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Unread 09-08-2012, 12:40 PM   #18
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Join Date: Feb 2010
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I am really not a fan of contests where the judges just sit behind a table and don't engage the cosplayers at all. I entered a contest where that happened once, dressed as Shaak Ti of the Star Wars Prequels. The centerpiece of my costume was a hand tooled leather apron, and I can say without hubris that it's perhaps one of the best fan-made replicas of that costume part I've ever seen, on me or anyone else. Even the actress who wears the Shaak Ti costume at Disney's Star Wars days doesn't have a replica as accurate (the colors are way off, for starters)

I later found out that during deliberations, two of the judges were ready to write me off entirely, believing the hand tooled apron I had spent 50 hours working on was something I had just bought somewhere. "That's professional work, there's no way she did that herself!" Luckily, the third judge was the proprietress of a local Gothic/Pagan store, and had sold pieces of my leathercraft before. She argued with the other two, saying that she knew I had made it myself. Unfortunately the judges never got a look at all that intricate work I had done, all that painstaking detail. (An almost three foot long piece of leather with almost every square inch tooled in some way and then hand painted)

An Iron Man cosplayer almost got boned in similar fashion, luckily he stopped at the judge's table and said something to them, showing them the inside of his helmet. (I didn't, because I didn't know I was allowed to say anything to them)

If anyone's curious here's a closeup of the costume piece deemed too good to have been done by my own hand, here it is, although the camera flash makes it look more orange than it really is, and the photo scaling flickr did kind of hides some of the detail:
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