Rose City Comic Con 2017

The last blog I wrote I said that I would talk about the costume contest at Rose City Comic Con and my time there. Well, that was back in September of 2017 before Rose City Comic Con! It is now April of 2018! I’m starting to see a trend. Don’t worry, everything is still fresh in my mind; but I do need to catch you up so I can start talking about my most recent project.

Friday:

I usually sleep pretty well the night before the con starts. I don’t usually cosplay on the first day so I’m not nearly as nervous or anxious about going. Friday my friend Carolyn drove up from Salem. Her plan was to stay with me the whole weekend and we carpool to the convention. The day before I made a schedule of everything we wanted to do; panels, autographs, photo ops, and lunch breaks. I’m kind of a stickler for schedules. I like having a time frame but also know that we didn’t HAVE to go or do everything at that exact time.

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See… I’m a stickler for schedules!!

As soon as we got to the Portland Convention Center we went straight up to the panel room to see Brent Spiner! We had not eaten lunch yet so we made sure to bring snacks and lunch with us so we could eat before the panel open. Best idea ever! He is a really funny guy!

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He gave people poses who had flashes on their cameras. No flashes people!

After this we were able to roam the floor a bit and check out all the neat Artists and Vendors. Some of our favorites were GeekStar CostumingEmerald City Wigs, and Charlie Donkin Art. You will be hearing more about him later. Definitely check out GeekStar Costuming. They make amazing earrings and necklaces that are very light and are laser cut. Absolutely fun to wear!

We had a photo op with Brent Spiner and John DeLancie and while waiting in line we met two girls who had some amazing Star Trek cosplays! We always seem to meet really 20170908_164201(0)cool people when we are in lines. That is actually how Carolyn and I met. We met in 2015 at a Wizard World convention waiting to have our photos taken with Stephen Amell!

One thing that sucks about photo ops is the speed they push you through. You don’t get to really chat with them or anything like that, but you do get your photo with them… sometimes get to say something… and then back out you go. However, after you retrieve your photo, go stand in line for the autograph. At that point you will get to have a much better conversation or longer interaction with the celebrity of your choosing. Which is exactly what we did next.

Now the sections that the celebrities are at are some what partitioned off… at least between each celebrity… sometimes. The lines are usually split with a short metal pole, fence type, thing. Not entirely sure what the “correct” name is for it. At the top of each curtain partition it says who the celebrity is. As we were standing in line for Brent Spiner’s autograph I look to the right of his section and see Mr. Dominic Cooper who play Howard Stark in Captain America and the Agent Carter series! *sigh* It was very hard NOT to look at him! I just kept leaning over to glance at him. Carolyn kept laughing at me. It was then that I made the decision that I HAD to get Dominic’s autograph and give him the photo of me as Peggy Carter!

 

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We finally get Brent’s autograph and to the left of him was John DeLancie. Although I had his autograph scheduled for Sunday we decided to just get it done now and not have to worry about it. We didn’t have anything else to do so that was good.

After we finished with the autographs we walked over to an open space that was across from all the celebrities. As we were putting our stuff away Carolyn taps me on the shoulder.

“Janice… the twins are over there” as she points behind me to their table. I look up from what I was doing and stared directly at them. James and Oliver Phelps. The guys who played Fred and George Weasley on Harry Potter!

“Do you think they would mind if I just went and said HI??” I asked. She told me she didn’t think so. I picked up my stuff and ran over. There was no one waiting in there line so I was quite easy to spot! I shook their hands and told them how much I loved them… and I don’t remember what else cause I was absolutely star struck. I think Carolyn had to talk for me a bit. Thing was… I was not able to get their autograph or get a photo of them since it was a bit much. $100.00 for the Autograph… $100.00 for the photo. Couldn’t do either at the time. Saying hi to them was the next best thing and I’m thankful I got the chance.

One of my favorite artists, Charlie Donkin, was there and we stopped by to say hi and pick up a picture. I told him of my Steampunk Snow White I would be wearing the next day as I saw his Steampunk Disney art. Which is absolutely beautiful. I made a mental note to stop by his artist booth again the next day to show him Snow White.

The day was over and we headed home. My friend April came over to hang out afterwards. Our minds were still going through memories of just our first day. The next day was going to be longer and a little more stressful. Both Carolyn and I planned on dressing up in our cosplays. Me as Steampunk Snow White and her as a character from Tron! Needless to say… sleep was very difficult. Even I couldn’t sleep well, but Carolyn didn’t get hardly any. Her stomach was hurting (possibly nerves or from dinner). So she ended up having to stay at my place while Jon, Esther, and I went to the convention. I was heartbroken that she wasn’t with me. However I hoped and prayed that she would be there the next day!

Saturday:

My husband and two year old daughter, Esther, came with me so they could watch me during the costume contest. I normally dress Esther up in a pretty elaborate costume. This year I chose to make her a toddler Moana Cosplay. It was quick, easy, and definitely a hit with the folks at the convention!20170909_143607 She was even featured on their main website!!  It was  a good thing the weather was pretty warm that day since that costume was a bit on the “just a diaper” style.

The first thing I wanted to do was get Dominic Coopers autograph, however, by the time we got onto the convention floor, I needed to be standing in line for the costume contest entry. Before we headed over there my daughter and I were stopped by the photographers for Rose City Comic Con to get our pictures taken in front of their gorgeous black and red backdrop. Esther… she was a natural!

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As we headed toward the are where the costume contest entry was, Esther spotted a Cosplayer dressed as Tafiti from Moana! It was a stunning cosplay and the reaction between the two of them was wonderful. 20170909_105033

There is preliminary judging prior to the contest. Part of it is  “does the costume qualify” and  is 90% of it made by the cosplayer. They also ask how everything was created, with what materials, how long it took to create the entire look, etc. It is quite the process but very thorough.

As I was getting pre-judged, my husband and Esther went to the large panel room where James and Oliver Phelps were going to be speaking. I was hoping I would make it up there before they started but if I didn’t, I at least wanted my husband to save us seats. Now I told him to find seats in the middle front, but apparently there were already a lot of people there.

He found a seat, but it was all the way to the left. It was towards the front, so I”ll give him that. When I arrived they were already on stage and taking questions from fans. I felt terrible walking in to the middle of it. Especially since my costume was a little on the noisier side. It was a great panel with a lot of laughs.

We stayed in that panel room for the next celebrity, Mr. Carlos Valdes. He plays Cisco Ramon on the CW show, The Flash. Great show and he is a great actor. Plus side… Danielle Panabaker who plays Caitlin Snow on the same show was going to be with him! When everyone (almost everyone) vacated the panel room I tried to move more towards the center.

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Before I could get over, a flock of people moved forward and took up every seat. All I needed was one seat. It was there that I saw my friend Deborah and her dad sitting 5 rows back from the middle front. I started talking to her and then her Dad gave me his seat and he sat on his walker (it had a little seat on it). I was so happy I cried a little. I couldn’t stop thanking him for that!

We roamed the convention floor for awhile before I had to do my photo op with Carlos Valdes.

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I was going to get his autograph right afterwards, but since I really wanted him to meet the person underneath the costume, so I changed the timing for the autograph to Sunday.

One other thing that changed (and why I could move things to Sunday) is Karl Urban (Bones in Star Trek). He had to cancel at the last minute because of a family emergency. This was understandable but definitely sad. Because of all the switches we had a good 5 hours before the costume contest. Most of the time we chilled out on the 2nd floor with my sister and nephew, eating good food and letting my daughter run around as Wonder Woman! She was getting chilly as Moana!

I did, however, go back over to Charlie’s booth again to show him my costume.

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He didn’t even know what to say. It was so very humbling to see an artist like him admire my costume and be speechless over it. He was amazed at all the little details. It was right then and there that I knew what my next cosplay was going to be. I’ve normally done cosplays as either my own design (like Steampunk Snow White) or straight from the original character (like Rey, Galadriel, and Tauriel). This time I would be taking something he drew from his own mind and render out a 3D version of it.

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It was Steampunk Belle. Isn’t it amazing? ——–> There are so many little details that I’ll be paying attention to. I can’t wait to start work on it!

When it came time for the costume contest, a lot of time was spent waiting for them to tell us where to go and when to go in. There were three categories of costume designs; tailoring, soldier, and tinker. Tailoring was my category and we are usually the first ones to go up on stage. But until then we sat in a hallway and we all chatted with each other. We might be competing against one another, however, in the world of cosplay, we all just want to learn from one another. At least that is how I look at it.

When it came time for us to go on we stood behind the stage and tried to get rid of our nerves. It can sometimes be a long process, but because of the preliminary judging, all we had to do was walk up on stage, do a little move or so, show off the costume, and then walk off stage. Even with that little bit of action, it was still very nerve racking, especially if it is your first time. This was my 2nd time so I wasn’t nearly as nervous.

As the announcer called my name, I walked onto the stage, bowed a little, took a few steps and used my spy glass to look out at the audience,  then took a few more steps and showed off the ruffles of my skirt.  As I walked off stage I stood against the wall with the others until everyone was announced and did their walk.

Video of Steampunk Snow White in Contest

At that point they announced the winners of the tailoring category. First they announced an Honorable Mention, a costume which they felt had some great work and even though didn’t become runner up or win, was still needing to be, well, mentioned! After that was runner up (2nd place) and then the Winner which stays till the End for Best in Show prize.

Honorable Mention was a girl who cosplayed a character from the video game Overwatch. I’m unsure of which character it was particularly, but if you watch the video, and you know anything of Overwatch, then you should get it. At least I think it was Overwatch. If i’m wrong, feel free to inform me!

Then they were about to announce runner up. As I stood with my back against the wall, I looked to my left and right, admiring all of the fantastic Costumes that everyone created. I was honored to be among some of the most amazing creative people. There was no way I would get picked when so many of them were way better than me.

“Runner up goes to…. Janice Angell for her Steam Punk Snow White!”

The look of pure shock that hit me was probably quite entertaining if you could see it. The girls next to me had to nudge me off the wall so I could go up and receive my prize! Such a blessing and humbling moment for me as I walked up and heard the applause! It was definitely a great moment for me! The prize? $200.00!! 20170909_212701

First place went to a cosplayer who was Helga Hufflepuff from Harry Potter! She deserved that. The dress was so elaborate and beautiful! To take a character who is not mentioned a whole lot in the movies, and make a costume for her, especially when all you see is painted liked pictures, is amazing!

Video of Prize Reveals

The night was over and we were all worn out.

Sunday:

Carolyn was feeling much better and was eager to get back to the convention center. She still had an autograph to get from Katee Sackhoff. Because of winning $200.00 from the costume contest I was able to afford to get James and Oliver Phelps photo and autograph! Such a blessing! Plus, because I had $60.00 in credit from Karl Urban canceling I decided to use that to get Dominic coopers autograph. It was starting to look like all we were going to be doing was photo ops and autograph. That was just fine with us.

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First step was getting my photo with the twins (James and Oliver). However, of all the times they had for photo ops and autographs with everyone we needed, everything was clashing with the times to get Dominic Coopers autograph. I asked Carolyn if she wouldn’t mind getting his autograph for me and giving him the pictures of me as Peggy Carter. She agreed to. I thought, if I have any time at all and he’s still at his booth, then I will come by and at least say Hi.

I go in for my photo shoot with twins and again, very fast, but, it was very nice to be in, what Carolyn and I call it, a Weasley Sandwhich. They are very tall so they leaned over and in towards me a bit.

Carolyn met back up with me in front of the celebrity booths to give me Dominic’s autographed picture. From there, after fawning over what he wrote, we went to the twins’ table so I could get their autograph. 20180417_174629We weren’t far from the front of the line, but that just meant we had to wait longer for them to get back from the photo ops. When they returned.. and it was my turn, we shook their hands… again… and I told them about how the autograph and photo op would never have been possible if I hadn’t won 2nd place in the costume contest. Then, miss Carolyn decides to show them the picture of my cosplay! They were very impressed and said congratulations. I even mentioned to them the Helga Hufflepuff who won!

This is where things kind of get fuzzy. I don’t remember what we did next or in what order. What we did get a chance to do is go back to Dominic. What he wrote on the picture was “To Janice: All My Love, Dominic Cooper”. 20180417_174610Seriously… make a girl swoon why don’t ya!! Carolyn gave him my photo of Peggy and said he loved it! So of course I have to go say Hi. He had no one in line as I approached the booth so I knew I didn’t have to completely rush what I was going to say! But to look at him and try to speak, was going to be difficult. He started saying something about whether he should sit or stand and how people thought he was a little short and preferred him to sit (they were stools so it made them taller). I actually preferred him standing cause it wasn’t as tall as he was sitting down. Made it easier for me to look at him. I then told him how Carolyn was a sweetheart and got the autograph for me and that the picture she gave him was ME. He was like “That was you?” I nodded. He said told me He loved it and thanked me for giving it to him. I had another one as well that went with it (I had Carolyn just give him both) and I told him I had a hard time deciding which one to give to him, that’s why he got two. He said “I’m seeing Haley in a week, could I give her the other one?”

My heart was pounding in my chest. I’m not sure if I was able to speak let alone smile. I felt like I was giving him the “deer in the headlights look”. I of course said yes. Oh, who is Haley you ask? Haley Atwell plays Peggy Carter on Captain America and starred in her own show for Agent Carter!! So you could imagine my excitement when the person who played the character I cosplayed was going to receive a picture of me in it!!  Let’s just say, I feel like that was my top FAVORITE moment of the weekend! And now I’m regretting not asking him for a hug!!

We also stood in line to get Carlos Valdes’ autograph. This one was a wonderful interaction as well. 20180417_174531As we got up to him and he took the picture to autograph, he said “wow… this is awesome!”  I then asked him to give me a hug. I”m used to them just hugging from over the table. He got down for his chair, walked around the table, and gave me a hug! *SWOON and proceed to melt!* I still remember how his hug felt. Since he is not much taller than me it wasn’t very awkward. It was so sweet… and Carolyn was kind of shocked cause apparently it was a long hug. I think it might’ve been… I was just too speechless to think about it.

Anyway, that’s how the weekend went. As you can imagine we have been talking about those memories since. This was one of the best Rose City Comic Con’s I had been to and I can’t wait till next year! I mean this year!! Right! September 2018!!

Life Get’s in the Way

I feel terrible. Honest to goodness I am disappointed in myself for NOT keeping up with this blog!!  I AM SOOO SORRY! I really wanted to do this and give you lots of reviews and cosplay updates, and I have no excuse. Yes my baby is now a toddler ( a year and a half) and she is a go go go type of girl, but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t have written even a little bit. So… without further ado here is a summary of what has happened since Rose City Comic Con 2016!!

HIT IT JAN!

Oh wait… that’s me!

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Last years RCCC was amazing and probably my favorite so far. We have another coming up in September and I have a feeling this years will top lasts… but we will see. At RCCC I cosplayed Rey form “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. I had an absolute fantastic time showing off my cosplay… but nobody was interested in me (there were a lot of Rey’s). However, what they were attracted to was my Baby and my Hubby… mostly baby. I dressed up Esther as a Ewok and Jon was Young Obi-Wan Kenobe.

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You can see why everyone loved her! She was the “bell of the ball” you might say. Jon and her were featured in The Oregonian and another news channel which I am blanking on

at this moment. One thing I learned was that my cosplay was a bit off in the color, but I still like it.

I made everything myself which is ten times more rewarding then buying one and I was just happy to be there with my family.I got to be in the costume contest where I was a finalist so that was pretty awesome but Belle won the Tailoring Category. I guess 200 yards of fabric will do that.

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Continue reading Life Get’s in the Way

Nine Month Project!

Being a cosplayer is so much fun and a lot of hard work. You get to create things that your mind has already plastered into a form and make it real. Whether its a game, movie, tv show, comic book, or book character, you can be anything you want. I always feel that the prerequisite to cosplaying is that you know your character and you work hard at creating it yourself (or sponsor someone to do it for you).

I was really excited these past few months leading up to Rose City Comic Con as I was starting to work on Peggy Carter from Captain America. On June 12th I had finished the jacket, despite feeling nauseous, and tried it on. One of the worst feelings a cosplayer or designer can ever have is making something you know is measured correctly and not fitting. That’s exactly what happened. I put on the jacket and could not button it around my waist. I didn’t understand why it didn’t fit cause I measured everything right and I hadn’t gained any weight. It should’ve worked just fine!

I went into depression mode, crying, and wanting to dump the whole idea of cosplaying all together. I couldn’t believe I had screwed up so bad. I didn’t want to have to make it over again. The next day I was still really nauseous so I stayed home and relaxed, trying not to think about my costume and my ultimate failure, which seemed to make the nausea worse when i started to worry. Come Monday I was still not feeling well and couldn’t understand why. I didn’t have a fever and I wasn’t throwing up, but my stomach was spinning. I called my doctor and made an appointment for that evening. When we got to the doctors, the first thing they had me do was pee in a cup. Fun right? NO!! My husband and I sat in the room waiting for the results, which didn’t take long at all. Less then a minute! The doctor came in and sat down with us (I was the last appointment of the day) and the nurse opened the door and whispered something to my doctor.

“Janice, it’s positive. You’re pregnant!”

You could hear a pin drop for the next 10 seconds as I had to seriously think about what she just told us. Tears welled up in my eyes. My husband and I cried together. We had been trying for 5 years to have a baby and God had finally blessed us with this opportunity. Of course, it just had to come at the most in opportune moment for me. *Laughs* I even told myself that I didn’t want to get pregnant for at least another 2 years so I could work on all the cosplays I had planned. However, creating a child is ten times better than any cosplay creation!

Now all my cosplay projects have come to a screeching halt. Am I sad that I’m not working on them?  Yes, but I know that I’ll get to do it again. Cosplaying isn’t going anywhere, it just has to be put on the back burner for a bit. What I think of now is all the many cosplays I get to create for my baby!!

God has a plan for all of this and I’m thankful He chose this time to make it happen. It reminded me that sometimes things won’t always go as I planned and they probably never will… and that is okay!

So here’s to a new adventure!!!

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Games, Gamers, and Goodies

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When my husband and I moved to Florida, we met a really sweet couple from the church we started to attend. We’ll call them Friend and Friend’s Husband. I call her by friend and she does the same for me, but that’s another story altogether. We all share the same nerdiness. Friend’s Husband and my Husband like computers, building them, and first person shooter games (aka FPS), while Friend and I like movies, books, and other such things. We would watch movie together at least once a week and even tried to do a full Harry Potter marathon (not sure we made it through all eight).

One day, Friend’s Husband asked us to come to a LAN Party (Local Area Network). I was extremely clueless as to what he was talking about, however my husband, very quickly, said yes! I have to admit, I felt pretty stupid when I asked my husband what he said yes to. Apparently a LAN Party is when you get to play games with other gamers and snack on goodies. They set up a bunch of computers (you can even bring your own if you’d like), all with the FPS Unreal Tournament on them, then link them together on the same network and BAM, instant gaming party that can last for hours! Oh, and there was lots of food and pizza!

The first LAN party was a blast. I believe it was even the first time I ever played Unreal Tournament. I’m not entirely great at FPS games, nevertheless I was quite happy when my kill score was higher than my husbands. Of course, that did not happen nearly as often as I would’ve liked.

Since then we’ve been to every LAN party they hosted, even from 3,000 miles away. Although we play Unreal Tournament still, we have upgraded to playing Modern Warfare (MW) and Battlefield 3 (BF3).

Last Saturday was our most recent party. We had a tough time trying to get into the game/network (tends to happen when we don’t run practice connections beforehand), but as soon as we were able… IT WAS ON! There is one map in Unreal Tournament where we played capture the flag, but the map was so short you could see the enemies flag have of a football field away from you. It is definitely the most entertaining map as we had about 12 or so people hopping around grabbing the flags and killing each other. Sometimes you couldn’t tell where you were compared to everyone else, or if you even grabbed the flag. I don’t even want to say what my death toll was for that map. It’s embarrassing.

Needless to say, after the many LAN parties we have attended, I can sufficiently say that my kill score is now steadily higher than my husbands. Of course, I’m not nearly as good as the other friends we were playing with. It will take a long time of playing FPS games before I even get to that. However, when my husband and I play one on one in BF3 or Call of Duty, I tend to always be the dead one. I can say, I’ve learned a lot from him.

It is sad that the party doesn’t last longer, but honestly, I can only take so much of FPS games. After a while I start to get a bit nauseous. This is why I like playing games like World of Warcraft, Lord of the Rings Online, Star Wars: The Old Republic, and Star Trek. These are all MMORPG’s (Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game). They are not the only games I play, but I do like them the most.

I’d like to know, what is your favorite video/pc game to play?

Lastly, check out this video by K-FaceTV on YouTube! They do incredible parodies!