I am at the three day comic convention held in Orlando annually known as MegaCon. These are my impressions of Sunday, the final day of the convention:
THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF GOOD CHARACTER DESIGN by Bryan Tillman was a well constructed look at the techniques that need to be considered when creating a graphic character. A lot of the techniques apply to literary characters; the most important is the back story the character brings to the moment that he/she is created. Using the STAR WARS saga, he expanded the character Jungian archetypes necessary to tell a good story. Some of his techniques were geared to artists and would apply to book cover design in addition to graphic character design, like color usage in the costumes worn by the characters and making the silhouettes they cast unique and recognizable. Mr. Tillman will have a book out next year on character design and I felt right at home whenever he said, “Buy my book.” ;-)
THE DOCTRINE FILM EXPERIENCE took participants through the process of making Independent film making. Using a green cloth sheet over a convention false wall they filmed a short scene and added the background and sound effects in a matter of minutes. Their message to every potential film-maker is to not wait for the best possible equipment, but get out there and start making movies. I had them take a look at the SLR camera I was carrying, and they said it was good enough to “Make it happen.”
This was a great convention for costumers. The last panel we attended on Sunday was WOLF PACK ELITE BRINGS YOU COSTUMING THE ELITE WAY. This costuming group shared techniques and ideas about creating great costumes from everyday items. They constructed the Black Widow’s sting cartridges out of wood dowels and cloth pins. They suggested websites where plans for building vacuum-forming machines can be found. And offered ideas about projects attendees were working on, Q&A not show and tell. Several members of the Wolf Pack are also members of the 501st, showing the cross-pollination of groups in areas outside of the Omaha area. Can we use conventions in our area to share our various expertises? Is there something you do that you would like to show off? Comment here or drop firstname.lastname@example.org an email with your suggestions. Watch the programming page of the OSFest website as the schedule gets pulled together, and if you don’t see something you want, ask us to bring it to you.
I had tried to get into the panel with Levar Burton and Brent Spiner, but it was the only one that was too full for me to attend. I had no trouble getting into any of the STAR WARS panels or the Q&A with Nichelle Nichols or James Hong, so does this speak to the enduring popularity of STAR TREK-TNG? What do you think? Leave a comment or better yet, go to your favorite forum and start a discussion. If you’re not on an appropriate forum, join http://www.osfes.org/ and speak your mind.