Friday, July 31, 2015

Otakon 2015 - Kuritare

Starting on Thursday, I was in panic on how to finish my armor for Bell (Danmachi). My original ideas were not working as I was measuring things from a two dimensional standpoint. Even Risa Chan Cosplay's help didn't work for me considering my glue was just too weak. I ended up making all the armor out of one piece each and molding them the best I could. The paint turned out very well though, and Lilitare's detail really brought out the accents in the armor.

I worked very hard on the props for this con. I am especially proud of Ryuu's staff (Danmachi). It turned out very smooth and beautiful, a great improvement from Amon's sword (Magi) from last year. The small swords also came out okay,  as well as the knife collection for Shokugeki no Soma.

My works in progress

I really only got about 7 hours of sleep in 3 nights...I don't know what was taking me so long but I realized I missed a lot of pieces on the bottom half of my Bell armor. I had to make a make shift sash to cover up my manly parts.

Enough about the work, lets talk about the con! It was tons of fun. We got the most attention we've ever received at any con. Being stopped so often and by so many people was surreal.

Photo by MEL Photography
I was Takumi Aldini from Shokugeki No Soma. The assumption was that the ladies of Tare³ were going to participate in the Love Live Mermaid group, but seems there were complications so they wore Natsuiro instead. I did feel left out when they got their pictures taken and at the love live
photoshoot which I have always been a part of. However that didn't take away from the attention I got when Shifty Studios showed up. Him being Soma really got a lot of people's attention and he used my props in the pictures I was alongside him. We even got our photos taken by Risa Chan Cosplay. The only unfortunate part was that my wig was super late and didn't arrive on time. I had to turn my Alibaba wig into a Takumi wig which was extremely difficult because it was absolutely tiny on my massive head. In a lot of the pictures you can see my hair in the back :(. Lilitare also forgot a wig cap so I gave mine to her. Later that night we went to a party on the terrace which honestly not that much fun. We ended up leaving early to head back and work on cosplay.

I wore my Bell from Danmachi and it actually was a lot better than expected. I actually prefer this armor color compared to the very common white armor. I saw maybe 2 other Bells with the armor cosplay (Looked very similar, perhaps bought? I haven't been able to find it). We got stopped for pictures pretty often and the photographers would pile on one after another. We seperated from Lilitare and her boyfriend for a couple hours in the dealers room, but Rintare and I still got a great amount of pictures. The majority of the day was spent in the dealers room and getting our photos taken. The most exciting part about this cosplay was being filmed by Shifty Studios for the cosplay video! We also managed to get a cute photoshoot going with Shifty. At night we went to the bars. This was the first time that Rintare and I have entered a bar and needless to say it was pretty fun.

This day Tare³ wore The Devil Is a Part Timer again. Since last time we didn't get many good photos. The costume itself is very comfortable so it was a good one to end on. I say this each time but we got way more photos than we anticipated. When we stood behind a registration booth we were suddenly swarmed. Such an amazing feeling!

Shifty was gathering last minute footage for his video when one of his favorite cosplayers was in the vicinity, Yashafluff! She was being photographed and some people were talking to her but, she didn't seem all too busy. Shifty isn't normally shy but he turns extremely beta when around Yasha. He had met her previously this con and he was afraid she had already forgotten him. I thought he sounded absurd so I went up to her and essentially told her this story. He was pretty embarrassed especially when she called him out for wearing the same shirt twice. He got his shot, and quickly left before checking if it was exactly what he wanted, as to not waste her time. Hopefully I get more opportunities to beat the little baby out of Shifty.

Overall, this con was amazing. I'm glad I went, as I was considering not going due to funds. Much more enjoyable than last year. I'm excited to see all the pictures people took of us!

In the meantime, please enjoy this amazing video Shifty Studios put together!

Shifty Studio's Cosplay Showcase of Otakon 2015

Tare Spotlight: Merry Sheep Cosplay

Merry Sheep Cosplay

During the Otakon 2014 Love Live! Photoshoot, Lilitare and Kuritare were marveling at all the fellow Love Livers when an extremely small and adorable Nico caught their attention. At first they were too shy to talk to her and just wanted a picture, but the Nico noticed that we were the only two first years in plain school uniforms, and she decided to give us THE Nico lecture. She trained us in the art of "Nico Nico Nii~" and being true idols. Quite the first encounter for us. Merry Sheep Cosplay's vivacious and bubbly personality won us over. Not only was she fun to be around, the construction on her outfit was beautiful and it all came together so nicely.

Later that evening, Kuritare mustered up the courage to invite Merry Sheep to a party in Shifty's room. She came and we had a great time together. After some embarrassing sleeping photos, she left and we exchanged contact info.

Ever since that fateful encounter, we have seen Merry Sheep at every con we've attended where she refers to us as one of her many cuties. We love it, and we love her. Outside of being a colorful person, she serves as an inspiration. Merry Sheep shows so much inspiration through her drive and determination in fashion school and her stressful jobs! We've watched her evolve extremely quickly throughout our time as cosplayers and it only drives us to make our work better as well!

LOOK HOW GORG. Photo by Alpha Neko

Follow Merry Sheep Cosplay:
Facebook: /merry-sheep-cosplay

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Otakon 2015 -Rintare

Hey everyone! I had a super great time at Otakon this year! We were initially on the fence about going because of the price increase and all that, but in the end we decided to go. I am definitely glad we went. We met a lots of people and had a lot of fun with our friends. Of course, we had some new cosplay to show off too ;)

Finally!! A moment to sit down and think about Otakon! The anniversary of my first con :') I've come a long way in a short time if I do say so myself... (= 3=) I had a lot of fun with my friends! This year we really paid no attention to the convention's panels and other activities. We went to the dealers room a few times and artist alley. There was SO MUCH STUFF!! It was overwhelmingly beautiful...I was especially on the look out for Puzzle and Dragons stuff and Love Live!!! My poor wallet. But anyway, I guess I'll break down each day!

Friday- So I guess I'll start on Thursday night when I met up with Kuritare and we went to our friends house (close to the convention) and set up shop to work on our cosplays. I thought I was good on time with my Ryuu cosplay, but everything you plan for always seems to take longer than you'd think (> n<) We ended up not sleeping very much because we planned to be at the con at 7am to pick up passes. So exhausting! Lili met up with us later in the morning. I was Natsuiro 1, 2 Jump Kotori and she was Hanayo (Colossalcon repeat) I was still sad about not being mermaids, but wearing Love Live always makes us feel cute (= u=) The Love Live photoshoot was fine as usual, but there were some obnoxious girls also wearing natsuiro that killed it for me...At night we went to a little party to chillax a little bit before we went back to WORK ON COSPLAY. The other two tares really had their work cut out for them...They were making me nervous...
Someone help us! Photo by Kagamine Kotarou

Saturday- This is the day we were Danmachi!! Finally all the stress was paying off because I thought we looked so good (; u;) Our friend Shifty Studios took videos of us and a lot of pictures. I'm so excited to see them I could cry about it. We went to the dealers room for awhile and then to artist alley. We got a late start this day, but it's whatever...Later at night our friend took us out for a night on the town (^ v ^)

Sunday- Sunday was our chill day and we rewore The Devil is a Part Timer. We failed to get pictures of this cosplay while we were at we asked Shifty Studios to snap a couple pictures. Surprisingly, a lot of people took our pictures! I'm excited to see them. I stopped by the dealer's room and got Love Wing Bell Rin (MAJOR HEART EYES) and a Kongou sisters poster I really liked.

Keep your eyes peeled for more new pictures!!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Tare Spotlight: Terumi Hanabi

Terumi Hanabi
The first encounter with Terumi Hanabi was during Otakon 2014 at the Love Live! Photoshoot. One of the greatest Eli Ayase's we had ever laid eyes on stood before us. We had no other choice but to go up to her and ask for a picture. To our surprise, she was extremely humble and didn't mind spending time with us to chat. She was extremely nice and down to earth, not to mention her construction and entire look were amazing. Once we followed her on facebook, it was easier to marvel at her attention to detail, construction, and even her exciting life outside of cosplay. At AnimeUSA we saw Terumi was attending as a part of the Maid Cafe/Performances. Once we found her she acted like we were the amazing cosplayers. We were so taken aback! She did other silly things like apologize for "creeping" on us. This was so ridiculous to us because we were the ones meeting one of our cosplay idols, not the other way around! Since then she has constantly responded to our messages on facebook and instagram alike; she continues to amaze us with all her creations. tare³ now makes it a priority to find Terumi anytime they are attending the same convention!

Photo by Aria Photography

Follow Terumi Hanabi:
Facebook: /terumihanabi
Instagram: @terumihanabi
Twitter: @terumihanabi

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Pre-Otakon 2015

Hey guys! Sorry for the slowness of our blog posts...We are all swamped with pre-con preparations along with our daily lives. We are all excited for Otakon (the anniversary of when we first got together T v T). So here's a little update from each of us.

I'm only working on one new cosplay for Otakon (Ryuu from Danmachi). It's coming along slowly, but all the major pieces still need work. I'm nervous for how the final product will look, but I have high hopes! I'm excited to wear elf ears (^ = u=^)
We also have Love Live mermaid costumes coming to us, but I'm not sure if they'll make it on time. If not, we can just wear Natsuiro again.
My parents planned a kind of spontaneous vacation to Aruba in the middle of July. I basically lost a week of time to work on my cosplay, so I was thrown off...Hopefully I can manage my time when I'm not at work and get this costume done. ANXIETY!!

So I actually thought Otakon was later, but no it snuck up on me so I've got my work cut out for me. I'm doing my first armor project (Bell from Danmachi). I've also taken up some laborious tasks in terms of props. I'm making several wooden props across all cosplays. The girls have gone ahead and excluded me in their Love Live! cosplays this time around :'( so I've teamed up with Shifty Cosplay to do some Shokugeki no Soma! I've completed my part for that mostly, just 2 pieces left to do. Other than not having enough resources, I would say I'm pretty on track other than the armor, which I have Risa Cosplay helping me out very soon.

I'm also only working on one new cosplay. ; w ; / I've been swamped with work and class, so cosplay progress is going slowly (Hestia from Danmachi). So far I've made the gloves and the basic structure of the dress! I still need to figure out how to properly make her boob window, hair peices, and ribbon. I'm running out of time! @____@;; The low cut back of the dress is also making it difficult to figure out how to properly structure the dress. All in all, I'm not ready for otakon yet because I have exams to study for too, but what else is new? I'm the tare that always finishes last haha... orz

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Tare Spotlight: Meet Shifty!

Meet Shifty Cosplay!
Originally, Shifty was only friends with Lilitare. Lili and Shifty reunited at Otakon 2014 where he invited us to party in his hotel room!! which allowed for the other tares to meet We quickly realized what a cool guy he is. We had a lot of fun and he even nice enough to drive us back to where we were staying in the middle of the night. We became fast friends during the whole Otakon experience!
Fast forward to Katsucon 2015. After taretaretare formed, we planned a No Game No Life cosplay and Shifty agreed to join us as Sora. We were honored :') We had such a blast at Otakon with him, we knew we would have a great time at Katsucon as well. At Katsucon, we received a lot of attention (probably because of the addition of our handsome friend, Shifty ;) ). It turns out that Shifty had some semi-professional experience with photography and agreed to take our first beautiful set of photos at Katsucon. We not only helped each other become better cosplayers, we also became even better friends. Since Katsucon, Shifty has also attended Colossalcon with us as well! He's sometimes featured in our group cosplays, and helps us out with photography. Shifty is not only a dependable con-going companion, but he's also one of our best friends! We always have a fun time with Shifty, and now we can't imagine going to any convention without him! ♥

Check out some of his photos and his photos of us!

Follow Shifty Cosplay:
Facebook: /shiftycosplay

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Ryuu Lyon's Weapon Prop Tutorial - Part 1: Planning Proportions

Hey everyone! Kuritare here with my process on how we/I create props. Today I'm working on Ryuu Lyon's main weapon (Staff/Sword?) from Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? (ダンジョンに出会いを求めるのは間違っているだろうか). I am just going to refer to it as Danmachi.

*Here I am using Photoshop, but you can use GIMP to make and measure your lines.

So Rintare is going to be Ryuu, so we are going to scale the item to Rintare. Since we actually don't know the height of Ryuu (which is actually irrelevant since we're scaling it ourselves),

So first, I measured the height of Ryuu in pixels (px). It came out to be 1798px. I then measured the length of the staff at 1019px. So with these two measurements we can begin to create our ratio of inches per pixel. This way we can convert anything we know from pixels to inches. Rintare's height is  5 feet and 6 inches = 66 inches. So now we know thet 66 inches = 1789 px. if we do 66/1789 = .0367in/px. Now we can apply this ratio to all our lines and get the measurement in inches. So in the end we get that the staff is 37.4 inches long.

After all these calculations, I wanted to see what the stick's shape was like. So I took the above screencap from the anime and redrew and colored the weapon to get the larger picture. I included the shading given in the anime in order to get a feel for the roundness/edging of the weapon as well.

To get a feel for the width of the whole thing, I went ahead and applied our ratio to the thinnest and largest part of the weapon. The item itself seems a little unreasonable if I'm to make it out of wood, so I will be adjusting them so that it is structurally sound.

That's the planning process! In part 2 I'll go over the actual creation. Stay tuned.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Shiro's Crown Tutorial (No Game No Life)

Sup! Rintare in da building. So, I said I was going to share the process behind my Shiro crown that I made for Katsucon 2015 and here it is! I really wanted my Shiro to resemble the figure more so than the anime, so I pulled my references for the crown from the figure.I guess I'll try to make this as tutorial-y as I can. Sorry in advance for lack of pictures as I didn't capture every single step of this!

Stuff I used:

  • Craft foam (I just used a few yellow sheets from Michaels, but I painted over them anyway so it doesn't really matter!)
  • Xacto knife or something to cut with precision
  • Spray paint + primer
  • Wire (I'm not too sure about the specifics of the wire, but it is slightly thicker than a wire clothes hanger?)
  • Gems!!
  • Craft adhesive of your choice (I used a hot glue gun)
  • Aligator clips for putting the crown in your hair!
 So first I made a paper mock-up after Kuritare did some dimensional analysis on the figure to match the size to me. Despite all the number crunching, I still needed some adjustments because well...I'm not an anime figure and I'm much taller than Shiro. I made...a lot of paper mock-ups before I was satisfied with all the angles. The structure is strange because the crown is not a complete circle. Shiro and Sora apparently break a crown in half,  but this crown is really far from being a half circle. It appears to be about 7/8th of a circle, just enough room for a ponytail to fit through.
After tracing the mock-up onto the foam, I drew the mock-up again with the decorative ridges (? I guess I'll call it that).
The crown is made up of 7 pieces.
I laid my mock-up on top of the foam to trace!
The decorative piece was cut out separately from the 7 crown parts.
It was one continuous and very narrow piece of foam,
so the tips of the crown where VERY fragile.
So, in total I had 9 pieces of foam: the 7 pieces, the long, skinny, and fragile decorative piece which also helps to hide the separation between the 7 main pieces, and a backing piece which I used to glue the main 7 pieces onto (so they have something to align to) which is not pictured, but you'll see it later.
Here's a tiny mock foam crown I made to test.
I'm like a fairy god parent!
Next, I painted all my pieces! First, I went over each piece with spray paint primer (it's white). I think this also helped fill in the porous foam as well to make the crown look smoother. Primer and two coats of gold did the trick.
A quick paint test on a foam strip. This is two coats after primer! 
Liquid gold *v* Also this is the paint I used! Shiny gold cap!
Here is everything all painted and laid out!
Ready for assembly!
 Now I just glued and glued and glued! Below you'll find the picture of a main crown piece as I glue it to the backing piece. I decided to use two pieces of wire because I didn't want the crown pieces to be teetering on one piece of wire. So, I glued the wire to the backing and then glued the pieces on. Finally, I glued the decorative piece on. I then CAREFULLY bent the whole crown into the right shape. It was very scary.

A glimpse of the backing piece and the wires.
The ponytail clip for the wig fit perfectly in the gap.

 Great! Next, I had to pick out the right gems for the job! Luckily, my big bag of gems from Michaels had all the large gems I needed and Lili gave me some small oval gems as well. Because I used premade gems, I obviously wasn't going to be accurate, but I think they did the job just fine. Making your own gems can be expensive and time consuming!

BAG-O-GEMS (spilled out on my desk)
Tada! all gems glued on.
Here's a sample of how I attached alligator clips.
I used 2 for the finished crown.
Our friend Shifty Cosplay also asked me to make him a Sora crown. The process was similar except I just made it one huge piece of foam. There's a back piece and wire as well.
The gems were pretty off for this,

Crown debut in our Katsu hotel room!
A hall shot of  Shifty Cosplay and I. 
Thanks for reading! I hope you found this at least somewhat helpful! I would be happy to answer any questions about it too. (= 3=)