Okay, seriously, this is the most fun I've had at a con all year, and knocks Otakon off the top spot for 2012! I know... crazy. But the saying goes true: the people you spend time with can either make or break a con.
I carpooled with a small group of friends Thursday morning to make the 8-hour drive up to Atlanta from Orlando. It was largely uneventful and cramped, but it was an adventure (and adventures are always fun)! We arrived at the Waverly around 7:30, and we all split up to go to our hotel rooms, because we were all staying with different people xD and then proceeded to wait in line for our press badges. Come to think of it, I think that is the ONLY complaint I have about AWA: Thursday night badge pickup. They merged all groups and media together in a single line, had two regular pre-registration lines, and a line for cash/credit. I had to ask myself why there would be a line for cash/credit purchases. Thursday night badge pickup should be reserved for those who actually pre-registered for the convention, media, vendors, groups, etc. Picking up my badge took much longer than it should have because, in my mind, the cash/credit line should have not been there in the first place. There should have been two lines each for group passes and normal pre-registration.
All that aside, I wandered out to explore the Cobb Galleria Centre and the adjacent Galleria Gardens with my friend Taisa of Shinboku Studios. It was both our first time at AWA, so when we saw the big fountains by the clock tower we got very excited. And when we reached the far end of the Gardens we had a simultaneous photographer orgasm that was epic in its own right LOL. If the location looked that good in the dark at 10:00pm, imagine what it would be like when we could actually see things! I ended the night early on that note.
On Friday, I started up doing some more scouting. My 11am shoot never showed or contacted me, so I found myself walking around the Dealers Hall prior to opening getting some setting shots.
The highlight of the day, and perhaps the entire con, was the shoot I had prearranged with peachibear
and her friend MarmaladeHearts
in their cosplays from the series Otome Youkai Zakuro
, unfortunately we got rained out, and later attempts to reschedule that shoot fell through. Despite the mishaps, I had a very positive experience spending some time with them (not too sure about peachibear
lol j/k) and would definitely shoot with them in the future.
Saturday, I had better luck with shoots. Three kept their appointments, and one canceled 15 minutes prior (thank goodness I checked my messages before literally sprinting from the Galleria Gardens to the skybridge). The cancellation allowed me to get some shots of cosplayers from Legend of Korra
, Angel Beats!
, and a Puella Magi Madoka Magica
I also had some time to get some shots of the Yuu Kikkawa concert. Near the end, she wanted to get a pic with everyone in the audience, then she noticed me with my camera and shouted "CAMERAMAN-SAN! KOCCHI NI KIITE!" At this point I'm thinking, "What? Really? FFF YES! I GET TO GO ON STAGE WITH KIKKA!" But some dude from backstage whipped out his iPhone and got the group shot >_>
You'll see the shoot I had with DR-ROBOFOX
in her Simca cosplay from Air Gear
and a later shoot I had from Homestuck
. Unfortunately, the pics from my morning shoot didn't meet my personal standards and expectations, so I won't be publicly releasing those. Homestuck shoot was followed by some derping, exploring, and hanging out with the DB crew (#subjectlineAnime
Sunday, I had an early morning complimentary shoot with MarmaladeHearts
and her friend as Dark Inori and Light Inori from Guilty Crown. It was very laid-back, with 70% derp, some experimenting, and no direction. I'll be releasing those pictures directly to them for editing (the VERY rare occasion that I'll let someone else do the edits), and you'll see those pictures one of our dA accounts in the future. Directly following that shoot, I had to get everything packed up, since my hotelmates decided to check out an hour earlier than planned. As a result, I had to coordinate with my carpool group to get their things packed and thrown into the car before we continued our day. The rest of Sunday was filled with IDOLMster
, Frill, shopping in the Dealers Hall (bought Battle Royale
on Blu-Ray), Gungnam Style, and a final run-through of the Artists Alley, where I had another run-in with Marmalade in her Minorin cosplay from Toradora!
. This could only mean one thing: spunkyshrimp had to be in Taiga. MUST GET THESE TWO TOGETHER!
However, after setting up a search party to find Taiga, 3:00pm hit, and I was dragged away from the convention by my carpool lead, thus ending my AWA 2012 adventures.==========
Check out AWA 2012 pictures from these other great photographers!