The Day One report contains a lot more pictures showcasing other cosplayers during this event. I focused on writing about events for the day in this one. There are too many pictures here as it is.
Since I wasn't able to take my own photos of the venue, here are some official photos from the CMX team, taken by Erving ~
. (Thank you, Erving and Henry!)
Giant tarps for Cosmania and the Cosplay Tournament of Champions at SMX!
There was lots of breathing room and good ventilation so I hope these people were comfortable during their wait.
Long line is looooong.
Cosplay Checkmate! I wish we could have watched but I think we were shooting outside when this was going on.
Outside the main exhibit hall, lots of cosplayers and spectators gathered to shoot photos. This seems to be pretty late in the day. This place is great for taking pictures when sunlight is streaming through the huge windows.
Part of the lineup of activities during Cosmania was the Cosplay Workshops. We were asked to do a panel on character portrayal.
I made sure to start by telling everyone that the things we were about to share are what we've learned through personal experience. There aren't any absolute rules about what's right and wrong when it comes to cosplay. Everyone is encouraged to try things out and learn what works best for them. We were just invited to share what we know and practice to possibly serve as a guide (not a rule) for other cosplayers.
And here is a webcam shot from when we were in the car, on the way to Cosmania. I was making some final changes on our presentation for our panel, and panicking because there was less than an hour to go and we were still on the road.
We made it just in time! My friends and I were escorted to the lecture room and set up the equipment.
At first we were like...
...and then we LOL'd
Starting off our panel. The lecture room was quite nice.
To explain the text on the whiteboard, our panel was entitled Character Portrayal: Putting the 'Play' in Cosplay
We noticed there seemed to be absentees even though some people outside told us all the slots for workshop were already taken. Apparently a group had gotten lost because they didn't know where the lecture room was.
told me they dropped by our table later in the day. To be fair, there weren't clear indicators about the workshop around the venue. When I was getting tickets for Hannah and Cassie, people had me going back and forth as well. I believe the organizers will improve on that for next year.
Despite our main topic being characterization, we took quite a while tackling other topics too. One of them was a short lesson on basic fabrics. Here, I was tracing around Ysabel's dress to show how portions that were made using a certain fabric fall and flow differently compared to lighter ones.
explained that the reason we were discussing other preparation topics is because based on our personal experience (and failed cosplays of the past) even though you pose or emulate a character's facial expression well, you could end up looking a little silly in a costume made with the wrong material.
Kat didn't know I included a photo of her Yoko cosplay to showcase usage of matte leatherette. Dohohohoho.
Me being totally out of character while doing a panel on characterization.
I believe this was from when we were discussing how do determine if you should paint or embroider patterns on garments. In our case, we chose to paint the triangles on the shinsengumi haori instead of making them out of fabric. We wanted to go for a distressed look so that our haoris would look battle-worn, hahah.
Oh man, this photo. Hahahahahahah. This was from when I dropped the F-bomb while giving the lecture. With a TV camera crew and other press people recording our panel. Everyone ended up cracking up after a second of shock. EJ ~Dinkyass
tried to save me by going, "Ha ha ha, Jin said FFFFFUUUUUUUUUUN! I totally heard FUN!"
live via sattelite! ...from beside me
Actually, we turned on the webcam so that even the people at the back of the room could see the pattern that she manually silkscreened onto her kimono to stay true to Chizuru's design in the game. (Well, half of her kimono anyway. The silkscreen broke and there wasn't enough time to make a new one. Gotta work with what we have!
Kat made the stencil for the asanoha pattern out of green film on silkscreen. She cut out every single dash and dot off the film using an X-Acto knife.
We haven't been able to find fabric with that pattern around here, so this is what we did. Miguel painted on the chain link design
of Souji's kimono as well.
During another webcam session later in the class, I asked Kat to make certain facial expressions and angle her head differently and took snapshots.
I then scrolled through the snapshots to show the class how simple gestures can appear to change the shape of our face for photos.
And this is Miguel zoning out.
And drawing a :3 face on one of our favorite examples of Best Cosplays Ever.
We were actually afraid that we might not have enough material to discuss over an hour, but then all of a sudden it seemed like we didn't have enough time! And so, even though there were other things we wanted to elaborate on (not everything we discussed is in this journal, there was a looooot more) we moved on to test our students!
We organized a little game for which we had people from the audience act out certain character archetypes, pose anywhere in the room, and direct Erving on how they would like him to take their photos. Immediately after, we would upload the shots onto my laptop and review the photos for the whole class to observe.
Now I don't know if you guys would mind having your names posted here publicly so I'll just refer to you by numbers.First challenge
: We asked a number of female audience members to come up front and show us their interpretaion of... moe~
No. 1 made us go "awwww" with her pouty pensive face. The way it was shot from a high angle made her proportions look more child-like.
No. 2 went for a well-known Haruhi pose
Tsun tsun moe?
No. 3 did a lot! She moved to a spot with good lighting, and had Erving shoot her from a high angle. She then goes for the doe-eyed look, raising her eyebrows to look more innocent, gave a shy little smile, turned her chin down to emphasize her eyes, and posed all the way to her fingertips.
Is No. 4 showing us tough girl moe? XD
No. 5 goes for meganekko moeSecond challenge
: This time we asked for male participants who were not familiar with each other. They were made to pair up and play the part of... seme and uke
This brought about many distressed reactions from the guys, and much delighted screaming from the girls.
Pair No. 1 goes for the classic romantic dip, with a not-so-classic twist. I must say the light worked well for them.
Pair No. 2 was perhaps our most reluctant but when they started posing, it was just... wow. Look at that intensity in their eyes. The gentle but determined grasp on each other. It's like a scene from a student-teacher doujin aaaahahahahahaha (Sorry you two, but I guess you can tell my friends are deeply inspired by your photos)
Pair No. 3 celebrates being out of the closet by get it on in the closet! Hahaha!Third challenge
: Villainous vampire!
No. 1 attempts an action shot and moved a lot as he posed
No. 2 poses by the blue glow of the projector and shows us a fang. Spooky!
No. 3 drew sparkles on the glass board. DUN DUN DUN. The worst kind of vampire is the type that sparkles. (Although it has been popularly debated that those sorts are more fairy than vampire.)
No. 4 goes under a light to get some shadows going to his advantage. Villainous hand pose that isn't up too high, check.
No. 5 makes use of the blue light from the projector and steps on a ladder to bring himself higher and make him look larger and more formidable. Great effort!Final challenge
: Groups of three, show us... a tentacle monster!
Group No. 1's tentacles are too fast for the camera. Boardcat says DO NOT WANT~ Run, Boardcat, run!
Group No. 2 volts into a united tentacle monster! With matching puckered mouth
Group No. 3 is a yellow-bowed Neko-Pandamonster!
Uploading and reviewing photos from the game
The winners! We had 'em troop over to our booth later on to claim their prizes.
Congratulations to them, and to all who joined because they certainly made it fun for everyone!
Class photooooooo! You guys were so great!
Hope you enjoyed it, and thank you for giving us wonderful memories!
Higher resolution [link]
(Will upload an even larger file later)
Perhaps one of these days I'll post up a compilation of the things we discussed and elaborate on the parts that we weren't able to for lack of time!
Outside the lecture room, photobombing commenced. Here is Dom who appears to be after Kat's brainssssssss
I was asked to sign some stuff, and yet again my inability to write decent dedications resurfaced.
Miguel signing a print of our art collab.
"Watcha doin', Soujiiiiii~?"
"Ignore me, will you? Who's your captain now? WHO IS IT?!"
O, captain my captain
Cassie is the bestest Captain Toshi ever.
There were so many people.
I didn't expect it at all. We were in that spot for a while and then I had to be rushed off in time to judge the Cosplay Tournament of Champions.
On our way back to the main hall, my friends managed to do some running action photobombs
At the judges table with Paul Mendoza (one of the people I got to know from the local community when I was just starting out
), the representative from Brother Philippines (I'm sorry, I am terrible with names) and our guests from Singapore, Mr. Clive Lee ~miragecld
The stage setup for the Cosplay Tournament of Champions (or Cosplay TorCh)
I greatly appreciated the way they set it up and coordinated the lights and smoke with the skit. The screen at the back really helps set the mood as well. This team prepared a video in which the visuals were timed perfectly to be appropriate with what was happening in their performance. Major props for that. I cringed (and heard the audience gasp) when Zeus actually broke wings off from Hades as part of their skit.
Team Clash of Brotherhood (finalists from Clark)
Rolando Logronio and Cykah Malagad
cosplaying as characters from Saint Seiya
Team Miyuki and Nyappy (finalists from Baguio)
Dianne Kathleen Balagot and Clarizza Panganiban
cosplaying as characters from Black Rock Shooter
Team MARCH Omega (finalists from Cebu)
Amado Carl Hernandez and Jose Carlos Mallonga III
cosplaying as characters from DoTA / Warcraft III
Apart from the fantastic armor and weapons, the puppet rig for King Leoric was excellent. I'd sometimes forget that there's a guy behind, controlling it. They also utilized stage ninjas well.
Team 3/4 (finalists from Davao)
Dewilsurv Duane Bacon and Fracine Isabelle Aquino
cosplaying as characters from Bleach
Although they said that there were technical problems with the hind legs, I could see that they gave it their all and simply pulling off a centaur-like costume is something to be admired.
Team Star Ocean The Last Hope I'm not sure if they changed their name after changing their costumes
(finalists from Manila)
Paul Martin San Diego and Kenji Matsushita
cosplaying as characters from .hack
This was another performance I really enjoyed. Highly entertaining fight scene with creative usage of stage ninjas. There was even a little surprise at the end. I'll be linking to a page below where you can watch these skits if you'd like to.
Man, these guys could move. They made use of the entire stage area, leaping and and running all over the place. I admire their dedication and stamina.
Team Dire Husi (finalists from Baguio)
Deven Baculpo and John Rey Yap
cosplaying as characters from Avatar
I must say, the face makeup was really effective. Paul and I were speculating if they used prosthetics for the nose, but it seems it was just makeup.
Another judges table photo. I was caught fixing my ponytail, hahah.
You may watch videos of their performances here Cosplay TorCH videos at Otakultura
After judging, I reunited with my friends.
Hijikata-san, where is that hand heading?
Cassie sneaks over to another photo, this time with Romi (other HIjikata, hahah), Jesuke, Yuu and Zell
After signing more stuff, I looked up and saw...
....SUDDENLY, RILAKKUMAS. Lots of them!
And then Plusle and Minun. And Charity gave us Pocky.
I... am not sure why we ending up doing this, but I would like to see more pictures from this time.
I think I was really out of it from exhaustion by this time. I have like ONE FACE for the rest of these photos. Like I was copy-pasted. Also, my scarf keeps choking meeeee. I really have to properly pin that thing in place next time.
Same face. (Hi Dom and Kat)
Same face still.
Ridiculous. There are more but they're not worth putting here, hahah.
Another snapshot of us in this area, by Kei !sakurako-shi
Those of you who are familiar with Hakuouki (the otome game/anime) might be wondering why our group's Hijikata and Heisuke are in the Western style uniforms while the rest of us are in their Shinsengumi outfits. The thing is, we didn't plan this. Actually, back when we first started talking about cosplaying Hakuouki, we had all pretty much decided who we wanted to be and were only missing Hijikata and Heisuke. And I thought Cassie ~cazzu-chan
and Hannah ~Hana181
would be fitting, but I wasn't sure if they were interested. About a week before the event, Hannah was at my house for a get together between our familes. She saw the sleeve of my Shinsengumi haori peeking out of a bag and asked, "Is that for... Hakuouki?" And that's when I learned that she and Cassie were cosplaying, that's right... Hijikata and Heisuke. BUT in the Western uniforms. And so Hannah and I went FFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUU together.
The end! Well, not really. We'll be helping them with the outfits to match ours, hahah.
In the meantime, here are some pretty photos of them by =KiraHokuten
as Hijikata Toshizo
Such a dashing Toshi!
as Todo Heisuke.
Hannah, Heisuke is supposed to be short!
When I saw the photos of them pointing swords and staring at each other, I had a feeling they were trying desperately not to laugh despite how the pictures show otherwise. I confirmed with them later on. I was right.
as Yukimura Chizuru
as Nakagura Shinpachi
(Wow my wig color is so bright in Kira's photos, hahah)
And this is me with Michelle, our guest from Malaysia. So pretty!
I feel so disheveled and messy next to her.
On that note, what we like about wearing a costume to a con before a shoot is that we get to test its comfort levels to know what we'll be dealing with when we wear it again. For me it was that I have to watch out how my haori is draping, my scarf has a tendency to try and strangle me, and my wig needed more cutting as it often looked messy and kept eating my face. We also observe its shortcomings (and our bad angles hahah) from other people's photos, so we can determine what to fix up or watch out for when we do shoots. In a more controlled environment, this is how we can try to improve:
Michelle with our Hakuouki group (minus Dom who was at our booth)
won the cosplay photography contest! Congrats on a well-deserved win, Kira! And happy birthday!
After the awarding of the many contests and raffles throughout the day, they prepared to wrap up the event.
Congratulations to the Cosplay Mania X team for a memorable, successful event!
X for Cosplay Mania X! Here's to 10 years of cosplay in the Philippines!
Celebratory confetti rainnnnnn!
) They make such amazing costumes and are such a good team when it comes to performances and such. We don't even know why astounding cosplayers like them who make costumes we can only dream about would regard us highly but we sure are thankful that they do!
Another of my favorite moments was seeing Polidread and receiving postcards from him. One of them referenced a joke from about about five whole years ago. OH POLI-SAMA YOU ARE OUR STELLAR CELEBRITY PRINCESS DIVA OVERLORD FUHRER FOREVER
As it was getting late, there were less and less people in the venue. After a while, we were content just hanging out at our booth with familiar faces like Ate Jewel, Gibs and Ricki, and also new friends like Shoti, AC, and Alvin (even if he was taking unflattering pictures of us all tuckered out hahaha). We also had fun watching the special anniversary video again.
On our way out, going down the long escalator leading to the entrance, my friends and I talked about how we missed Cosmania X already. It has been an incredibly exhausting couple of days, but they were also full of happy memories. It almost felt like we had been there for a week because so many things happened, and we met so many people. It was a wonderful, monumental event that I am thoroughly grateful my friends and I were given the opportunity to be part of.
I think that may have been the best local con I've been to.
For starters, SMX as a venue was a refreshing change. Even though all the attendees still managed to crowd the hall, ventilation was great and there was always room to breathe. The halls outside had great lighting and clean walls and windows for those who wanted to have shoots. Competing cosplayers were cared for and given their own space. There was affordable food and even free Slurpees and snacks for the congoer who needs more energy fuel.
A lot of the cosplay competition entries (on both days) were outstanding. It's so exciting to see how every year the bar is raised. People keep developing their talents, pushing the limits and showing us things we may not have thought possible. There were so many events going on that you wouldn't get bored if you knew where to look. An on-the-spot costume building contest, an eating contest, raffles, cosplay chess, workshops, and more.
One can tell that so much heart went into the planning for the event. Everything was thought out with the interests of cosplayers and cosplay enthusiasts in mind. That's probably because the organizers are cosplayers themselves. Thank you Cosplay.ph, for giving us this event to celebrate the tenth year of cosplay in the Philippines. Here's to many more, and for the continuous growth and development of our happy community.
If you were one of the people we took pictures with (intentionally or otherwise) during Cosmania, I'd love to see our photos together. If you saw pictures we photobombed somewhere, we'd like to see that too.
My friends and I love collecting snapshots to look back on the fun we've had during events.
Yet again, I apologize since I am unable to respond to messages as much as I would want to, given the number I receive and the time I allot myself to spend on dA. I do my best to log in a few times a week to check my inbox and read as many messages as I can. When I get to read comments that I can make a short response to, I do just that. Others require more time, though.
Although I have not been able to reply to most of you yet - please know that I truly appreciate every heartfelt message that I get to read. Thank you so much. I say this a lot because I feel like I'm never able to catch up with the amount of messages I get. No matter how many times I post a message like this, I still mean it every time. Thank you.
I'll be honest about something. One factor that leads to my being unable to reply is because some people send letters that leave me completely overwhelmed (and sometimes teary-eyed). And I feel like whatever reply I can send them given the little dA time I have won't be good enough, because that they deserve better. When I am in the proper mindset and have the time, I will get around to writing back. So to you guys - I hope for your understanding for now, and I hope you know that your letters keep me sharing here.
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