Thursday, June 14, 2012

A look back at Long Beach One Day Comic Expo a nice little show!

With the San Diego Comic-Con just under a month away I could already feel that anxiety of planning and preparing.  It seems like I do the same routine every year as I get ready for the long days, long lines and big crowds.  It is mentally and physically exhausting even before I step on to the convention floor.  So looking back on how I prepared for the One Day Long Beach Comic Expo (LBCE) that was on May 12th was a total 180!

Long Beach Comic Expo is a one day event brought to you by the people behind the Long Beach Comic & Horror Convention. It's small. Very Small. However, it's packed with lots of comics. If you're looking to check out new work, particularly work created by locals, this is the place to go.  The LBCE also has workshops, panels, exhibitors and professionals.

My planning for the LBCE literally took me no more then 2 hours of prep work.  I looked at the website (, found the Artist Alley section, then I wrote down what pros were attending that I wanted to see plus their table number and that was it.  So simple and easy, I wish preparing for SDCC was like that!  My main goal was to meet and chat with pros and if time permitted check out back issues of comics.  I wanted to relax and take it slow!  

When I got to the the expo I felt like I was transported back to the 1980's when the San Diego Comic-Con was held in Golden Hall.  The set-up and feel of the LBCE was eerily like the old days of SDCC from badge pick-up to even the way the vendors displayed their comics.  It was a nice change from the typical conventions I attend with attendance numbers in the 10,000's.  I was also impressed with the Long Beach Convention Center it is a really nice venue with good restaurants and the Aquarium of the Pacific within walking distance.     


I got to meet and chat with artist Bernard Chang  Eric Basaldua, Joe Benitez, Joel Gomez, Beth Sotelo, Rebecca Hicks, Georges Jeanty, Drew Johnson, Barbara Kesel, Dustin Nguyen, Peter Nguyen, Peter Steigerwald and Lenord Robinson!  This was what I used to do as a kid at Comic-Con.  My last memory of actually taking a whole day at Comic-Con and chatting with artist I admired was back in 1993 with the Image and Valiant crew specifically Travis Charest and ironically Bernard Chang (nice to see him there).

When the website described the expo as being "very small" they were not kidding.  I could walk through the entire expo hall in 15 minute as the area is no bigger then a high school gym.  Although it was small it had a lot of big talent and content.  I am glad I decided to attend and I would recommend the LBCE for people who love comics you will not be disappointed.  I enjoyed my experience and will be back next year I even saw K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider and the Delorean from Back to the Future on the way out... awesome!!!  

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