End of Year Cosplay Event: A Mega Runthrough! Part 1

I don’t feel as pumped up and positive as I did now compared to after Cosfest a few months back. This means EOY wasn’t as good, simple as that. Before I begin, let me just say a few things. First, it would be great if experienced photographers could give some pointers on human photography and the use of the external flash. I don’t think I fared too well. Next, I hate pointless and destructive criticism that doesn’t give credit to the efforts of others. Finally, if you wish to use any of these pictures here, just drop me an email (top of the page’s contact form). And if you appear in any of these and I know you personally, TOO BAD! But if you’re some random guy/girl/cosplayer who doesn’t want your picture displayed for some reason or another, drop me an email as well. Oh and, if you happen to be one of the few people I highlight as "HOOOOOTTTT", drop me an email as well. (because I may have a lot more pictures of you that I can send you… lol).

I took more than 500 pictures just now and because there was also work to be done in the morning, I’m now totally exhausted. But for the horde of hungry Riuva fans, let’s talk about what happened today. I’ll be breaking up this entry into a few posts for easier reading and loading. Why? Because I picked 99 pictures for you!

The last time I attended a cosplay event, I was armed with a Fujifinepiz Z2. It was a disaster, with its slow focusing, slow rate of capture, shutter lag, grainy high ISO settings, poor zoom, weak straight-on flash and overall lack of PRESENTATION. In simpler English, all the pictures then were blur and spotty. So to avoid the same problem, this time round, I equipped myself with a Canon EOS-30D, a USM L 24-105mm zoom lens and a EFS 17-55mm wide angle zoom lens. And a Speedlite 580EX external flash unit. And a shitload of batteries, extra memory cards and even an extra camera in the Canon S3 IS (which I lent to Tsubaki).

Me heavily armed.

Tsubaki is weak. See this crossfire, who’s got the better camera WOOOOO?

It’s comparable to going into battle with five light sabers and four beam bazookas, compared to the previous time’s wooden stick. Needless to say, I almost broke my back from the weight. But worth it, because the pictures actually turned out quite ok! I am totally inexperienced with handling live photography specimens, it’s just so much more dynamic and difficult than plastic figurines. Using the flash is another aspect which I’m a n00b at and some shots have an ugly shadow.

Man, the insane speed of focusing and the ability to take a trillion shots in a row, totally sharp all the time, makes this camera godly. And the best part is, the ego! Watching those tiny prawns scurry around with their puny peashooters gives me a huge sense of satisfaction. Even more so because… THEIR PARENTS PAID FOR MY CAMERA HAHAHA!! Through income tax and all…

Ok, maybe it’s time to talk about the actual event. I met up with Tsubaki and Umehiko, then Darkmirage at Expo, where the event was held. I was quite shocked to see Umehiko in a Nagato Yuki cosplay, and quite a good one too! She had mentioned cosplaying as Eureka of Eureka seveN, and so this sudden change was unexpected but nevertheless an impressive one. We did a figurine photoshoot of her after the event, so I shan’t post too many pictures of her now.

We spent 10 minutes laughing at Darkmirage’s shirt. It’s so fucking stupid yet effective.

"Hi, I am Darkmirage." Did anyone go up to him because of this?

He’s "ThePaper", hence the joke.

Hot new earring!

The crowd was pretty huge, this is the lobby area outside the main hall.

I wore a earring for a while. It was very heavy. The group of us queued up to pay silly money (12 bucks) for admission. They issued a programme, ticket and stamped our precious skin with dirty ultraviolet-light visible ink. That’s quite clever of them. I don’t think anyone is giving the committee proper credit for this. If they had slacked off and used normal ink instead, many a cosplayer would’ve been fuming mad at having their costume sullied by this. BUT! The ticketing is incredibly bad. At 3 pm or so, the ushers suddenly just opened up the floodgates and everyone who came after that just waltzed in without paying. This would’ve been less painful had one of my friends not been one of the last few to have coughed up the cash. The story went like this:

Programme frontpage

Programme backpage. I like the designs. Well done? But the programme was as accurate as a drunk Mikuru firing her beam attack.

This dude, Anal, arrived and heard some of the counter guys saying that they were about to "close the gate". Thinking that this meant not accepting any more incoming people, Anal paid up the admission fee and walked in. But he decided to pay the bathroom a visit first, and promptly exited. When he had finished his wee wee, Anal returned only to see the barriers totally open and everyone after him walking in free. Now that must suck.

I’m not sure of the rationale for this, but I suppose it’s along the lines of "We can’t charge the late guys already because they won’t be hanging around long enough to justify the 12 bucks, so let’s just do everyone a favour and let them in free! Then we don’t have to man the booths too!" Sounds good? But such inequality benefitting latecomers must surely rile the early birds. Not very clever business practice isn’t it? I think what they should’ve done was, slash the entrance fee after a certain time. And specify that time clearly in their advertisements.

Anyway, so the group of us headed in and immediately searched around for the notorious DRMCHRSO, who was supposed to be peddling some doujin at a booth. Found him and he joined the party. There were quite a number of booths but these were very disappointing. Actually, not so because I knew beforehand that all the good artist circles and merchandisers were going to another event in neighbouring Malaysia. And because of a perceived lack of respect/emphasis on the drawing side of things, they did not have good impressions of the EOY people. So, filling up the booths here at the EOY were little stalls selling unremarkable stuff and displaying Dolfies. Only one stall was of note and that was the Gundam store. But who comes here to buy Gunpla?

DRM and merry friends’ booth. I never quite figured out what they were doing.

He didn’t man it much at all, that lazy scumbag.

Did anyone actually pay 10 bucks? That’s quite expensive, to be fair.

A couple of nice stuff but why buy here where you have to lug it around?

This caucasian couple had two daughters, who both look exactly (!!) like Hermione from Harry Potter. Amazing!!

This stall sold some affordable gothic goods for ladies. Interesting, but I’m not a lady.

If I’m not wrong, this stall had large prints… judging from the picture.

I should make a diorama with my figurines too. Makes things a lot more interesting.

I like the dead girl.

There were a lot of random encounters along the way where we shot up some targets. I’m not particularly proactive at asking for picture opportunities, unless the girl (LOL.. only girls?) is really a subject that if missed, would cause regrets the size of Tsubaki’s hair (big). So it was more, scavenging, as a cosplayer or a group would pose, swarms of cameras seize the chance and attack from all angles. Everyone probably had some early jitters and didn’t really dare to go forth. The experienced photographers were making the cosers pose and stand at suitable locations, while the lesser ones just hung around and snapped away.

Deciding that this wasn’t the way, we adjourned for a quick lunch at Burger King to discuss better tactics. And Bjorn showed up. He comes whenever there’s food. Darkmirage apparently has this strange sickness, where his gluteus maximus is very sensitive to internal kinetic energy. Simply put, he can’t sit on hot chairs. So he ate his burger standing while the rest of us were seated.

Bjorn. WOOOOO!!! Does he have extra chromosomes??

To think these engrish signs could be found here! I need a new baby, is this where I trade in my old one?

TO BE CONTINUED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IN PART TWO!!!!!!!!!!!!

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