Friday, September 20, 2013

STGCC 2013 Roundup: Bubbles of Thoughts and Comments

STGCC 2013 has ended a month ago, and the various guests have gone off to other scheduled appearances and meeting their work deadlines.

While several fans are still dealing with post-convention blues, The Glam Bloggers Alliance decided to poll a few people for their STGCC 2013 impressions. They include a geekgirl who was just a convention attendee, an illustrator working at Artist Alley and special guests Adi Granov and David Mack.

Here are what they said:


Red Dot Diva: Did you enjoy yourself as a convention attendee? 
Jas: Yup, definitely had lots of fun at this year's convention. I think my aching leg muscles are proof! Good to see more focus on Toys, Games and Comics (not just manga!).

The Marvel panel on Day 2

Red Dot Diva: How different is this year's con compared to those you have attended? What do you think can be improved?
Jas: Compared to previous years, I'd say that this year's showcase justified the price of the ticket. The panels at the main stage were also very enjoyable and relevant to toys, games, comics. Unlike last year where I understood almost every other stage appearance only from the Japanese translators! (I was there at those panels just so that I could rush in and get a good seat for the next panel.)

That said, impressive as it is to walk in the front door to be greeted by a noisy, generous and very very flashy Marvel booth, wasn't really necessary. They could have gotten a booth in a far corner and everyone would still find them, even if only by sonic detection. I felt that they tend to overshadow some "smaller" but still interesting and noteworthy booths.

Red Dot Diva: Any "best" moments?
Jas: The best part for me was Artist Alley. Because even though it was exciting to meet the star guests, I feel that the artist alley peeps seem genuinely happy when people go up to their booths.

The guests are cool, but sometimes I feel that we the con goers are just another camera flash in their faces. Probably. Although I'm not sure if that is a fair judgement on them. I haven't really interacted too much with the guests. More of a "Hi!", "Thanks for the sketch!" "Bye." routine at the Marvel booth.


Keh Choon Wee, or .K for short, is a local-based illustrator who churns out these quirky and kawaii renditions of pop-culture icons and characters. His art, creativity and sense of humour has earned him a place on Red Dot Diva's hot faves list!

Red Dot Diva: Did you enjoy yourself as an Artist Alley exhibitor? How different is this year's con compared to those you have attended?
.K: I had a great experience at this year's event. This is my first STGCC experience as an artist at Artist Alley though. But comparing this with AFA last year (my first art booth), I enjoyed this more.

One of the things I've noticed is that the crowd is more diverse and more receptive of the various art forms (e.g. anime, American superheroes stuff and designer toys/ vector art, etc.))

Red Dot Diva: What do you think can be improved?
.K: In terms of improvement, I thought having a bigger table would be nice.

Red Dot Diva: Any "best" moments?
.K: My best moments were when I saw people reacting positively to my art, e.g.. looking at the Ghibli piece and trying to locate the various characters as well as discuss about the films and characters. It was also nice to see their faces light up upon receiving the commissioned sketches. For an artist, that is very encouraging. :)

Diva loves her SPOCKKKKKK Sketch by .K!


Well-known artist Adi Granov (hosted by Play Imaginative) was busy during the convention fulfilling signings and art commissions that he was unable to leave his booth during Red Dot Diva's allocated interview slot.

Rosa from Ninemer PR thought Diva should not miss her chance anyway and led her to where Adi was stationed. Red Dot Diva felt a little guilty taking his attention away from his work, but Adi was patient and super nice, and fielded her nosy questions in that distinctive European accent of his:

Red Dot Diva: Were you surprised with all the hype surrounding Iron Man during the convention, and the general reaction of the crowd here?
Adi: I knew it was popular but I didn't know he was *this* popular. It seems to be a very big thing here and so yes, it's a bit surprising.

Red Dot Diva: Is this your first Asian convention and how has your experience been like here?
Adi: Yes. It's similar to other conventions but overall, everybody is a bit friendlier than in other places. Or at least more polite. In Canada, everybody's polite but in some conventions in Europe, people can be... not so polite. To put that mildly.

Before she let him get back to his work, Red Dot Diva couldn't resist asking Adi about his process on staying focused and inspired. Adi says that he consciously makes an effort to keep moving forward because if he falls behind, things will get worse and worse. "I try to find new things to be excited about," Adi said. "Either I'm trying a new technique or a new approach or trying to design something new ... just to keep things exciting for me. That way, I keep myself interested in what I'm doing so that things will not get boring and repetitive."

And after Adi got back home from STGCC, this is what he posted on his FB page :)

(Click image for larger version)

PS: Special thanks to Rosa from Ninemer and Daphne from Play Imaginative for helping Diva with her quick moment with Adi!


Artist/ creator David Mack spent loads of time interacting with his fans on the showfloor that weekend. Waves of fans kept sweeping up to his booth; most of them already familiar with his work and so very eager to meet and talk to him. Red Dot Diva was right in the fray of Da Mack-Frenzy so if you want to read her take on the Boo(b)th Babe Experience, click here!

A week or so after STGCC, while on a trans-continental flight from LA to Cincinnati for another convention, David graciously took the time to answer some of Diva's questions. This sweet little gesture just warms the cockles of her heart (if you believe she actually has one... ) :

Red Dot Diva: What stands out about STGCC and what do you love most about the experience? 
David: What stands out is the incredible reaction and welcome from the fans and readers of my books in Singapore, and how busy the convention was the entire time. I was very busy doing interviews and signing at my table as well as discussing with my readers about my books - which I love to do.

I wished I had more books for the fans. And I very much hope to return as soon as possible. It was such an incredible experience and one of my favorite convention experiences of all time. I am so grateful that STGCC invited me.

I loved the city too. I went about the city doing drawings after the convention was over. And people took me out to try the local food. Also, I was happy to see and meet so many talented artists in Singapore.. there are some incredible creators of all kinds. I really feel like I made meaningful connections with people during this visit to your amazing city. I found the city and the people very inspiring. And very kind. 

For example, I was walking about the city drawing with another artist I met at STGCC, and a man at a restaurant recognized me and said: "David Mack!" And then he insisted that I eat at his restaurant, and he even bought us drinks.

Red Dot Diva: What's the creepiest fan-meet session that you encountered?
David: Ha! I can't think of any less than positive experience at the convention. It was amazing to see readers dressed up as my characters. And to see them show me their tattoos inspired by my work.

It was great to have the fans bring me their artwork and drawings of my characters as gifts which was very touching. Some artists even drew pictures of me, and my cats, as gifts. And there were also gifts of food from readers.

It was quite humbling and rewarding to get so much wonderful feedback from Singapore readers of my work. I loved hearing how they connected personally to my stories and books. And that it inspired their own art and life.

Red Dot Diva: Were there enough ... ahem... biceps or boobies? 
David: I can exercise more before the convention next time, to bring more biceps. I'll make sure to do this next time, as I now have learned at this convention how important biceps are to you. (Diva gives an elated W0000t!)

As for the other anatomical feature you asked about, or any other physical or mental features… I have no complaints. The intelligence, grace, kindness and talent of the fans at STGCC and the people of Singapore were positive and magnificent on all levels. 

I have only gratitude, and wishes of continued blessings to everyone I met. 

Understandably, Joe Mad is way too busy to reply to a short post-convention Q&A. After all, he decided to return back home earlier than he had planned due to deadlines and other reasons.

Before the left the Island, Joe Mad had to say on Twitter about the convention though:

(Click image for larger version)

As soon as he got back home, there was an epic reveal about some HAWT Bromance brewing behind the scenes .....

Artistic Man-wich! (Click image for larger version)

*Diva fans self* (As if the Red Dot Island isn't hot 99% of the time already..... )

For two years, fans of Western media and pop-culture have felt neglected due to a heavy slant on anime + manga activities held at STGCC. (And really, there are already so many anime/ cosplayer events held locally in a year.)  

Red Dot Diva felt that a much desired balance of the East-West mix that STGCC is aiming for was achieved this year.  Even if there was an inescapable overload of all things Stark.

On the whole, it seemed that a majority of the people had Fun that weekend. And Red Dot Diva thinks ... that's what matters the most!


If you want to provide the organizers with your personal thoughts and comments about STGCC 2013, it is still not too late!
The STGCC Fan Survey closes on 30th September, 6 pm. Click here for the online survey form!


A final and more pictorial STGCC 2013 Round-Up will be online soon! So do check back in awhile!


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