What To Expect When Your Expecting To Be At SDCC: Adorable Mayhem Edition

I left my heart in San Diego... at the Magboo booth (E-04). Oh, if you still have that pitter patter in your chest I assure you after you check out the Adorable Mayhem line, you too will soon fall head over heels. We caught up with artist Tara Magboo who explains how this unique blend of fanciful delightful smile worthy pieces came to be a showstopping line of must have collectibles featured at San Diego Comic Con.

I have been working in the jewelry industry for the past 13 years. I currently work on a variety of freelance projects in the jewelry industry and teach jewelry classes. I do enjoy having the creative freedom of being a business owner. It always pushes me to create new work. I also create other jewelry work and objects that have a very different aesthetic than my “Adorable Mayhem” line. My website has a wide sampling of images of the kind of work I make.

Where do you find inspiration for your work?

I wanted to create a line of work that was cute and fun, yet had a little bit of dark humor thrown in there as well. This is where “Adorable Mayhem” was born. The line consists of cute animal characters I designed because I adore cute animals and am very much inspired by them! I also draw much inspiration from Japanese culture and craft tradition. I try to carry out that same careful attention to craft in a similar way. I am also inspired by the cute illustration/anime styles and packaging from Japanese popular culture.

What is your favorite work you have done?

My favorite pieces in my Adorable Mayhem line are my display narrative hamster rings because they are whimsical and very detailed. I combine sterling silver with resin and polymer. Even though these pieces barely function as rings ( they are a little too big to be wearable), they sit upright stably, therefore they work best as miniature sculpture. The other part I love about these hamster rings is their interactive quality which brings out the inner child in me! I fabricated a different mechanism in each ring so they can be played with in different ways. For example, I made a ring with a miniature hamster wheel. There is a tiny hamster that sits in a track in the wheel. When you turn the crank in the back of the wheel, the hamster slides in place, appearing as if he is running in the hamster wheel! I will always love to play with toys and I don’t think this part of me will ever grow up!

What current work are you most excited about?

I have been building these miniature “Adorable Mayhem” worlds housed under miniature glass domes. I am very excited about these new pieces that will release at Comic-Con! People are always drawn to my display narrative hamster rings. They were quite time-consuming to build and are not practical to go into production with. I was searching for a way that I could make similar pieces that are easier to make yet still have the same whimsical yet dark feel to them. I incorporated other materials into building these scenes to make them look more colorful and whimsical. Look out for sad, sugar-addicted bunnies and frolicking hamsters with axes!
I also, have some new pieces of bronze jewelry that I am currently working on for Comic-Con. A few new pieces will be unicorn and hedgehog jewelry! All of the pieces mentioned so far are still in various stages of completion. You will definitely find all this new work at Comic-Con!

What is one thing you would like to pursue if you had additional free time?

It is very ironic that you ask this question because I always imagine being able to stop time and I fantasize about all the various activities I could accomplish with this additional time! There are a myriad of projects I would complete, however, if I had to pick one, video making would definitely be it! I currently have a YouTube channel called “Adorable Mayhem” where I conduct mostly Japanese candy reviews, but I also use video as a vehicle to promote my Adorable Mayhem line. I would love to fully immerse myself into learning more complex video editing software to create more effects, however, at this point in time, I have just barely scratched the surface. If I had all the time in the world, I would learn the programs inside and out! Youtube has been a fun , yet very time-consuming hobby and I would love more time to invest into making and editing videos.

What do you typically offer at your booth at SDCC? Is there typically any exclusive items?
Comic-Con has become a testing ground to get a feel for how the public responds to new items I am experimenting with. The new work is initially exclusive for this reason. I invest much more time into creating new product for this show than any other show I do. My primary focus is on the jewelry pieces that I create with the Adorable Mayhem characters I designed. However, in addition, I have sold a variety of other products such as lip balm, t-shirts and tote-bags. I would say that the felt animals I make are the next most popular items.

What is your favorite autograph or collectible you’ve picked up at a convention?
Can I name two favorite things? I love perusing through small press and supporting the independent artists. I see some very innovative things happening in that area. I’m very drawn to different approaches to the comic medium that go beyond super hero story lines and aesthetics. One of the best things I picked up in small press is a comic called “The Atrox”. I cannot imagine the amount of work that must go into creating this series! The artists build three-dimensional sets using clay and mixed media to narrate their comic stories. The scenes are then photographed and printed in comic book form. Not only are the sets well -crafted, but the story line is clever, articulate and hilarious!

My second favorite thing I collected at Comic-Con was from my fellow exhibitor Tae Young Choi who is an amazing artist! His table is usually situated next to mine. He is a video game concept designer and he sells prints of his digital and traditional water color paintings. He also self-publishes books that have compilations of his artwork. He is incredibly talented and has drawn a couple of portraits of me during some of the quiet times at the show. I feel fortunate to have some of his original artwork! He even gave my boyfriend a watercolor painting! His illustration skills for portraiture and otherworldly environments is rather exceptional.

What is the best SDCC or convention moment you have had?

I’ve been exhibiting at Comic-Con for the past three years and it just gets better and better! Last year was definitely my best year from a sales stand-point! It is nice to see familiar faces that come back to support the work I make. It’s hard for me to pin down a specific moment but, overall, I have to say that I really enjoy being an exhibitor at Comic-Con. This is definitely the most fun convention that I sell at. After exhibiting for three years now, I am glad that this has given me the opportunity to get to know my fellow exhibitors because they are such a nice group of people! The exhibitors are always supportive of each other , therefore it doesn’t feel competitive. I’m very happy that I found this place and I look forward to many more happy, successful times at Comic-Con. I’m always sad when it ends. All the exhibitors spend so much time in preparation for this event and it flies by in a flash!

There it is kids! Now we know where you will be in under 3 months... Magboo booth E-04.
Kill some time between now and then by checking out the website www.magboocandyandjewelry.com or pregame with some shopping at www.etsy.com/shop/AdorableMayhem.

Stay in touch with Tara and all her little cuties at:


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