San Diego Comic Con 2018 Recap!

If you’ve been following us on social media, you know that for the last few weeks, we haven’t been able to stop talking about San Diego Comic Con. While we didn’t have a booth at the convention this year, our COO, Jazzlyn Stone, spent the weekend talking on panels, getting to attend a seriously amazing geeky fashion show, handing out prizes, and getting to meet you – the members of our ever-faithful Bomb Squad!

After giving Jazzlyn some time to recoup after her busy and exciting weekend in San Diego, we just had to sit down and pick her brain a bit about the experience. She spoke on three different panels alongside our friends from Espionage Cosmetics, with a rotation of other awesome professional geeks to talk about their experiences and to share their wisdom about building their careers.

Each panel focused on taking your passion for the nerdier things in life and establishing a career around them, with focuses on slightly different areas of the process. “Building your own Themyscira” talked finding your niche and building the professional relationships needed to turn it into your life’s work. “Level Up: Be a Nerd Boss” tackled the technical side of getting your brand off the ground, like marketing, licensing, sales. Last but certainly not least, the “How to be a Nerd for a Living panel shared how they got their start and tackled questions about what it took to carve their paths in the industry.

"Building Your Own Themyscira" Jazzlyn Stone (COO), Sam Maggs (Writer), Robyn Warren (Geek Girl Strong), Jaimie Cordero (CEO & Glitter Jedi of Espionage Cosmetics), Jordan Dené Ellis (Jordandené & Sartorial Geek), Rose Del Vecchio (FanMail). Moderated by Lisa Granshaw (GeekFold).

“Building Your Own Themyscira”
Jazzlyn Stone (COO), Sam Maggs (Writer), Robyn Warren (Geek Girl Strong), Jaimie Cordero (CEO /Glitter Jedi, Espionage Cosmetics), Jordan Dené Ellis ( Sartorial Geek), Rose Del Vecchio (FanMail), Lisa Granshaw (GeekFold).

Was this your first time being on a panel?

No; I did a panel with Nerd For a Living previously at C2E2! That’s how I met their producer, Wendy Buske. She’s amazing, so I was really excited to work with her again. When she was like, “Hey, do you want to come to San Diego to be on this panel?” I was like, “Forever YES. Just – blanket yes.”

What advice would you impart on somebody preparing to speak on a panel for the first time?

Chug water in the hour beforehand so your mouth doesn’t get too sticky while trying to talk. Eat food – like real food. Don’t over-practice; you’ll likely have an outline beforehand and it’s good to read that a couple times, but don’t practice your answers because you’ll sound too forced. Be authentic, but read the room. If people obviously want to hear more about a story you’re telling, you can divulge a little bit more. I was on three panels that were similar, and different parts of a story I told at all of them got more exciting at different parts depending on the crowd.

"Level Up: Be a Nerd Boss"  Jaimie Cordero (Espionage Cosmetics, CEO), Jazzlyn Stone (COO), Jordan Ellis (The Sartorial Geek), Allison Cimino (RockLove Jewelry), and Mandie Roman (Geeky Glamorous)

“Level Up: Be a Nerd Boss”
Jaimie Cordero (Espionage Cosmetics, CEO), Jazzlyn Stone (COO), Jordan Ellis (The Sartorial Geek), Allison Cimino (RockLove Jewelry), and Mandie Roman (Geeky Glamorous)

What was your favorite panel moment?

When Susan Eisenberg leaned back in her chair and winked at me, very secretly and quietly. It was amazing and I almost screamed into the mic. But I didn’t, and that’s probably one of the chillest moments I’ll ever have.

Do you have any favorite sentiments or pieces of advice that really stood out to you?

So much! I was taking a lot of notes during each panel because so much wisdom was being dropped. A few favorites:

“Think about it like a stovetop, you can’t burn all four burners at the same time or you’ll burn too much gas. Switch your energy between the four to stay focused and move forward.” – Robyn Warren of GeekGirlStrong, on sticking to four points of focus to avoid burnout.

Jaimie Cordero (CEO & Glitter Jedi of Espionage Cosmetics), Travis McElroy (The Adventure Zone podcast; My Brother, My Brother and Me), Susan Eisenberg (Voice of Wonder Woman, Justice League / Justice League: Unlimited), Tomi Adeyemi (author, Children of Blood and Bone), Ben Blacker (Vertigo’s Hex Wives, co-creator of The Thrilling Adventure Hour), Jazzlyn Stone (COO)

Jaimie Cordero (CEO /Glitter Jedi, Espionage Cosmetics), Travis McElroy (The Adventure Zone podcast; My Brother, My Brother and Me), Susan Eisenberg (Voice, Wonder Woman, Justice League / Justice League: Unlimited), Tomi Adeyemi (author, Children of Blood and Bone), Ben Blacker (Vertigo’s Hex Wives, co-creator of The Thrilling Adventure Hour), Jazzlyn Stone (COO)

“Stand out by finishing something. Create something, make something, and just ‘do’. Don’t be a afraid if the first round is bad.” – writer Sam Maggs, on how the biggest hurdle in starting something new is actually starting!

“I could have saved a lot of time by asking the customers wanted they wanted first, and not just assuming.” – Jaimie Cordero, CEO of Espionage Cosmetics, on listening to your customers and fans!

We also talked about our “bugs” and seeing them not as flaws but as features instead. My OCD and ADHD were hell when undiagnosed, but now that I’ve gotten ahold of them I’ve learned to redirect that energy and use them as tools instead of letting them hinder my lifestyle. I’m learning to rethink what I originally saw as flaws in my design.

You also got an invite to the Her Universe fashion show – what was that like?

The fashion show was fucking amazing. It was like a Beyonce concert – everyone dressed to the nines to be there. Also, some of the designers were their own models and I was in the front row (very luckily – thank you, Espionage Cosmetics!) and so I got to see them before they walked out on stage.

I would see them right before going out on the catwalk and they’d be backstage pumping themselves up and then they’d step out like “HELL YEAH!” and it was really sweet and also really inspiring to see what these people were doing. The one I voted for (and won!) was inspired by Ripley from Alien[s] and she didn’t even have to pump herself up on stage, she just got onstage and her music came on and she just did it. It was so good, I was losing my mind – we were all losing our shit. It was a really, really good show.

Speaking of showcasing fashion, you wore a skirt prototype to the convention. How did that go?

People were really excited about it and asked me where I got it! I think they were really excited that I was actively trying out a prototype at a convention and that they had the chance to see something that no one else has yet. I got the most compliments on that outfit. I, personally, am even more excited than I already was about this skirt because of how much shit I shoved into those pockets and it stayed up!

Screen Shot 2018-08-02 at 12.30.10 AM

Thank you, Jamie Rage, for this adorable photo!

Last but not least – favorite cosplay?

An amazing Shade the Changing Girl, and an incredible Jon Snow:

If you know either of these talented humans, please let us know so we can give them proper credit!

Bomb Squad Spotlight: Sarra Scherb

Our latest collection of drool-worthy designs, Talk Nerdy to Me, was inspired by Emerald City Comic Con, which is happening here in Seattle next weekend. I, for one, am always excited to see (and join!) the hoards of uber-creative cosplayers, comics aficionados, and nerdy folks hanging out downtown.

Our models for this collection are two glamorous Bombshells who own their geeky tendencies with style and wit. First up, meet Sarra Scherb!

Tights, leggings, crazy, tron, computer, circuitboard

Sarra is wearing #CircuitBoard

Bombsheller: What do you geek out over?

Sarra: I grew up playing X-Men with friends at recess in elementary school. I had a Gambit poster on my ceiling from 3rd to 5th grade. Comics have been a life-long love, although I turned away from Marvel and DC as I hit puberty and began to realize that their depictions of women heroes discomforted me. I dove into indie comics instead, and later into webcomics. Now I keep up with a few quality Marvel titles (unsurprisingly they are usually written by women, or have realistic depictions of female characters), a good range of indie comics, and some incredible webcomics. I curated an exhibit about webcomics for a Seattle museum a few years ago, which was like reaching some sort of geek nirvana.

Some of the most carefully crafted comics out there are webcomics, because the creators can wield total editorial control over their pacing, content and story. Unsounded by Ashley Cope is hands-down the best epic fantasy comic going. It will fight you, and it will win. Family Man by Dylan Meconis is well-researched, deeply moving, sumptuous historical fiction set in the Enlightenment (…with werewolves). And nobody (nobody!) builds worlds like Evan Dahm and his massive epic adventures about characters who by-and-large don’t have mouths.

I have a squishy spot for open-world video games like Fallout and Elder Scrolls, and story/character driven games like Mass Effect and Dragon Age. I begged my boyfriend not to buy Skyrim as soon as it came out, because I knew that if it was in the house I’d never finish grad school. (He acquiesced, I graduated, and then I fus-roh-dahed the holy hell out of it.)

I also play Dungeons & Dragons with gusto, and read and write sci-fi, fantasy and surrealist fiction.

B: Do you have a nerdy/guilty pleasure?

S: I’m not guilty about any of my pleasures.

BUT, if “guilty pleasure” is synonymous with “embarrassing levels of geekery”, then….in high school I was so obsessed with Sailor Moon that I memorized the lyrics to the songs in Japanese and sang them loudly in the shower with the depths of emotion only a high school girl can plumb. My girlfriend and I wrote notes to each other and signed them as Haruka and Michiru, and a friend made us chokers with the Uranus and Neptune symbols on them. I mean, not that I’d ever admit that to anyone.

Tights, leggings, crazy, tron, computer, circuitboard

B: Why do you self-identify as geeky? What’s empowering about that?

Announcing to someone that you’re “a geek” in this era is shorthand for saying “would you like to gesticulate wildly and talk too loudly about a specific set of sci-fi and fantasy media with me?” It’s quick way of delineating what falls in your Venn Diagram, and invites others to overlap their bubbles with yours. Then you can do the sniffing-butts-dominance dance in which you prove your geek cred with each other, which can sometimes be really entertaining and lead to instant friendships. (And other times be tiresome and toxic. C’est la vie.)

What is “geeky” has really changed over the last 15 years: it used to simply mean that you were deeply interested in something outside the norm, possibly to the point of obsession. You could be geeky about statistics, or analog clocks, or semaphore flags, or gramophones, or searching for Ogopogo. But today it has codified into that shorthand of comics/video games/board games/sci-fi and fantasy books & tv/cosplay/anime. The primary reason for that narrowing scope is the fact that the latter can be monetized, while the former remains esoterica. While the new definition is a bit homogenous–hence the ease of Venn Diagramming with strangers–it also has brought together huge communities of people who are dedicated, creative, passionate, and enjoying the art of freaking out over something with thousands of others.

What I find empowering is the give-and-take that happens with geek media. There’s two sides: the consumption and the transformation. People consume the media: they read Game of Thrones, they watch Battlestar Galactica, they play Skyrim. And then they transform the media: they write fanfiction about the Sand Snakes, they cosplay as Kara Thrace, they code a Macho Man Randy Savage mod. The sheer amount of creativity that arises from the original media in geek culture is astonishing. “Geeky” media is filled with rich stories and worlds and characters that beg to be further explored, and geeks are just the obsessive people to do it. There’s no more fertile ground for self-expression, and for finding your own unique way of engaging, responding to and transforming the original material. That’s the power of the kind of escapist, what-if?, brain-bending stories that are told in “geek media.”

B: Do you have a favorite leggings design? 

S: The #AReflectionOf designs are my favorites. I wear them to fancy art gallery openings and people ask if I’m part of the exhibit! I love that you can see the texture of John’s brushstrokes, and even the canvas underneath. They’re a perfect synchronicity between the art + fashion that sets Bombsheller apart.