Things have been quiet over here at Slothcore... in the post-move chaos my computer hasn't been hooked up to the internet (and still isn't) which makes updating my website challenging, nor do I have space for crafting so I haven't made anything new. All I've been doing so far this winter is knitting.
But I'm trying to get back on track, starting with a substantial gallery update covering ConBravo! Both my "Ain't No Pretty Princess" Alice gallery and my Amaterasu gallery have had photos added, courtesy of Cosplay for a Cure and Dream Land Photography. I hope that this will be the start of a big batch of gallery updates, even if cosplay creation itself is still on hold for another few months.
Did I plan a far-too-busy Halloween seaon once again this year? You bet! So without delay, let's get to the opener:
EPIC HALLOWEEN BATTLES OF 'SEVENTEEN!
I've been going to Toronto's main geek Halloween party - Snailoween - since 2012, and have been hearing about the closest equivalent in Ottawa via Kurumasha for almost as long. This year I owed Kurumasha a visit, and the parties didn't overlap, so we decided to hit up both. Because I'm such a party monster >_> *ahem* Thus, I figured that I would write about Halloween by pitting the two parties against each other!
Who are you wearing?
First off, Heroes & Villains had a theme this year; it was actually "Heroes & Villains That Came From Space", which I thought was brilliant. It gave people an optional costume theme, and they carried the space theme through all the decor, drinks, music, and even some of the prizes! I decided to be on-brand with my only "alien" costume, Izabel, which also happens to be one of my faves (but I don't get to wear her often). Kurumasha was AMAZING and pulled off a last-minute and also totally legit Alana to go with my costume ^_^
Originally, Kurumasha and I were thinking about taking some new Marvel costumes to Snailoween this year, but in the end neither of us had enough time to finish anything, so we picked something party-friendly from our closets: Chihio and Lin from Spirited Away. As a bonus, it was going to be easy to make a No Face mask for Dan to join in!
But what did you think of the actual parties?
I'll start with the down-sides of Heroes and Villains: the venue was very hot, and the music was very loud. So between music volume and wearing the big fake ears I have for Izabel, I couldn't hear anyone unless they were yelling into my ear (and then: ouch). And while my makeup (somehow) survived dancing in the heat, the uncomfortable air plus use of smoke machine did force us to leave early - which means that we missed our photobooth time. But still, they had a pro photobooth to take everyone's photo; that's awesome! There was a large variety of prizes, everything was on point with the theme, music was awesome, and the venue was cool, even though it wasn't cold ;) Bonus: a lot of people recognized and liked my costume!!
The following weekend, I left the Snail party feeling satisfied, but I saw a lot of complaints about it in the week that followed, and while at first glance I was dismissive (things like "the music/DJ sucked" are completely subjective) the more I considered it, the more I realized that this year was pretty disappointing. The new venue was too dark to see everyone's costumes, lacked seating, and was generally a boring big box. My experience with the washrooms was worse than the previous venue - and they weren't even signed! I hesitate to describe the drinks as "expensive", but they weren't cheap and with only one bar, the lines were long.
While I wasn't directly affected by them, the policy of absolutely no re-entry, no ticket sales at the door, and controlled entry to the patio area? That sucks. I won't comment on the catering since I ate right before the party so I didn't bother with their food. I don't know who was awarding the merch prizes this year but the table was still weirdly full by the time we left. And while music taste is subjective, I enjoyed it up until the contest a announcements, after which the DJ switched to painfully slow R&B type songs which I could not dance to.
Ultimately though, not many of my friends went to Snailoween this year. And despite H&V being both too hot and too loud for my taste (and the prizes mostly unappealing since they were all specifically local) I had more fun there and saw just as many friends. Weirdly... Snailoween couldn't compete. So while I don't know if I will be able to make it back to Ottawa for Halloween next year, I will probably be looking at Snailoween alternatives closer to home.
I didn't take many photos, but here are some from both parties:
Wait, there's more?
Well, less "more" than I planned... I had wanted to go to the Kitchener Zombie Walk in my R costume, but unfortunately I came down with a cold that weekend and had to duck out. I had also been planning a Halloween-y photoshoot but it needed to be rescheduled until November for a variety of reasons. But that brings us to Halloween proper.
SHAKES AT POP'S
As in previous years I wanted a subtle/stealth costume to wear to work for Halloween since I don't like being the only one dressed up. So of course I went with my latest trashy addiction and put together Betty from Netflix's Riverdale. Nobody at the office recognized it, but I went to Fran's Diner downtown for dinner with a few friends and had fun ordering shakes with Iamwintermute who wore her Jughead stuff, and TrickyLove also arrived in time to get the hat I made for him and also be Juggy! (though I forgot to get a photo with him T_T) Yay for friends indulging me ^_^
And finally, the big post-Halloween "party" - Dan the Video Ninja's Extra Life stream, AKA:
This totally counts as part of my Halloween-a-thon because it was Nov 4, and because I dressed up. So there. As I'm sure you already know if you're reading this, Extra Life is a 24-hour gamaing marathon fundraiser for Children's Miracle Network hospitals. Dan's done it 4 times now and I've dropped in to help out every year! I'm not sure it really needs more description than that, so my photos are below, and Below that is Dan's highlight reel from the day. Enjoy!
I was at ConBravo! for all 3 days again this year, but I guess I was too successful at being a stealthy ninja because I feel like I somehow missed most of it. Go figure. Friday is understandable - I spent the day at work, then took the bus to Hamilton, and by the time I had arrived. picked up my badge, checked in to the hotel, and gotten into cosplay... there was time to take a real quick look at the dealers hall and then go for dinner with Kurumasha. I'm not even sure why I bothered to put on my Kate Bishop costume - I didn't even take a selfie. But it was good to see Sha again and dinner was perfection.
Saturday was the big day - convention time during the day, then being a Stage Ninja for the masquerade in the afternoon/evening, followed by a group Wicked + Divine shoot to wrap up the day. So Kurumasha and I spent the morning doing our goddess makeup for Badb and Amaterasu respectively, went to Cosplay for a Cure to get photos and hang out with friends in the afternoon, until it was time to do the masquerade thing. I couldn't ninja my makeup off so I just did what I could to hide in the shadows anyways LOL
While it otherwise ran relatively smoothly, the masquerade did finish later than expected which meant that we were rushed to meet with Jen of Verberg and Dan the Video Ninja for our shoot with Dream Land Photography... but we made it work in the end. Jen and I had been trying to find a time to cosplay Luci and Ammy together for months, so I'm glad that it finally happened, and even better that we had Badb and Baphomet along too.
Sunday was a lot more chill. I was "on call" at Cosplay for a Cure but the other volunteers for the day mostly had everything covered so it was nice to get to wander away regularly as well as chill with the ever-growing Ain't No Pretty Princess cosplay group. I've got shots from Cosplay for a Cure and Dream Land Photography to share from that group too... coming soon. As usual my own photos (plus a couple others) are below... mostly Saturday. Between carrying around my bass and fighting off con-plague sniffles on Sunday I didn't have my camera out.
I was at NFCC a couple of years ago, and while I skipped 2016, I was back this year to work for my friend Ice Phoenix Art at her AA table. So that means I don't have a ton to write about - I mostly spent the 2 days behind the table, making some sales but mostly keeping Ice Phoenix company. Aside from that I did a little bit of shopping, visited my friends at Cosplay for a Cure (and their neighbours the Ontario Ghostbusters) and finally did a proper shoot of my "Marvelous Coat" with Very Frank Pictures. So I'll share some selfies (the pro shots are coming soon) and leave it at that... for now ^_^
Like every year, I ended up with several Halloween costumes and events this year, and so one post will rule them all.
Firstly, on (Canadian) Thanksgiving weekend, Mr Stark, The Video Ninja, Dream Land Photography, and I all went out to High Park to shoot some costumes, one of which was the Space Warrior outfit that I made a year ago. Unfortunately, it's been a warm autumn and the leaves hadn't really changed colour yet, but I'm just happy to have some photos of the costume. Next year's squad goals: a whole group!
Next up was a very last-minute decision to go to Unplugged for the day to give Bear Sailor Moon a hand with the masquerade, and with it came a very last-minute costume: R from Warm Bodies. R is a character which I've had on my cosplay list for a couple years; just waiting for the right opportunity. While the hoodie is way too big (that's what happens when you only have one hour for shopping) I'm pretty happy with the distressing and my makeup. Hope I have the opportunity to wear him again ^_^
(and while we're here, have a few Unplugged floor photos...)
Snailoween was the main event for October this year, with Kurumasha once again coming in for the weekend and we managed to pull together a (small) costume group! Kurumasha, The Video Ninja and I all went as characters from The Wicked + The Divine; I put the finishing touches on my Amaterasu, Kurumasha went as Badb, and I put the Video Ninja in a Baphomet outfit. It was great to be there with my peeps and spending the night dancing with friends - and to top it all off we took home a couple of small gift cards for the store ^_^
Of course I couldn't walk away from the season without dressing up on Halloween itself, even though dressing up is not a thing that people do at my workplace. So, I decided on a "stealth" costume - a non-uniformed Holtzmann. I think I did a decent job replicating her look using stuff found in a quick outlet-store shopping trip (and already accumulated for other reasons ~_^). I've got some sweet non-selfie pics in the queue for a later post.
It's been difficult to post this photo set from YetiCon, simply because I love every shot that Elemental took! Kurumasha and I brought out our Flashback Hannah and Tizzie costumes and barely held it together in front of the camera. OK, sometimes we didn't hold it together.
Honestly, this set is more Needle Panic than Rat Queens, but it was lots of fun and Kurumasha is so awesome for always being willing to join me for my graphic novel cosplaying whims. Can't wait to get together again at Halloween this year ~_^. Lots more of this costume on my Rat Queens gallery page.
Happy Thanksgiving to all my Canadian friends!
I'm going to be posting lots of photos as we approach Halloween, and i'm starting with my girls from The Wicked and The Divine. Back in February I did makeup tests for several characters, and over the summer found placed to wear relatively complete costumes of both Lucifer and Amaterasu. Galleries for both costumes are hanging around on my casual cosplay page.
No blog posts since Bravo? Whoops! How the time flies by!
I was going to post about Fan Expo, but it turns out that I don't have much to say this time. I spent most of my weekend working at the Cosplay Recovery Lounge, which was fun but didn't leave me with any stories to share. I also wasn't able to take photos - definitely not a selfie-con this time around. I spent a little time on Thursday doing some shopping, but other than that, when I wasn't at the Lounge, I was at home being exhausted (real-life job has been keeping me on my toes). However, I was extremely fortunate that I was able to meet up again with Asgard Barbie (and Mr Asgard Barbie) on Sunday for some fun #TeamPepper photos and then being a terrible tour-guide as we explored some of downtown Toronto's sights ^_^
Some other things happened this summer which I haven't commented on yet, like getting to co-host a Game of Thrones themed trivia night with the fab Bear Sailor Moon. While admittedly I was dying of heat in my dress that day, I still had fun and it was great to hang out with "Jon Ho" and meet BrigitFiddle among others!
August also included Mr Stark's birthday, which was a cosplay-filled affair. I pulled together a more complete version of Ammy from The Wicked + The Divine, and had fun spending foreverrrrr doing my makeup LOL
As for off-camera stuff, I've been working away on finishing Cersei for the last couple months, as well as upgrades or additions to the other costumes in my current rotation. That percentage counter over to the right is climbing, but it is so painfully slow T_T. Right now I'm trying to stop myself from working on anything else until Cersei is actually complete, but a couple new projects for other people have popped up unexpectedly and I might have to break for them :/ In any case, my instagram (@maishericostumes) is the place to look for current progress updates until I have more time to post collections here.
I've gotten back several sets of photos from photographers recently which I will be posting soon (I hope!!!) because they're gorgeous, so that'll be the next few blogs.
As for events: I thought that I was going to be finished for the year after Fan Expo, but I just can't turn down working with Cosplay for a Cure, so I will be with them at the Niagara Wine Festival parade again this year (Sept 24), as well as Hamilton Comic Con (Oct 1-2) and probably Forest City Comicon (Nov 5-6) as well! And can't forget about Halloween either. It's going to be a very busy fall!
I wasn't planning to be at ConBravo! this year, because of the convention-burnout from all my spring events. But the masquerade put out a call for volunteers and since I can't resist the siren call of working for a masq (and I could allow myself to have a day off from my sewing projects) I ended up there for Saturday afternoon and evening anyways ^_^
I wanted to wear something comfy, easy to change out of (since I needed to be a ninja for the masq), and "new", so I elaborated a little on my makeup test from the winter and dressed as Luci from The Wicked and The Divine. I love the look of the Devil Herself, and had a lot of fun trying to look like a badass all afternoon XD. I spent most of my time hanging around the Cosplay for a Cure room or shoving my camera in friends' faces until It was time for the masquerade, when I changed and shifted to ninja-mode. I got the "interactive" ninja jobs, which was fun, and there were lots of beautiful costumes entered! However, as a masquerade vetran, I think that Bravo might want to consider reducing the time limit for entries, or we need to bring back the "Masquerade 101" panels. Or Featherweight's tip-sheet handouts. Something to remind entrants that 2-3 minutes on stage is a very long time.
The night wrapped up with spending some time at the dance (it's been years since I went to a con dance!) and hangouts with friends because I wasn't quite ready to say goodbye to everyone yet. Thank you to all my friends and the ConBravo! masquerade and events staff who made it a really fun day ^_^
As usual, I'm going to toss in a plug for The Video Ninja's coverage, including the full masquerade, retrospective, and interviews: ConBravo! 2016 playlist
So what's next? Fan Expo! I'll be there with Cosplay for a Cure this year, looking forward to that and the masquerade and cosplaying with friends. Gotta spend the next couple weeks getting my costumes finished though!!!
A couple of weeks ago I hit up Centre Island for a cosplay picnic, and dragged along Mr Stark and Dan the Video Ninja as Hawkeye and The Hulk respectively. The island is one of my favourite places in Toronto and it was great to be back there once again with my friends. Here's a collection of photos from the day, mostly taken by Dan and I ^_^