KBoom (Barcelona) is the first convention outside of the UK we’ve attended; so we’re gonna tell you why we love it – and why you might wanna go yourself! ^^
And while we went with just a day either-side for travel this time, we cannot recommend enough taking a full week to enjoy both the con, and the beautiful city it’s in.
After a great time going solo last year, both Harry & Mike went this time and finally met up with Kami D – after so many years of working together, via the internet.
KBoom works on a “Donate on Exit” concept: Go enjoy the con and then pay how much you feel it was worth on the way out. Which is a surprising system given it’s increasingly impressive guests, inc. Stjepan Šejić (Artist; Witchblade, Rat Queens & creator of Sunstone) and Javier Rodríguez (Artist; Batgirl: Year One, Daredevil and The Amazing Spider-Man).
The multi-floored La Fontana building gets totally taken over for the weekend:
– Upstairs you have the Panels Rooms, with widely varied topics and guests.
Everything from tips and tutorials on art & writing, to discussing the history of feminism in comics, censorship, porn VS story, fanart legality and so much more!
– Downstairs you’re lead to the main convention via The Gallery of the guest’s works – a great way to introduce attendees to the artists and art-styles they may be interested in, without being blocked out by a crowd or queue. Huzzah for discovering new things ^^
– The Basement / Stage room is for the Dealers Den, Signage Area and Bar.
We adore KBoom for it’s love of the indie, and for being art & comic specific – when certain larger cons may have weirdly irrelevant booths. There’s always someone new to discover, as well as art, books & merch to consume and support them with.
Having the bar on-site is always a brilliant idea – saves you leaving the con in a desperate search for McDonalds and Caffine. And so much of it was made on site with fresh ingredients! When you’re used to the trinity of Crisps, Coke & Desperation, it’s a very welcome change…
And letting dealers make lunch-orders in advance was a friggin’ God-Send!
And it wouldn’t be KBoom with “Super Pencil Fighters”, the absurd drawing-tournament / gameshow(?) that goes on in the evening. Artists compete in an improvised draw-off of suggested topics and phrases, and the best interpretations or ideas (voted for by the audience) earns you a championship belt.
It is utterly ridiculous and soooo much fun!
KBoom is also great for embodying Spain’s “Art is Art” attitude; Erotica, LGBTQ+ and NSFW work doesn’t need to censored or hidden. Which allows proper discussions on the sexual element of the human experience to be had – and had, they were!
We’ve really gotta thank everyone who came by our table and chatted about our work, their work, other works they love, and just comics in general ^^ And the surprising amount of fanart of ourselves and Kami was amazing and humbling to see!
“The people were so great! And the con had that ‘family’ kind of feeling” – Kami D.
If you’re looking for an excuse for a holiday – we really recommend heading to KBoom next year; it’s a fun, relaxed event that feels very on-the-rise, but is still very local and loved.