Freak Out Moments











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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{April 17, 2014}   Mass Media and Cosplay

WOW! I am so proud to say that I know people that have been on the TV or in Magazines etc with their talents. It’s amazing to see those wonderful talents getting a spot light but I also know it comes with reservations.

I’d like to explain why I don’t think it’s a media issue as such, but more about how you take it as a person when you see it. So I am going to pick the Fur And Loathing episode of CSI, Season 4 saw the “murder of a furry” with it came a lot of jokes about the weird things people do, they covered as much of the culture in the 40 ish minutes they had and rightly, or wrongly, most likely missed what those in the community saw as the “real deal”.

If I am honest I had never even heard of the community before that show aired, and it didn’t make me shy away going OMG bunch of Freaks! What it actually had me do was look at the culture, I thought wow, well it’s like any fetish isn’t it? Good and bad sides for all. You get a good and a bad egg in anything you do, anywhere you go. It’s not unusual either for the media to try and cover something and abysmally muck it up but at least I thought about looking more into that culture and now I have furry friends, and I have a better understanding by asking them about it.

To me that is the same for Cosplay, gaming or anything that other people don’t get. If someone says “you’re into all that weird stuff” ask them what is weird about it? Didn’t they go to their friends stag do in a dress with a comedy wig? Haven’t they played cops/robbers or cowboys./indians as a kid and got delight out of that few pounds costume? It’s the same thing only at the cosplayer level you get everything from the off the shelf fun, the few quid ones you made, and the massively pricey ones. Either way that person is having a good time right?

Well here’s where I think it’s dangerous and it’s not about you, me or the media. It’s when you listen to that media and take it’s ONE slant as gospel. You take that comment one guy makes from a ten second clip saying “oh I think all cosplayers are a bit mental” but I bet you they could easily have shaved off that bit after where the guy could be laughing saying “and i am utterly mental, this sounds brilliant. Sign me up”… it’s not necessarily the view they gave it’s how the media cut and portray it when they want to take their slant one way or another.

This is the bit that I also find dangerous, when I was 15/18 I was a singer and I travelled around, I sang in pubs, clubs and all over. I loved the performing aspect I hated the industry with a passion that I cannot explain in words. Why?

Let me summarise where many of my own problems about my appearance. confidence and troubles stopped me from going on with that career…

I was physically assaulted at school for being short, tall, thin, fat, spotty, glasses, no glasses, having horses, not having the same blazer, using a biro not the same pen as was in fashion. Name your theme, they did it, they hurt and I was not backed up by the school despite my mother’s sincerest attempts. In the end we moved but the school had been less than useful.

When applying for any part/spot in a performance: too fat, too thin, eyes wrong colour, height, need to shave her hips on one side, her knee isn’t quite the right shape for a ballet career. What her skill? Oh yeah brush that side, boobs? No boobs? Either way they have faults they want to project on to you yet seldom praise your talent.

What does all of this do? I went from barely eating and dancing most hours of a day to crying, depression and binge eating. You can tell me I should smarten up, and that these people shouldn’t affect you but the second you become passionate you open yourselves up to both sides. Positive and negative.

I am 34 as I write this, it’s taken all those years to get back to a place where it is okay to have my picture taken, to dance without a care, to sing in the shower and have a laugh. And I can’t say that the media or anyone helped that, it was the network of support, friends and being able to hear that others had come out the other side.

So to all those that worry about these things, yes you will worry, but don’t fall into the trap of letting it destroy that smile, crooked or otherwise that is the essence of beauty isn’t it? Loving yourself and loving those who see you for who you are.

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{October 11, 2013}   The Fat Factor and photography

I am realistic, I am a big girl. I know this, to be honest we are ALL aware of our own bodies and size.  Don’t be fooled into thinking I am unaware of my own shape and size, and why? I was for many years a dancer and singer and very slender. I was toned, I did ballet, jazz and tap, I danced for two to three hours a day and I would ride horses around when I wasn’t in school/college/work.

I didn’t have a full time office job, I wasn’t subject to injuries and at the time I wasn’t even aware of the horrifically cruel things human’s would do to one another just to make themselves feel better. And that’s the crux of this post…

I shied away from my picture being taken for years after I exited the entertainment business. At size 8-10 with fairly decent figure, fit, healthy, brown hair and brown eyed I was told more often than I would care to mention – you are too fat, need to loose a couple pounds. Basically in order to satisfy a man’s ideals instead of being happy that I was healthy they wanted me to starve. Ballet Dancers aren’t allowed to eat, shit or drink like a human they are expected to be some form of bone with a fleshy cling-film overlay.

My impression of the cosplay world for those that want to take it seriously is that it is just as brutal and rude. CRUDE would be a good word. I am not thin, I am not going to slim down for THEM I do it for me!

I have downsized from a UK 24 to an 18 in the last year, I have done it with a healthier eating pattern and by taking walks. I have done this for me not for a media photographer and yet I still see girls who are perfectly healthy and normal being told they are too fat, their breasts are too small.

It actually makes you feel disappointed that in a day and age where we are so willing to fight for the rights of a murder, or rapist that nothing is said about the media portrayal of people.  It’s easier to poke fun at the “fat bitch” than to think, hey she’s really fighting to get up in the morning, to do the right thing, I should ask her how she’s feeling… I should keep my damned abusive mouth shut.

It is true I feel that you can avoid internet bullying, but I also think it’s important to understand people that feel bullied won’t know how to deal with it. Sometimes we aren’t equipped with the mindset to walk away, you sit in front of the PC and see those comments, “fat” “ugly” “worthless” and buried in the myriad of beautiful praises they stand out, they are negative and they are hurtful. Internet trolls aren’t even clever people, they just think they are. Personally they are the ones I feel more sorry for when I sit down to analyse it, after all they are that needy for attention they have to try to destroy other people’s creativity and happiness.

So I guess really what I am saying is, I don’t think it’s important to you as a person if you cosplay and they ignore your costume for the thing girl. I’ve been physically pushed aside by men for a picture of a prettier girl by the way…

It is more important to evaluate your self-worth. I find this hard but here’s my example!

I love what I do, I have a balance of life and work, I love my friends and family equally. I won’t judge you as a man or woman, I will judge you as a person. I am not blind to my follies and faults, I will adapt and try to move forwards. I WILL love you no matter your size and I DO care if you are upset.

And, if anyone ever wants to talk to me outside of my blogs you can find me on facebook.

Take care all,

GearsGirl



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