Graphic arts expo a hit
CATWOMAN, THE JOKER, HELLBOY, Ichigo and Venom all took a break from their respective duties to attend the first annual Animekon yesterday. These and other characters a mingled in the crowd attending Barbados’ first graphic arts showcase at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, Two Mile Hill, St Michael.Organisers Melissa Young and Omar Kennedy said it was an opportunity for Barbados’ talent to be shown on an international market as representatives from ToonBoom – a Canadian animation company, Wizard Entertainment – a famous pop-culture magazine and actor/director and author, LeVar Burton were all present.Burton is a fan of graphic design and animation with projects of his own. He is known for his role as Kunta Kinte in Roots and Geordi La Forge in Star Trek: The Next Generation. The convention displayed the work of several Barbados Community College’s (BCC) graphic arts students and booths from companies such as Komik Kraze, System Link, 2 Rules Entertainment and Anime Spot. It also featured panel discussions, animated movies and electronic gaming.Young, responding to comments that Animekon was not strictly about anime, said anime was an art form and Animekon was showing how the art form had progressed.“Anime is Japanese slang for expression; and as we are moving on to the modern age, that form of expression changes, so what we are seeing today is that progression,” she said.Graphic designer Terrence Holder said animekon was “really cool” and that it was good to see like-minded people come together to further their art.Holder’s display, Korekulture, represented his final year project at the BCC. “Too often, Barbadians look outside for clothing because they are accostomed to wearing clothes from external markets and forget Barbados also has a lot to offer,” he said. Kraze, Tyrone Lynch, praised Animekon for being the catalyst through which young artists could receive exposure.“The panel discussions were very good and the convention was also good. Everyone who took part had an opportunity to show their work, which was especially important for those who could not do so before. “I’m looking forward to the convention becoming even bigger and better,” he said.Both Young and Kennedy said this was exactly what they had in mind and were hoping to attract a larger international contingent as well as making Animekon a regional event in the future.