Culture Japan Penang 2013 (Day 1 and 2)

No doubt some of you are wondering where the hell have I been? Well it’s a long story but it involves going back to Kenya for the golive and then coming back. That is another story I hope to do a blog on later.

Though as a result of that assignment I managed to get a nice week off and guess where I decided to spend it? I’ll give you a hint, “Culture Japan Penang”.

Okay, that wasn’t really a hint but a dead give away as I couldn’t come up with something witty.

What is CJC about?

This is the first ever convention being held under complete control by Danny Choo and his company. The event is also very special as it’s being held first in Penang instead of the usual possible location such as Singapore, or even Kuala Lumpur.  For more info, you can find out here

Who is coming?
So I guess being first, Danny decided to invite some great guess from the states, as well as Japan.

  1. Maridah AKA the real life Saber from the United States
  2. Malaysia’s own cosplay start Angie
  3. Asakawa Yuu who is the sample voice for Megurine Luka and her other notable anime roll as Rider in Fate/Stay Night.
  4. DMYO and Ikkyu who are the artists behind Mirai Suenaga (Danny’s mascot for his brand) and Moekanji product.
  5. And once again VividBlaze!!

The choice was simple….
So when it came to where I should spend my week long holiday, I chose to go up to Penang for the weekend and attend this event! I quickly placed my order for ticket and other arrangements. Stayed at the b-suite hotel again this time for RM160 per night. I really like their big spacious rooms.

Off I went on Friday where I then met up with friends and other boring stuff which you have absolutely no interest in.

Day 1: 17th August 2013.

Picked Fuminari from his place and had breakfast, by the time we arrived it was 8:30am at Straits Quay.

Oddly, the pre-order line was already very long while the walk in counter was practically empty when Fumi went to the counter to get his ticket.

After picking my pre-order tickets, we were ushered to the main entrance to wait for the opening. Although after waiting for a short while, the staff let us in because the air-cond in the waiting area were not working and we were sweating like pigs in the slaughterhouse (that description is not very far from the truth actually XD).

As I said, while the pre-order line was long, the walk in line was near to non-existence. Although once the counters were opened, the pre-order line moved incredibly fast to the main entrance as visitors got their tickets quickly, like me 🙂 Here we have Fumi waiting in the other line.

Once in, but only to enjoy the air-cond as we still in the corral. Here I am with Fumi making our plans. The game plan was simple, fumi would quickly queue up at Danny’s booth to get Day 1 limited Mirai edition cards while I would go straight to the guest booth to get goodies.

As the clock struck 10am!! The first Culture Japan Convention was officially opened to the cheers o the crowd! Everyone quickly lined up at Danny’s booth to get their swag and Touch and Go cards.

I quickly made my way to the guest booth, but to my dismay they didn’t have change of cash so handing them Rm100 was no good. Later I managed to get the needed change and bought Maridah’s photo~~~~!!

Finally applied for that Kino membership card and got the mirai edition version of the card!

Meanwhile Fumi had managed to get the TnG cards we wanted, the line had oddly grown into something reminisce of the pitwalk queue at Super GT and was snaking around the whole convention floor.

Opening stage event
While all of this was happening, Danny was on the stage giving first show of the day by welcoming all  the people who had come to the event and also this this opportunity to introduce the main guests for CJC.

Danny on stage welcoming fans and etc.

Here we have the main guests waiting for their turn on the stage. Unfortunately, I didn’t bring my 70-300mm lens so couldn’t get any good shots unlike Fumi AKA “tall bunion/freak” who literally towers all other participants of the event. I hate his tallness.

Lighting again is always a challenge for me at these events, driving me up the wall!!! Here we have Maridah cosplaying as Mirai Suenaga.

Here we have Angie cosplaying Kanata Hoshikawa in a tsundere pose!!!!

After the opening ceremony, it was a performance by VividBlaze. Took this opportunity to check out the booths and cosplay~!

I WANT THIS FIGURE!!

Also bought 2 of the nendoroids being offered at the good smile company booth! I got the kimono madoka special along with the red yukata Miku! Cost me a pretty penny but well worth it! That reminds  me, I need to catch up on my figure review entries~!!!

We decided to get some drinks and left the hall and just as we left, we met with CrossChannel who had decided to come after all. Nope, no photos as he hate having his picture taken.

Took this chance to also drop off the goodies at my car and went for drinks to chill out and review our photos. It really grinds my gears whenever I’m shooting at these events, I’ve never been much of an event shooter and was more of a general photographer.

Danny Choo Panel
After lunch, we went back up and it was Danny’s turns. He talked about his background and how he started and how he got to this point.

The current collaboration with Lawson

The Mirai has really grown since, now he has even partnered up with Kinokuniya

Even AirAsia X! Frenandes you villain!!!

He even unveiled some details about the next big project, the smart doll project! Which involves, robotozise dollfies! Only a few more steps to Anglic layer!!! And then after that Chobits!!!!

Meanwhile, oddly, the TnG cards weren’t selling out as fast as I thought they would be.

While there, met up with some friends, some who had driven up today from KL to attend this event as well and met up with CrossChannel who was debating on whether to buy the nendoroid figure of madoka. Naturally I saw it as my duty to poison him into buying it~!!!!!

Asakawa Yuu panel
Next up was Asakawa Yuu panels, who by the way is not only a talented voice actress, but it also fluent in English! She started to learn english about 5 years ago and now her skills has reached the point that its almost impossible to tell that she is still learning as she claims.

One of her secrets she mentions is that she watches a lot of english drama and sitcoms to help her learn, another factor is practice, lots and lots of english practice. Amazing, I couldn’t have guessed her level of proficiency until I had a chance to speak to her at the guest booth to asked for a picture.

Some of you may already know that she is also the contributor voice for the vocaloid Megurine Luka who happens to be my favorite one!! FYI among the vocaloid, Megurine Luka is supposedly the one to use to sing english songs.

In this panel, she talked about her work and how she is so fluent in english as well as answer questions from fans sent online and etc. She also talked about the roles she has played and etc. A lot of questions were asked but I didn’t record them down.

Pity I couldn’t get close enough to the stage to get a shot of Asakawa either as the crowd were thick so decided instead to wonder around until the next stage show.

Angie Panel 
In this panel, which was being MC by Solomon and etc (can’t remember his name >_<), Angie talked about how she got into cosplay, what did she cosplay as and how she worked on creating her own cosplay outfits as well as her love for animes especially with the new titles like the new gatcheman (Or battle of the planets in US).

Managed to get close to the stage this time!!!

After the panel, some girls presented a gift to Angie as she was leaving the stage. Here we have Evangel as bouncer.

Went around to shoot more cosplay.

Note to self, buy blu-ray for Evangelion 3.0.

Shirahane NAO panel
This is the panel or workshop where Nao sensei showed how from start to end she draws the artwork for Mirai Suenaga. Pity I didn’t bring enough SD cards, else I would have recorded the whole workshop as it was absolutely wonderful learning experience especially for those wanting to learn how to draw anime artwork.

It may surprised you that while she is a Japanese citizen, but she is actually of Korean origins hence explaining while she is so tall for a Japanese.

It was also at this time I got word from a friend that Maridah was back at the guest booth signing her photo prints so I quickly rushed there to have her sign the prints I had bought this morning!! At least I had my own signed Saber print!!!!!

Autograph session
Finally it was time for the final event of the day, the autograph session. Although we seemed to have overran the time and each participant were only allowed to have one item signed by each guest.

  1. Angie
  2. Asakawa Yuu
  3. DMYO
  4. Danny Choo. 

With that, concludes day 1.

Day 2 : 18th August 2013

We only arrived at about 2pm as personal prevented us from coming early today. By the time we did, the Maridah panel and Ikkyu panel was already over and now it was the middle of today’s autograph session.

Meanwhile as predicted, the TnG kiss edition card had completely sold out, but we always covers all our bets and had asked a friend yesterday to help us get it early today.

With the autograph session being a long one again (fumi went to queue again today), I decided to go around shooting

Soon, when the smart doll is complete, it will spell the end of humanity bwahahahahaahahaahahah

Soon the autograph session ended and everyone was getting ready for the main event of the day, the cosplay competition!!

hmmm! Gonna have me some nom nom!

She’s not a cosplayer, BUT DAMN ! She is hot!!!!

Next here is what I believe is the cutest cosplayer I have seen yet!!

Here we have as staff a member of the Fire sisters!!!! Pity I couldn’t find the other one, else it would have made an awesome pair!!

while taking all of these shots, the cosplay competition was being held on stage with many of the contestant being paraded in front of the judges who will decide who will win the plane tickets for 2 to Tokyo provided by Air Asia X.

As the judges announced the winner, they also added in a special award (by Maridah and Asakawa), the fan girl award!

Next and the final event of the day was the lucky draw for those who had pre-order their tickets for 2 tickets to Tokyo as well! In short, I didn’t win >_<;;

Although that wasn’t the end of the shenanigans when Danny used the remaining lucky draw to determine who would get the special 11th version of the TNG card. Though the last card was given out to the person who could catch Danny as he ran around the convention…..

My god, it was like watching World War Z except with Danny Choo instead of Brad Pitt, running for his life as swarms of rabid zombie fans chased after him for that last TnG card. It was so hectic, I didn’t even have enough time to set my camera up for video mode!!

With that concludes Culture Japan convention Penang 2013!

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One thought on “Culture Japan Penang 2013 (Day 1 and 2)

  1. Pingback: 2013: The year of great ups early and lots of downers near the end. | dreaming Artemis

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