Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The ultimate resemblance

I'm going to write a post about cosplay and mockery inside the fandom. One thing every cosplayer might have come across, is the argument of not looking like the character. That is going to be discussed in the up-coming post, but in the meantime entertain (and possibly educate) yourself with "What if Japanese cartoons were real?".

You can also try to guess who has gone trought some serious photoshopping.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Possible design for Debitto's jacket

I got myself Google Analytics. The reason is most likely my utter curiousity. Apparently Analytics doesn't only satisfy my appetite for sniffing around the trafic on our blog, but also to see how people finds our site. It's almost hilarious to read the search word list, but it gives rather useful vision of what people are seeking.

Debitto's outfit was one of them. I have come up with few sites where they sell the costume. They are easily found via Google or other search engines. But it's almost impossible to find good collection of reference pictures for Debitto's costume, because almost in every manga frame he is bent, stooped or partially blocked my Jasdero etc. When I was working with the costume I went trought many pictures to get the general view for the jacket. And it was actually really slow, some minor details were only drawn in few frames.

I have pointed out that I don't like manufactured costumes. One reason is the fact they usually lack the details. I thought I'd offer my alternative design for the jacket based on the manga illustrations. I came up with the cut, because in manga I didn't find any images with vertical seams. It's quite commonly used in leather jackets, which I think is the right material for Jasdero and Debitto.

I also gave my imagination a chance while choosing the fastening. One alternative could be poppers or buttons and over them would be overlapping piece of fabric to hide them. (Please, if anyone know what's it called officially, send a message!) I thought it would be natural to use a zipper, because there is one in Jasdero's vest. The other thing was the patches. I really don't know what they portray. In the sleeve there might be some kanji, but I'm not sure. Also the attachment in the collar might be with two poppers. It varied between references. The lenght of the jacket is over-knee. The way Debitto wears the jacket, hanging it over his shoulders makes it look like it reaches the knees. I came up with the other stichings to make the jacket look like a real deal, but only visible one in the references were the one on the hem. It's placed roughly three centimeters from the hem.

I hope this is useful to anyone who is going to sew the costume!

Basic drawing for Debitto's jacket by Hiron (2009).

If you want to more detailed information about the jacket, leave a comment!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Special Weekly- Pick a pic

Adulthood in sight! Happy birthday, Yoki!
Casual Sasori and Deidara from summer 2007. Pic by eila.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tutorial - Dead and stressed effect for Bubblehead Nurse (without paints)


I have the worst type of acrylic paints. They differ drasticly in consistency from grainy and gobly to runny and bland and mixing those paints is a pain, because the result rarely is the one I'm looking for. Sometimes the colour seems fine, but when it dries it's something totally different. I never would have bought those paints, if I wasn't forced to. School regulations for art course, which was nothing more than pitiful. So I'm stuck with huge bottles of second-rate acrylic paint and I'm doing costume that needs to be stressed, rustic and believable... So I continued in the road of using stuff found from kitchen to finish my Halloween costume.

Staining buttons and shoes

I had bought the cheapest white buttons I could find from the fabric store. Tea dyed dress and nurse cap were already aged with goop and looked great. I had to come up a solution to make the buttons fit the costume and not to pop out as spotless and shiny. The solution was to use instant coffee, drop of water and all purpose glue. I used this technique for the shoes also.

I mixed a small amount of instant coffee in a tiny drop of water. Then I added glue to make the mixture semi-runny. It needs to be thick enought to stay on the button.

I paintes the buttons with "coffeeglue". For different surfaces and looks add different amounts of the mixture and let the buttons dry in different angles. If you want to strain the surface, tap the glue with a Q-tip when it's partially dry. Then let them dry completely. The result is cunning with unique look and little effort.

For the shoes I first painted a a white base with acrylics. Then I just added the "coffeeglue" and when it was dry I finished them with few splashes of goop.

Dead legs in progress

I wanted to use stockings as a part of my costume. I wanted some coverage and I didn't want to spend too much time doing the bodypaint. But I wanted my legs to look like... dead. I purchased a pair of grey stockings. For my purpose they needed to be synthetic fiber. Then I bought bleach. Fun fact: When you bleach synthetic fibers they don't become white, but yellowish.

First I took a bucket and threw the stockings in a water-bleach bath. I just wanted to wear out the colour a bit. After I had soaked the stockings 'bout two hours I took them out, rinsed them and placed them on the floor. I folded them from the knee and squirted undiluted bleach randomly over them. I let them be for another hour, squirted some more bleach and waited two hours before washing the bleach off. It recommendable to wash the stockings before use if you have sensitive skin.

Easy and un-deadly cool!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Weekly- Pick a pic

I just love this shot! Jasdero and Debitto from 2008. Pic taken by kolibri from Fighting Dreamers Pro.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Crazy timetable- High stress levels spotted

This week has been full of planning, cutting, cementing, sculpting and sanding. The vacuum cleaner has been singing and our hands are getting sore and dry... That's costume making.

I took great pleasure of drawing up a timetable for our costumes. It is ridiculous and I know that in some point we will fall behind. But then again it should motivate us to work harder. This current project is matched up from many different pieces and we are going to be faced with techniques we are not familiar with. I know I can pattern and sew pants and jackets in few days if I have to, but creating armor parts from scratch in few weeks will probably immobilize me for the rest of the year.

OOPS! A spoiler! Yes, our costume will include armor parts.

So I placed the armor parts as the top priority and the bases for them should be done before New Year. If we succees with them and our plans for the techniques actually work, the rest is like a child's play. Seriously, I would be in the top of my little world if I only saw some finished pieces before next year! I've have gone trought some worst case scenarios and I hope we never have to face them. The worst one might be starting all over again from the very beginning.

I put almost all of my spare time to work with the costumes. Gladly my job is quite easy-going. Yoki is going to graduate next spring, so she is working really hard with school right now. At the time I'm being the mad costumer, who is snappy and all over the place. I think my crankyness is cause of styrofoam dust, which must have slipped trought my respirator. Or it's just the stress. Oh, the stress. Maybe I should just stop worrying and work my butt off before holidays, which, even for the likes of us, will be duty-free.

(The holy timetable says: FREETIME)

Friday, December 4, 2009

weekly - pick a pic

finishing touches, hiron yoki and karan (almost), pic by irja