My Quinte Mini Con report, & why I am going to warn every artist I know against going.
Alright, this may seem a little harsh, but seriously? I voiced my opinion & got berated & my art insulted by someone who wasn’t anything more than an attendee.
So here’s my report.
Quinte Mini Con sucked. It had potential (heck, it had almost 300 people show up)
it only had 1 panel room, so there was only one panel going at a time, which is a bad omen. The only other ‘activity’ was a game room, where you could go play board or card games (I assume, I hardly left the sales floor)
The sales floor had the dealers directly across from the artists, no separation. This may work at bigger cons, but when you’re in a small town like Belleville, it doesn’t work. People see all these neat Japanese imports that they can’t get unless they go to a big city, & they spend all their money on that stuff.
When I voiced my concern at the con, I was told that the con values both artists & dealers, & wanted to keep them on equal footing. I can tell you right now, a small locally owned business will FALL when put on equal footing as Walmart.
I also had an issue with the dealer room closing at 7pm when the website & schedules all said 8pm. My husband asked one of the staff members & they told him that they were closing early for people to restock (meaning dealers, as artists weren’t selling shit that day). When I mentioned this the next day, I was told that ‘people hear what they want to hear’ & it was because everyone needed a break & there was an issue with one set of doors into the room. Then later we were told that the dealers were told to shut down at 7pm, so that’s why the room shut down early.
Basically my concerns & issues were brushed aside, & I was told that my complaining was offensive to one of the people on my FB list.
Later, when that same person made a snarky remark on their FB about how people don’t read, I commented on how half the information available to read is incorrect (or outright ignored by the staff), I got the aforementioned attendee coming in, white-knighting the staff member, telling me it’d be no big loss if I didn’t come back again next year
& insulting my art
Now, I have no problem if people don’t like my art. But to sit there & personally attack me while I was trying to point out how the con could improve for future years? No.
& to me, that’s a complete embodiment of how Belleville con attendees feel about the original artists. I didn’t hear of ANY of the artists doing well at this con.
The main reason I was pointing out issues is so that they’d know where to improve for future years. However, that was before all this crap went down. Now I just want to warn EVERY ARTIST I can to NOT go to Quinte Mini Con. You’ll just get ignored & insulted if you dare to complain or point out a flaw.
I made $150 at QMC. I more than made my con goal of $65 (that was just to cover costs. Because I’m from the area, & my husband & I are nomads, we had no extra food costs, no travel costs, & no hotel costs. There’s no way I would have been able to cover those costs)
BUT half the money I made was from crap I pulled out of my parents basement, like My Little Ponies, & figurines.
I’ve been to smaller cons, with less pre-made stuff to sell, & made over double that in the same amount of time. (plus this was in mid-2000, when my art was less refined than it is now)
So, by saying that my crummy sales are because of my lack of talent, the attendee is basically saying that EVERY artist who had crummy sales is a shitty artist. Which isn’t cool, because there were a LOT of talented artists at QMC, being unappreciated because of green tea flavoured pocky.
(on another note, the staff member that the attendee was white-knighting has since gotten booted off staff for future cons because of the number of complaints against her. So apparently other people had crummy sales & were taking it out on her, or whatever the hell they think I was trying to do)
(also, because I don’t want people accusing me of taking these comments out of context, here’s the whole conversation)