by Mary Cronos
What a great time we had! I am still overwhelmed with all the feelings, memories and happenings. At first I want to say thank you to all who made this past couple of days so extraordinary awesome! Thank you Tatjana, Anja and Ines, my lovely mission ladies! I can’t imagine life without you anymore. We rocked Brussels and made many lucky faces! Thank you Arantza, Anika, Sabrina, Janina and Franzi for always being on my – on our – side to support the big mission-dream (and also my personal little writer- and artist-dreams). Thank you Adela, Marina, Albert, David and all the other great staffmembers of KLZ! Thank you for always being patient and helping us whereever you could. Thank you Kat Graham, Chris Wood and Michael Malarkey for posting my drawings in the Social Media. I am pretty happy that you apprechiate my art! There are many more and I am sorry if my tired mind forgot one important name. Just be sure: I am super glad you were with me!
But now: let’s start the report. 🙂
Step 1: Brussels we’re coming!
Traveling by bus is easy and nice – if you have not much luggage. … You can’t imagine, how much luggage I was carrying with me that day. There were my clothes for one and a half week, the mission-suitcase with the mission-cheque, the camera-equipment (incl. tripots, studiolights, flashes, lenses, laptop etc), a dozen books for my lovely readers (and some books just for me to read) and tons of tiny little things like Post-its, pencils, posters, reading excerpts, bookmarks… And what shall I tell you? When I arrived in Bochum and Agent Anja took me to her place, a very heavy downpour showered us. A real wonder that my equipment survived. After a very short night (I „slept“ 10 minutes) we started early Friday morning to catch our Thalys (train) to Brussels. Now we also were carrying a huge bag with mission-shirts. X_x We kind of blocked the whole train with our stuff. Then we finally arrived and Brussels welcomed us with April-weather – and Agent Ines and Agent Tatjana. We made plans for the weekend, tried to focus on our mission (even though the Belgian chocolate was a big temptation) and finally were ready for BloodyNightCon Europe.
Step 2: We are on a mission! B-)
We had big plans. During registration we chose the place for our „headquarter“ and started our daily agent-work: collecting funds and signatures (wedding card) and sharing shirts and information (we became kind of inofficial staff members). We did what we were able to be prepared for Saturday and Sunday. Of course a lot happened way different from what we planned but in the end, everything worked great! We used waiting lines to talk about the mission, ISF and EndIt, we gave the wedding card to Ian during his first panel (he was very touched – like the audience, I think), we talked to the MoC David Ordinas to be our model during the BloodyNightPhotoshot (and he agreed with pleasure – what an awesome man!), we set the set up (lol – the „bloodynightstudio“) and started shooting nearly in time at 6:30pm. The awesome addition: Anika offered her help and so we had an makeup artist too. Pretty great service! Like the fact, that everyone will be able to download his/her photos soon from a secure server (thanks to fotograf.de btw!).
p.s. I am on it, friends. I am positive to upload all photos not later than Sunday!
p.p.s. Anja won FIVE meet&greets on Saturday! Holy crap! Why didn’t she play the lottery?! Our fundraiser would have been exploded! 😀
Sunday was tough. Short nights and long days since weeks, we wanted to sleep. but instead we were working on plan A, B, C and Z for our Mission on Stage. We planned for the case that there will be a delay, for the case there will be only an Ian&Michael-panel – or not even that. We planned for the case that one or some of us won’t be able to make it on stage (for what reason ever). We talked about our plans with Adela and Arantza, Marina and Marina, Albert and Alberto and also David… There was so much to think about: the timing, the light, the music, the possible reactions on stage and in the audience. We are perfectionists. Guys, you have nooo idea what we went through. And in the end, we luckily had plan B-Z. The single Ian-panel was canceled and Michael was on stage, and we lost one agent (sorry, that you didn’t made it, Beth 🙁 ).
And then the final moment happened.
Mission accomplished! B-)
P.S.: thank you so much to all who took photos or were filming our mission. Feel free to send them to us, so we can share them (we will mention you for sure): firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 3: Barcelona
Even if I left the most parts of my camera equipment with Agent Tatjana, my luggage had still overweight – I realized during the registration of my luggage. But anyway, after a short flight (you probably won’t believe me, if I would tell you that Chris Wood was joining the same flight as us – but he did) we landed safely at „BCN“ and felt like in a German hairspray commercial: „Berlin, storm, the hairstyle keeps in shape. Brussels, rain, no problem for your hair. Barcelona, sun is burning, your hair is still protected.“ (does anyone remember this advertisment? 😀 you need to google „3 Wetter Taft“). What I try to say: it was hot like hell. When we finally reached our appartment, it felt even more like paradise because of that. It was just so close to my personal „perfect“.
During the week we slept nearly until noon (at least the most of us – now there were „only“ Anja, Arantza, Franzi and me), explored the city during the afternoon and talked the whole night. We saw so many great things. Imressive architecture (mainly by Gaudí), beautiful nature, street artists and so much more (I wasn’t able to check all my photos yet, they’ll be soon on my flickr-page).
Well, while the others were talking by night, I was focussing on drawing Kat Graham, since I decided to meet her in Barcelona (Anja met her in Brussels and told me so many great things about her). Maybe she would be a great partner for mission change in future… or at least she might share my drawing. I was so proud that I finished it until Friday. Looking forward a night with some sleep we just talked a bit longer and someone mentiones Chris Wood and that he said, he would love to play Batman one day. I couldn’t help my self… a few minutes later I was searching for a good photo of Chris Wood and a Batman mask. We planned to attend the Bloodynightcon Party Saturday – the perfect chance to hand a drawing to him.
Step 4: BloodyNightCon
Saturday morning, I was tired but happy. I really made it. Its just a quick drawing, but still you recognize Chris Wood within the drawing – even though he is wearing a Batmanmask. So, it should be okay. Motivated the four of us left our appartment for BloodyNightCon. I truely love KLZ, but for the first moment I was shocked: I am sorry to say that, but I am no fan of hyper-fangirls – especially not, if they are sitting behind me, screaming, singing, crying the whole time. It sucks if you can neither see the actors on stage (wrong pass number) nor listen to them.
But even without those extreme-fans I was just a nervous wreck (and who knows me for a while, know also that I have no problems with talking to celebrities etc). The past weeks I was working really hard for this moment. My plan was to win a meet&greet with Ian Somerhalder (no money to buy one) to tell him something really important (at least for me really important). So I was staring at the screens, waiting for the raffle results for his meeting. You have no idea how I felt, when I saw my number on it. „Relieved“ isn’t nearly enough to describe the moment.
Now that he knows, I can tell you too: Dariel Seine, the maincharacter of my first book series Nafishur is somehow the reason for everything I do: He has ice-blue eyes, dark hair,… I guess, I can stop here. In fact, he looks exactly like Ian Somerhalder. So far so good. The creepy part thing about it: When I created Dariel – nearly 10 years ago – I didn’t know Ian, but the description of him is, like I had a picture of him right next to me. When I saw Damon Salvatore in tv for the first time, I just thought: WTF! (sorry) What is Dariel doing in a foreign tv-show?! I googled the role and googled the actor. I read about all the things he does and decided to research more about his Foundation ISF. At this time ISF was announcing a competition for creative shirt-designs. That was just like my personal invitation. A few weeks later, I was a volunteer of ISF and was planning my first workshop on my first convention. It didn’t take long and I was also part of the German ISF Team Hic et Nunc Society e.V. and founded my own international support team TIBA too. That was the beginning of Mary Cronos as official artist, event planner, charity lady and more. Guys, I tell you: without Ian looking like Dariel, I would be someone whole different today. Probably without an own art business, without own charity projects and without published books. I wouldn’t even know the people that belong so much to me now I can’t live without them anymore.
So Saturday was really important for me. The 6th June. The day that is a black and bad day for me and my family for one year now, finally got a little splash of positivity. At least I was able to tell Ian this story (in way shorter) and gave him one of the first English reading excerpts of Nafishur. I really hope, he will read it soon and if he likes it, will tweet about it. At least that was what he promised to me.
The next moving moment happened in the evening during dinner. When Chris Wood showed up at our table he was already awaiting our little surprise (Anja won a meet&greet with him and already told him, that there will be one in the evening 🙂 ). I won’t forget his face and how his head fell down when he started to laugh. Awesome moment. And he was so impressed, that he decided to put my drawing on instagram. There are around 60,000 likes right now. And this kind guy added my name and website to his post, when I asked him for. How nice is that?! I was and am full of gratitude – and I was absolutely motivated and remembered that I told Michael I might have something for him the next time we will meet. So I used the last sheet of paper and the last night to draw a Michael Malarkey portrait too – while my phone was going crazy cause of Chris‘ post.
So Sunday I was really tired and just was wondering when my vacations will start. In fact, I was so tired, that I fell asleep over my Michael drawing. So I had no choice but finishing the drawing of Michael while waiting in the autographs-line. I am so so thankful to Adela for allowing me to accompany Anja and Franzi – without having an own autograph to sign. This way I had the chance to remember Ian on my book and the Mission, to say thank you to Chris for his post, and to hand out the drawings to Michael and Kat.
Michael was the first one. I was already wearing my agent-suit for a photo with Ian later the day, so he remembered me immediately. He liked his picture a lot (his comment: he looks way better than the real me). In the afternoon also he posted my drawing – on Twitter this time. And this very smart man figured out that my Instagram- and my Twittername are not the same and used the right one. I was kind of impressed. 😀
The last one I visited during autograph-session was Kat Graham. And her reaction was outstanding. First she was staring at the drawing, at me, at the drawing. Than she just said „I need a photo“. What she took were several photos of the drawing and me. A few seconds later she told me that she will post it on Instagram. I asked her for linking my name and her reaction was: „Of course! Let’s post it now!“ I felt a bit bad about causing so much trouble but on the other side I was really happy about her reaction. She edited her favorite photo, let me add my name and posted it. Then she asked me if she could keep it. Of cause! Therefor I drew it. She told me she will frame it. Before I left the room, the post already had nearly 2000 likes. Right now it’s nearly 80,000. This is just mindblowing! Thank you so so much!
The golden end of the day was a meet&greet with Kat and Chris (because of delays both m&g were merged together so we got two celebtrities instead of „only“ one). Very cool! So my „models“ met their artist again and learned about Nafishur and the Mission too. Both got our mission-contact-address and a reading excerpt of Nafishur. Kat promised to read it and to give another one to Nikki. I really hope she will do. I would love to get her feedback. At least she liked the storyline. 🙂 If you want to read it too, here you will find a pdf-version of Nafishur Praeludium Dariel (English Excerpt).
Now I am home. I am missing my crazy friends and extended family already. But editing tons of photos reminds me on all these perfect and unique moments. I am working on a crowdfunding campaign to fund the translation of Nafishur into English. At the same time I am working on a possiblity to sell you my art on posters and postcards too (within Germany would be easy, I just need to learn how I can sell around the world legally). Until this will happen (I will keep you updated): maybe you wish a comission work? A drawing just and only for you or your beloved ones? Just contact me! 🙂
Wow again! What a report. Sorry for such a long one. I guess that’s the writer in me. I might write a book about it. 😉 I am wishing all of you a wonderful evening (here in Europe and a nice morning in Australia and Co and a nice afternoon in America 🙂 …).
Be blessed my dear friends.