Photographer Jeff James talks about Dragon Con

logo dragoncon


In order to prepare myself for the madness that is Dragon Con, I spoke with photographer Jeff James about some of his experiences visiting the convention. Jeff has been to the last 5 Dragon Cons and has some really good thoughts on how to maximize a visit.

UnderCurrent Atlanta: Hey Jeff, you’ve been to several Dragon Con’s. Do you have any great stories to tell?


Jeff and friend

Jeff James: “Twas my third year at Dragon Con and I was out taking pictures during an X-Men photo-shoot when Stan Lee randomly crashed the party and posed with the group.  He joked “you guys are my kind of people!”.  Just as it was amazing to see the Excelsior(!) in person, it was equally astonishing to see a guy three times my age have more energy than I do.”

UCA: Oh man, Stan Lee! That’s awesome. Well other than seeing Stan Lee, what’s a “must see” event at Dragon Con?

JJ: “Dragon Con is whatever you want it to be.  For some it’s the panels.  For others it’s dressing up in ridiculously awesome costumes that these people work on all year round.  It’s a non-stop party from beginning ’til the end.”

UCA: What’s one of the attractions that keeps you coming back to Dragon Con?


“Why so serious?”

JJ: For me, it’s all about the photography.  I go from hotel to hotel and just snap away at all the craziness.  I love taking pictures of everything and I’m a big people-watcher (and not in a creepy way…OK maybe a little).  I feel bad for any of my friends that tag along with me as they would rather see some Buck Rogers panel and I’d rather be taking pictures of the goth chicks.

UCA: I’m going to Dragon Con for the (official) first time. Got any advice for a newbie?

JJ: “Check out their website in advance before the event or download their official smartphone app once it’s available.  You can schedule out what you want to see and get in line early enough to see it.  I used to find it a bit silly for people to be already planning next year’s Dragon Con before…this one currently starts (hell, I don’t even know what I’ll be doing a week from now, let alone next year).  But that’s actually a good idea; the sooner you plan ahead the more you can get out of the experience.  Be advised though, this place can get pretty crowded.  It will take some time determining all the shortcuts getting from one hotel to another. And seriously, get a hotel room for this event.  Do not be a moron like myself and try to commute every day.”


Speed Racer Mach Five


60’s Batmobile


That was great advice from Jeff, especially the planning ahead information. I figured I would just show up and just go with the flow but Dragon Con offers so much, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by everything. So I’m definitely coming up with a plan of attack so I can see as much as possible. Plus, according to Jeff, there’s a really good chance I’ll run into someone famous!

You can find more of Jeff’s work on his Flickr site and if you see Jeff during Dragon Con 2015, make sure to say hello.

See you in 50 days!