Another Anime North has come and gone. This is going to be a relatively short con report, partially because large blocks of my time were taken up doing single events, and partially because I went back to my no-photo-taking habit from previous years. AN ended up being less of a social convention for me this year, which makes taking photos of or with people difficult, but I'm aiming for another "selfie-con" gallery from NFCC :)
Anyways, Yavarice was awesome and drove Elemental and I out to the con on Friday afternoon. It took a while to check-in, which is normal for Anime North (except for the additional confusion about our room since the way we were booked in as staff was different from previous years), but eventually we got keys, got badges, grabbed lunch, met up with Ragz, and settled in. Kurumasha's crew arrived from Ottawa just in time to swap our costume components (she had ordered some contacts for my Mai, I had her Hawkeye bow) and head out to the Congress Centre together. I spent a while handing out all the Yaya Han patterns that I had picked up for people at C2E2 and just generally browsing. I made just one single purchase, because as soon as I saw the sloth plushies at Critterama's booth, I knew I wouldn't be leaving without one. Totally worth it. It's super cute and extremely huggable (now accepting suggestions for names). Unfortunately, Mr Stark arrived just barely in time for his evening panel and not early enough to cosplay Zuko with me, so that was sad (but not entirely unexpected). He and I did get to all do a large-ish group dinner at Kelsey's though with Kurumasha, Yavarice, DarthMarySue, Ragz, Dan the Video Ninja, and Derek. Good way to wrap up the night and start off Anime North.
Saturday was my casual Chell cosplay since I needed something comfy and appropriate for staffing. Kurumasha and I went to the resin casting workshop with Chris Warrilow at 1pm where we enjoyed getting to try our hand at resin for a minimal cost. Unfortunately, when we paid for the tickets to the workshop it was labelled as being Saturday morning, so having the start time scheduled for 1:00 when the program was released was an unpleasant surprise. We both had to leave early to staff the masquerade, and put together with a late start-time, we didn't get nearly as much of an opportunity to make things as we should have. We did at least get to make one item each, and learned from someone else's mistakes about what not to do when creating a silicone mold LOL. From there the masquerade greenroom was mostly chaos-as-usual. Of course there's always different problems from year to year so anticipating what will go wrong at my level of staff is pretty much impossible. Thanks to all the entrants who were very patient in the greenroom and asked questions or voiced concerns politely! This year I ended up with the task of having numbers ready for each entrant's judging Polaroid, which was definitely a change of pace from previous years, but still gave me the opportunity to see every entrant up close and to say hi or have a brief chat with many of them, which is my favourite part of being backstage at the masq. Once the show started we had ninjas running the entrants from the greenroom to the stage, so I actually got to sit with KW Iron Man, Cloudbreak Cosplay, Mel Colley, Ice Phoenix Art, and Evie-E in their den and watch a bit of the show on the live feed! Other years we have always had problems getting dinner once the show is over since the restaurants are always packed, so this year we just ordered pizza and it worked out great. And we got another evening of conversation with friends in the hotel :)
Sunday was the big photo day for me! It was quite the hassle trying to get in a full costume with excessive makeup and fixes/repairs for the rest of the group while also packing up to checkout (especially with both suits of armour in our hotel room) but somehow we managed. So what was my mysterious Sunday "backup" costume? Since I didn't get Midna done in time for our Hyrule Warriors group, and Kurumasha didn't get her Agitha finished either, we decided to just go with the main pieces of each that were done and make postal uniforms to match Yavarice's Postal Link. To help fill out the group, I decided to put Hikarimoro in my old Midna costume and make her a uniform as well. (More details on all this stuff will be going on my Zelda gallery page with the next site update)
Kurumasha, Yavarice, and I ended up randomly meeting up with Chanelley and Kymera Cosplay who are also HW cosplayers, and we got a Hall Costume Award from Kaijugal while waiting for Hikarimoro to arrive. Once she got there, we put her in her costume and did her makeup in a hurry and then it was off to spend the afternoon doing photoshoots! I got photos or video with Viewtiful Design, Trillance, Elemental at Cosplay for a Cure, The Video Ninja, Very Frank Pictures, Paul Hillier, and we stopped by the massive Legend of Zelda photoshoot too LOL Most of those photos will be going up once I set up the new gallery, but in the mean-time, a few teasers are below. The weekend ended with a shared cab ride home for Elemental, The Video Ninja, Mr Stark, and myself; followed by a very nice sushi dinner.
Overall, Anime North was as enjoyable as always, and of course I'm looking forward to being back next year. :) Shoutouts to everyone I haven't already name-dropped because as always, they are just too many awesome people at AN to tag them all ^_^
Sam Sparks 55%