So first off tell me about yourself, and the core team involved in putting DeeCon together?
We are a group of 3rd year Animation Students at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, University of Dundee. The DeeCon Committee is made up of people from our year who have chosen to undertake this event, and we work alongside the Students’ Union.
Can other people get involved/does DeeCon need any volunteers? And if so how do they express their interest?
Right now the event is ran just by Animation Students, as it is a fundraiser for our course. However the event has grown so much over the years that it could evolve to include other people in the future. We always look for local businesses to exhibit at our event, as well as independent stall holders, Animation and Games Industry professionals to give talks, and various partners to help us make DeeCon the most exciting event in Scotland. Stall applications are closed for this year, however keep a lookout on our social media for news about DeeCon 2020.
How long does it take to organise an event like this?
A long time. Our Committee were picked in May if I remember correctly, so we had just under a year to prepare. This time is needed, as we are wanting to expand DeeCon and set the groundworks for future years to take over.
Why was DeeCon started in the first place? And has it evolved beyond that initial reason?
DeeCon was a student creation, created to raise funds for the Animation 4th Year Graduation Degree Show. Other courses have bake sales, we run an anime, gaming and cosplay event on a National scale. We like a challenge.
How many people on average attend the event?
Last year saw around 3500 people, however we expect more this year, because we gave ourselves much more time to organise DeeCon to be the highest it’s ever been!
Tell me some logistics about the event i.e location, what to do/not to do, and in general just things you feel would be good for people to know/be aware of before attending?
DeeCon 2019 takes place on 20th April at DUSA The Union and the wider Dundee University Campus. It is an all day event, with stalls, games, guests, food and lots and lots of nerdy people who all enjoy similar things! Then there is the After Party, which runs until 3am! It is a family friendly event, but children under 12 should be with an adult. You get a wristband at the door and then you are free to make your way around and in and out of the event.
Do you run any kind of Cosplay events? And if so how has that went down in previous years?
Yes! We run the Cosplay Masquerade, which gives a chance for keen cosplayers to sign up and show off their craft to the event. It will take place at the Chaplaincy Building. We have 3 amazing judges and a variety of prizes for our winners, like a Professional Photoshoot with our photographer Alasdair Watson, worth £175! Our fans also always organise a cosplay music video, which lets cosplayers have a laugh filming on the day of the event. We love seeing these fan creations and we make sure to promote their work.
What attractions are coming to Deecon this year?
We are expanding! More stalls than ever before! Plenty of amazing art and merch to browse. Bonar Hall will host the majority of Stalls, with some more in The Union. Gaming is getting an upgrade too! We are proudly working with Showcase Dundee, who are providing us with VR equipment for visitors to try out. There will be a Gaming Tournament, with gamers from all over the UK attending, and prizes to be won, as well as a casual gaming area and a Board Games and Card Games area courtesy of Highlander Games. There will be Anime movie screenings, the Cosplay Masquerade, a Professional Photographer providing custom prints for Cosplayers, and guest speakers from the animation and games industries giving talks.
And what have been some of the highlights of the past few years?
DeeCon has just kept growing. Starting out as a relatively small student endeavour, and expanding to be the only event in Scotland to cover Anime, Gaming and Cosplay. It’s on the map with events like Rycon and MCM, and positioned so centrally in Sunny Dundee. It has been great to have the Dundee Uni Students’ Union get so involved in the event. They really help us create the best event we can and provide so much for us. The Committee being passed on each year also means the event stays fresh. The highlight for our team has been seeing a massive response from fans, when we launched our DeeCon Mascot Competition. In the end we had to leave it to a public vote, because people’s designs were just too awesome! As art students, we love seeing the public get involved.
Speaking of which how long has DeeCon been running? And is it getting easier or harder to manage?
DeeCon has been around for around 10 years. It’s difficult to say as at the start DeeCon went through many changes and rebrandings, went to different venues and back and sometimes there were 2 events in one year. It has only grown, so of course there are challenges with organising such a big event. But the growth has also meant more opportunities, bigger guests and more involvement from the Students’ Union. It used to be 4th year students who ran it, but as the final year is so crucial on our studies, a while ago the choice was made for 3rd years to organise it, leaving our final year a LITTLE bit more stress free.
And are their any big changes this year that will make This DeeCon different?
This year DeeCon takes place in not just the Union, but also the Bonar Hall and the Chaplaincy Building. It is just too big to contain! There will be guides taking people between all buildings and a schedule so everyone can attend all the attractions they are interested in. We have more stalls than any previous year, so much more to see! In partnership with Dundee Uni’s Video Game Society we are making the bottom floor of The Union into a professional Gaming Tournament stage, and the tournament winner will receive a cash prize!
Where can people buy tickets?
Tickets are available on Eventbrite or at the door, however it is cheaper to buy in advance. There is also the official DeeCon T-Shirt, and bundle deals for best value. T-Shirts will be picked up on the day.
And lastly, tell me a little about the after party?
After the day event there will be a bit of time for people to grab some food, go to their hotels to change and then the After Party will start at 8pm. DeeCon will keep 2 floors of the Students’ Union all night. We are planning candy floss, Beat Sabre games, Karaoke and themed drinks! Last year’s After Party was the biggest so far, and we intend to keep our good streak.
First Published on: https://offtherecordblog.org/