. . .so she became my con buddy.
I wanted to buy buttons, but they are losing their usefulness to me. So I went with stickers or other flat things I can put in my scrapbook. HOWEVER! When I got home I realized I could just make the buttons into magnets myself. So I began doing that...
I think in the future I will only buy buttons to make magnets with. I have smaller buttons that I haven't figured out how to get the magnet to work. It's deeper and so I need to find a way to elevate the magnet better.
SPEAKING of magnets!
I love these and can't wait to get more! You can find her on Etsy: HERE.
So yeah. FUN TIMES!
DEVIL GUNDAM WANTS YOUR SOUL.