Sunday, May 7th was the sixth annual Forest Hills Comic Con, held at the well-respected namesake, Forest Hills High School, with attendance increasing from last year. Like the previous years, Forest Hills Comic Con featured both professional comic book artists as well as local vendors. Held in the school gym, the local comic con itself was small, but the crowd was buzzing.
The increased promotion of the event on Instagram helped get the word out. Cosplay was most certainly encouraged. There weren’t that many cosplayers around, as it was mostly Pokémon one pieces, sprinkled with some homemade anime costumes. However, one gentleman went all out wearing an entire suit covered in mirrors.
The legend of band The Ramones was not lost on Forest Hills High School. Walking around the gym space, you saw the occasional illustrated tributes to one of NYC’s original Punk bands. For those who don’t know, original members of The Ramones attended the school prior to forming the band. Artist John Cebollero sold limited prints of The Ramones that he’d illustrated exclusively for this comic con. Another vendor, Normandie Syken, sold tee shirts of frontman Joey Ramone, which she designed herself. Syken’s work can be seen on Instagram @nsyken or on Etsy: NormandieArt.
In case you were strolling into Forest Hills High School looking for back issues of your favorite comic, you might’ve been in luck that day. There were some good deals to be had on graphic novels. One vendor selling back issues also hosts a monthly comic book event called Queens Comic Party. The next shindig will be held on Sunday, May 28th from 12 – 5pm over at Neir’s Tavern in Woodside. If you follow their Instagram account @queenscomicparty, you can keep up on future events.
Another local artist at the Forest Hills Comic Con was Dave Fox. This Queens resident has done work for Marvel, DC, Lucasfilms, Topps, and has contributed to properties such as X-Men, Star Wars, The Avengers, and more. In addition, Fox has illustrated and designed characters for the graphic novel Satan’s Prep, published by Skyhorse Press. At the moment he’s putting out his own creator-owned comic book series. In his downtime he plays bass in the punk band Dead On A Friday. He had a table that Sunday, available for commissions. You can follow him on Instagram @davefoxart.
Also at the local comic con was the New York Times best-selling artist John Stanisci, who’s done work for Marvel and D.C. He’s drawn prominent characters such as Batman and Spider-Man. The one and only superhero, otherwise known as Peter Parker was based in Forest Hills, Queens. The Will Eisner Comic Industry Award nominee was invited to Poland as lead designer and international judge for the Gdańsk International Shakespeare Festival. However, this accomplished virtuoso was still there selling prints and commissions.
As the crowd walked around checking out what the Forest Hills Comic Con had to offer, a rock band started performing. Consisting of high school students, the music was in the spirit of The Ramones, as previously mentioned earlier. Since their international fame took off, The Ramones are now known as Queens Legends.
Some of the artists and vendors at the comic con were Michael Gerlich (IG: @studiogerlich), Shawn Hill (IG: @ublincd), Dan Gottlieb (IG: @dantheman_official), Henry Martinez (IG: @dragonbrush_studio), Aigner Chocolates, Bit Happens(IG: @bithappens1), Sean Chen (@seanchenart), Psycho, aka John Kotsis (@psychocomicsart), Niall Orourke (IG: @nycdub), Enrique Lopez (IG: artbyquiqueststudios) and Fabrice Sapolsky (IG: @fabricesapolsky)
Last but not least, if you collect Funkos, that was covered too. On the way out, there was a table by Nuff Said Collectibles (IG: nuffsaid.collectibles). Funko Pops have become a staple in pop culture and comic con events, with the Forest Hills Comic Con being no exception.
Make sure you don’t miss out on the fun next year by following Forest Hills Comic Con on Instagram: @foresthillscomiccon.