Touhou Con 2015 Artist Alley Report


Of the conventions I attended at this point, this one was largely enjoyable.

However, it was some time after that I realized something was amiss. I left this report unpublished for a long while, because I wanted to sort out my feelings over being erroneously charged for my complimentary hotel stay at the hotel venue.

As of May 2016, I have yet to hear back about this situation…

[ Particulars ]

Touhou Con 2015 was held at the Hilton at Anaheim. Parking was located at the garage, and it was priced $16 per 24 hour intervals with in/out privileges.

As a surprise from Touhou Con, I (as an artist) was given a complimentary hotel room for three nights. As a local resident, I typically forgo ever staying at hotels, let alone stay for conventions well beyond dinnertime, so this was a neat opportunity. I brought my older sister (as a regular attendee) and brother along as well. There were two queen-size beds, so I had little trouble sleeping, and I appreciate that the guest lobby internet hotspot persisted for a while beyond its boundary before having to go to the ground level to recharge,  so I was able to use the internet in my room for a while. I was very pleased!

Due to arriving at the hotel late on Day 0, I picked up my badge the following morning. I was likely the first artist of the  day to pick theirs up as they were just setting up the systems. I had a morning engagement that lasted till well over 4 P.M. after factoring in a food run, so I was impatient, haha.

Also features tickets for the concerts.

I felt that Touhou Con was more sensitive to guidebook construction this year. Instead of binding them, the “guidebook” went with a folded double-sided singular program guide, and had separate letter-sized schedule sheets. A box of chocolate pejoy, a recent product offshoot by the maker of Pocky, was also included in a standard Touhou Con bag.

Artist Alley hours ran from:

  • 12~6PM (Day 1)
  • 10AM~6PM (Day 2)
  • 10AM~4PM (Day 3)

My table was at 38, which was near the front, and I tabled alone.

My brother was my helper again, and sat in for me while I was away on Friday. Calpi and Emu, artists I got to know at Touhou Con, sat behind me!

[ Preparation ]

I created a new Touhou artwork print featuring Remilia and Flandre that debuted in this convention. I tried to put in more time compared to last year’s Reimu, haha. I also tried making some new buttons, which was only possible through borrowing Emu’s button maker and resources. Thank you!!

Packing was typical, but we had to haul the box of wire cubes with us, since I had the table to myself again. I also prepared separate luggage for my stay, since I decided to bring both of my cosplays again.

[ Report ]

[ Day 0 ]

Even though we arrived late in the evening, we still went and set up my table. This took a lot longer than I imagined! I believe both my brother and I were substantially exhausted from the long day, haha.

A few artists has gone to set up already, and from my observation, artist alley expanded greatly this year. Whether it would affect my potential business or not remains to be seen.

Afterward, I trekked back to my hotel room to finish a assignment before sleeping in a few hours later.

[ Day 1 ]

In the morning, I left my table’s care to my helper. I was able to pick up numbered tickets to TAM + Akai Ryuusei and Marasy’s concerts easily. Day 2’s Yuuhei Satellite concert tickets wasn’t being offered till on Day 2. To my surprise, the concerts were free~

Before leaving, I opted to pick up my badge right away, but it took longer for the system to process, because it wasn’t fully set up yet. Before long, I was finally granted my badge and goodie bag before I left the venue for a great deal of the day until 4 P.M.

Before reentering artist alley, I dropped off my things off at my hotel room and changed into my Tateyama Ayano (Kagerou Project) cosplay before rejoining my helper. He reported that activity was fairly slow in the manner of “I didn’t miss much,” but was informed that there were a few customers that personally asked for me. One declared that he would revisit my table, actually.

Artist alley  day 1 closed without much fanfare, and my sibling and I went back to the room to refresh ourselves before lining up for TAM + Akai Ryuusei’s concert. The line took place in a adjacent room from the ballroom where the concert was held. The line was organized in a fairly tidy snake fashion. I played a few games on my ipod touch to kill time.

The concert ended up starting later than scheduled, but the run time was fairly long regardless. Run time was probably about an hour long- certainly more than 40 minutes, at the least.

TAM, the violinist, introduced himself first, and then proceeded to play several different songs. He reserved Touhou songs for later. I took note of the concert program, but I’m probably missing a few pieces.

By the way, film and photography was not banned, but camera flash was. I took the opportunity to record some of the performance, largely for live audio because my film footage is awful.

General setlist:

  • Anime EBM
    • Notable songs I could recall include:
    • Madoka Magica’s opening theme song
    • Monogatari’s ending theme song “Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari”
      • It’s one of my favorite performances!
      • I actually recorded a majority of it.
  • Nico Nico Douga Medley [10 minutes]
  • Touhou Project

Pianist Akai Ryuusei eventually went onstage, introduced himself, and played a few so-called “warm-ups”… which I felt wasn’t totally true, because a lot of them were enjoyable to listen to. XD

  • Accompaniment with Akai Ryuusei
    • TAM notes that this was the second time they ever collaborated on stage!
  • Kommakyo [classic Touhou Songs like U.N.Owen]
  • Songs by Akai Ryuusei’s circle [Jazz Covers!]
  • Famous Touhou Project Medley on Violin
  • More Touhou Project songs
  • Finale [a regular performance of the song from “Phantasmagoria of Flower View,” I believe]

The concert closed with great fanfare. TAM invited fans to gather around the foot of the stage so that he could take a selfie. This selfie happens to be shared on his twitter account for a while, haha.

The musicians eventually made way to sell their CDs to fans. The line was very long! I was very tempted to purchase a CD or two, but I couldn’t justify purchasing things right away when I had yet to break even.

Afterward, I went back to the hotel room to unwind.

[ Day 2 ]

I figured that since I was going to be onsite for the entire day, I felt it was fine to wear my heavier cosplay. I had forgotten how hard it was maneuver between tables with the costume. I had a pleasant time putting it on though, since I had a room to dress up at ease.

I don’t remember much of the day, but I took several breaks to browse. I made several purchases on heavily discounted books [likely remnants of books being marginally damaged and thus deemed unfit for ordinary sales, and probably overstock from a warehouse]. I bought two copies of Spice & Wolf volume 10 novel (one I that I planned to gift later), and a Resident Evil 5 artbook. I got one novel for myself, another as a gift, and the artbook was for my helper.

For lunch, my helper went and procured a subway sandwich for me. Thanks!

Throughout the day, I took on several chibi commissions. What was notable was that I got commissioned to draw characters from Atelier Ayesha and Atelier Escha & Logy! As it was late in the day, I chose to finish them in my room later in the evening after the Yuuhei Satellite concert.

By closing, I hurried back to my room to change out of my costume, because wandering around with it during the concert would be unwise.

The Yuuhei Satellite concert was the most energetic of the three scheduled concerts. Fans used glowsticks extensively, and many jumped to the beat. Unfortunately, I was feeling tired and quite unwell at the time, yet was stubborn enough to stay to listen to live music. For a great deal of the time, I remained seated and just focused on listening to the performance.

The first 15-20 minutes was by the group’s DJ, and then Moimoi, the vocalist, showed up on stage to sing several songs. Most of them were from the doujinshi OVAs. I kept on expecting to see some animated PVs due to the screens being lit, but they weren’t used at all till the end of the concert.

Like on Day 1, the concert closed with the musicians selling their CDs to fans. I had commissions to finish not to mention feeling exhausted, so I retired early.

To my fortune, my helper brother came back with a signed poster! >A<

Amusingly enough… my sister procured a signed poster as well, haha.


[  Day 3 ]

Overall, Day 3 felt more subdued than Day 2. I chose to reprise Day 1’s cosplay.

Before reprising in artist alley, I had my siblings haul all of our things to my car, and properly check out from the hotel.

I went shopping for more discounted books again…

Also includes one of day 2's purchases.
Also includes one of day 2’s purchases.

I took a temporary leave from my table early in the afternoon to attend Marasy’s piano concert. The line queue wasn’t very long by the time I arrived. While waiting, some staff manually brought filled boxes and eventually a wagon filled with pejoy to hand out to attendees.

The concert was splendid! Compared to Day 1’s concert, no film or photography was allowed. However, I did enjoy the tranquility of being able to listen to music free from loud audience cheers except for claps at the end of each notable performance. I found the audience was trying to be respectful by being subdued, yet focused on listening. Regardless, Marasy tried to get listeners to participate, though! He played several upbeat songs that had some people clapping along.

Unlike the previous concerts, I was able to secure a seat with a fairly nice view.  The only unfortunate thing was that I was sitting on a very narrow spot, so it wasn’t exactly the most comfortable when I had to regularly raise my head up to see the performer.

At the end of the convention, my siblings and I wandered around for a bit. We eventually settled on watching the closing ceremonies, since the return trip’s traffic forecast was horrendous for some reason. I usually skip the ceremony, because of time constraints and my assumption that there wasn’t much to glean from. This one started an hour late annoyingly, but this closing ceremony presented all of the guests and let them have closing remarks. That was neat~

[ Conclusion ]

Highlights of this convention were:

  • Free and enjoyable concerts! I particularly enjoyed the instrumental ones the most.
  • Received autographs for the first time! Thanks sis!
  • Generally profited from the convention, which was surprisingly when I went and spent a bit on some goods, books, and food.
  • Complimentary hotel room! Not so due to unexplained circumstances. I lost over $500 from this ahaa…
  • Having a room made it easier putting on cosplay onsite.
  • Fairer parking rates and with in/out privileges.
  • Collected many boxes of pejoy and green tea pocky snacks.
… our hoard of pejoy and pocky.
Some more loot~
And more autographs!

Cons of this convention:

  • Hosting a larger artist alley likely made several artists struggle to profit.
  • Staff, guests, and artists that accepted complimentary hotel rooms were erroneously charged. I heard some people were able to successfully win their case (congrats!)… but a lot of us (including me) have yet to hear back from the con about possible remunerations… let alone the full story behind this outrageous situation.

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