D and I spent the weekend at Arisia, a sci fi/fantasy/geek culture convention where I had some of my fantasy-related art in the art show. This is the first such con either of us had attended and it made an interesting mini-vacation. D, who's interested in geek culture more generally than I am (and whose idea it was that I should try selling my art there), checked out a variety of panels and programs. I, who am interested more narrowly in fantasy literature and art, tried to go to all the panels and activities that catered to those interests. I found the con rather too diffuse to be useful: too many people with too many wildly diverse interests were all trying to follow their own thread. Even though I ended up seeing the same people over and over at all the literature panels, I didn't get the impression that we necessarily shared the same taste or opinions on what makes a fantasy book great. This was a little disappointing, as the whole idea of a thing like this is to get together with like-minded people. (In all fairness I should admit that an introvert like myself is perhaps not one to get the most out of a convention!) However, I did write down a whole list of books people mentioned that sounded like they might be interesting, so perhaps I will find some new favorites among them.
|Top hat? Check.|
Little round glasses with extra lenses? Check.
Cog decor? Check.
We have achieved steampunk!
The part of the con I enjoyed most was probably the historical weapons demonstrations (everything from medieval longsword to Roman legionary to Jedi lightsaber.) There were also programs I enjoyed on Renaissance dances, and swing dancing, and a belly dancing show. Don't ask me to come up with any intrinsic connection between the last two and sci fi or fantasy, but the fantastic thing about the belly dancing show was that the routines did have sci fi and fantasy themes: World of Warcraft, "The Fifth Element," "Metropolis"… How can you not like a belly dancing homage to "Tron"?
|Me practicing my medieval swordsmanship|
(in sensible shoes, of course.)
[Pictures: photos by D Nydam and AEGN at Arisia, 2011.]