Freak Out Moments











{December 29, 2014}   Happy New Year

Time for an end of year round up?

As I write this I’m thinking about a lot of good things that have happened and I am however drawn inevitably to some of those lower moments too. A hit and run on my car, thanks mate I needed the insurance claim! and bad mental health that has put my plans for dieting back so I need to get back to that. But on to the good!

* Another year with my wonderful partner.

* Cosplay, meeting new and old friends thanks to the hobby.

* Mental health is back on track… for now ūüėČ

* Changed job and moved house.

Cosplay wise I got to meet so many people and share a passion with them, it’s just been fantastic. I have even been nominated for Miss Yorkshire Cosplay, if you get time do click on the link HERE and vote for me. I would really appreciate it, and to be honest I am utterly flattered people have voted at all. It’s so much fun to be part of something like that, I never dreamed it would happen to me anyway.

Gaming wise Рmore Gears of War, a tantalising news event of the possibility that there will be more for X Box one from the Gears world; this means my year of co-operative gaming and hilarious deaths in multi-player were worth it!  Well to be honest any time with friends is worth it.

I got to revel in the new Wolfenstein, also to play new games from Gold that I might not have before. One of those which still amuses me now is Battle Block Theatre, the chaos platform gaming just seems so much fun. I also like my Steam account as it means that I can go wild playing on that too.

World of Warcraft and running a guild is also a blessing, sometimes it feels a little curse like when I am having a rough day and cannot get everything properly organised but the guild I run has amazingly tolerant and mature players for the most part. I like it when I can get time with them as a group for raiding etc… now I really should sort that poor guild bank out!

I really do wish everyone a great 2015, and I hope that you get the most out of a new year.

That Gears Gal

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Hey tis me!

So how are you all? It’s been a convention packed year again, more of them coming up and I think it’s time to be realistic about the number I attend. Darn you real world eh?

So recently we went to a couple, one was Sheffield Comicon and it was fun. We went along without tickets, took the queue hit but fortunately it was pretty good and we got in within about an hour or so. The large layout was a good thing, the stalls were varied and it was great to see so many people out and happy about their favourite films, anime, cartoons, comics etc.

We also went over to J-Con at Derby, it was so nice to see a panel with cosplayers talking about how they make things (Iron-Manda and Darkiekun) and I came home feeling more inspired. I do however find one thing a little frustrating about this convention and that is the ticket price if you are not going to be at all the evening events…

I went to Nottingham Comicon too with my friend Buster Boy, and met up with some of my other friends there (Check out this page). It was a lovely day out, not many cosplayers but those that did were met with staff that gave real encouragement. It was quite a highlight to walk in and get a cheer from the staff over our costumes. As an amateur trying to learn yet more skills it’s nice when someone compliments what you have done. Incidentally I was also featured in the Nottingham Post.

Conventions are fun, but the expectations on what to deliver is high and I also feel bad for the independent artists who go and people aren’t buying things off them. The art is good, they are passionate and even buying a few of them often doesn’t cover the stall money, yet a My Little Pony toy that you can get from a local store drags people over in droves. I brought a couple where I could afford it and I thoroughly loved the interaction with those artists. At Nottingham Comicon I brought from Dark Pond Creations, signed, picture drawn in the cover and only a few pounds. Come on!

Conventions are getting bigger, they are getting more popular and with it comes media attention. Good or bad you are at risk of getting it as a cosplayer. Don’t be afraid of one comment about your cosplay that’s negative, remember it’s for you, it’s for fun and if others love it it is a big bonus. Don’t shy from what you love, if you get up and plan a new costume instead of panicking about a random internet troll get your glad rags out and get creating!

Confidence is your best ally, and I didn’t have it when I started. In fact I went into this in order to build it up. What I have got out of cosplay and conventions? Friends, new ideas, new ways to get creating… people who cannot understand what you do aren’t always going to agree with it but I don’t spend my time taking drugs or causing people trouble so I consider it a win!

With lots of cheer for all,

Rea

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{December 28, 2013}   2013 What’s happened to me?

Wow what a year! And I really do thank my family and friends for it all.

1. Partner.

He’s suffered my obsessive cosplay outings, holiday and trips all over the place. We’ve both been very busy this year, he even ventured out to a convention with me despite hating them. He’s a rock when I am depressed, and I in turn hope I do that for him when he is low or wants comfort. We’ve been together for over a decade now, seems pretty impressive to me.

2. I changed jobs.

I went from a full time position dealing with complaints for the energy industry and it was a bit of a harrowing time. The place I was in took up a lot of my energy and I found it hard to deal with by the end, more so when I realised how many people I would leave behind. I have now got a new job, it’s part time and the money adjustments will really set in during 2014.

3. Venice.

This was amazing. I went with what I consider to be one of my best set of friends here in Nottingham. It’s a shame more friends couldn’t be mustered up but it’s really a place you can fall in love with. I am desperately hoping to return there, as much as I would like to go back to the USA and even Germany too. It was so hot and I even got a tan!

4. Other outings?

I was lucky to get to see the Mansion for Zed Events, I met a lot of amazing people there from both Zed Events and REUK (Resident Evil UK). It was so much fun! It was a great road trip with my friends and it was another great way of proving I can get past the years of sitting home, in semi-forced reclusion.

Sheffield and Birmingham Cemetery trips – again I went with friends or met friends there. I love to look around and see the beautiful gravestones, the plants and environment; I don’t mind if people consider it morbid. It makes me happy and I feel at peace in them.

I also took a couple of other trips, one to Haverhill to see friends I don’t get to see enough and also a random trip out to go and buy a Gears of War Lancer off a friend there. I fell lucky enough to catch up with another friend in Scarborough and so both trips were a great deal of fun.

5. Cosplay.

WOW where do I begin? How about the list of the ones I ventu

I have really enjoyed making so many friends, and I have absolutely learnt a lot about costumes. I have seen the good and bad side of the hobby. I love the costumes, the friends and I love looking around. I hate the blatant elitism and the downright rude way people can be, not everyone there wants to be an air-brushed model on a page, and I am definitely happy with just staying in the circles I do. If you want to say hi or get a picture do so, but I don’t approach photographers because I don’t need them to make me feel good. Especially when this year I lost seven stone, made friends by the bucket-loads and didn’t even need an agent to do it! (Yeah that was a cheap dig at the “I want to make friends, book my pictures” type of people).¬†red too? So MCM Telford, both Birmingham events, both London events, LFCC in the summer, Insomnia47 (thanks to the awesome Tigerlily Cosplay and her competition), J-Con and Nerdfest. What a year?

6. Gaming.

Oh lords well – it’s really been the year for Gears of War and Resident Evil, mixed with a bit of Devil May Cry (original 4). I did also get my mitts on Metal Gear Rising. It’s been a great year for social gaming, I’ve spent plenty of hours on my Xbox and PC, and I also got a fair amount of time on the MMO I have played for quite a few years (yes the dreaded WOW player is here).

Gaming has been a good outlet for me, when I am not able to write, draw or muster up the energy to fight low points of depression it’s a way to escape the troubles. When I am in a good mood it’s a great way to clock up some kill counts too!

So how has your year been? I hope it’s been good and that come 2014 it¬†will only get better.

Special thanks to Jon Fisher Photography for my Dante picture.

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{November 3, 2013}   MCM Review Oct 2013

So it’s been a bit manic but finally I have time to get some writing about the event up and running, other than the previous comedy post about the situation with the weird man on the Sunday.

So here goes –

Friday: we had a few blips to get there, we were stuck in a two hour tail-back around the Birmingham area, I really needed to pee! But it’s okay once we got on the road it was a fun trip down and despite the cheesy music in the car my friend fared well and came in alive haha!

Getting our wristbands for the weekend on early entry wasn’t at all painful compared to the May queue. It was simple in and out, bands on *which by the way are a better quality so thanks MCM!* and then into the event.

Friday’s is for me the better day to try and shop, Saturday I barely ever go into the complex and hall. It is just toooo busy! So we had a wander and I brought some rather sexy Gears of War additions for my collection.

Saturday – Oh lords just TOO busy to be inside. And it’s not even just the staff that can be rude, most of them were okay this time. I’ve had the door staff and people being quite rude before but for the most part I escaped that. I will however say some members of the public should probably be glad there are not real weapons they are that damned rude! Pushing people, moaning about the fact there’s too many folks. It’s a convention expect people to be there, but if you can’t be polite or at least move out of the damned flow to have a twenty minute food break I’d rather you let your oxygen go to another person with a brain…

I went to the Fox the Saturday night, a little bold for me as I am terrible at these social things. Cosplay is the way I have picked to battle this social issue, so I went and I had a lovely time. I came back, passed out for about three hours and then woke up with an anxiety attack, however could have been worse because I at least got a little sleep. Did also have a lot of bacon for breakfast – mmmm bacon!

Sunday was a lot calmer indoors, it meant we got a little chance to do some last minute shopping. My friend James had found me a Robbie Rabbit from Silent Hill, I never did find the Konami Store! I was dressed in BSAA outfit, whilst I wasn’t stopped as much as others I really did have a wonderful time in that costume. REUK are just wonderful as a group, I feel like part of a family there.

So the organisation? I would say considering the volume not bad. Again I would say some of the staff/volunteers sincerely need to work on their damned attitude. It’s a nerdfest/geekfest of people that probably aren’t all as brave as they think and sometimes we need a little human touch even if we don’t look one. However when it came to a problem on the Sunday the security on site were on hand and dealt with the issue quickly.

Props/Con Goers treatment – whilst I had no problems myself I was really angry to hear that sensible con-goers with props were turned away whilst others in there I could see were more dangerous with their behaviour than any guy with a fake gun could ever have been! It’s not the Props it’s the bloody people that need chucking out. I would say there should be a check point where you can get your weaponry/props checked out by ONE central point. If the weapon is deemed safe and the cosplayer sensible then give that prop a tag to tie on or something that makes it clear it’s been deemed con-safe. It takes the personal issues away from the door security and means less trouble for those of us that can go in and out ten times a day, then suddenly stopped by the one guy/gal that suddenly takes a dislike. It’s far too based on someone’s personal opinion which means too much error with bias.

Stalls/stands – FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WHAT COMICS! Seriously it’s called Comiccon and there was like one, maybe two stalls of comics? Very disappointed that the gaming side is lacking, the comics were hit and miss on about two stalls. If I wanted to buy a lucky cat or a bazillion takes on Japanese sweets that we already could buy on the ENTIRE area of Japan food then wow great day. Didn’t see a damned thing outside of the Gears tucked away in some boxes and the Robbie that someone else found for me. I wasn’t impressed with the range this time, a shame as people go with all that money to spend on an event and can end up coming back with very little.

The Steam Punk stands seemed non-existent and even if you are not a major fan it’s part of the conventions generally. The Table Tennis area was a terrible idea, whilst standing by my friends waiting for his cosplay judging we were constantly bombarded by the damned things and watching some kid destroy a table and having to keep repairing it. Not a good idea MCM really, really not!

So overall? Negatives =Biggest lets downs? Not a single guest of interest for me as a gamer, I don’t give a shit about Young Dracula and I don’t care for half of the crap put on inside. Sadly it was just not exciting for the line up and I was sad to hear so many negative bits about it. ¬†Gaming was not really that varied, a shame but the ones on there looked popular enough for the mainstream.

Highlights –¬†I did chat to a developer for a bit who was making his own xbox game and that was pretty cool. Costumes – plenty of good ones and I got to see a lot of my friends finished products from their blogs and facebook make it into real life. New friends I made along the way, absolutely the highlight! A couple of people stopping me for my pictures, I’m not bothered by popularity but it’s a massive compliment when someone does stop me.

Go again? Yes I will be, I will be going to May to see if some of the points addressed by people are picked up on and resolved. ¬†I don’t want people to think I don’t ever have a good time there, I really do or I wouldn’t go back but I’d hope for more variety on the menu by May. Please MCM PLEASE go back to the pre-mainstream crap, I’m a geek and I don’t want it to feel like a trip into the city centre over a weekend of celebrating that fact.

And LOVE to everyone I met there!

So some shoutouts and links for anyone that got to the bottom of this haha!

AJL Armours and Cosplay

Big Red Ape Cosplay

Capcom UK

Buster Boy Cosplay

Cosmic Workshop

Cosplay Without Bias

Cosplayuk

Jon Fisher Photography

Zed Events 

 



{September 1, 2012}   Nero’s Gun from DMC4

Okay! This one was a bit crazy mostly because half way through this I suffered a break out of contact dermatitis. Maybe I will post about that at some point, I end up looking like a leper!

So, Nero is one of my favourite boys of all time! I mean it, seriously love his little punk attitude and the clothes. Now obviously I love the original Dante and I won’t start a rant about how much I hate the reboot but I thought you might like to see what a few hours and a ¬£10 budget can do for Cosplay. This is Blue Rose – aka Nero’s gun.

What you need – 2 plastic guns, a hacksaw, paint, some cardboard or filler of some sort and time… lots of time. At the end you can also tidy this up with varnish for more protection.

I got two “Cowboy” guns for “¬£3, you can see I pretty much just hacked off ¬† barrel and put it on to another. Then put some card in to fill the centre and built the little extra box. It doesn’t look sturdy but you can see the overall shape roughly matches Nero’s gun.

After that was the fun part of spraying! I used Games Workshop’s white paint as a base coat but it wasn’t really necessary. I just sprayed it with a light silver paint then hand painted with another silver paint over to give it more texture. Again just leave it plenty of time to dry, I had to take this outside because I picked model paint and it stank!

After that I paint the handle with “leather brown” paint. It wasn’t amazing looking but it’s more about¬†representation¬†than exacts, especially when I decided I was going to save myself the costs online.

I paint the box with the rose on next, I had metallic coloured paint in the stores but honestly I think you could get away using just the colours you fancied.

Then to get the rose outlines for the vines I drew them on with a soft pencil, the design was then painted on as a mix of black and silver paint with a fine brush.

Once all of it was done it was a matter of varnish over the top to keep it protected a little more. It’s not exact but I am pretty confident that you could recognise what it is and that’s more important.

So costs?

£3 for two plastic guns from Amazon.

Paint – already had but still cheap enough if you wanna get some.

Hacksaw (for the love of Holy if you are trying this and young get your dad or mom to do it for you!)

Glue and card.

Varnish (or as an alternative some clear nail varnish you could pick up from a market etc)

 



{July 14, 2012}   Dante’s Amulet

Hey,

Back on the run of Cosplay stuff. Rin’s still got a few additions to go but that’s not stopped me looking around at other things.

Today’s is the amulet that Dante wears from DMC. Had lots of help, and advice. I am sure there are better ways to make it but for a first effort I am quite happy indeed.

I wanted to find a way to make it on a budget, I think that whilst we can all spend a lot of money on these things and enjoy trawling sites to get the best costumes if you are trying to do things without spending a fortune there are ways.

Firstly I do have Dante’s jacket and unlike the ¬£117 pounds most sites advertise for his costume I got the jacket for ¬£30 by being patient on Ebay. Fortunately the sellers measurements matched mine and so I got a good deal. I am particularly chuffed with this of course but on to the amulet.

Firstly, air dry clay for the sculpting, this cost £3.99 and there was enough to make a fair few of them anyway.

The chain was £2 from hobbycraft on a clearance sale. I am sure there would be better ones to use but like I say, attempting to do these things on a budget in case others are looking for help that way.

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The paint was silver model paint, ¬£1.60 and then the red paint was Asda’s George Nailvarnish (on sale for ¬£1) and the clear varnish was the same.

So the total cost was: £9.59. The ones I found on Ebay were around £30 or more.

Firstly the amulet was made, the basic shape then chain was fed through before the final shaping was done. After that the amulet base was left to try, it was easier to do this than to oven bake. Once the amulet was dried the base coat of silver was applied, I believe the only difference for Vergil would be to use gold paint. This was then built up over a few more coats to ensure that the clay underneath wasn’t visible.

Once the metal look was sorted out the red nail varnish was used to pain the red part in the centre. It took a few coats to get it to shine (picture may not really show that too well) but after they were dried off the clear nail varnish was put on. Again this was used to give the whole amulet a shine, the entire thing was painted with the clear nail varnish.

Once it was dry it was fine to put on and play with. It wouldn’t suggest dunking it in hot water or anything but for cosplay purposes it seems pretty tough and durable to wear. Obviously I doubt throwing it around would do it’s health too many favours but that’s how it was made and I think it passes for the job it’s intended to do.

 

That’s it for now.

MJ



{March 21, 2012}   Game and RIP to the Highstreet

GAME and RIP highstreet Today I hear that GAME is still suffering with it’s trading issues. I love that place. I hope that something comes up for the company and they continue because I have always shopped there since the store came to Nottingham.

Complaining that they re-sell for profit to themselves, well I don’t see anything about that being an issue on e-bay, Amazon, Gamestop etc… hells even Supermarkets are in the pre-owned market. I disagree really heartily with the idea of having to pay extortionate amounts for one license on my computer that I have to repay for if anything goes wrong…

Internet based companies took the market into easy shopping but I like going into the store. Helpful, friendly people came to assist me and unlike most mass crap retail outlets I felt like I could engage with staff. The manager was on the shop floor and he would talk and listen to people. It’s what we used to get and what we SHOULD get! I hate going into the city centre lately, mostly it’s a place for a small gathering of tents for “occupy Nottingham” which by the way just is a farce.

I hate the masses of cafe’s and other boring ass places with more calories and sugar and no personality. The best shops I can remeber are all gone replaced by Primark and Gap, or other such cheap ass “only if you are stick thin” places.

So Game, Forbidden Planet, Page 45 and the old geeky shops were my reason to go in. Take those away and my choice has to be internet so I am forced into the market of the internet even if I didn’t want it, purely because there is nothing else.

I feel sorry for the high street business of today, unless it’s something like Starbucks or Poundland it’s not getting very far unless it goes netbased. RIP highstreet, I used to enjoy walking around with my friends but I fear it’s an age of the past.

Signing out Rea



et cetera