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  • Writer's pictureChris Deboda

Lightbox Expo 2023 Wrap Up

Updated: Nov 5, 2023

About a week has passed since Lightbox Expo 2023 has ended, and after some much needed R&R, figured I would finally share a few images and final thoughts to wrap up this years event held at the Pasadena Convention Center in California.

Main entrance to the Artist Alley hall at LBX 2023.

First time exhibiting at this show since 2019, I thought this years event was even bigger and better than that first experience. Table sales wise, it was actually a personal best! Which was a little surprising to me considering that I thought this show was more of an industry event about networking with other artists and studios for jobs and such. Not too surprising was that the art books were easily the best sellers and glad that the new book I brought was well received. But for me, beyond the sales at a table, these conventions are always more memorable because of the connecting (and reconnecting) with new and familiar folks alike. From former coworkers, old classmates, or artists I only knew from Instagram -- many of them were at this show. These events are always a nice little reunion of sorts and is an aspect that I look forward to whenever I do get to attend or exhibit. (And ok, the money/sales helps a little too! :D)

Pretty much every studio that I have worked at going back to the beginning of my career, I have come across at least a couple of past coworkers from these studios. Once the front doors open, everything became almost a blur. Busy working behind an artist alley table, I unfortunately was not able to see everyone that I had intended to and I apologize if I missed anyone. But overall it was a good time nonetheless and probably among my top 2 or 3 convention experiences ever.

Day 1. My humble table amongst the rows of other ultra talented artists.

Each morning, I would walk around the semi-empty floor before it opens to the public. And as I made my rounds and checking out everyone's set up, I couldn't help but think how high the quality bar was for this years show! Other art conventions I would exhibit at (and granted, I only do a couple of local shows a year) while they are usually great as well and a lot of other show is as inspiring, humbling, and makes me want to "level up" more like this one (for me, at least). Just the kick needed after a long and trying year in the entertainment industry as a whole.

Snippets from LBX 2023. Top 2 left corner photos are courtesy of Ed Li.

All that said, I most likely will NOT be tabling at next years event as I think I would like to take in a more "casual" approach as an attendee. Great to see some other new talent tabling as well. Maybe I'll even get to catch a demo or panel for once. But I'm already thinking about what I would like to present and have on display for a potential future table at Lightbox Expo as well. I even saw a cosplayer or two this year! That was new, I think. Maybe next time we'll see cosplaying of our favorite creators and artists since I thought this show was initially intended more as a celebration of the creators behind our favorite films, comics, and games, etc.? (which would be kinda hilarious to see :))

Pasadena City Hall at night from the balcony of the Westin during the "Sweet Social" event.

Wrapping up here, special thanks once more to the event organizers, my table assistants, and to everyone who stopped by and chatted at my table!

And last but not least, just a quick note that my online shop should now be updated with some of the latest merch from the show. As well as FREE shipping currently available on qualifying orders for a limited time. (Just in time for the holidays too!)

Well that is all for a memorable Lightbox Expo 2023. See you in 2024!

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