The Visions science fiction
convention used to be held annually at Thanksgiving Weekend in Chicago, Illinois. I attend when possible,
and I've had a pretty good time. Here's some pictures I took at the 1996 Visions.
By the way, I apologize for some of the problems in a few of these pictures
that look like they have dust on them. Something showed up during the scanning that wasn't
visible on the original prints. It's either from the scanner or from my camera lens. :-(
Visions featured many chances to get
your picture taken with the celebrities. This sequence shows myself with the various guests. The
first picture (36K JPG) is me with Philip Segal and Yee Jee Tso. Phil was
the producer of the May 1996 Doctor Who movie, while Yee Jee played Chang Lee in the movie. Yee Jee
seemed to have a good time at the con. One night he apparently stayed out so late partying that
he fell asleep during his panel session the next day. Another time, I saw him trying out a martial
arts skill machine that was demonstrated at the con.
The second picture (48K JPG) is me with Ben Bass and Mark Ryan.
Mark (who has a tremendous singing voice) is best know in sci-fi/fantasy circles for his role as the
Saracen Nasir in the Robin of Sherwood series. Ben is best known to that community as the vampire
Javier Vachon in the last season of the series Forever Night. Notice the green wrist band I'm
wearing. That was the substitute that the Visions staff came up with for name badges in 1996. It
may have worked for them, but it made it hard for us and the guests to know who was who. Fortunately,
I had an old badge with me, as can be seen in other pictures.
The third picture (64K JPG) is me with Deborah Watling and
Lalla Ward. Deborah and Lalla both have had many roles in British stage and screen, including
Doctor Who. Deborah played the Second Doctor's companion Victoria, while Lalla played the second
incarnation of the Time Lady Romana. By the way, that's my
Florida State University Meteorology shirt. I wore it on
Saturday afternoon after FSU's victory over Florida!
The fourth picture (40K JPG) is me with Richard Biggs and
Claudia Christian. Richard is best known in sci-fi circles for his role as Dr. Steven Franklin in
Babylon 5. Claudia is well known for her portrayal of Commander Susan Ivanova in that show.
Both of them (and most of the rest of the B5 cast from what I saw on the blooper reel) are first
The fifth picture (41K JPG) is me with Sarah Sutton and
Colin Baker. Sarah played the Fourth Doctor's companion Nyssa of Traken, while Colin played the
6th Doctor in all his technicolor glory!
The last picture (42K JPG) is me with Stephen Grief and Michael
Keating from the British science fiction drama Blakes 7. Stephen was one of two actors to play the
villainous Travis, while Michael played the somewhat cowardly Vila. On Monday after the con, I got
to ride in the same airport shuttle with Michael and got to hear some of his interesting tales of other
cons and other actors.
Visions also featured chances
to get the autographs of your favorite celebrities. I took a couple of pictures while waiting in
the line. The first picture (41K JPG) shows Mark Ryan and Ben Bass busy
signing autographs. The second (43K JPG) requires a little more explanation!
I was waiting for an autograph session to start while another session (Deborah Watling and Lalla
Ward) was ending ahead of me. Suddenly, I see Colin Baker sneaking into the end of the line! Sure
enough, he gives the ladies a BIG surprise by asking for their autographs! I snapped a picture
of the event, but unfortunately I was too far away to see it well.
One reason for attending this convention was to meet in person the people that I'd been
acquainted with from the USENET newsgroup rec.arts.drwho. The
first picture (51K JPG) shows some of the USENETers in attendance. From left
to right are Chris Heer, Chris Elliot,
Jason A. Miller,
and Trina Short.
The second picture (58K JPG) is a group of us gathered under a
large statue that graces the lobby of the Hyatt. Elsa Frohman and Trina Short are in front, and to
Trina's right is Kim Weatherford. Jon Blum is kneeling with
his back to the camera, and kneeling behind him is Chris Elliot. To the right of Trina in the pink shirt
is Greg McElhatton. Sitting to Greg's right in the
background is ?. Standing along the back row are ?, Mike Doran,
and Gregg Allinson.
The third picture (64K JPG) is of a quiet room party
(especially when compared to many room parties at a Visions con). Sitting in the left foreground
is Judi Grant. Sitting behind Judi is
Greg McElhatton. The cluster at the end of the far bed includes Chris Elliot (front), Jennifer
Tifft (barely visible in the middle), and Michael Lee (back). They are clustered around Jon Blum and
his laptop. The laptop is visible, but Jon isn't! Sitting in the right foreground with
her back to the camera is ?.
If anyone I couldn't identify sees these pictures, please
drop me a line and let me know who you are.
I'd forget my own face if I didn't see it everyday!
Here are a few other pictures I took at Visions. The first
(48K JPG) is of someone roaming the fan dealers room in a Cyberman costume (from Doctor Who). The
second (91K JPG) is a notorious Doctor Who Dalek! The
third (54K JPG) was a rare site for this southern boy - a 1 inch snowfall
that occurred Saturday night and Sunday morning. The last (108K JPG)
is a holiday decoration that is displayed annually in front of the Hyatt's main restaurant. There
used to be a train running on those tracks, but it was absent in both 1996 and 1997. :-(
Note: All pictures on this page are © Jack Beven.
Please ask my permission before using them publicly.
Visions '95 Pictures
Visions '97 Pictures
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