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Saturday, February 9

Komikon Event in Baguio Successfully Concluded

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The different artist's works in the recently concluded comics event, the Komikon Baguio.

Just yesterday at the fourth floor of CAP Building in Baguio City, the Komikon Baguio was held. It was fun to see several artists gather in a full house event with book auctions, talks, cosplay items, cosplayers, on hand Photoshop presentation, digital painting, character design contests and book signing. I was very happy when I saw my idol comic artist under his author name “Manix Abrera” who draws and illustrates the wittiest modern way of tickling our minds through his strips. =D

The First Komikon Outside Manila
Participant draws for the character design tilt

If I only had all my Kikomachine Komix books yesterday, I would have brought it and let Manix sign all of it. Unfortunately only the latest book was there and all the others were in our house in the province. But well seeing Manix Abrera is already enough (he looks like one of his unnamed characters in his comics). But well I am really a fan and thus I have to let him sign my only Kikomachine! And of course I will never leave the hall without the picture of us. =)

But it’s not only my idol Manix who was there yesterday, there are several artists who also attended the event. Mel Casipit, Lyndon Lagdameo, Emil Flores and Rob Cham to name a few. There were hundreds of attendees inside and most of them were students and artists well who are talented in visualizing things by the use of their hands. Booths were also available for the people who want to purchase comics. I guess everything was at a discount rate. Plus you will also get a chance to let the real author of the book sign it for you.

Joven of Travex Travels and Manix Abrera of Kikomachine Komix for a picture!
This signature by Manix is really awesome!

Imagination is the limit. But is your imagination limited?
Character design contest and splash comics contest were also held as the activities. The main talks of the guest speakers were done on the stage and all the guest speakers shared their personal experiences on how they reach success in doing comics. Pretty inspiring indeed. Even if I am not good in manual drawing and painting it inspired me to actually enhance my visualizing skills.
People flocked to the event as it offers book auctions, talks from the guest speakers and items at discounts.
Do I really look like this? Sketch by G. Apul, a comic artist.
 The event is an interactive occasion where people can move around the area, meet the authors and illustrators, have a conversation with the organizers and heads of Komikon, Inc., check out their items, watch live digital painting session by the use of Photoshop and so on. I also met the main producer or head blogger of www.flipgeeks.com, that is Tony Tuason. He is a blogger that concentrates on niches like toy events, book events and this one comics events.

Of course for our Travex Travels event mark of Komikon Baguio (and we cannot let go of this!), I got a few minutes with Mr. Lyndon Gregorio, the Finance Head of Komikon Inc and the illustrator behind the successful and funny comics “Beer Kwatro” (Beer Ka Dos, Beer Dekada etc) which I love to read even before Kikomachine existed (I had to admit the fact that was still in high school, long time ago hehe). This is our one-on-one interview of Mr. Lee:

Paano nagstart ang Komikon?

Komikon started 9 years ago, 2005 or 2004. All Komikon events are primarily in Manila.

Is it first time in Baguio?

First time namin magpartner up sa mga Baguio fans of Komikon.

Do you have any previous Komikon events outside Manila (except Baguio)?

Well, we visited and we participated but we haven't organized yet. [Yes this is] the first Komikon event in Baguio. What the head of the Komikon partnered up with the true organizers [Bag-iw Arts Society]. They know the people, they know the place, so it's better if we give them the freedom, then we give them all the support and all the publicity we can. So iyon yung agreement namin.

Character design contest of Komikon Baguio
Yung idea ng "Komikon" kanino nanggaling?

Sa current organizers. Lima (5) kami and it's good to us that during that time, 9 years ago...well people, cosplayers were organizing, toy [fans] were organizing so we realized comics has a strong culture, may following pa rin, its rich history and we thought about a convention kasi naba-bypass siya eh, repeat attention..toys to cosplayers. So we created a convention that will pay attention to the love and love of comics.

What's the main purpose of Komikon?

To propagate yung comics awareness.

Can you describe the Komikon in Manila? Is it a bigger event in Baguio?

It's a bigger event, we got a bigger place maybe 4 times larger, maybe 6 times larger than this [hall] and yun nga we got...marami nang artists who are based in Manila who attend there especially those who work in international [market]. Plus we have guests from other provinces who drops by the Komikon event.
Meet them at the Komikon event!

What can you say about the foreign artists who create those graphic novels (like Superman) comparing it to the Pinoys who create comics?

The good news is there are several Filipinos who also work for Marvel, yung mga illustrators. Sila din will be featured in our Komikon because they also promote Filipino talent in international market. So we welcome those guys and we also welcome yung mga counterpart naman namin and we hope we can parter up with them one day.

As a summary, the Komikon event in Baguio successfully concluded. We just hope in the coming few months and years there will be more events like this that will be held in several parts of the country so that people will get a broader view of what comics is all about, its culture and the illustrators who dedicated all their lives to strengthen the power of comics and its values.

See related poster of Komikon Baguio here.

Manix Abrera on his own speech. It was short but inspiring.
Comics on auction in the Komikon event in Baguio

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