Tuesday, February 19, 2008

More Costumes; More Sword Changes

As is typical, the idea and process for creating the Suigintou sword has changed yet again.

I spent hours with my dad (definitely a two-person job) creating a blade out of foam to cover in plastic, and it was just not working out. We got stuck trying to make the difficult angles in the blade, and worried how the plastic would adhere if we couldn't get the foam perfectly smooth. It was all blowing up and we were at a standstill for a while.

I finally came the conclusion that I should just make the blade out of wood/MDF and deal with the consequences should there be any. That way, the sword would look the way I wanted it to. I will take it to Anime Boston and hope no one thinks it's dangerous (it certainly will not be). If they do, I'll just leave it at security, pick it up at the end of the day, and go on without it. But at least I will have a sword the way I want it to look for other cons and photo shoots. That seemed more important, in the end, than a particular cons potential rules, particularly when I'm not being entered in any formal competitions.

In the realm of more costumes... MORE COSTUMES. I will be making myself another costume for Anime Boston to wear to the formal ball, which will be Gwendolyn's ball gown from Odin Sphere. I bought all the fabric for it this weekend and I'm really excited about it.

I also bought fabric for my friend Mike's costume, who will be going to AB as Ashitaka from Princess Mononoke. It's a pretty simple costume, which are some of the most fun to do, because every detail is important. I got great fabric for the hood and burlap to make him some shoe covers. He's (supposedly) taking care of his own sword and (maybe) bow.

I'll be working on 4 costumes - the two mentioned above, Suigintou, and the Urd commission - over the next month leading up to AB. Spring break is definitely my friend this year (first week of march). I'll be posting all kinds of photos over the coming weeks, including of sword construction.

This is the fun part!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The First Official Client

Thanks to the magic of Facebook, I have a cosplay client. She's a very nice college student who was looking to have a part of her costume done by commission.

She's going as Urd from Ah! My Goddess, and I'll be making the dress part of the costume. She came over last week to drop off supplies, meet me, and get measured. She's very nice!

I still have some mixed feelings about costume commissions overall, and I'm wondering how others feel about it. On one hand, I love love LOVE cosplay and making costumes, so any chance to make a great costume is fantastic. On the other hand, I can't help but feel like I want credit for my work, and when someone else wears the costume, it's hard to say if the credit is correctly placed. I also really like the idea of people making their own costumes. However, I realize many people don't have access to resources or have skills such as sewing. I am very fortunate to have these things.

I think costume commissions are good, if the client knows not to take credit for the costume's construction, and if they aren't mass(ish)-produced throw-it-on-ebay-in-5-sizes kind of thing. Custom costumes for a specific person is something I might be able to get into, particularly for boys, since I am not one of those. I was very proud of costumes I've made for my friends, so it shouldn't be different for other people.

If you have any thoughts on the matter, add a comment. I'm curious to know how others feel about commissions, etc.