Halfway through the weekend. Some Fanime tidbits:
* I watched a guy stake out the corner of the hall near my booth as his personal lightsaber skillz showcase arena. Basically a much more agile version of the infamous Star Wars Kid, done right out there in the open: at least twice as old, completely unashamed, reveling in his audience. That's the fun of cons -- letting yourself just be a big kid with no excuses and no self-consciousness. Letting go!
* Chatted with a fellow who stopped by my booth. He turned out to be a lawyer from D.C. on a business trip to San Francisco. He was told by someone back home, "Oh, you should just stay in San Jose. It'll be quiet and peacefully dead there. Nothing ever happens in San Jose." Well he showed up at the Fairmont Hotel, to find this strange thing called an anime convention going on, with a constant parade of costumes and huge crowds of people. Not exactly "peacefully dead". He took it all in stride and jumped right into the fun with a weekend pass. He was talking to me about how after seeing all the artists here, he wanted to go home and see about starting up some pro-bono work for artists. I told him there was definitely a need for that. Far too many artists naively walk into contracts that end up biting them, and there's little most artists can do about it because the size of the jobs just doesn't make it economically feasible to consult a lawyer for every contract. We learn by trial and error, and hope that we don't land into too big of an error.
Incidentally, something I recommend for anyone who has an important contract to review -- look up to see if your state has a Lawyers for the Arts group. They charge a nominal fee, but can give you very good advice, and look over contracts that you really don't want to get screwed on. Unfortunately each state has their own group, and some I hear are better than others. I have had very good experiences with California's.
* Overheard from a fan who was gushing at a neighboring artist a couple of tables over. "OMG! You're only twenty-four? I've been watching your art and I always thought you must be like this hardcore person that's like THIRTY or something."
Gah. Didn't that make me feel old!