How many of these will my procrastination kill off?

So here’s a long list of places I want to go for next con season; Katsucon, Emerald City Comic Con, Awesome Con, All Star Comic Con, Blerd Con, Otakon, Baltimore Comic Con, New York Comic Con, and Boston Comic Con.  So some of these I already know I’m going to.  Some are cons that I’m heavily leaning towards.  And one is just because I want to post a goofy picture.

And here’s a list of costumes that I need to work on; Update Western Wonder, embellish and repair Yang, rework DARPA Poison Oak, water walking Leonardo Da Vinci from Ever After, Old Man Logan/Yang mashup (with working claws), All American Boy, John Crichton (Farscape/Crackers Don’t Matter), and YoRHa No.2 Type B from Nier: Automata (which I’ve never played).  No problem, right?

The repair work for Western Wonder and Yang are pretty straight forward.  The cowboy boots are cracked and need to be repainted.  This is only noticeable up close.  I am thinking of making boot covers instead.  Since I need to learn how anyways.  If I cannibalize the shirt I have now I think it will provide enough fabric for both boots.  The bonus to this is that the boot colors will match the new shirt (I bought 2 of the same shirt when I made the costume).

The next step would be making a new shirt for Western Wonder.  Again, the defects are really only noticeable up close.  Small bits of fraying and fabric glue.  A LOT of wrinkling. I am hoping the new fabric will hold up a little better than what I originally used.  Sure it held up extremely well, but the new fabric may be more “wrinkle free” than the thin stuff.

Yang repairs will be a little trickier.  The gauntlets sustained pretty significant damage for only 2 days wear.  Of course, it was 2 days at NYCC.  I’m experimenting with sprays to cover the paint for protection but without sacrificing shine. The rattle cans I purchased have been problematic so far, with one being a flat out failure. I want to try one more before looking into purchasing airbrushing equipment.

The embellishments that I have in mind for Yang sounds pretty easy.  Extra detailing on the vest and some edges around the panels.  However, the more I think about it the less simple the detailing becomes.  Mostly because I’ve already finished the vest and the detailing is being added last.  (And I just thought of adding Yang’s emblem to the back of the vest in the same color fabric.)

For my DARPA Poison Oak I want to take the streamers of leaves apart and sew them directly onto the BDU’s.  I think this will make it look more like the original character and add additional durability to everything.

At least I’m half way through growing my beard for Da Vinci.  I’m REALLY not a fan of having it this long.  I get up in the morning and have to brush the hair out of my eyes.  Go ahead and read that again, I’ll wait.  The costume itself looks pretty simple.  A brown robe, some long johns, a white cap, and water walking boots.  See, simple.  I can draw from BHCosplay’s experience with building the boots for his Red Legion costume here.  He also recommended making them removable so that they can be carried if there’s a long distance to travel.

John Crichton and All American Boy are exactly what they sound like.  Some prop building for Crichton and a lot of sewing for All American Boy.  YoRHa No.2 Type B (2B for short) should be a quick build.  Gender swapping it will be easy but may require some rethinking to keep it from looking like other characters in the game.  Bonus, I now have an excuse to play the game.

Old Man Yang is the costume that I am, currently, most motivated to work on.  Just thinking about the mechanism for getting the claws to extend and retract has taken up a lot of time.  I’ve been looking into Arduino controllers and motors as well.  I even picked up some straws and kabob skewers to start prototyping.  Most of the rail systems I’ve seen online are, either, entirely too large or crazy expensive.  I only need it to do 2 things.  Move forward, then move back.  I don’t even want it to move quickly.  I like the idea that the claws move slowly, you know, as if they’re old.  I figured I could build a rail system just using pieces of straw on wooden dowels.  Three claws are attacked to pieces of straw, they are stabilized at the back end, and moved forward as a single unit.  I’ll make the claws out of foam to keep them light so it should not require a very powerful motor.  The trick, however, is that the motor has to move in both directions, several inches.  At work I deal with motors from time to time but they’ve already been engineered into the products.  I just change them and make sure they work.  In this case, I have to figure out the entire system from start to finish.

I could add notes about my Steam Punk Poison Oak but I’ve stalled on that one pretty solidly.  I am also toying with a gender swap Winter Schnee, also from RWBY.  Then there’s Shego and any number of other characters to swap.  But the fun one that I really want to cosplay isn’t even a character.  I want to go to Boston Comic Con so I can cosplay this building!

This is going to be an interesting project.

Brad and I have joined a group for next years Emerald City Comic Con.  The theme is, “When your favorite show ends…” The idea is both simple and grand.  Imagine all of your favorite childhood shows.  The ones you watched in the mornings before school, after getting home from school, and early Saturday morning.  Those times when it was only you and the TV and you got to be one of the heroes.

Now RE-imagine those characters.  After their shows ended.  And after the apocalypse.  What could possibly warp and change them after what they’ve seen on their shows?  How could the end of the world effect them?

My first inclination was a fusion of Mad Max and Speed Racer.  Unfortunately he was already chosen.  I toyed with the idea of joining with a rendition of Racer X.  In one of the posts Tina mentioned that they had found their Mr. Rogers.  Naturally this got me thinking of Captain Kangaroo.  Having grown up in Washington State, my stream of consciousness quickly latched onto JP Patches.

jp patches

For those that don’t know, JP Patches is a legitimate icon in Seattle.  Over two decades on the air, thousands of hours, and millions of fans.  He’s recognizable and memorable.  Even those in the Seattle area who had not been born by the time the show went off the air in 1981 know who he is.  Among those of us old enough to remember him, his reach extends globally.

The children that he taught to laugh and love.  To be compassionate and caring.  To be good neighbors and even greater people.  We crossed the planet and shared what he shared with us.

Now take a that character and reimagine him having survived the apocalypse.

Pause a moment to reflect on how changing such a beloved character can be taken by the general public.

In a society today that will jump on everything, whether the criticism is justified or not.  Where the anonymity of the internet has allowed the callous and venomous to spew their hate unchecked.  A society that has even allowed that venom to escape that virtual reality into actual reality.  People behaving in a manner that should shake us at our core, yet somehow, doesn’t.

Imagine the hate that changing this character, in this way, could foster.  I’m not exaggerating when I tell you that this makes me more than a little nervous.  JP Patches means a lot to me!  I want to honor him as much as I want to be creative.  This isn’t about making someone you love into somebody you could never recognize.

I don’t think that the idea is to take a character and show “what a monster they’ve become.”  I want the world to see “a shining light that has survived the darkest night.”  With Gertrude to help and lean on, it’s not that hard to imagine.  I still want JP Patches, even post apocalypse, to represent love, compassion, and friendship.

The rub is how to do it properly.  To remain recognizable as JP Patches.  To show the trails and tribulations survived.  And still radiate hope and joy.

These are some big shoes to fill (pun intended).

So….what have I been up to?

For over a year!  I believe I’ve mentioned that I’m lazy.  And now you have proof.  If you did comment in the past year and a half, please let me know.  Why?  Because all comments require approval and the vast majority of comments were spam so I just deleted all 500 pending comments.  Plus the 60 that were actually flagged as spam.

Cara (AZPowergirl) suggested that I use this space as more than just a DIY tutorial.  My posts can be rather long and rambling and as Brad (BHCosplay) pointed out, nobody wants to sit through long posts.  So why not make this more succinct for the Learn As You Go posts and add additional content about other things in my life.

For example; while I have not posted, I have done work on cosplays and been to conventions since my last post.  So it’s not like EVERYTHING has been put on hold.  Just this page.  Cara thinks I should be more active on this page my blogging about how to keep myself motivated and work.  What cons I’m going to and what happens at them.  A more general, here’s life, kind of blog.  Ironically, more like my Xanga was, which I eventually abandoned because I had no real need to blog like that anymore.

I think I’ll give it a try and see how it goes.  Hell, why not!  I’ve already bought and paid for the domain name and hosting services, I may as well use them.