Browsing the bootleg bins at WonderCon 2006. The comic-book convention, which was held Feb. 10-12 at San Francisco's Moscone Center, drew fans of all ages.
Serious collectors prize original panel art. The price of a single page of original inked artwork can easily run into the thousands of dollars.
While most conventioneers came to WonderCon to look at the art, many fans opted to imitate art, dressing up as their favorite comic-book and sci-fi characters. "Star Wars" attire was popular. Here, a few members from the Dark Side talk shop.
A lot of the fun for comic-book fans comes not only from collecting books but from collecting memorabilia. Shoppers swarmed several booths packed with toys, figurines, T-shirts and other collectibles.
Peter David, a prolific writer who has worked on stories featuring the Hulk, Spider-Man, Captain Marvel, "Star Trek" characters and Babylon 5, greets fans at WonderCon. David announced at the conference that he's signed an exclusive deal with Marvel Comics. Other big names who made appearances at WonderCon 2006 included independent filmmaker Kevin Smith, "Hellboy" creator Mike Mignola, "Spider-Man" contributor Frank Cho, and Frank Miller, who has worked on "Daredevil" and several Batman stories and also created "Sin City," which was adapted into a major motion picture in 2005.
As evidenced by the number of costumes in the convention hall, fashion is a key element for many at WonderCon. A few booths carried everything from Edwardian gowns and corsets to cartoon-character costumes.
Two costumed attendees treated fans to a sequel of "Alien vs. Predator," but with more hugs and a lot less gore than the original movie.
Thousands of books from the "golden age" of comics--the period of time from the late 1930s to the early '50s, when comic books saw a surge in popularity. That growth was due in large part to the creation of many of the superhero characters--such as Superman, Batman and The Flash--that are still popular today.
And what would a comic-book convention be without weaponry? Arms collectors could peruse all manner of swords at this booth.