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Unread 09-06-2012, 12:41 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Illa Scriptor View Post
LOVED being in the Sheraton. It was absolutely amazing to have elbow room! The artist's alley seemed kind of sparse since it was more spread out, but the space was just great.

My group hosted four panels and had a blast with them all, and I'm happy to see some good feedback on our Crossplay panel! The reimbursement scheme worked just fine for us and I think it was a very fair trade. It was unfortunate that one of our panels got scheduled at 11am on Sunday, but that's just how it goes sometimes.

As far as the skit contest, I'll echo about having no water containers- my group and I did a pretty strenuous dance skit (as did most of the skits) and there was no water in the room.

With prizes- I understand the division between Open and Masters, but since there were so few skits and so few prizes it seemed a bit unnecessary. While it's okay that most of the skits were dance skits, it seems the "original choreography" rule was kind of done away with.

Mostly I'm confused as to why there is no longer a "Best Dramatic Skit." Two years ago there was, there was a miscommunication and it was announced wrong, and then the next year there wasn't. Not many cons are like this, but there are ALWAYS a couple of good dramatic skits at AnimeFEST, so it's strange that the award has been done away with.
Heh, so that rule was still in place and all those people that filled out the forms in advance never contacted me like they were supposed to. Their forms also did not indicate that they were performing choreographed acts. Needless to say there is a lesson learned as I did not discover these were choreographed dances until early Sunday when screening the music which means I need tighter rules.

I can also re-include Best Dramatic, but I believe a few years ago it was removed due to not having enough dramatic skits.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 12:53 AM   #17
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thefinal ~ Well first off, yes the whole thing being on Friday is completely horrible, considering check in isn't until 3pm, and of course there was a huge line, we had to cancel our photoshoot for our costumes, so that we could make the judging in time, and because we were wrapped up for 3 hours, didn't get to walk around in our costumes AT ALL.

But other than that, the fact that they gathered all of us up, made us line up, get in order, sit down, and then go 'ok either leave and come back in an hour, or sit here and watch opening ceremonies' was ridiculous. First off, an hour is about long enough to walk somewhere to do something, just in time to walk back, especially considering some of us were in either big bulky costumes, or costumes that were hard to maneuver in, so we were pretty much stuck watching opening ceremonies, which was painful and boring, and they were pretty much just BSing to waste time at the end because the Cosplay Runway started like 20 minutes late, which is another complaint.

Then on top of that, I highly disagree with some of the winners (not saying we should have won, because there were other costumes in our category that definitely beat us outright), but I think some people got way overlooked. This would help if the judges were actual cosplayers. I have no idea who the judges were, but they had NO IDEA what they were doing. I've done more than a dozen cosplay contests (not including hall cosplays) and at every one I've been asked questions about construction, materials, ect. These people? Nothing ... we walked in and they said 'ok, tell us about your costumes' then made us come closer for a 360 spin, and that was it. 3 of the girls in our group who worked on their costumes together spent about 6 hours putting together a binder FULL of reference pictures, progress pictures, and wrote about how certain things were accomplished with details and times. They explained what the binder was, set it in front of the judges, and the judges didn't even acknowledge that it was there, they didn't flip through it or anything, they didn't even pick it up. How can you possibly judge cosplayers when you yourself are not a cosplayer and probably don't even understand half of what's being said to you. There were times when we were describing how we did something, and the judges looked like we were speaking a foreign language to them, and I could almost see the ? above their heads. Not only that, but they didn't even ask us to clarify what they didn't understand, they were just like 'ok thanks, next'.

EDIT: Oh also, another thing, there were a lot of groups (considering you guys count 2 as a group) this year, I think instead of creating awards for specific people (which really isn't fair anyway) you should have done 1st in each category for individuals and groups.
Friday unfortunately I have no control. There have been talks in the past about having the event on a different day or re-merging the two events. This is something though on a Directorial level decision, not a Manager level decision. I know there have been several times the Directors have asked for feedback on if the Cosplay events should remain separate or be merged, but I believe the main issue on Saturday is usually band set-up, at least that's what I'm informed every year. Please feel free to post a message on the AnimeFest forums expressing the interest of a different day or re-merging of the events, as the Directors do not typically check cosplay.com.

I'm sorry the times on Friday got pushed back, but issues had taken place in Registration which also pushed back some cosplayers being able to make it to their time slot in a timely manner, and we tried to accommodate everyone to the best of our ability that even we went past the the pre-judging time frame.

All of the judge's information was on the website and the program book. While I agree that judges should get up close and personal, that is not the style of all judges and the ones that you had on Friday, each had a rather versatile background. Feel free to read the biographies on the website of Dom, Maggie and Melfina whom you had seen on Friday. If there are more specific issues with the judges, please PM me so that I can speak with them.

Also, can you PM me or elaborate on the bolded item above? I'm not quite understanding what you're referring to.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 01:14 AM   #18
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Oof. That's unfortunate. Surprises are never fun. I know something a lot of cons do is require skits to send their audio in, in advance? AFest already has skits register ahead of time so it wouldn't be adding too much on for people who want to compete.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 01:57 AM   #19
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I didn't spend much time on the con floor itself so I can't say much on many things, but there are a few things to note.

The badge stuff seemed to delay a ton of people. Not just with people in line, but sometimes entire panels getting delayed waiting for staff to be where they should.

Panels that needed set-up time sometimes didn't get it so those panelists constantly were trying to kick the prior panel out early so they had time to set up. I believe that's why the Cosplay Dating Game had to end early.

My wife had both a bad and good instance with staff when trying to get her badge. One staff member brought her somewhere to get her badge situation figured out, she was told by the same person to wait and someone would come out to help her, and after near a half an hour she finally went into the room (I think it was con ops) and asked if someone knew who was supposed to help her to get an idea if she should come back. No one knew what she was talking about and no one else had left. Luckily, someone helped her out and got things straightened out, so...bad, then good.

Main Events felt significantly smaller than year's prior, and it was very hard to move through the areas. There was no good walkway to get through easily. The middle aisle had barely any room to get around, and even less if the seats were filled. The side ones had points you maybe only had 1-2 feet at most to get through. That, and having people constantly standing on the sides made the walkways very difficult to maneuver.

There seemed to be no water in the main events. Why? I left once to get a drink, the person at the door saw me leave, told them what I was doing, came back to get inside and had to get my badge scanned again and wait for her to get it to work because it was going slow. That's a bit of a mixture of two problems, but regardless, main events needed water stations.

I've brought it up before but I'll say it here too...please...PLEASE...prescreen audio. If the audio is unintelligible, screechy, overmodulated, whatever, then deny the use of the audio. It may seem unfair but I can record with clear audio and not over modulate on a $20 microphone. There's no reason to put the audience through an audio hell when it would only take a little bit to sound check all audio and ensure it's good to go.

I second the idea of bringing back Best Dramatic Skit. Currently if you have a dramatic skit in masters, you can only win if you have the best in masters overall. A comedy skit has the ability to win one of two awards, regardless of division. I think it's hard to argue for more awards after the half-size turnout this year over last year, but I still think it should exist. Maybe allow a tier of awards that are given depending on number? So, 3-7 skits, best in masters, best in open, judges award. 8-12, best comedy and best drama get added, maybe BiS. 13-16, second place in masters and open. So on? That way you can give a decent amount depending on the number of entries.

Other than that, was happy to walk out with a win with the Kefka skit. With the numerous issues that hit that cosplay, we finished it with about 20 minutes to spare, and now I get to rework everything on it. I'm glad Saucy Noodle got the recognition they deserve, was great to see them do something live after missing Heartstrings a few years ago, and it was great to share the stage with them. Wish we had more awards for something to be given to Fatal Frame, simply stunning skit. I'd be hard pressed to find another contest I've been in that had over half of it's entries be that well done.

The con felt strangely empty though. Probably just the new location but it really did in the end. Panels seemed to have less people attending, same with the contests. Felt odd for A-Fest.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 02:05 AM   #20
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I really like Ben's tiered idea, with adding awards as there are more skits.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 02:23 AM   #21
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Friday unfortunately I have no control. There have been talks in the past about having the event on a different day or re-merging the two events. This is something though on a Directorial level decision, not a Manager level decision. I know there have been several times the Directors have asked for feedback on if the Cosplay events should remain separate or be merged, but I believe the main issue on Saturday is usually band set-up, at least that's what I'm informed every year. Please feel free to post a message on the AnimeFest forums expressing the interest of a different day or re-merging of the events, as the Directors do not typically check cosplay.com.

I'm sorry the times on Friday got pushed back, but issues had taken place in Registration which also pushed back some cosplayers being able to make it to their time slot in a timely manner, and we tried to accommodate everyone to the best of our ability that even we went past the the pre-judging time frame.

All of the judge's information was on the website and the program book. While I agree that judges should get up close and personal, that is not the style of all judges and the ones that you had on Friday, each had a rather versatile background. Feel free to read the biographies on the website of Dom, Maggie and Melfina whom you had seen on Friday. If there are more specific issues with the judges, please PM me so that I can speak with them.

Also, can you PM me or elaborate on the bolded item above? I'm not quite understanding what you're referring to.
Well I would definitely NOT merge the two ... omg, people would be there ALL DAY! I would just make it on Saturday, but instead of having it start at 8pm, have it start at like 5 or 6 like a lot of other conventions do. This year the contest only lasted about an hour, MAYBE an hour and a half, so it'd be over by 6-7:30 ... I dk what time the band plays, or sets up, but if it's really that big of a problem, now that you're in the Sheraton, there are half a dozen rooms that could be used, you guys could use the room you did this year, and let the band set up in the room downstairs, or vise versa, cuz the rave guys don't need as long to set up, and those usually don't start til about, what? 9? anyways.

No, I'm not really complaining about the cosplay contest getting pushed back, it happens, a lot actually. But, it wouldn't have seemed so bad if say, you flipped the timing for the line up and the opening ceremonies, that way we didn't have to sit there for an hour already, and 20 minutes would have seemed like nothing. You guys RUSHED the hell out of us to get us over there ASAP so we could get lined up ... then we find out we have to just sit there for an hour anyway? That was way crazy and uncalled for imo.

As for the judges, I just read their biographies on the con website, and I'm sorry, but I still don't think any of them are qualified to be judges.

And I PMed you about your bolded section.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 02:30 AM   #22
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I was really upset with this con. Although for me animefest has been going down the past few years.
Not to mention I got sick Saturday morning and had to sleep in and missed the panels I wanted to go to boo. Oh and sunday the skit contest took up most of my time.

THE SKIT CONTEST... I could really saw a very very many ugly things about this competition. Not to say that we should have won (we were the fatal frame skit) but I believe one of the skits got shafted and one got pushed ahead because of their past relationship with animefest. NOt to say it wasn't a good skit, but I know how much it takes to do certain skits and yes, that skit definitely had more work than the other one. Not to mention I know there was only 8 skits, but there were a LOT more awards listed on the website and then just because there were 8 skits, I can understand some got dropped, but the need for categories seems silly then. Plus no best in show? Um why have a skit contest separate if there is not best in show for that contest. The open/masters should have been done away with, had best in show, best comedy, best drama, or even have the best open and do away with the best masters and just have best open. But even then I wasn't happy with that result either. We had SEVERAL people come up to us and said that the judging was wrong.

Speaking of cosplay runway... I didnt enter this year because I feel like last year the judges really didn't give a crap, were bored and didn't want to be there. Not to mention I have been advocating they move it to Saturday for the past few years (especially since no big band has been there since flow) without success, so I gave up. But the winner of the intermediate award ticked me off. Last year my friends entered costumes that showed some stomach, legs and maybe a little tiny bit of cleavage and they were told by the judges to pretty much in a nutshell, put more clothes on or wear a skin color leotard. And the intermediate winner was wearing MUCH LESS than they were. That's kinda contradictory.

Not to mention the pre-leg line was horribly long and didn't move at all. There definitely should have been some leadership since everyone was going into one line and it wasn't moving at all.

I did love the artists alley and the dealers room. a whole lot bigger, although I didn't find too much I wanted to buy ( i was looking for the ame-comi figures, which one booth had but not the ones I wanted).

Honestly, I had more fun with my friends than at the con. Even though I love spending time with my friends, I'm getting sick of not having fun at the actual con, and I'll be attending dragon con next year.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 02:33 AM   #23
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Well I would definitely NOT merge the two ... omg, people would be there ALL DAY! I would just make it on Saturday, but instead of having it start at 8pm, have it start at like 5 or 6 like a lot of other conventions do. This year the contest only lasted about an hour, MAYBE an hour and a half, so it'd be over by 6-7:30 ... I dk what time the band plays, or sets up, but if it's really that big of a problem, now that you're in the Sheraton, there are half a dozen rooms that could be used, you guys could use the room you did this year, and let the band set up in the room downstairs, or vise versa, cuz the rave guys don't need as long to set up, and those usually don't start til about, what? 9? anyways.

No, I'm not really complaining about the cosplay contest getting pushed back, it happens, a lot actually. But, it wouldn't have seemed so bad if say, you flipped the timing for the line up and the opening ceremonies, that way we didn't have to sit there for an hour already, and 20 minutes would have seemed like nothing. You guys RUSHED the hell out of us to get us over there ASAP so we could get lined up ... then we find out we have to just sit there for an hour anyway? That was way crazy and uncalled for imo.

As for the judges, I just read their biographies on the con website, and I'm sorry, but I still don't think any of them are qualified to be judges.

And I PMed you about your bolded section.
i've been pushing this for the past two years now with no luck. I don't even understand why they have pre-judging for the runway since most aren't qualified to judge COSPLAY contests, since ren faire and historicial costumes ARE DIFFERENT, and apparently the judges lack of interest. My friends had the same problem with judging....they said the judges looked bored and didn't ask any questions at all. Um we have TONS of qualified cosplayers here in texas that could judge...there's no shortage. And why isn't twinzik judging the skit contest by now? they're totally qualified...

So I say cut the pre-judging for runway and just have the show (like a-kon) and then have craftmanship for the hall contest. problem solved...less time and less problems..hopefully. although like I said I won't be coming back
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Unread 09-06-2012, 02:50 AM   #24
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As for the judges, I just read their biographies on the con website, and I'm sorry, but I still don't think any of them are qualified to be judges.

I can't speak for most of the judges, but I know at least a few of them are VERY qualified.

Why do you think they aren't? What do you think are correct qualifications exactly? Not being a punk, but maybe some suggestions would help in choosing judges for the future?
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Unread 09-06-2012, 02:57 AM   #25
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And the intermediate winner was wearing MUCH LESS than they were. ...
THIS. Holy crap this. We were in intermediate, and we had a group of 5 that had a lot of detail and a lot of skill that went into our costumes, and we were won out by a person basically wearing a bikini (no offense to that cosplayer, she looked great, but it was basically a bikini with stuff painted on it).

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... most aren't qualified to judge COSPLAY contests, since ren faire and historicial costumes ARE DIFFERENT...
THANK YOU OMG YOU READ MY MIND! That was going to be my next point ... 2 of the 3 judges didn't have ANY anime/video game/pre-designed costume experience ... it was all basically original costumes. There's a huge difference in making your own costumes and being able to create an exact replica of an already designed outfit, and whether it seems like it or not, IT IS A HUGE FACTOR IN JUDGING.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 03:02 AM   #26
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THIS. Holy crap this. We were in intermediate, and we had a group of 5 that had a lot of detail and a lot of skill that went into our costumes, and we were won out by a person basically wearing a bikini (no offense to that cosplayer, she looked great, but it was basically a bikini with stuff painted on it).



THANK YOU OMG YOU READ MY MIND! That was going to be my next point ... 2 of the 3 judges didn't have ANY anime/video game/pre-designed costume experience ... it was all basically original costumes. There's a huge difference in making your own costumes and being able to create an exact replica of an already designed outfit, and whether it seems like it or not, IT IS A HUGE FACTOR IN JUDGING.
yup most people think sewing is sewing, but when judging a cosplay contest, no it's not the same. Like I said, last year no one asked me questions,no one cared that I serged everything or really seemed to care at all. most of them weren't even looking at my costume, just looking at the floor. There's really not a shortage of master cosplayers who have won best in show and know how to judge COSPLAY contests, I really don't see why some of the current judges are there besides perhaps maybe knowing some of the staff members.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 03:12 AM   #27
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I can't speak for most of the judges, but I know at least a few of them are VERY qualified.

Why do you think they aren't? What do you think are correct qualifications exactly? Not being a punk, but maybe some opinion would help in choosing judges for the future?
Well, I'm sorry, but I think years of experience in sewing and making costumes isn't enough.

First off, like I mentioned in the post above, 2 of the 3 judges only did stuff like ren-fair outfits, which is basically an original costume, if it doesn't come out looking the way you wanted it to, oh well, no one will know, because it's your design. But to take a picture, and make a costume that looks exactly like it, takes skill, not just in the craftsmanship, but also in the ACCURACY of the costume, any costume can look pretty, but if it's suppose to look like something else, and they messed up/left out/changed something to better suit their liking, or purely because they didn't realize it was 'wrong', then they should have that counted against them, but they can't if the people judging them don't know how to look for that accuracy.

Also there's the fact that just because you do a lot of costumes, are photogenic, and have sewing skills, doesn't mean you're qualified to judge other people. For example, if all costumes were based on a difficulty level of 1-5 (1 being very easy, 2 being easy, 3 being average, 4 being hard, and 5 being very hard) someone who hasn't accomplished anything over a 3, should not be judging level 5 costumes, because they don't have the experience, no matter how many level 3 costumes you make, you don't know what it's like to make a level 5 costume, so you have no place to be judging them.

These judges seem to have just looked at costumes and went 'that's pretty' or 'wow it LOOKED like it took a long time to make' or 'that LOOKED like it was hard'. But I'm sorry, costumes shouldn't win just because they're pretty. As far as LOOKING hard or LOOKING like it took a long time, that doesn't mean that it was/did. There was one girl who had a great costume that to a random person would LOOK like it took a long time, but if you looked very closely at her costume, you can tell that she took massive shortcuts, and probably didn't take her very long to do at all. Also, just because something LOOKS hard to someone, doesn't mean it was, maybe it's just that it's out of the person looking at it's league (in which case they shouldn't be judging it anyway), or because THEY DIDN'T ASK HOW IT WAS DONE, so they don't know how easy it really was.

And last, because I don't care how experienced you are, or how amazingly you make costumes, you CAN NOT judge someone if you don't know anything about the production of the costume. If you don't ask questions (which these judges did not) then you're basically going on your opinion of the costumes looks, and not the time, skill, effort, money, and techniques that went into it ... not to mention the things sacrificed for accuracy (like for example me and this other girl, I basically could not walk (or breath for that matter) in my costume, the biggest step I could take was about 4 inches, and I cause myself some MASSIVE pain to wear this costume, all so it could be 100% accurate, I didn't change a single thing just so it could be more comfortable ... and the other girl I'm talking about could do nothing but sit or stand, she was confined to a wheelchair because she too decided to sacrifice things for the accuracy of the costume).
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Unread 09-06-2012, 03:41 AM   #28
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not to mention the things sacrificed for accuracy (like for example me and this other girl, I basically could not walk (or breath for that matter) in my costume, the biggest step I could take was about 4 inches, and I cause myself some MASSIVE pain to wear this costume, all so it could be 100% accurate, I didn't change a single thing just so it could be more comfortable ... and the other girl I'm talking about could do nothing but sit or stand, she was confined to a wheelchair because she too decided to sacrifice things for the accuracy of the costume).

I think you made some very interesting and good points.

My issue here is where I quoted you. It seems like you and this other person were starting to worry too much about cosplay and accuracy than your own personal health. I totally understand aiming for accuracy. I think that's quite important too. However, when you start wearing something that is causing you "massive pain", then it may be going too far. Take it seriously. Work your butt off on your amazing costume. Kick ass at the con and take amazing pictures. Just don't endanger yourself because of a hobby yo!
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Unread 09-06-2012, 03:51 AM   #29
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I think you made some very interesting and good points.

My issue here is where I quoted you. It seems like you and this other person were starting to worry too much about cosplay and accuracy than your own personal health. I totally understand aiming for accuracy. I think that's quite important too. However, when you start wearing something that is causing you "massive pain", then it may be going too far. Take it seriously. Work your butt off on your amazing costume. Kick ass at the con and take amazing pictures. Just don't endanger yourself because of a hobby yo!
Ok, don't take this the wrong way, cuz this isn't a hit towards you or anything, I just want to make a point ... but did you notice how you thought they were 'VERY' qualified to judge, until I made those points? It's thinking like that, that get unqualified people in the judges chairs. People who don't really consider ALL factors, and think just because the person can sew, has been doing it for a long time, and has a lot of costumes, that that's good enough to judge others, when it's really not. You seemed very adiment (whoa I spelt that wrong, it's getting late XD) about them being qualified, yet after I made my points you had no defense for them.

I'm sorry, but I must disagree. The other girl I told you about in no way endangered herself, she just couldn't walk or stand for very long, she had a very nice person pushing her around in a wheelchair, and helping her out of it for pictures. I on the other hand, yeah, it may have caused me 'massive pain' to wear it for a long period of time, but that doesn't mean that I've 'taken it too far', that's just your opinion, maybe because you don't take it as seriously as I do? Don't get me wrong I'm not one of those people who are all 'OMFG COSPLAY BE SRS BUSINESS YO!' but if I'm going to spend my money, and my time to make a costume that I want to enter into a contest, not just run around it, I'm going to do whatever it takes to make sure I look like I just walked off the screen, because that's what should really matter. If that means I can only take baby steps for a couple of hours, and I'll have a couple of bruises on my hips from my corset, and I have to pop a couple of advil after wearing it, and I'll end up being a lazy ass for a few hours cuz my feet hurt too bad, and I have to take small controlled breathes while I'm wearing it, then so be it. Cuz first off, all of that isn't that bad, when it's only a couple of hours, however when unorganized people cause you to be in it for twice as long as you figured you would be, it can get worse, but I don't see that as my fault, I knew I'd be fine for 3 hours, and I ended up being in it for 6. And secondly, none of those are 'major' things, it's just that there are so many of them all at once it stacks up, and after I take it off I feel as though I'm in massive pain, but I do no endanger myself, I would never do that. I take cosplaying serious, but not more serious than it needs to be.
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Last edited by Sinnocent : 09-06-2012 at 03:54 AM.
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Unread 09-06-2012, 04:00 AM   #30
ChibiBritt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailor Moon View Post
Ok, don't take this the wrong way, cuz this isn't a hit towards you or anything, I just want to make a point ... but did you notice how you thought they were 'VERY' qualified to judge, until I made those points? It's thinking like that, that get unqualified people in the judges chairs. People who don't really consider ALL factors, and think just because the person can sew, has been doing it for a long time, and has a lot of costumes, that that's good enough to judge others, when it's really not. You seemed very adiment (whoa I spelt that wrong, it's getting late XD) about them being qualified, yet after I made my points you had no defense for them.

I can stand by my word about the judges. But I also said I can't speak for all of them. I won't claim to. I only know what and who I know. The ones I do know are very much qualified, even if you don't know or realize it.

I said you had good points because your opinion could very well be used when it comes time for them to look into judges for next year.

I have no hand in AnimeFest cosplay so I'm just an outsider looking in so to speak. I do know that getting feedback is essential when it comes to improving or looking into issues that may have come up. Hence why I asked what I did.
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Last edited by ChibiBritt : 09-06-2012 at 04:05 AM.
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