Hal-Con Makes Me Want To Dress Up

This November, in the middle of my Movember growth, I had the great pleasure of attending Hal-Con, a comic/sci-fi convention in Halifax, NS.  This was due in great part to photographer and friend Jake Garn, founder of Shoot For Love.

I brought up the convention to Jake a while back, thinking it would be a great place to source creatives of other genres on how they keep creative in their own work and what experiences they could share with us.

Needless to say, it was an incredible 3 days.

I was able to speak with 4 highly insightful and generous artists about their own takes on creative work.

Christopher Torres, comic artist and creator of LOL Comics and Nyan Cat.

Ian Boothby, an improv, sketch and stand up comedian who is also an award-winning comic book creator best known for his work as one of the main writers on The Simpsons and Futurama comics for Bongo.

Ty Templeton, who teaches script writing and illustration at Ty Templeton’s Comic Book Bootcamp and works on Batman, Superman, the Avengers, the Justice League, Howard the Duck, Mad Magazine, Star Trek and more.

You can find each interview by clicking on their names above.

First Impressions

Costumes.  Incredible Costumes.

The thought of spending time(lots of time) putting together an outfit to wear to Hal-Con was the last thing on my mind, but in the end I sort of felt left out of the fun.  A lot of these costumes were completely photo/tv/movie worthy as far as I’m concerned, which just showed the dedication and love these folks had for their genres.

Check it:

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Got My Doctor Who On

Peter Davison

Thank you to my friends at Aperture Studios for their great work and this shot!

Yes, I got to meet, get a photo with and signed by fifth Doctor Who incarnation, Peter Davison.  It was surreal, and probably as close to anything genuinely Doctor Who-ish that I will ever get to – except for my new coffee mug.


Just to give you and idea of some of the great talent I had the pleasure of spending the weekend with…

Hal-Con had Jewel Staite, from Firefly and Stargate Atlantis.  Jewel was a sweetheart – everyone loved her(and my friend Lisa – in the purple top – was her “handler”), she loved our city and I truly hope she comes back next year.  Check out her food blog, HappyOpu – it’s epic.


Robert Maillet, who – among other parts – played the Uber Immortal in 300, Dredger in Sherlock Holmes and Aleksis Kaidanovsky in Pacific Rim, was literally so big in person, my lizard-brain sent me into fight-or-flight mode just moments before his hand swallowed up mine in a friendly shake and got this shot snapped.  He was a great sport who catered to all of the fans requests – within reason(part of me wanted to ask him to hold me like a baby for a shot, but I thought that would be too far…)


Rob Denbleyker of Cyanide & Happiness and hilarious/talented guy, gave me this great pose – in his hammerhead shark costume no less – for my buddy Aaron… it’s just something we do.


At one moment, I turned around and saw Ajay Fry, co-host of Inner Space(love this show) across the showroom.  I raised my camera – we locked eyes – and got this spontaneous shot before he came over to chat and get some more posed ones.


Garrett Wang, who played Harry Kim from Star Trek Voyager, was the life of the whole weekend.  He was playful, energetic, humorous and was up for anything that was thrown at him.  A true lover of the conventions and the fans.  We shared a moment after interviews watching the flash mob with a few other bystanders.


Mr. Billy Dee Williams, yes, Lando Calrissian himself was another top-ranking guest at Hal-Con.  Did you know he paints? (I did)  He auctioned off The Empire Strikes Back, this large painting he created – many artistic skills in this man.


In the end, it was great fun, great friends, great food and a great big hole in my wallet that was totally worth it – go to Hal-Con – even if you don’t like the shows or games or everything else they serve up there because believe me, in the end;  you will want to dress up too.

Michael Carty



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