Another year, means another FanimeCon has come and gone again. If you’re unfamiliar with Fanime, it’s a convention in Northern California that happens every year on Memorial Day weekend. This year was Fanime’s 20-year anniversary, which is a huge milestone for any convention. Not only was this the convention’s 20th anniversary, it was the first time we got to see the completely renovated San Jose McEnery Convention Center that had been hiding it’s facade for the past two years. This means we now have access to a much larger convention center, new areas to explore or loiter, and more background choices for photography. This translates to more room for Fanime attendees and more space for panels, gatherings, and events.
Renovations are completed! How is the convention now?
The new renovation is quite a big deal for photographers as well since the construction made it quite difficult to shoot around the convention area. During the construction, we were limited to a narrow path and planter area in front of the convention center, next to the Marriott. Now it is Fanime, so that really isn’t too much of a big deal since Fanime does offer a variety of outside areas within walking distance to shoot at, such as Guadeloupe Park, the Art Museum, Performing Arts Center, and more. But that isn’t the case for all photographers because some enjoy shooting close by the convention center so it makes it difficult when there are too many people crowding the area. This new expansion to the convention center is a big deal because not only does it allow more space outside, but it also allows more places that are closer to the convention center for photographers to use.
What to expect as a photographer at Fanime
For me Fanime is one of those few conventions that I always look forward to photographing at because the vast variety of locations available. Even though the convention center itself isn’t a bad place to shoot at. With the right angle, you can turn parts of the convention into the right look for the cosplayer you’re shooting. Plus the convenience of having two hotels attached to the convention with a few others only a block or two away. Those areas allow you to find fitting locations for fancier-type cosplays. The ambient lighting at night is just fantastic with the new renovations at the main entrance. So it’s definitely worth trying out some night shots. Don’t forget to check out our previous article,”San Jose McEnery Convention Center: Best Places To Photograph” for more info on photographing around the convention center.
So all these changes to the San Jose McEnery Convention Center have proven to be a step in the right direction for Fanime, not only for Photographers, but for cosplayers and regular attendees as well. With shorter lines to get your badge, more places to just hang out and relax during the con, I definitely look forward to attending Fanime for many years. Hopefully, FanimeCon renews its contract with this convention center the next time it’s up. This is always a convention I look forward to shooting at because not only does it bring in a lot of local cosplayers, but it also attracts many out-of-state cosplayers. It’s a place where many people debut their more intricate and complex cosplays. You won’t be disappointed in the amount of cosplayers that will be there, ranging from all skill levels and a wide variety of genres. Whether you’re a new or a veteran photographer, local or out-of-state, if you’re debating the trip to Fanime, I definitely recommend you check it out at least once. I’m sure you’ll end up adding it to your convention schedule!
Special thanks to MLZ Studios for providing video coverage of Fanime this year!
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