Sunday, September 15, 2019

Blog Con 2019

I stopped by Full Sail University to see the opening of this year's Blog Con. Ford sponsored the event and several vehicles were parked outside the entrance. In the parking lot a woman had her arm stretched out in front of her holding her phone which she was  talking to. She was clearly recording a video of herself reporting about Blog Con. I have tried to sketch at Blog Con every year since 2009. It is a chance to see what is happening in this relatively new field of digital communication. This year's theme was "Tell Your Story." The Full Sail Live auditorium was packed. Blog Con had sold out.

Rachelle Lucas a Freelance Spokesperson, Writer, and Videographer was giving the key note talk. I sketched her as she waited to go on stage. She spoke about getting a trip to Dubai and being nervous about going to the Middle East. With world tensions so high she feared that she and the people with her might be dragged out into that desert to be shot. The trip however was lovely. She showed an Instagram photo of herself in a bathrobe sipping a cup of champagne. It looked like the ideal relaxing vacation. However the reality behind that image was something else. She had welts all over her arms and legs from mosquito bites. That was why she was in the bathrobe. 

Rachelle talked about walking through the lobby of the hotel with several gentleman carrying the campaign. Two older gentlemen seated in the lobby, I imagine them looking like the two guys in the balcony of the Muppets show, winked and nodded their heads. Had they seen the cameras set up in the hotel suite their imaginations would have gone wild.

Rachelle's primary point was that social media like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter are platforms to help drive traffic to the place where the WHOLE story can be  told which is her blog. It was rewarding to hear that for once I might be doing something right since I use those media in the same way. 

She pointed out that telling stories is as important in society as the basics of survival. Stories have been passed down through the generations, filling history books, offering insights into our culture. They are central to humans communicate. We engage with others through stories, and storytelling is a lot more than just a recitation of facts and events. As human beings, we are automatically drawn to stories because we see ourselves reflected in them. We inevitably interpret the meaning in stories and understand ourselves better. It was helpful to be reminded that the simple act of sharing ideas every day has meaning and value.

After her Key Note, the  crowd was divided up into different groups. Someone would hold up a sign saying something like, Foodies and all the foodies would gather around the sign. I always feel like the odd duck out since what I do does not fit neatly into any of those categories. I'm not a mommy blogger, a foodie or a lifestyle blogger. Though I am starting to use digital sketch tablets, I'm not a tech blogger. I feel too old school to fit into the modern digital categories. I have so much to learn and Blog Con was a fire hose of information. Someday I hope to master the business of telling stories.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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