Re: Photo booth in DT upstairs
(last year AN - no other year that I can recall)
That was The Enthusiasts (of which Elemental was one), and the reason they were up on the lobby of the Plaza Ballroom of the DT was because they were also the official photographers for the Skit Contest and Masquerade that year. Different arrangements were made this year, partly due to the photo alley in the TCC. This turned out to be a good thing as we were actually short curtains for constructing the green room and therefore wouldn't have been able to block off an appropriately shaped space, as well as having many large costumes that we really needed the space for.
The basement area at the stairwell to go to the second level of the DT - I've heard we don't have access to that because of the businesses located there, so we'd be unable to use that space for a photo pit. The only other large space I can think of, though also really busy, is the 'lobby' where volunteers tables and the like were, near the Japanese restaurant.
We can explore the idea of having a photobooth in the DT, though, and see if anything can be done.
Re: Repair station
The Masquerade has one, but it's only available during the masquerade and is managed by the Greenroom Manager personally. I believe pre-AN there was a thread discussing a repair station here on coscom, and Kaijugal
said it's possible BUT would need someone responsible to over-see it and be willing to staff it and maintain it all weekend. We just don't have the man-power. If someone dedicated wanted to take it on, it could be arranged. Rest assured, we don't have one not because we don't want one. I'll have to see if I can find that thread and edit this post to include it. Someone said they were willing, but I don't think it got beyond that. EDIT: past thread here
Re: Masquerade Judging
I'll take the comments about the judging process to the judges for next year, and maybe create a list of questions or something for them to start with to help draw out shy/nervous entrants.
For entrants, please remember that you're allowed to let them know if you feel they're not paying enough attention to certain things. Point stuff out; literally show them "hey, look at my seams". They all have different specialities and don't necessarily inspect every single seam of all the garments (there's just no time) and don't have a set questionnaire - much of the 'art' of judging involves the entrant.
I will also make note of the comment about references, which are usually used for workmanship; it's up to the judge if they want to keep it. It's best to bring two copies of documentation, and one can be submitted when registering which will be provided during deliberation. There was a panel at AN on Sunday about costume documentation as well, which may be helpful (look up past Costume-Con or WorldCon examples). I may have to add some information to the website or create a FAQ thread on the Teahouse for next year regarding the Masquerade.
As always, best way to reach us for masquerade specific things is to email masquerade AT animenorth.com.