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Archive for the ‘photography’ Category

As you geeks know, New York Comic Con happened last month. Let’s just call it NYCC for short. I attend every year, even if my own comic book tastes run more towards alternative than Marvel or DC. I’ll go to do the ‘networking’ thang, check out the current trends, but it’s also become a bit like a mini-vacation. NYCC also reminds me why I got interested in comics, sci-fi and other related genres in the first place.

The first five years of attending NYCC, I got caught up in all the buzz, the excitement, the cosplay, etc. Things shifted a few years ago. Like last year, a lot of time was spent attending panels.

This blog post will focus on NYCC 2018 cosplay. I was surprised on the type of cosplay seen this year. Despite Black Panther being huge at the box office, I didn’t see a lot of Wakanda. There’s this photo:

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Black Panther cosplay at NYCC 2018. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

Was more surprised on witnessing more Harry Potter cosplay. Doctor Who cosplay went down. Bob’s Burger cosplay went up. Star Wars cosplay from any era will always be a staple of any comic book convention. That’s a given.

 

Another reminder about many years I’ve been attending NYCC. In 2008, I saw a man outside the Javits Center play the accordion while wearing a Boba Fett helmet. Exactly ten years later, he was back!

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Boba Fett playing the accordion outside 2018 NYC. First saw him back in 2008. Renegade Accordion on FB and IG. Photo by Michele Witchipoo, Oct. 2018.

Deadpool cosplay was still going strong, but it was usually in some form of mash-up/crossplay.

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Pope Deadpool. NYCC 2018. Photo by Michele Witchipoo Oct. 2018.

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Cosplay at NYCC 2018. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2018.

Ending part one of NYCC 2018 is the inescapable photobomb. None other than good old Deadpool himself.

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When you’re photo bombed by Deadpool. NYCC 2018. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct 2018.

This report on NYCC 2018 will be continued on another blog post. Until then, enjoy some tasty grub from the Bob’s Burgers food trucks outside of Javits Center.

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Last weekend was the annual Bushwick Open Studios. It’s right in my backyard, since I live on the near borderline between Brooklyn and Queens. My residence is in Queens. Fortunately, the area of Queens where I live is close enough to hop on a bus to Bushwick. Although BOS reeks of gentrification, I’m lucky to live close to an art event. I’ve done BOS three times. The first time was in 2012. That was a complete mess. The second and third scored much better, 2016 being the best one over at OUTPOST. The opening party at OUTPOST was amazing. One reason was because they had open bar with free Finback beer.

This year I could only venture in baby steps. Usually for BOS I’ll take a whole day to explore. I had tickets to see The National for both nights over at Forest Hills Stadium that same weekend. Therefore I couldn’t take in as much. Hopefully next year there will be more opportunities to explore.

 

 

The first stop on BOS 2018 was this mobile gallery. It was run by Japanese transplants. (You can check out Shihorks on Tumblr.) They were taking names of people who stopped by, and offering to include the first names into an open art piece they were doing. My name is all the way on top. After thanking them, I went inside the check to check out the rest.

 

 

Walked around some more. Walked inside which I guessed used to be a former factory converted into either artist studios and/or lofts. Saw some nude body painting, and stumbled across a robot. The robot was part of something called Toaster Unplugged.

 

 

Walking around some more, you can still see some of the anti-Trump sentiment in the Bushwick area.

 

 

Last stop before going to Forest Hills was something I haven’t seen since leaving the Midwest. A fake beach. Having grown up on the East Coast with natural beaches, I always turned up my nose at this concept. Guess it shouldn’t be surprised that a fake beach with a bar hit Bushwick. Wyckoff Beer Garden were part of BOS too.

 

 

 

 

Until next year.

 

 

All photographs taken by Michele Witchipoo 2018. 

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Last month we went to check out the Stanley Kubrick photography exhibit over at the Museum of The City of New York. Stanley Kubrick has always been one of my favorite film directors. Back in high school, I made it a mission to check out every film Kubrick directed. This was way before the days of Netflix. If it wasn’t available on VHS, then I would hit up all the revival movie theaters. You millennials have it so easy nowadays!

Luckily films are now more easily obtainable. If it can’t be found on Blu Ray, DVD or through a streaming service, there always places in NYC. For example, Videology Bar and Cinema over in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Anyway, I sought out most of Kubrick’s films. 2001: A Space Odyssey, Lolita, the prophetic Dr. Strangelove, The Shining, Full Metal Jacket, and of course, A Clockwork Orange. Even sat through that yawn fest Barry Lyndon. Although I never managed to catch the earlier films like The Killing or Paths of Glory. Did watch Eyes Wide Shut much later on – despite my disdain for Tom Cruise.

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Entrance for the Stanley Kubrick photography exhibit over at the Museum of the City of New York. July 2019. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

Before Kubrick became an influential film director, he got his start as a photographer for Look Magazine. At the exhibit, open until Oct. 28th, 2018, you can see the gritty yet candid detail that would later show up in Kubrick’s films. Kubrick was just 17 years old when he sold his first photo to Look back in 1945. These photos also show how NYC was from 1946 to 1951.

 

New York City wasn’t just Kubrick’s subject. At the exhibit, a Kubrick photograph of a tattooed and pierced carny was not accepted by the editors of Look. Apparently the photo was thought as ‘too extreme.’ It was decades before the ‘Modern Primitive‘ movement, which led to the current acceptance of body modification.

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The photo below particularly stood out. It’s of professional boxer Rocky Graziano. Graziano was trying to repair his reputation when Look did a feature on him. Boxing later helped Kubrick make the transition from photography to filmmaking.

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After walking through the Kubrick exhibit we checked out the rest of the museum. Right next to the Kubrick showing was the last day of Rebel Women, which inspired this sketch done back in August.

 

At the other end of the floor was a retrospective of the feminist era. It showed the beginning of the women’s rights movement, ending with one of Hilary Clinton’s infamous pantsuits.

 

Which leads to the Psycho Bunny sketch of the week. This sketch isn’t just a sketch. This weeks shows the cover of the latest Psycho Bunny issue. If all goes well, hopefully Psycho Bunny issue 3.5 will be released at the end of October.

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This may or may not be the final version of the cover. It really depends on finding the original typeface of the lettering used for the A Clockwork Orange film poster. For now you have an ideal about what the front cover looks like. Other details forthcoming. If the latest issue is completed in time, it’ll mostly likely debut at Incredicon, taking place in Upstate NY, Oct. 28th. Incredicon is a very small con, but it’s been a while since I’ve tabled at a comic book convention.

My life has been busy as of life. You however, still have time to check out these social media links:

Facebook: pages for Psycho Bunny and for Michele Witchipoo – WitchesBrewPress.

 Twitter: One account for me, and one for Psycho Bunny.

Tumblr: World Ov Witchipoo

Instagram: there’s WitchipooArt.

Get yourself some cool stuff on RedBubble, featuring my designs. There’s dresses, tee shirts, notebooks, etc. The notebooks, and the Quentin Crisp tees seems to be one of the best selling items.

Still haven’t gotten around to posting those commissions on this blog. Maybe this week I’ll get around to doing so. Until then, stay tuned.

 

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Really didn’t do another David Bowie blog post. Thought that was done once I visited the Bowie exhibit over at the Brooklyn Museum. Unfortunately, everything has been really busy lately. Once I had some free time, the first three days was spent sleeping in and whatnot. Now that I’m back blog posting, there’s art to upload, concerts to semi-review, etc. It’s Friday as of this post. So it doesn’t make sense to finally post a new Psycho Bunny sketch of the week. Those entries are usually online from Monday to Wednesday, most likely Monday. So let’s go back a few months to when the Brooklyn Museum and Spotify had a massive clever promotion at the Broadway-Lafayette subway station. In addition you could score your own limited edition Bowie Metrocards. Currently I have the complete set in my possession.

It also gave me a chance to take some selfies with my freshly dyed hair, thanks to Second Star salon. Usually I do my own hair, but hey. My friend has some serious skills.

Basically the entire subway station at Broadway-Lafayette/Bleecker Street was covered with Bowie. Hopped on the 6 train. Upon arrival, there it was.

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Here’s some more photos of the Bowie-fied station. Slightly reminded me of Christiane F, when she used to hang around Zoo station in Berlin. All was needed was Warszawa playing in the background. Only it’s gentrified NYC 2018 with no junkies in sight.

It was time to collect those Bowie subway Metrocards. People were lining up at the token booth. How it went was, most of the cards was in the self-service machines. However, to avoid wasting your money with random cards, you could also buy the card you needed at the booth. Luckily the machine gave me one of each, and only needed to buy one card from the token booth to complete my set.

As I was getting most of the Bowie cards from the self service machines, a tourist was looking over my shoulder, watching what Bowie cards I was receiving. Then some Japanese film crew came over, interviewing me about my purchases. They filmed me getting one of the final cards. That same Japanese crew then interviewed some man who told them he couldn’t be bothered doing the physical random purchase; so he already brought a complete set from eBay for $200. Must be nice to have money to burn. When the tourist wanted to do a Metrocard trade, that was my cue to take a break. Too many people were hovering over those Metrocard dispensers. Even though for the most part, it was peaceful.

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The display inside the subway station was still nothing compared to the actual exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum.

A few days later, I just happened to find a book in the street. It was a Bowie biography. Barely read, near the stairs of some apartment building. Right in my own Queens neighborhood. That was some synchronicity.

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That should cap off the Bowie posts for now. Next week I’ll return with some brand new Psycho Bunny sketches of the week.

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It’s late but here goes. The days of March 8th to March 11th 2018 was NY Art Week. That’s when the big fine art/modern art fairs happen, such as The Armory Show, VOLTA NY and Art On Paper. Unfortunately I was only able to attend one fair, which was Art On Paper. This was my second time returning to the event.

Along the way there was a life-size Marge Simpson seen in Lower Manhattan. Throwing in a cute photo of a dog riding the subway. Why? Sometimes I like animals over humans.

You’ll have to pardon me. Usually I take notes, but this year was a bit distracted. Some of the art seen was repeats of last year. The surprising part was not so much political art displayed as opposed from last year. Not to say there wasn’t any.

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Art On Paper 2018. Kim-Trump paddles. Photo by Michele Witchipoo

Halfway through the event, I met a lady carrying around matchboxes. These were refashioned as art items. Jennifer Robin Arnold (her name) told me during the summer she sells them in Coney Island, Brooklyn. She was kind enough to give me the matchbox with the 1970s porn flavor.

Again they had the overpriced concession stand. As much as that alcoholic coconut drink was tempting, I wasn’t about to fork over $14.00. Ditto for the Sixpoint beer for $7.00 when I could get it cheaper at a Brooklyn dive bar. However, there was ton of art to be seen.

Afterward a friend took me to see a concert over at Brooklyn Bazaar, which helped inspire a Psycho Bunny sketch, seen here.

So hopefully next year I’ll be able to snag passes for not only this show, but for the other two like The Armory Show. Fingers crossed.

*All photos by Michele Witchipoo March 11 2018.

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From Thursday Oct. 6 to Sunday Oct. 9, I felt as if I lived at the Javits Center. That’s because it was the annual New York Comic Con. Earlier this year I received my Pro pass for which itself felt good.

As usual it was packed and the cosplayers were out in full force.

To the left as you walked into the main entrance, there was a entire section dedicated to Wonder Woman. Not just because the Wonder Woman movie will be released in 2017, but Oct. 2016 marked the 75th anniversary of the character’s first appearance. There were also a lot more Wonder Woman cosplay than ever before.

To my relief there wasn’t as many Harley Quinns, but plenty of Pokemon characters. There was some unique ones that stood out above the others. Darth Maul looks happy here.

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NYCC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo Oct. 2016

NYCC 2016 had an increase in Bob’s Burgers cosplayers. Louise and Tina Belcher were the most seen. Occasionally you would run into the entire family.

During the course of the four day event, I checked out a few panels. Panels are very good. For one, they give you a wealth of information in regards to the comic book industry, or discuss pop culture. If all else fails, you can rest your weary feet in the seat closest to an outlet to recharge your cell.

Some of the panels I attended were: BOOM Studios, DC Comics, and IDW (where they discussed an upcoming release to benefit the Orlando Pulse shooting victims).

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Panel for IDW during NYCC 2016.

Two panels however intrigued me the most. One was for Trump magazine (NO! Not Donald Trump!!!) put on by Dark Horse and Kitchen Sink Press. In 1956, Trump Magazine was a short-lived publication financed by Hugh Hefner, and put together by MAD Magazine’s Harvey Kurtzman. Among some of the speakers on that panel were Denis Kitchen and Al Jaffee.

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The Panel for Trump Magazine (No, not Donald!), a short-lived publication from the 1950s.

The other panel that grabbed my attention was the panel titled ‘Bringing Stories To Life: Holding a Comic Con at Your Library.’ Here local librarians from Connecticut explained the ins and outs of operating local comic cons from the library.

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Librarians from CT discuss how to do comic cons at the local library. NYCC Panel. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

Back for more cosplay.

One thing you cannot forget. The real reason why we have comic cons in the first place. To promote comics. As in artists, writers, pencilers, inkers, etc. Onward to Artist Alley.

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Walking around the Javits Center was exhausting. It was time to head home and come back another day.

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Everyone needs rest sometime. NYCC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

During the NYCC, I found out there was going to be a panel for the latest Planet of The Apes reboot series. Since I was a huge fan of POTA, I trekked all the way out of the Javits Center to the Theater At Madison Square Garden. That’s where they held the special events, like the one for Doctor Who earlier during NYCC.

Point blank, this Q&A ‘career conversation’ with actor Andy Serkis, who portrays Ceasar in the Apes reboot was the only letdown during NYCC 2106. This might be clarified why in separate blog post.

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Actor Andy Serkis after finishing his Q&A panel during NYCC 2016.

I stuck around however to catch the Stan Lee panel at the same venue. Which went off much smoother. Moderated by film director and famous geek Kevin Smith, the panel also had Walt Simonson and Chris Claremount. The packed house was treated to an oral recollection of Marvel comic history. Insert very crappy photo of the panel itself.

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Very bad, blurry photo of the Stan Lee panel at NYCC 2016 with Kevin Smith, Walt Simonson and Chris Claremount.

Barely getting enough rest, it was time to head back to NYCC.

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Classic Star Trek cosplay on the NYC subway. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

Since NYCC has become so popular, expect free swag. During the weekend I got a free Monster energy drink which I usually never touch, some wafer cookies and a complimentary sample of Death Coffee.

The cosplaying continued.

The last day of NYCC was spent getting merch I didn’t need like this Muttley POP. Then off to cruise Artist Alley once more.

This year there was some new interesting talent in Artist Alley, as well as those established such as Terry Moore (Strangers In Paradise), Joe Staton, and Erik Larsen (Savage Dragon).

One person that stood out was graffiti artist Andre Charles, otherwise known as ACharlesNYC. I brought a pin from him. He was so kind to give me a second one for free. Which was a score because I was having trouble which color to choose from. Besides, it’s always good to share old school NYC memories with someone.

Another new comic I discovered during NYCC was titled Pugly.

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Also snagged a free issue of Faith, a popular comic book title now published by Valiant.

Of course some more cosplay.

Some T-Rex creatures were spotted as well.

Another trend I noticed. This year people were cosplaying with their pet dogs. I asked someone cosplaying a character from Adventure Time how he got his dog in. He replied listing your pup as a service dog. While it’s cute, I was left wondering if it was safe at all for the dogs themselves.

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Adventure Time cosplay. NYCC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

Another curious observation during the NYCC weekend. I kept on seeing something scribbled on the bathroom doors inside the ladies room. Later I discovered it was a quote from The Handmaid’s Tale in Latin: ‘don’t let the bastard grind you down.’  Quite fitting for these times, especially during the current U.S. Presidential election, in which NYCC was the perfect escape from. Ironically, this was the same weekend that news broke out about Trump ‘grabbing pussy.’

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Quote from Margaret Atwood’s book The Handmaid’s Tale in Latin: ‘Don’t Let The Bastards Grind You Down.’ NYCC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

In all it was fun as always. Maybe one day I’ll have another table at NYCC Artist Alley again. Till next year.

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Superheroes resting at the shoe shine stand. NYCC 2016. Photo taken by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

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On a humid Saturday afternoon, we checked out the Bushwick Art Book and Zine Fair 2016. It was sponsored by Hyperallergic, Brooklyn Beer and Knockdown Center. Didn’t have a table myself, and doubt if my work would’ve ever fit in to this event. Since it was only a few subway stops away, figured it was worth checking out.

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Scene from the Bushwick Art Book & Zine Fair 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. July 2016.

The weekend event (July 16 and 17th 2016) took place over at Signal art gallery. There was no air conditioning whatsoever. This made it very uncomfortable to fully check out the tables, especially since it was crowded.

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Scene from the Bushwick Art Book & Zine Fair. July 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. The guy eating his lunch later gave me a balloon that said “fuck you.” 

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Display at the Bushwick Art Book & Zine Fair 2016. July 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

To get relief from the heat, we stepped outside to the backyard. There was a BBQ, a small bar and a class on book binding.

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Backyard at the Bushwick Art Book & ZIne Fair 2016. July 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. 

As the book binding class went on, one couldn’t help but notice the effects of gentrification behind Signal gallery. The hyper gentrification has become a huge problem in not just NYC but across the country. Gentrification also had an effect on struggling artists, who once flocked to places like NYC.

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Scene from the Bushwick Art Book and Zine Fair. July 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

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Scene from the Bushwick Art Book and Zine Fair 2016. July 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. 

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Scene from the Bushwick Art Book & Zine Fair 2016. July 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. 

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Scene from the Bushwick Art Book & Zine Fair 2016. July 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. 

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!?! Is someone trying to replicate the eyeglass art prank? 

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Rain during a hot NYC summer day. Bushwick Art Book & Zine Fair 2016. July 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. 

Anyway. After walking around the small venue a few times, it was time to head out. Right next door was another art gallery called Present Company. Their latest exhibit curated by Jacquelyn Strycker was called ‘Timeshare.’ It was part of the MFA Art Practice from School of Visual Arts (SVA).

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This gallery had art that was more interactive. Particularly the Brainwave Frequency Modulator. Next to the flashing installation was headphones, and you can listen to music. Believe it was created by Dee Solin, titled “CYBO.”

One of the best parts of this gallery – it had air conditioning!

Till next time.

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