Crypticon Seattle 2014: Full Con Report
Crypticon 2014 has come and gone, and now I’m counting the days until next year. The feeling is similar to that of how I felt about Christmas as a child. It may seem silly to someone who’s never been to this con but for those who have attended, you know that Crypticon Seattle has a near cult status. I see hundreds of the same devout faces showing up every year. These people have honestly become like family to me.
Crypticon Seattle is three days of horror actors, authors, and artists.
Every year also includes a film festival, makeup contest, writing contest, art contest, and costume contests. Each has an awards ceremony and incredible prizes. They also have the ever-popular Biohazard parties (dollar well drinks and dancing). They also have informative panels with top names in the business, and opportunities to meet actors, authors, artists, and directors.
I must also point out that Paracon Northwest also happens to be part of Crypticon, so if you’re into the paranormal you should definitely check them out. They seem to have a lot of cool things to bid on, and lots of great info on the paranormal community. For all the skeptics out there (like me) rest assured that the Paracon, while part of Crypticon, manages to be very much separate. They have never bugged me ever, and I honestly appreciate that. They’re very cool people.
Friday started off well for me. I met up early with fellow writer and WPR’s Comics Editor Adrienne Fox. We got our press passes and promptly headed down to the bar in the Hilton and after a few drinks we hit the vendors floor. We saw plenty of amazing vendors and I quickly started to blow my budget. I bought many new things for my office and while I’ve yet to display them, I cherish them plenty.
Some of my favorite vendor tables I saw were:
Nick The Hat — Nick does amazing illustrations, magazine covers, movie posters, and even some 3D illustrations. Nick is one of Seattle’s most talented artists. His H.P. Lovecraft, and Godzilla themed art are by far my favorite.
Devon Devereaux — Devon does illustrations. While my favorite works of his are his Universal Monsters Valentines, all of his work is very cool, and very clever.
Katie Clark — Katie is new to the con, but her paintings are amazing. Many of them include Shy Guys from The Super Mario Bros. universe. Others are spiritualistic in nature, but all of them are beautiful.
Martha Hull — Martha was quite possibly my favorite artist I met this weekend. She was enthusiastic, cute, and slightly creepy; my three favorite characteristics in an artist. Martha has a couple of children’s books that are really more for adults, and a bunch of amazing art. Martha is from my old stomping grounds in Portland, OR and I’m very glad she made the trek to Seattle so I could cross her path.
The Skull Shoppe — The Skull Shoppe sells castings of skulls. They’re all highly detailed, and very unique. If you ever wanted a human skull but couldn’t afford a real one, or weren’t willing to risk the jail time for harvesting your own, I highly suggest the Skull Shoppe.
After a day of shopping and getting to meet my favorite actor of all time (Jeffery Combs), Adrienne and I sat down to watch some burlesque featuring Adrienne’s long time friend, and one of the stars from American Mary, Tristan Risk. Tristan put on a jaw dropping show and brought a level of burlesque to Crypticon I’ve never seen before. The Soska Sisters (directors of American Mary) were in the front row eating cake and cheering Tristan on. It was clear all parties involved were inebriated which made the show even more entertaining.
Saturday morning I met up with Adrienne for another day of con coverage but before that I went to watch Steven Holetz from the BoneBat Show Presents Saturday Morning Cartoons; a yearly tradition of mine. He mixes classic cartoons with new independent animated shorts and he has yet to let me down.
After the cartoons Adrienne and I watched two great movies. The first was a short by debut Director Jill Sixx Gevargizian entitled Call Girl staring Tristan Risk (American Mary) and Laurence Harvey (Human Centipede 2). It’s clear that this is just a glimpse of Jill Sixx’s future. She seems to be an ambitious and talented young film maker. She’s also part of a group of women who are proving that there’s a place for women calling the shots behind the camera.
Along with Call Girl we watched Jessica Cameron’s full length movie Truth or Dare. I will be writing up a full review of this as well as an exclusive interview that I got with the talented film maker. I’ll just say now that if you get the chance to see this movie, do not pass it up. I’ll also say if you have a chance to meet Jessica in person, do not pass it up. Beyond being a smart, passionate film maker, she’s super nice and has one of the best sense of humor I’ve ever seen. She’s almost as sick and twisted as I am, maybe more.
I have to say the panels this year were better than last year. I did go to fewer panels this year but the ones I did attend were well put together. My only complaint (and this happens at every single con I go to) was some of the audience participation was overwhelming. Just a note to anyone who sits in on a panel: asking a question or two is fine, but participating in a conversation and raising your hand every two seconds is inconsiderate to the rest of the audience. I’m sure you have insightful things to contribute, but there’s a time and place for it. If you’re very passionate about the subject, consider applying to do your own panel on it.
The make up contest was held on Saturday as well. This year’s theme was clowns so needless to say quite a few people were disturbed, and that says a lot at a horror convention. I sat down with Adrienne and we watched the artists work their magic. There were a few standouts including a teenage boy who was quite talented. Part of me was shocked he didn’t win but part of me was excited that my long time friend Erik Albidress won. He’s an extremely talented make up artist and certainly deserved this win.
Saturday night culminated in the ever infamous Biohazard party. Dollar well drinks, dancing, zombies, poor decision making. I reconnected with some old friends, and made some new ones. So far the Biohazard parties have yet to disappoint me.
Needless to say Sunday morning was a little rough for me. I woke up hungover, covered in glitter, and trying to recall what poor decisions I made the night before.
Luckily, Adrienne and I got to go to the VIP breakfast and I quickly forgot about things while I rubbed elbows with the stars. The Soska Sisters, Tristan Risk, Jessica Cameron, C. Thomas Howell, Naomi Grossman, Carel Struycken, Camden Toy, and Lynn Lowery. This event was hosted by the Reverend Enfuego, and included zombies.
Sunday is always a slower day at the con. People are all worn out and some vendors and guests leave early. I spent most of the day watching short movies with Adrienne and got in an interview with Jessica Cameron towards the end.
There were some great short movies playing Sunday. The most notable ones were Service directed by Jerry Pyle as well as Tasha and Friends directed by Greg Kovacs. I’d suggest checking both out, especially the hilariously dark Tasha and Friends about vengeful puppets come to life.
Out of all the cons I go to every year (I go to almost one a month) Crypticon is my favorite. It’s by far the most fun for me, I’ve met so many good friends there, and many of my most favorite memories occurred there. If you’ve never been, than you must come in 2015. If you have, then most likely you’re already planning on it!
Recently there has been some buzz about an article written by a female con attendee. She felt unsafe at Crypticon, and bullied by some of the men there. I personally witnessed some of it in the panel she references in her article. Men can be jerks, and nerds from any fandom can be awkward, rude, socially inept, and downright inappropriate towards women. I was sad to see this happened to her but very excited to see Crypticon immediately respond with a Code of Conduct. I have a lot of respect for Crypticon by addressing this immediately. Not all of us male horror enthusiasts are like the ones described in her article, but enough of us are to warrant something like a code of conduct. No one should ever have to feel unsafe, period!