If you’ve ever been to an anime convention, you’ve spent at least a little bit of time in the Artist’s Alley. For fans, it’s an opportunity to find unusual nerdy merchandise that can’t be bought in normal stores. And for the independent artisans running the booths, it’s a special opportunity to sell their wares in person to the very customers who will appreciate their work the most. But, who exactly are these artisans? What kind of people are they and how do they run their businesses?
To delve deeper into the fascinating world of independent artists and dealers, we spoke to four different shop owners – primarily at Colossalcon in Sandusky, Ohio – about their businesses and day-to-day lives. Here’s what we found out!