Portsmouth Comic Con held its inaugural event over the bank holiday weekend at the Portsmouth Guildhall, and Blue Fox Comics had a table there.
There’s always a reason to be slightly wary for a first con, but Portsmouth Comic Con have been great at getting the marketing far and wide, and I’d heard a rumour they’d sold 4000+ tickets prior to it opening.
Another great plus point in its favour (for us, anyway!) was the location. Portsmouth is 30 mins away by train or car, so there was no need to travel up the night before, or at some terrible hour of the morning. We just arrived around 8.30am with our cases, got our wristbands and were shown to our table.
In fact, the whole set-up process was very smooth.
As for any show in a similar style building, there were several rooms, which made it feel a little fragmented. We were housed in Comic City 2, which felt like a good room to be in for comic creators. Most of the tables were creators, so people knew what to expect when they walked in.
Some of the other rooms seemed more random, with one of them not housing any comic creators at all, which was a shame.
The guests artists alley was in the main hall, on the stage. I wasn’t there in rush hours, but the times I did visit it, it was very accessible, with a good range of comic guests for the size of con. I also got to chat with Alison Sampson, which is always fun.
Saturday was the busiest day. The weather was blisteringly hot, but it didn’t put people off coming inside (and perhaps it helped). We had a good trading day, with Gone and Hexes graphic novels being our best sellers.
Sunday was slightly slower, as it always is, but we still had good sales.
The Guildhall was in a good location, with easy access to cafes and smaller supermarkets for reasonably priced food.
As first cons go, Portsmouth Comic Con went very well. There was a lot going on, and it felt well organised. Hopefully they’ll snag a few more independent comic creators for next year.
As for Blue Fox Comics, we’ll definitely be after a table in 2019!