Fanime 2013 Convention Coverage Report by The Bui

July 18, 2013
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FanimeCon 2013 has been getting quite a bit of mixed reviews this year. Many of the friends and people I’ve spoken to regarding their Fanime experience have said things such as “This year sucked.”, “It was horrible.”, “Last year was better.”, and things along those lines. But after some follow-up questions, many of those same people said that Fanime was still fun for them and they had a good time. So why such negative remarks? Well, it’s the 800-lb gorilla in the room…

LineCon 2013

LineCon is the affectionate name that many have dubbed FanimeCon 2013 because of the long pre-registration lines and time it took to pick-up badges. Roughly speaking, the wait time on average was about 4-hours. I will admit, it was bad. I actually waited with my friend in line to pick-up her badge on Day 0 and I spent more than 3-hours waiting with her despite picking up my press badge in less than 10-minutes. But on the same note, I have many friends who work for Fanime from regular staff all the way to the Board of Directors and I can assure many of you, they are aware of the issues and actively working on improving and solving it, so any assertions that Fanime isn’t interested in fixing the issue is simply untrue.

All The Freaking Construction

One of the biggest concerns for many of the photographers was the construction taking place at the San Jose Convention Center. Essentially they are expanding and building a whole new section to the convention center and they’re putting it in the front, taking away lots of locations that many photographers have used in the past. Entire stairways and sections (inside and out) were closed off due to construction. With the interior remodeled to accommodate the new extension, Registration was moved to the Fairmont Hotel this year and that created some confusion. The maid cafe was also moved from the convention center to one of the rooms in the Fairmont.

Despite all the construction, many of the photographers still found plenty of areas to do photo shoots from Guadalupe River Park & Gardens, Plaza de Cesar Chavez, Cathedral of Basilica of St. Joseph, San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose Montgomery Theater, and all the rest of the surrounding buildings.

The Amazing Cosplay

Fanime is one of my favorite Anime conventions because of all the amazing costumes that cosplayers bring out. Even after 5-years of being in this community, I’m still blown away by some of the amazing craftsmanship by these talented individuals. With a convention of this size (~25,000 attendees), it’s always hard to see everything. Lots of cool League of Legends cosplay, Lionel Lum’s Evangelion cockpit was amazing, and so much more.

Conclusion

A number of the team was at Fanime. I was joined by Tim Vo, Vince Milum, Fokita Manga, Darrell Ardita (his very first Fanime!), Wei He, Mike Rollerson, BigWhiteBazooka, and more. We also had most of the Cosplay Videographers out there as well. It was a great time. Check out the coverage and  photo shoots on our Facebook. Here are some samples:

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The Bui is principal photographer at Bui Photos specializing in wedding and engagement photography. He's also a co-founder of CosplayPhotographers.com.

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