Comics, crafts and lots of cosplay: Highlights from day one of the Savannah Comic Con

Julia Fechter

Princesses, superheroes and stormtroopers strolled among the aisles. People sported neon-colored hairstyles, and tables were stocked with a myriad of pop culture memorabilia.

One could only experience these things at an event like the annual Savannah Comic Con. The convention is happening this weekend at the Savannah International Convention Center.

Doors open for Day 2 of the convention today at 11 a.m. Events start at 11:30 a.m. and continue until 5 p.m.

During the convention’s first day, Saturday, the event’s main exhibition hall offered a variety of entertainment options catering to everyone from the casually curious to avid fans. Here are some of the highlights from the first day.

The cosplays

One of the signature parts of attending the convention, for many of Saturday’s attendees, was donning a costume, or cosplay, from their favorite movie or television show.

Abygail Gutierez, left, cosplayed as “My Hero Academia” main protagonist Izuku Midoriya, Logan Dixon, right, cosplayed as one of Midoriya’s good friends and rivals, Shoto Todoroki.

Many cosplayers, like Abygail Gutierrez of Savannah and Logan Dixon of Statesboro, dressed as characters Izuku Midoriya and Shoto Todoroki from the Japanese anime show “My Hero Academia”.

Even though them seemed like they had known each other for a while, Gutierrez and Dixon said that they actually had not met each other before the convention.

Tandra Smith dressed as Garnet from the cartoon television series “Steven Universe”. Smith appeared to be the only person cosplaying Garnet at Saturday’s portion of the convention.

Dixon was not the only Statesboro attendee at the convention. The George-Anne’s own Tandra Smith attended the convention, cosplaying as Garnet from Steven Universe.

Many of the other cosplayers, like Guiterrez, lived in or near Savannah. However, other cosplayers, like Dan Moulton and Eenae Tam, said that they were from Boston.

Dan Moulton, left, cosplayed As Aang from “Avatar the Last Airbender”, while Eenae Tam, right, cosplayed as Katara from the cartoon television series. Moulton mentioned how he met one of the executives from the television series

“We had already planned a trip to Savannah, but we heard about the con and came here [to the con] last minute,” Moulton said.

He added that they usually attend cons in the Boston area, and that this was their first time attending the Savannah Comic Con.

Art, merchandise and more

While many people seemed to enjoy the conversation around cosplays, many others meandered throughout the aisles on the convention floor.

Products sold included everything from patterned clothing to character buttons and stickers to regular and body pillows.

Then, there were also many artists at the convention. Their works represented a variety of approaches and main themes ranging from witty or playful colored pencil and ink works to sensual and grotesque works.

Calvin Mudge from Savannah explained how he likes depicting World War One and animal-inspired art in his comics because of the concepts he can then explore. “Diversity, different groups of people working together, the clash of technology, old and news…what does that look like for things like animal characters?”

Once people looked at the art and merchandise, they often wandered in between booths and tables to other activities, such as the face painting offered by Colorful Day Events’ owner, Chela Waterfield.

Leianna Miller of Columbus, Georgia, had a unicorn painted on her face as she donned a Captain Marvel costume.

Tathiana Vaughn, Miller’s mother, described how excited Miller was to get that particular costume for the convention.

“As soon as it [the Captain Marvel movie] came out, she was like, ‘I want to be her for Comic Con!’”, Vaughn said.

Chela Waterfield paints a zigzagged design on Tithanie Vaughn’s face. Vaughn cosplayed as Valkyrie from “Thor: Ragnarok”.

Vaughn and Miller attended the convention because Vaughn’s partner. David Gregory, bought all three of them tickets for the event.

“Yeah, he got me my birthday present to come here,” Vaughn added.

Cosplay contest and celebrity panels

In addition to stops like face painting, there will also be more celebrity panels today at the convention center’s auditorium.

John Wesley Shipp will be participating in a question-and-answer panel at 1 p.m., and Summer Glau will be participating in a panel at 2 p.m.

Shipp, who played the role of Barry Allen’s father, Jay Garrick/Flash and Earth-90 Flash in the newest “The Flash” series. He also played the role of Barry Allen in the 1990s version of the superhero series.

Glau is perhaps best known for her roles as River Tam in “Firefly” and Ravager in “Arrow” from 2013 to 2014.

After these celebrity panels, the votes for the convention’s cosplay contest will be collected at the judging table in the Oglethorpe Auditorium from 3:15 to 4:15 p.m.

The results will be announced at 4:45 p.m. from the convention center’s main lobby stairs.