Sequential Planet attended Ichibancon, an anime convention in Concord, North Carolina. Like a lot of conventions, Ichibancon is a fantastic opportunity for artists and creators to share their work with various fans. We wanted to take this opportunity to give these creators the spotlight.
Get To Know Yen Press
Yen Pen is a little shop run by Jessica Nguyen. Nguyen is a midwest-based artist that specializes in creating cute chibi art, apparel, and mugs. Though she has worked with other creators as a studio, she has been working on Yen Pen as a solo project for about four years.
Ichibancon is an anime convention, so it isn’t surprising to see that most of Yen Pen’s work is based on anime and video game franchises. “I have many inspirations, a lot of it comes from my passion for Japanese pop culture and anime,” says Nguyen. “A lot of my art is inspired by my current fandoms: Yoshihiro Togashi (Hunter X Hunter, Yu Yu Hakusho), Rumiko Takahashi (Inuyasha, Ranma 1/2), and Eichiro Oda (One Piece).” Nguyen says that she is also a huge sports anime fan as well. She says that Haikyuu, Big Windup, and Eyeshield 21 are among her favorites.
Of course, at shows like Ichibancon, Nguyen is surrounded by talented artists at Artist Alley. “Many of my peers, other Artist alley creators, also inspire me and help me feel motivated to continue on with improving my art skill,” says Nguyen.
So if you missed Ichibancon, where can you find Yen Pen? “You can find my works at many anime conventions,” says Nguyen. She says that being from the Midwest makes it easier for her to travel around the United States. “With the nature of my work being handmade mugs, it is very difficult to find another salesperson, so most likely you will be talking directly to me if you see my works at cons.”