Since this involves a major update and I've been very busy with work, apologies for the delay coming 3 months after the event. ^^;;
Despite the FanimeCon being outclassed by Animazement in the guest department this year, it was my fourth year in a row in attendance, having pre-registered last year. Although not as Evalicious as last year, this year was still pretty good enough Evangelion-wise that it's worth blogging about the update that resulted.
I skipped Day 0 (Thursday) because it remained to be seen if the linecon issues from last year had been resolved, but from Instagram it became clear that this had been addressed. After picking up my badge on Friday in just 5 minutes, I headed to Artist Alley. Now in all the years I have been attending cons it took a while for me to come around to the idea of patronizing artist alley because I had been so focused on the artwork I picked up being official or being created by someone in the anime industry. But after spending much time in Saboten Con's artist alley last year, albeit not picking up anything, I gave Fanime's this year a chance. Also, after seeing an Asuka and Eva-02 print on Instagram by Jimbobox (James Ghio) that I really liked, I was glad to see that he would be in artist alley so I made a beeline for his booth.
The print wasn't on Ghio's Deviantart but it was up for sale. I opted to not get any others although on second thought wish I had. Based on the design I also commissioned Ghio to do an Asuka sketch based on the promotional photos of the Alter figure of her in her track jacket and Nekomimi hat, only my second commission to date after obtaining the first at Big Wow Comicfest the week before (also of Asuka). I hadn't brought any shikishi with me so this would be done on sketch paper. After emailing Ghio the image, I headed for swap meet.
Following an hour wait in the growing darkness outside the City National Civic (previously the San Jose Civic Auditorium), swap meet's much smaller location for this year, I spent about two hours inside and made some good pickups plus some Ranma phone cards for a steal, Bleach shitajiki, and a Naruto art book (not pictured).
On Saturday I picked up my Asuka commission from Ghio. He had it out at his booth so it had gotten some interest. I like his interpretation of the source material.
Later in the day I learned that Masahiro Kanehara's Mazda RX-7 itasha was parked near McDonald's. I first became aware of this itasha just before the Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival in April, when I saw pics of Kanehara driving it in the parade. However I hadn't been able to attend the festival. I had seen the itasha on Friday night and was glad to finally be able to photograph it at my leisure.
On Sunday, all of Gainax, including Takami Akai and Noir, unexpectedly showed up again at the signing (originally just Hiroyuki Yamaga was listed). After having asked Akai to draw Lafiel from Crest of the Stars, this time I asked him to draw Asuka based on a Mana Kirishima sketch I had seen on Rubberslug. For reference I used my phone's lockscreen wallpaper, which was part of the K-Swiss collaboration.
This one took Akai about five minutes to do and he specifically asked for red to color Asuka's hair clips. While he was working on it, a couple people after me asked Yamaga to sketch Asuka which he did, albeit slowly. I had seen Yamaga's sketches on Rubberslug too before, so next time I'll ask him to sketch depending on the circumstances. Akai's piece is definitely one of the jewels of my Asuka gallery.
Monday was when my Eva purchases picked up:
Because of my gripe about Animazement's guests vs. Fanime's, I decided not preregister for 2015. Depending on my situation next year, I'll head to North Carolina or return to Fanime out of necessity.