Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Anime Boston AMV List

I found a thread at the big bad AMV site of all the AMVs shown at Anime Boston 2008, complete with links to each individual page, where you can download a high quality movie if you sign up for the site (free, fast, painless... I did it). It shows who won each award and provides some basic info.

Anime Boston 2008 AMVs



Hope you enjoy looking at these! I think "Unbreakable" is really great. I haven't seen many of the anime featured in it, but now I want to! Also, it's makes me all happy inside to watch it.

Also, make sure you check out Dead Fantasy I and Dead Fantasy II... they're awesome.

AB Aftermath

Well, Anime Boston has come and gone, and I've had to integrate myself back into the real world.

It's a sad time for everyone.

I had a lot of fun at AB this year, although perhaps not as much as I had expected. I can't really put my finger on the exact reason for it, but I think part of it had to do with being unable to attend all the panels I was interested in, with the exception of the Doujinshi Culture panel, which was very good.

As far as cosplay goes, I would say it was a success. I loved wearing both of my costumes, and a lot of people took photos of me and my friends. I even got a ticket for the judge's hall contest... too bad you need three to get a prize ribbon. Oh, well. Maybe next year I'll hang out in the hallways posing more often. :3

Mike's Ashitaka costume turned out great, if I do say so myself. My boyfriend helped out (time crunch, don't be too shocked) by wrapping the sword handle and making the sheath. Mike showed up with his own bow.

The Pillows put on a really great show on Saturday, despite the concert itself being very far behind schedule (reason I missed one of my panels ._.). It was kind of ridiculous how long we were kept waiting, and that they didn't even start letting people in until 3, which is when the concert was supposed to start. This was bad planning. I enjoyed watching Luv & Response as well... can't go wrong with choreographed dances. They were too r&b for my taste, though. I'm more of a straight pop fan in that category.

Anyway.

I heard about... and saw a little of... the astronomically long registration lines. To anyone who had to wait in that melee, I feel really bad about it. It couldn't have been fun, and I'm sure you missed things you wanted to do. On behalf of everyone, I hope - and pretty much expect and demand - that AB gets it right next year. Six computers to register tens of thousands of people is unacceptable.

I saw many good costumes at the convention, but as I'm still having camera issues, didn't get to take many photos. I'll have to rely on my friends' few pictures to show some of the costumes.

For now, here are some pictures I've gathered off the internet and my friends of all of us in our various costumes. The photo above is me as Gwendolyn from Odin Sphere (her formal outfit), which I wore to the formal ball on Friday and just walking around Sunday.


[Left] Me as Suigintou. [Right] My boyfriend as Phoenix Wright (plus glasses), with a Mia and Maya we bumped into at the Pru.


[Left] Mike as Zabuza from Naruto. After a year, the sword needs some touching up, but it still looked pretty damn cool. [Right] Mike (the other Mike) as Ashitaka from Princess Mononoke.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Cosplay Material Links

I get excited when I find a new source of materials or information for cosplay, so here is a short list of some that I've found recently.

Reynold's Advanced Materials - These guys just opened up a store in the Boston area, which I plan on checking out. They have basically everything you would ever need to cast anything. If you live near a store, they also have classes.

Simply Spray Fabric Paint - The website isn't so great, but I'm trying to focus on the product. I found out about this through a cosplay forum. A girl used it to paint an intricate plaid pattern on a dress, and it looked great. It doesn't get stiff or anything, and goes on like spraypaint. You can buy it in stores... I just saw some in Joanns recently.

Volara Foam, Conductive Foam - These foams are supposedly alternatives to "fun foam" or craft foam for forming armour. Apparently they respond well to heated shaping and are pretty durable. One is closed cell and the other appears to be open celled. I was recommended these materials by others who have used it.

Friendly Plastic Pellets - This is an alternative resource for Friendly Plastic pellets, which might be a little less expensive than cosplaysupplies.com.

Electrique Boutique - This isn't for construction, but this place has a large assortment of different shoes that might be useful, and their prices are good. You can get a pair of boots for about $25, brand new, which is good in my book.

Hope you guys can find these links useful. ^_^

AB Prep Day 2

Hello there.

Earlier today I finished Ashitaka's hood. Sorry, I know I look... not good. heh. I traced a hood on my WoW hoodie for a general idea of the shape and size of the hood. I brought it over the forehead a little more and made the top more pointed, then cut it out and sewed it together. I made two of these exact hoods, one in red and one in brown (for the lining... the red fabric has a bit of an open weave). Then I used trial and error, putting it on to check the shape. I ended up making the top shorter. Sometimes trial and error is the best way to go.

Right now I'm working on my ball gown. I finally got the top fitted to me properly, which is extremely important for strapless dresses. Now I am working on pinning on the colours. I finished and gathered the top edge of my blue fabric and am in the process of pinning it on, which is what you see in the picture. That's why it looks weird.

I ran into a problem with Ashitaka's pants. I won't go into details, but needless to say it came down to a shortage of fabric... even someone as skinny as Mike wouldn't fit into these. We're going to try to substitute some premade pants for the sake of time, either a pair of Mike's or one that I will go purchase. Sometimes, when there is a simple component to a costume, it is more worth your time and money to just buy it and add it to the pieces you made yourself. That way, they won't detract from all your hard work.

I've been trying to take more step-by-step photos, but I've been having a problem with my camera's batteries running out for no reason, and then I have to recharge them. Since the con's only a few days away, I can't stop working to wait for the camera. So, sorry. ._.

I'm going to post some links to cosplay supply websites that I've found lately. Next post!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Ashitaka's Comin Along

Mike's Ashitaka costume is coming along nicely. Last night, I created the sleeve part that goes underneath the whole thing.



At this moment, I'm working on the robe. It's almost done! It just needs sleeves.



Sleeves are one of the hardest things to make, especially if you aren't using a pattern. Robe sleeves are pretty easy because they're baggy and easy to hide any flaws in. At this point, I'm okay at sleeves. I start by making cylinders, which either taper toward the wrist or don't depending on the design, and then I cut an angle at the top unfinished end.

I'm going to do a sleeve tutorial some time soon.

I have a few more things on the check list for today, so I'm off. I hope if you're going to AB that your preparations are going well! Leave a comment and maybe I'll see you there!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Preparing for a Con

Anime Boston is a week away!
Yay!
I'll be blogging all this week, showing pictures of my projects and giving you some idea of my timeline. I try not to have costumes to make right before the con, but that hasn't happened yet, and I have one to make for my friend in addition to finishing my own.

The first step is to make a big fat list. I wrote down each costume and underneath each put what I had to do, in specific tasks. If a task had multiple steps, I wrote those in. If you gloss over things, you will think you have more time than you do. Seriously.

Tomorrow I'm going to make a rough timeline to give myself some deadlines. I'll have to squeeze in some schoolwork, too!

The second step was rearranging my room to accommodate the amount of cosplay stuff that's in it. I live in a single dorm room, and it's reasonably sized for a person who doesn't sew or do cosplay as a hobby. I have crinolines hanging on the walls, bags on the walls... everything on the walls! All I have is vertical space. Use what you have.

I have a lot of materials and supplies, and everything gets organized into separate bags by costumes. Fabric is kept separately from paint, wood, etc. and in ziplocs (to keep out dust) instead of grocery bags.

3M hooks are great for this kind of thing. You can put up tons of them, hang everything your little heart desires, and then take them down after the con!

I'll be posting some photos of the sword making process this week, as well.

I finished up my client's dress. It was a bitch to make, for some reason, stupid things just kept going wrong. It happens. There was a problem when she got it, too, but we figured out how to fix it :D and she has been very nice the entire time. I can't wait to see how she creates the rest of her Urd costume.

Well, off to work on costumes...!