AMBER LOVE 05-OCT-2015 It’s no surprise I’m kind of tired today. We had a beautiful, fun-filled, successful two days at COMIC FUSION in Flemington, New Jersey. Our biggest problem was the weather since everyone was terrified Hurricane Joaquin would make landfall and wreck the eastern coast like Sandy did. Plenty of us have some form of weather-phobia or PTSD from that, I swear. Some of our regular supporters couldn’t make it this year because there were regions without power and downed trees. Luckily, everyone seemed fine despite trapped at home. We were fine too. We had overcast skies on Saturday and an supremely beautiful sunny Sunday. I’m not sure how much we raised this year, but it was over $3,400 as of Saturday night. [UPDATE: As of Monday Wednesday October 12, we’re over $3,858 $3,900 $4,000!]


Stacy Korn and Bill Meccia did all the major work to pull off this year’s fundraiser with great coordination from Tracey at CASA-SHaW. Jesse Parrino did a lot of cosplay recruitment and as always, he and John helped do some heavy lifting to set up a tent, tables and chairs. I spent a day cleaning and months recruiting cosplayers and trying to get donated art and swag. We had SO MUCH donated! Stacy managed to pick up a mountain of books and merch at the Baltimore Comic Con from publishers like Action Lab, Valiant, Zenescope, and individual creators. Plus DC Comics shipped posters and pins to us.


This year, Stacy and Bill and the Guild of Good decided to dedicate all our efforts to CASA-SHaW for the first time. This is the organization covering three NJ counties to advocate for foster children and families. Needless to say, we found them to be vital to our community and wanted to help them out.


I spent a whole lot of time tweeting, Instagramming, and Facebooking about the sketches/paintings we had in this year’s comic art auction and the raffle prizes. It was one of the most impressive collections we ever had. I was particularly thrilled to see my friend J.K. Woodward’s STAR WARS and STAR TREK paintings fetch us hundreds of dollars. Other sketches seemed to average $60-75. Lynne Yoshii’s color Wonder Woman piece went for $500! It was incredible. But, honestly, the majority were pieces that were beautifully rendered and stayed at affordable prices under $100. I won’t repost the entire gallery here, but you can see it on the page that I originally used to promote SHW2015. SAMPLES SHOWN HERE BUT THERE WAS SO MUCH MORE!

The first day Wil Torres, Tom Scholendorn, and Dexter Weeks filled our Artists’ Alley; the second day Phil Sloan, Eric Grissom, and Nick Justus spent the day with us. Some of them even brought their kids to help out which is always something we encourage.

shw2015 wil torres



On Saturday, the quirky and perky SARAH DONNER – musician extraordinaire and evil kitten trainer – did an indoor acoustic set in our Artists’ Alley and gallery room. She performed hits like “With Pride” and helped give a short lesson to one of our dedicated wee fans. Sunday was a last-minute booking of the band PIXEL FACE which Stacy discovered. They played a variety of video game soundtracks; they were able to get a Stormtrooper, the 4th Doctor and Metal Gear Snake to dance.



What can I say? Cosplay is a huge reason people come to Comic Fusion’s Superhero Weekend. It’s a perfect time to test out a new costume to make sure the construction holds up. You get to meet up with old friends and make new ones. You can plan ahead on our Cosplay Casting page to work out themes, teams, and photo ops. This year, instead of hauling ourselves a mile away to the Hall of Justice on Main Street, I made arrangements with Factory Fuel Coffee Co. to shoot inside their cafe which has visual aesthetics for more industrial/crime/steampunk/noir settings. Unfortunately on Saturday, the farmers’ market took up all the other space inside the building, but we were able to shoot inside the Factory Fuel kiln which is a wicked setting utilized by Babs Who Takes Pictures. Day two there was nothing else going on there so Tyrus Flynn Photography had free reign to play with the heroes and 501st Legion. The Turntable Junction courtyard in front of Comic Fusion lends itself well to shooting nature themes and a couple of alleyways. We also use one of the gingerbread porches for our big group shots.

I realized I was a villain both days for a change. Technically Moonstone was a villain forced to be a hero during DARK AVENGERS, but she was considered a villain like Namor and the rest. And PLANET GIGANTIC’S Queen Neva didn’t first present as evil, but her true colors showed rather quickly. No event would be the same without the Legion of Super Villains and the 501st Legion.



The first day I donned the Moonstone as Ms. Marvel costume that I debuted at Free Comic Book Day this year. For whatever reason, I didn’t like most of the pics from FCBD, but I did for SHW. The biggest problem I had this weekend was that my Spanx were showing in a lot of the cool pictures that were taken inside Factory Fuel Coffee Co. I tried to photoshop them out. Some of the ones taken by Babs have been posted to her gallery. More posted on the Moonstone gallery page, but here are highlights:

amber-cafe-filmstrip Moonstone SHW cosplay

For me, I had the privilege of bringing to life a character that I thought was beautiful, fun to read, and wonderfully evil. I wanted to make the Queen Neva costume anyway, but since I was able to book the character’s writer Eric Grissom, and one of the backup story artists, Phil Sloan, as guests, I had more incentive to figure it out. I extensively blogged the process of making the costume and props.


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