Now that I'm back to regular life after a busy weekend... Comic Con! It didn't suck! Yay! hahaha... I don't have a great history with Fan Expo and its sister events.
I arrived shortly after 4 on Friday and spent 50 minutes in line to get my wristband. While that was unpleasant (especially carrying my coat and costume stuff) it was about what I expected when arriving at an event this size as the doors opened. Mai had her first test-run, and while I want to make a change to my makeup for next time (and add coloured contacts and those boots NEED insoles) I think everything else was good! I was expecting to want to make alterations to the actual costume or wig. I did a shoot with Everage and also had my first shoot with Very Frank Pictures! I'm really excited to share the shots from what I've seen so far ^_^
Since I was only there for the one day, I basically took one quick lap through the exhibitors' hall; just enough to look for the books I wanted (found none), the baby pop vinyls I wanted (found one), and I made an impulse buy of The Pitiful Human-Lizard from the Artist Alley, since the title has grabbed my attention at Silver Snail before, but I haven't actually read it. Other than that, it was just wandering and running into con-friends (I don't see you guys often enough!) and even meeting some new people. Hope that next convention (Ad-Astra? C2E2? Anime North?) I can have a longer visit with everyone <3
At random: shout-out to the Dad in line ahead of me who was there with four or five 14-year-old boys. I hope you survived, sir ;)
Since my camera is still missing (I know it's SOMEWHERE here in the Mystery Shack) no photos again. Such a plain wall of text T_T
Better add a couple of preview Mai images ~_^
For more Mai in the mean-time, check out Very Frank Pictures' gallery on Facebook!
This is a thing that happened because of the awesome creative people I’ve met in fandom, all building original ideas off one another’s work. I hope we can keep doing these kinds of projects with our OC’s in the future.
Crystal Entropy: Mai Sheri Costumes
Camera, editing, effects, voice over: Dan the Video Ninja
Voice over: Doctor Holocaust
Voice over: Professor M. Hades
Concept: Professor Enigma
For more about Crystal, check out her gallery page.
I finally made the decision to check out Toronto Comic Con, about seven years after the last time I went (back when it was still March Toronto Anime Con). I've heard that it's shaped up to be a worthwhile convention these days, so I'm giving Fan Expo another chance and we'll see how this goes. I'm only going to be stopping by Friday evening though, since I have other plans for the weekend. I'm planning to do a couple of photo shoots and look for a couple of comics that are missing from my current collection. And, of course, hanging out with awesome people!
I want to give Mai a test-run, which means putting the pedal to the metal this week to get her done. I went full-llama* last week so I'm really behind schedule, but I'm pretty sure that I can get things done as long as I can focus. So here's how things are looking for the next few months' events. As always, I'm flexible and happy to join groups since that's always more fun than cosplaying alone... just saying...
Fri: Saffron (weather permitting)
Sun: Princess Hawkguy
Fri: Princess Hawkguy (Hawkguy/Marvelverse group)
Sat night: Pepper???
Fri: Mai (with Zuko)
Sun: Twili Midna (Hyrule Warriors/Zelda group)
So leave me a comment if I might see you on Friday, and I'll keep my eyes peeled!
* "becoming a llama" is now my phrase for being thrown off my creative groove. Shut up; I like it :p
So much (and yet also so little) to say about the inaugural Kitchener Conic Con.
Part 1: The Con Itself
I had a good time. I hung out with friends, got to know the KW geek community a little better, and saw a lot of people (especially families) being excited about comics.
I went with KW Iron Man, doing our Pepperony thing. Since he was a guest of honour and was doing most (or all?) of the cosplay programming, I spent almost all of the con sitting behind his table in the market place (an experience that all partners of "professional cosplayers" know all too well LOL). We weren't selling anything, but it was a convenient place to have all the extra armour pieces that we brought for the "props and armour" panel out on display promoting his work (especially since he was doing so many events that he was barely at the table). I was thrilled that Ragz Cosplay showed up since he kept me company at the table all day while Mr Stark was off doing his thing. I did have the opportunity to leave a couple of times for lunch and a little walk around the building, and was fortunate to be able to squeeze in some photos/video with Trillance, Everage, and Yo Napper while doing that. And when the con wrapped up, Mr Stark and I had a fun dinner out with a bunch of our cosplay friends ^_^
Part 2: The Con's Online Presence
Unfortunately, as much fun as I had at the convention, I feel I should at least acknowledge the issues surrounding KCC's disastrous PR. If you're part of the Southern Ontario con-goer community, especially if you know staffers from any of the other cons in the area, you probably saw at least a little of the drama being played out in the days immediately following the event.
I watch the event's Facebook page, and in the lead-up to KCC I was a little surprised at some of the comments that were being posted by the Con Com*. While the posts weren't outright rude, they were often written in a way which was casual, joking, or not actually answering the question which could easily be read as being rude, condescending, or elitist due to the loss of meaning in text communication. But I gave them the benefit of the doubt. That is until, the day after KCC, I saw the abusive post by the Con Chair directed towards an attendee who was unhappy about the con's parking situation... and the next couple of days of fallout and escalation and bullying and other people's experiences with the Chair which came through my facebook feed. The behavior went so far beyond unprofessional that they no longer have my benefit of the doubt.
The bottom line being that even though I had a great time at KCC itself and I would like to support the awesome artists, craftspeople, vendors, and friends I have made in the region, the aftermath left a pretty bad taste in my mouth. Since the con chair seems to be unable to treat all their attendees and prospective future attendees with respect, I would have a difficult time choosing to attend another one of their events.
If you read my blog regularly, you'll know I rarely get into the gossipy stuff that goes on at conventions. Most of the time it's not worth mentioning, especially since it rarely or never affects me directly, nor does it affect the experience of the average attendee. But the KCC statements have created a LOT of ill-will in the community, and when put together with the very poor treatment that Mr Stark and a few other friends received earlier this year from KW Tri-Con organizers, I'm pretty disappointed in Kitchener-Waterloo's ability to host events which are welcoming places for everyone to feel comfortable sharing our geeky interests.
*for those not involved in convention staffing "con com" refers to the convention committee, and the " con chair" is the convention chairperson aka the boss.
Sometimes even the simplest projects can end up causing a lot of frustration. It's been one of those weeks for me. I flew through the pattern design and sewing and details of Mai's shirt... until I got to the collar. I have no idea how I got the rest of the pattern exactly as I wanted it right off the bat and managed to have such trouble with the collar, but there you go. The first attempt gave me something with was saggy and floppy and just sad. And because I hadn't realized how wrong it would be, I miiiight have sewed it on "properly" instead of using temporary basting stitching. *sigh*
So that took a day to rip out without damaging the shirt *more sighs*
And I drafted a new piece and tried again. And again. And again. between size, shape, and position on my fabric to best take advantage of its stretch, I made the collar 4 times and sewed it together 5. Never again. I still don't even understand how I messed up a simple collar that badly to begin with O_O
But since it was sorted out, I was eager to move on. I wanted to spend last night putting the finishing touches on the shirt, and maybe even whipping up the vest. That was the plan. Then I checked the mail when I got home, found out that my Hawkeye sunglasses had been delivered, and then discovered that I had been shipped the wrong thing. Well, the right thing, but the wrong colour, which was the whole point of ordering online to begin with. I can get black aviators anywhere >_>
The point of all that though, aside from never trusting the internet, is that opening a dispute with the seller and finding another source for replacements (which probably aren't going to arrive in time) and then having to deal with some emails etc etc etc took up my whole night. No time for sewing at all, let alone almost finishing a costume.
Cosplay Life: I have a beef with you >_>
While I wait to get photos to go with my KCC report, I want to do a small progress post. I had really really wanted to finish one of the 3 costumes that I'm actively working on by the end of February. I tried hard to push at least one of them to a point where I could consider it complete. Unfortunately, I failed in that goal. (Though I take solace in that it's due to the fact that I've been splitting my time between >5 costumes this month instead of due to me slacking off)
I ran into different problems with each of my main projects (what I've decided to call 2015's Phase One)
Although I'm disappointed that I didn't get any of those three done, I am far enough along to still consider myself on schedule for my goals this year. Izabel was completed in January, and Mai and Princess Hawkguy are both far enough along that I can easily get both done in March. Then I can get down to serious cosplay business through April and May working on Midna and my Anime North back-up costume. Extremis Pepper's completion goal is for SouSho in June. Then I'm going to spend the summer working on the rest of Phase One (namely Nightingale and finishing Midna), collaboration costumes with/for KW Iron Man and Iron Girl (Phase Two!), and a couple brand new projects which I'm really excited to get started on (Phase Three!!)
Finally, I've been posting fewer individual progress photos lately, mostly because I've been working on so many different things a little at a time, saving image posts for when whole sections of a single costume are done. Sometimes I randomly put single progress images on Facebook or Twitter, but it really is random; I'm god about taking photos, but it disrupts my workflow at lot to try to post while I'm working on things. If you realllly want to keep tabs on whether I'm on track though, I've put a running progress meter for each costume on the right side of my blog (assuming you're reading this on my blog page). This way it's easy for me to keep myself accountable without having to constantly post images and boring descriptions!
Anyways, time to get back to work!
Amaterasu (Imperial) ✓