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Unread 01-10-2008, 06:41 PM   #151
haruharu
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Re: The State of Youth Home Ec-

Yeah... up here in Canada it's similar but not as drastic Students get basic sewing (make a pillow/pencil case) in elementary school and some basic metal/woodworking.

I'm really disappointed with fashion classes in high school.
The teachers, who I work with... well, let's just say that I have never actually met a fashion teacher who was capable of sewing something like a fitted blouse. I asked one the other day about a project I was working on at home and she actually said she didn't know how to make anything besides a pillowcase and the kids in grade 12 make PJs from Simplicity patterns. '-_-

Re: Anime cosplayers vs Sci Fi Costumers...
It's the same thing up here in Canada too.
You want to make everyone happy but at the same time there are a lot of novice-level teenagers getting really upset that Masters or Artisans win.
I don't remember being like that the 5 years ago I was a teenager...but I imagine it comes from them not understanding the difference between a hall cosplay and a masquerade.
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Unread 01-15-2008, 10:56 PM   #152
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I just want to say that I love skit performances, but I know that sometimes they can be not so good.


For the masquerades that I have run I have not done any separation between skit and walk on. I think thats silly because sometimes a walk on can have a much better stage presentation and be much more interesting then a skit. There is craftsmanship judging and presentation judging. Craftsmanship is optional (tho I encourage everyone to sign up)and judging is done before the show, sometime during the same awhile before the con. I have done this because a) I want to make sure the judges have enough time to devote to really getting a good look at the costume and b) because the 3 shows I've done have all be outdoors at night and it would be difficult to do judging in the green room when you don't really have a green room. I've done craftsmanship judging at cons right before the event that felt very rushed and hurried because they wanted to make sure they got to everyone and the show started on time. I've also been in shows where they took their time and the show started late. Both were irritating situations.

Everyone in the show is judged on presentation. The audio you used, how you used it, how you used the stage, choreograph all of that is important. You could have the most beautiful costume in the world you are probably going to walk away with a craftsmanship award. But if you just hurry on stage and hurry off no one but the judges will care about your costume and you won't be walking away with any other awards. If you come on with lovely music and walk on with the pride and confidence and you can show the audience just how awesome your costume is and just wow them and the judges, you could walk away with best in show. I think well constructed costumes and good presentations are really what makes a good masq.

Skits are a big part too and since my shows have presentation judgeing its treated as just that, presentation of the story they are telling and things like, good use of audio, use of the stage and how they hold peoples attention.

For timing as a general rule the shorter the better, but I do think there are exceptions. The rule I've always had is 2 minutes, but if you feel your skit just has to be longer talk to me and see if what your doing really needs to be longer then two minutes or you really should just cut it down. For any masquerade I always think there are exceptions to rules and I think the director needs to be understanding and evaluate situations as the case maybe.

Rules are there to keep people from running around like crazy and abusing rights. For instance if there ever was a situation at a con that did prejudging for craftsmanship and a contested (for whatever reason) is unable to be in there costume till before the show, they should let that person be judged then. It is hard to put a really elaborate costume on twice and they shouldn't be forced to.


Oh and i just have to say something that just drives me nuts about the difference between scifi and anime cons and masquerades is judging times. It seems like at anime cons people just don't want to wait for judging, they are so instant results, even staff. One show I ran the judging went 30 minutes (which i thought was kind of fast) and it only took that long because we took the time to divide the prizes to who we thought they would fit best. When we showed back up on the stage we found out that the stage crew was 2 minutes away from walking out on us because it took to long and the MC's talking and killing time was boring (and we even had a 15 minute music act before that so he wasn't even talking that long). It made me very upset, but to them the masq was boring and not a priority and we were wasting time.
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Unread 03-05-2008, 01:39 PM   #153
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Originally Posted by Rogue Marvel View Post
Oh and i just have to say something that just drives me nuts about the difference between scifi and anime cons and masquerades is judging times. It seems like at anime cons people just don't want to wait for judging, they are so instant results, even staff. One show I ran the judging went 30 minutes (which i thought was kind of fast) and it only took that long because we took the time to divide the prizes to who we thought they would fit best. When we showed back up on the stage we found out that the stage crew was 2 minutes away from walking out on us because it took to long and the MC's talking and killing time was boring (and we even had a 15 minute music act before that so he wasn't even talking that long). It made me very upset, but to them the masq was boring and not a priority and we were wasting time.
LOL Amen to that. Good judging takes time, especially if the masquerade is fairly large. Anime North and FanExpo both have very large masquerades which are high-caliber (and therefore difficult to judge) so people would have to wait forever for the results; therefore we usually announce the awards during the dance afterwards, or the next day.
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Unread 03-05-2008, 01:58 PM   #154
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarcasm-hime View Post
LOL Amen to that. Good judging takes time, especially if the masquerade is fairly large. Anime North and FanExpo both have very large masquerades which are high-caliber (and therefore difficult to judge) so people would have to wait forever for the results; therefore we usually announce the awards during the dance afterwards, or the next day.
When I direct a masquerade I insist on planning the whole show, including the blocking for the half-time entertainment. It is key that the show not appear to "end", so the audience doesn't feel a strong break.
If you have any exhibition-only entries, block them at the end so the judges can quietly exit and begin deliberations before the masquerade presentations actually end.
For half-time, we pick something that engages the audience and can be done in 15 minute blocks, so it can be always exactly the right length. Audience participation game shows (we've done "Match Game" and "Wait Wait don't tell me" type games) can be very effective, as can a series of short film clips.
The problem with bands is that they take time to set up, so you have "dead air" while they are doing so. When we use the game show, everything is staged to be set up in less than 5 minutes, and the crew practices setting it up at least twice before we open the house.

We've also learned a lot about streamlining the deliberations process (step one: get rid of numerical point systems; they actually get in the way of your judges' expert opinions!) and make sure we have either a judges clerk or another MD staff person there keeping time. The judges can usually come back in 45 minutes or less. If you have a HUGE masquerade, consider multiple sets of judges for different divisions, and the only thing they all have to consider is if they can agree on a Best in Show.
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Unread 03-05-2008, 09:41 PM   #155
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Rogue Marvel - sounds almost exactly like CONvergence, which is why I *always* compete there!

Having a good halftime show is a great way to keep people interested in the masquerade. Sure, you'll still get half the audience leaving after the performance, but the halftime entertainment retains enough to keep the contestants feeling appreciated when they go out to receive their awards. CONvergence does the Soylent Theatre performance then. I really liked the photo-op thing they did at CostumeCon last year (in StL), so much that I implemented it on the spot at Geek-kon when they needed some way to stall (yay for judges being more prepared than the emcee) and people loved it. And the competitors liked being able to go back up and pose for pics, again. It gave us just enough time to finish adding up our numbers and settle on the awards - and yes, having a numerical system GREATLY streamlines the judging process. Exponentially.
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Unread 04-21-2008, 08:47 PM   #156
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Archon in St. Louis has a very well run masquerade, which is why I always compete there. I'm not 100% sure of the way judging is run there since I'm involved in competing but it seems we've never had to wait overly long for the judges to come to a decision on awards in the last two year at any rate. (Not that you notice the wait anyway since everyone is in the greenroom eating and talking about costuming or about the presentations they they just watched on live feed.) The halftime show at Archon is a photo run like we had a CC25 last year and this allows the judges plenty of time to deliberate since we normally have between 27-40 entrees depending on whether the ICG groups are doing seperate entrees or are entering as a group.
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Unread 05-03-2008, 07:39 PM   #157
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At AWA we have the judging by appointment earlier in the day, so technically we are ready to hand out the awards the minute the last cosplayer walks across the stage (we cap it at 120 entries). We don't do skits, so the judges don't have to site through the show to make any determinations based on what's done on stage. It does mean our judges are working about a 12 hour day (judging 10am to 3pm, deliberations 3pm to 8pm, stage show 8pm to 10pm). I'm trying to figure out what else we can to thank our judges for working so hard. Keeping them fed all day doesn't seem like it's enough...
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Unread 03-04-2009, 03:24 PM   #158
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I just came from Wonder Con in San Francisco, and I noticed to be successful, you should have group skits, there was this awesome GI Joe and a funny Star Trek. Funny thingis, the best costumes I saw on the convention floor were not part of the masquerade. I made a hub and video about it if you want to see some of the cosplay stuff there. There was this really awesome Bumblebee from Transformers.

I just wore my Iron Man helmet didn't feel ready enough to go full blown gear.

http://hubpages.com/hub/Ironman-Goes-to-Wondercon
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Unread 03-06-2010, 06:45 PM   #159
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BoinkCoBoy, thats great data for new Masquerade coordinators.

As of now I am just a cosplayer competing but if I were to run one I would most likely run it the same as you do. I like planning everything down to the what if this and that might happen.

Workmanship judging done early in the day always help speeds the process and judging the performance done after last cosplayer competing.

I was in a smaller masquerade where in the Best in Show awardee was questionable.They had a funny skit but their costume was not impressive by any means.I guess this do happen quiet often.The judging was poorly done and so I am not participating in that event anymore for that particular con, the masquerade coordinator defended their decision but what is done is done.
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Unread 09-02-2010, 09:57 PM   #160
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Greetings all.

I am apparently a Troll. Mostly because I raised many of the points you have on this thread, but in a separate thread that didn't want to hear any of it. I'm so glad I found a place I can discuss some of these things with people who are open to new ideas and working together to make the costuming/cosplay experience better for everyone.

I am, as you can see by my name, and old costumer at heart. I believe many of the points you have raised are ones I just did on the other thread, and was attacked and called all sorts of nasty names. Even a bunch of PMs telling me to bugger off. This doesn't do much but bolster my opinion of these kids.

However, one of them, and I'd have to look it up, sent me here. This gives me hope. Hope that maybe my imaginings of "Costumer Apartheid" may not be as bad as I thought. A tad exaggerated, and yes, inflammatory. However, it made my point. The "us and them" mentality I've seen with the younger (and yes, I understand the younger status has an awful lot to do with it) anime genre kids and the older costumers has been making me very upset. We are all geeks, and fans. We should be encouraging each other to be better and raise the standards.

I'm very happy to have found this thread, and will be enjoying seeing what everyone comes up with.

I'll jump in with other points here and there, but for now I'll leave you with the reason I went off in the other thread.

The Convention decided to shorten the time limit on entries to 30 seconds. You'd have thought people were being dragged across hot coals and force fed live eels. The Reason that was stated was that Steam Punk (who were asked by the convention to participate) were putting on a fashion show, IE Non competition display pieces, during the intermission time and a concert to give the judges time to deliberate and then announce the winners.

So instead of embracing the ability to keep the audience hyped, and THERE, it was asshole Steam Punkers this, and stupid convention that. Let's start email campaigns, get your pitchforks! I learned of this after and was unpleased. I enjoyed the masque, I enjoyed the fashion show, and might have been inspired to try some of that.

So I'm hoping that here people are more reasonable and might be able to find some interesting solutions to some of these problems.

Thanks.

Oh, and the other thing I noticed at the beginning of this thread was the no professionals thing. In Canada, there is a category called Artisan in the SF circuit. It's above Master, and it's for the professionals to play amongst themselves. it's a great idea.

** It was VickyBunnyAngel that found me this thread. Thanks again.

Last edited by oldschoolcostum : 09-02-2010 at 11:41 PM. Reason: missing information
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Unread 09-05-2010, 10:32 PM   #161
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Welcome, and I'm glad you found us, too. I'm sorry you got attacked elsewhere for being an advocate of a different style of costuming and masquerades, that's really unfortunate.

Having a steampunk fashion show during halftime while the judges deliberate is a GREAT idea. I am not a fan of steampunk myself but there are some outfits I've seen that are quite beautiful and impressive and worth strutting across a stage so everyone can see it. And that's a very good way to fill time in a costume competition with MORE COSTUMES. Why would anyone be sad about that? I guess you can't win 'em all.
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Unread 09-06-2010, 12:44 AM   #162
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Originally Posted by oldschoolcostum View Post
Oh, and the other thing I noticed at the beginning of this thread was the no professionals thing. In Canada, there is a category called Artisan in the SF circuit. It's above Master, and it's for the professionals to play amongst themselves. it's a great idea.

** It was VickyBunnyAngel that found me this thread. Thanks again.
In what part of Canada is that? At what conventions?

It seems that in most Ontario in Quebec conventions Artisan is between Journeyman and Master if there is an Artisan Division at all.

I'm curious to know which conventions do it this other way? Also if you could give me details I will put them on my canadian masquerade event listing.
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Unread 09-12-2010, 06:32 AM   #163
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In what part of Canada is that? At what conventions?

It seems that in most Ontario in Quebec conventions Artisan is between Journeyman and Master if there is an Artisan Division at all.

I'm curious to know which conventions do it this other way? Also if you could give me details I will put them on my canadian masquerade event listing.
Huh, it appears that I might have been mistaken. I was always told that the progression was Novice, Journeyman, Master, Artisan. Artisan being the category of OMG costumers and professional costume makers. If that's not the case, I apologize. If it's NOT the case, why not? It makes the most sense that I know of.

What is the order in Canada? and what is the level needed to go up a step? IE 1 win as a novice, 3 wins as a journeyman, etc. My understanding of almost 20 years was such.

1 novice - Journeyman
3 journeyman - master
3 master - Artisan
Artisan - only compete vs. other Artisans or non-comp show pieces.

Could someone correct me if I'm wrong? Again, this has been my understanding for a long time now. And are these codified across the board? If I compete in the states, do I get put into the novice category again? Kaijugal, you seem like the person to know these things.

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Unread 09-12-2010, 01:01 PM   #164
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If that's not the case, I apologize. If it's NOT the case, why not? It makes the most sense that I know of.
Could someone correct me if I'm wrong? Again, this has been my understanding for a long time now. And are these codified across the board? If I compete in the states, do I get put into the novice category again? Kaijugal, you seem like the person to know these things.

The names are artifacts from the development of the Skill Division System, started by Peggy Kennedy at Denvention II (Worldcon 1983?) and later fleshed out by the International Costumers Guild; the latest version is described in the document "ICG Guidelines: Ensuring Fair Competition" available at http://www.costume.org/documents/fai...6-05-2006.html. I have been a member of the committee who developed the Fairness Guidelines more than once, and in particular for this current version.

First of all, it is the intention of the Guidelines to be guidelines, not rules. Secondly, the skill divisions are NOT RANKS; you do not have to work your way up, and there is no "certifying" authority. YOU CAN ALWAYS COMPETE IN A HIGHER CLASS. The only point is to shelter less experienced competitors briefly while they gain experience in competition. For any particular competition, you can always ask the MD which is the most restricted division they feel it is appropriate for you to enter (Novice is the most, Open or Master the least restricted).

Finally, the names, and the question of "Artisan". When the guidelines were first written, many of us drew from experiences at SCA, Renaissance Fair and other events, and since we were the International Costumers Guild, drew terms from the old trade guilds for the level names. In those earliest days, we made the semantic mistake of thinking in terms of them as ranks you worked your way through. It was thought that a secondary top tier was needed, for people who were at the top of the heap at regional competitions but had never entered at an international competition (Worldcon, Costume-Con and now Anime North). We bounced the name "Regional Master" around briefly and then on the east coast a number of conventions adopted the term "Artisan" instead.

When (after some dramatic friction over earning "rank" had occurred) the ICG reconsidered the way to describe the Division System and chucked the entire notion, replacing it with the current concept of "protected classes" for less experienced competitors, the Artisan division was eliminated from mention at all. During this last revision we suggested replacing the division names with Novice, Intermediate and Open, but the force of tradition was too strong and the trade-guild-based names were kept.

Since the Fairness Guidelines are simply that, guidelines to help each Masquerade Director/committee develop rules appropriate to their event, some competitions have hung onto the Artisan division.

(I will note that a number of cosplay competitions adopted their rules based on other contest rules which referenced the Guidelines without learning the point of the underlying Guidelines first, which has led to a bit of history repeating itself with drama over earning "rank" in competion.)

The most important thing to note is that there is no central authority, so each competition is its own entity. The Guidelines are there to try and give competitors a rough idea of with whom they will compete in a competition.

Sorry for the long post; I hope this helps a bit.
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Unread 11-01-2010, 03:03 AM   #165
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The only point is to shelter less experienced competitors briefly while they gain experience in competition.
I think this needs to be repeated It's the best description of why there are class divisions This year we split into two categories: open and novice. In a couple of years I see the need to split into three but for now we are giving a nice introduction for new contestants to enter in.

And the reasoning is the same.
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