Friday, October 23, 2015

34th Arctic Comics Festival in Kemi, Finland!

Hello peeps!

Last weekend, on Saturday 17th October, me and Jäätynyt Enkeli attended the Arctic Comics Festival in Kemi, Finland – or more commonly known as "Kemin sarjakuvapäivät" by the Finns. It was held in a building called Sauvotalo.
From what I've gathered the "comic day" seems to take on different appearances ranging from actual comic exhibitions to manga day events. This time it was the former so yeah, comics were displayed all over the place, complete with information about history of comics in Finland, original drawings/comic strips etc.

Event poster outside the building.
The entrance to Sauvotalo was from the "side door", or whatever you should call it – normally when an event was held in Sauvotalo you always entered through the main entrance.

Posters showing the direction where to go.
At the entrance there was a small info desk where you could buy some merchandise and there was also a table where you could read comics while waiting. Otherwise the exhibition part itself was in the main hall of the building.

Entering main hall, looking to the left side.
Entering main hall, looking to the right side.
I had dressed up a little bit geeky for the event – I was wearing my Tigrex plush cap (from the Monster Hunter game franchise), a face mask and circle lenses. I wore a wig too because my real hair looks like nothing.

Herp derp me.
I did feel "overdressed" because it felt like there were few attendants and well, everyone were dressed normally. I stood out like a sore thumb lol. Thank God I didn't cosplay.

But instead of me rambling about uninteresting things I'll just spam you all with photos instead. There's honestly not so much to say about the event itself, it was calm and quiet.

Just a lot of "info sheets" about the history of Finnish comics.
Same as above; closer look. (notice Moomins)
In that glass thingy on the floor there was original art and
comic strips, sketches etc. This one is of "Kiroileva Siili", aka Swearing Hedgehog.
And here's the super popular Moomins.
If I recall right the sketches to the right on the above photo (the yellow paper) are originals made for some Wild West Moomins comic strip that was produced in English (for America?). The original finished comic was destroyed after publication, which was a custom by the time because of how the printing system worked... or something like that. When these sketches for the comic were found many many years later fans were rejoicing all over the world.

This was the "superhero corner", old superhero magazines etc were
Some really old Superman and The Mighty Avengers comic magazines, possibly
first numbers...?
Promotional Batman masks.
Captain America cover art.
Original artwork of The Phantom.
A Spiderman statue.
There was this display of a lot of comic character statues that I assume were fan-made or made by students. I think they might have been made of papier-maché or something similar to that, because I heard someone talk about how you had to be very careful with them since they were fragile...

Duckburg (I had to google the name lol) sign and statue.
Fingerpori comic's main character Heimo Vesa.
Gyro Gearloose (the English names are sooo weird... yeah, I'm googling them)
Grandma Duck.
Goofy and Pluto.
Mickey and Minnie Mouse.
Donald Duck family and Daisy.
Scrooge McDuck and Magica de Spell.
The Beagle Boys are at it...
A statue as mentioned in one of the Viivi & Wagner comics.
The actual comic is next to it.
Yep, this is the comic.
Statue depicting a character from the Mämmilä comic.
I'm sorry I don't know more...
Mämmilä comic in different parts: lineart, color, finished comic.
Garfield and the rest.
A lot of comics were everywhere, ranging from well-known ones worldwide such as Garfield and Donald Duck to unknown Finnish ones that I had never heard of before. I must admit to being really happy to see Fingerpori displayed, it's such an awesome comic. xD

The Fingerpori display!
The humor is brilliant. I love this kind of satirical and politically incorrect
type of humor that Fingerpori tends to represent...
This one totally got me. I laughed so hard, partly because as a
kid I had one of those jump ball thingys and I had, somehow, completely
forgotten about it. xD
Most comics were in Finnish but a fair amount was in English too and well, some were even in Swedish! Although occasionally so old-school Swedish that even I had problems understanding...

Something similar to a "wanted" type of poster.
There was a video clip running showing how to draw Donald Duck etc.
Viivi & Wagner art.
Can't remember the name of this comic but something
along the lines of "man in black". It was a comic completely
without text/speech bubbles.
In the entrance, on the opposite wall of the info desk there were some comics too on the wall. I assume they were originals. Here are three of them:

This is shit humor. Literally. x)
"Peräsmies" would translate to something like Assman or Fartman...
Some Finnish words taken literally.
This one was glorious. One of the best
ones in the whole event, if you ask me.
Oh, and in case you didn't know Donald Duck is very loved in Finland; it's everywhere. You can buy Donald Duck pockets in every food store, every kiosk, every... yeah, you get the idea. I think it has something to do with how Donald is and that a lot of Finns can relate to him.. and how things rarely go as he had planned. My dad is a huge Donald Duck collector.

Original Donald Duck comic.
This one was hilarious. :'D
There were of course lectures during the event too, but I wasn't really interested enough to go listen. It was mostly the actual makers of the comics (like the girl who draws the Kiroileva Siili comics, for example) talking about their, well, comics. 
The lectures were all held on the second floor; there was also a cafeteria there.

A "Kamala Luonto" (lit. Horrible Nature) comic. I really liked this one.
Event schedule.
Upstairs there was the lecture hall and in there I finally found some people who looked like manga fans. Yeah, there were these two peeps having a second-hand manga selling table and well, I did strike a short chat with them. They were also surprised that so few "alternative looking people" were here, aka the manga/anime/J-pop culture fans. I ended up buying the full set of Monster Hunter Orage manga from them, the Finnish translation.

The Phantom was upstairs!
And so was Batman.
Catwoman, also upstairs on the lecture hall.
More Batman.
I had to resist the urge to go and do a goofy face...
After we had seen everything we just spent some hours upstairs, playing Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate in a corner. All in all it was a nice event to go watch, although I was kinda expecting to see more colorful attendants, haha. Oh well ~

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