I’m really, really grateful for this awesome vote of confidence. It’s neat how we managed to make the cut, and I owe it to you – my cosplay friends, geeky fans, and readers – for making this possible.
We’re cosplay warriors, and proud of it! ^^
So today, we’re gonna play a game of 20 (well, really just 4) questions that will hopefully answer everyone’s queries about my nomination for this award, and what The Neo Tokyo Project’s gonna do moving forward!
Are you ready? Here we go!
1. How do you feel about being one of finalists in Singapore Blog Awards 2012?
Elated! The team’s been in a tizzy since I told them about the email last week!
It’s The Neo Tokyo Project’s first nomination ever, and being a part of the Singapore Blog Awards means we’re doing something right. (It’s a group effort!)
It’s great validation, and affirms our commitment not just for geeky coverage, but in documenting the transformative and empowering effects of cosplay.
We’re motivated to do even better, both for our readers in the cosplay community, and for everybody out there who’s curious about just how amazing and positive this hobby can be!
2. When did you start blogging and what drew you to it? Where do you get inspiration for your blog content?
I’ve always had a taste for the geeky things in life.
Yeah, being a warlock (World of Warcraft) irl was pretty geeky. ^_^;;
As a comic collector, cosplayer, gamer, and unabashed Japanophile, I’ve had no lack of inspiration, so all it took was a little push in the right direction to get me started. That push came in the way of Kaika (another kickass cosplay blogger, and she’s a finalist in the vlog category!).
I met her on a sponsored trip to Hong Kong as Singapore’s Cosplay Ambassador for a promo by Animax and Hong Kong Tourism Board, and our conversations got me thinking.
When I first started cosplaying in 2001, the hobby was an arcane thing, but cosplay’s gained ground, increasing social acceptance, and a way, way, way bigger following in the past decade.
So ‘Hey’, I told myself on New Year’s Day in 2011. ‘It’s a hobby that’s turned my life around. It’s broadened my horizons, helped me develop practical problem solving skills, and taught me how to put my best foot forward. Why the hell am I not blogging about it?’
After all, I’d picked up a trick or two as a cosplayer and costume maker, amassed some modicum of stage experience, and loads of geeky know-how; the only cool thing to do was to share.
Blogging about cosplay’s my way of giving back to the community. I delight in helping novice cosplayers along, and it’s always a pleasure to know that I’m contributing in my own small way.
That’s why we’ve got a regular tutorials column, and editorials about cosplay and stage performances on The Neo Tokyo Project. I’m also interested in highlighting (by way of journalistic exploration, interviews and convention coverage) just how exactly cosplay’s changed the lives of people in the scene, and that’s the focus of our Spotlight On column.
ConJurer CJ’s just one of the many cosplayers we’ve featured in our interview column. XD
So yeah. That’s kinda how The Neo Tokyo Project started, and as they say (as cliched as this sounds), the rest is history.
3. How do you feel about the other Finalists in your category this year? How do you think you will fare compared to them?
I think they’ve all got their strengths. They’ve got some really quirky content, so I think it’s gonna be a tough fight all round.
It’s already a great honor for a niche blog about cosplay to make it to the finals, so win or lose, it’s still a triumph for Cosplay, yeah? XD
4. Give a reason why readers should visit your blog and vote for you?
The Neo Tokyo Project’s an all-inclusive blog dedicated to cosplay, pop-culture, and all things geek. Cosplay’s our passion and it doesn’t matter whether it’s comic books, computer games and fantasy novels, or anime and manga.
We’re all about cosplay. We feature cosplayers, we cover the latest cosplay and pop-culture happenings in Singapore, and if we’re gonna create a brand new cosplay costume, you can bet your life we’ll eventually put out a tutorial and show you just how you can make one too.
When you vote for us, you’re voting Cosplay. So if you’re a fan, if you love the hobby and love pop-culture as much as we do, do support us!
I’ve also made a little video about our nomination, and here it is!
Click on the image below, and click Vote For Me! It’s as simple as that (Clicking on the link will open a new window, and you might need to register for an omy.sg account if you haven’t yet).
Just click on the “Vote For Me” button, and you’re done! ^_^
You can cast your vote once per day, so it’s kinda like a ‘Daily Quest’ (like in an MMORPG, or something).
So if you like what you’ve read so far, and want to support Crimson, Angelus, and the rest of the Neo Tokyo Project team, please, please, please, cast your vote every day!
What’s more, we’ll be releasing new and exclusive content ‘Achievement’ style each time we hit a new campaign milestone. Each time we hit 100 or more likes and daily votes in the tally, we’ll be putting out a brand new tutorial or cosplay related tidbit!
How cool is that?
So remember, guys, you’re voting Cosplay each time you vote for us (and don’t forget to vote for Kaika too!)
Cosplay’s awesome, so let’s help our hobby take the blogosphere by storm!
Dunman High School’s Japanese Arts Fiesta (JAF) marks its return next Saturday, with the campus transformed into a playground for cosplayers and fans of Japanese animanga alike.
Helmed by the Yutaka Japanese Cultural Club (DHS YJCC) this year, the event promises more fun and excitement thanks to a the new team promises more fun and excitement, as well as a plethora of stage and fringe activities to whet your pop-culture palate.
Highlights include a maid & butler cafe, a haunted house, a cosplay runway competition, song & dance performances, game stalls, vendor booths, and a studio set-up where cosplayers can be photographed.
Date: 2 June 2012
Time: 11 a.m. to 7.30 p.m.
Venue: Dunman High School (DHS), 10 Tanjong Rhu Road, (S) 436895 (map link here)
Tickets: General admission is free. Tickets are required for the Maid/Butler Cafe ($10) and Haunted House ($2).
We know that you, our cosplay friends, have been clamoring for an armor tutorial for the ladies, so we decided that ‘Hey, since we’ve got such great ratings in the Singapore Blog Awards, why don’t we do something to thank the fans?’
And here it is.
Angelus put together this nifty tutorial, demonstrating an easy method for creating a breastplate that conforms to the female anatomy.
This tutorial will take approximately 45 minutes to complete.
Stuff you’ll need:
1. Some EVA foam
2. Contact Glue
4. White glue or putty
You’ll also need either chalk or a soft pencil.
Draw out the base shape of your breastplate on a piece of foam, and cut it out with a pair of scissors.
Cut out the base shape first, as always.
Next, cut away the panels to create the necessary curves and contours around your sides and hips.
Cut, cut, cut! XD
Join the pieces together edgewise where necessary,
Affix the cuts together with contact glue.
You’ll end up with something like this.
At least that part’s done. XD
Using either a bikini top, or bra padding, trace out a suitable paper pattern, and replicate this pattern onto blue foam.
Trace it out like so.
Make two of these shapes, and proceed to cut several wedge shaped grooves along the edges. Like we highlighted in a previous armor tutorial, joining wedge cuts together will cause the foam to curve in a certain way, and in this case, you want these shapes to curve snugly to conform to your anatomy.
Make cuts like these.
They’ll look something like this once you’ve glued the edges together.
Mark out the areas where you’ll be pasting these shapes on your breastplate. Try to be as accurate as possible, because you want an exact fit!
Now, cut these areas out using a sharp pair of scissors.
It’s like drawing a bikini on your chest piece. ^_^;;
Cut out one hole, then another.
Affix the bra shapes to your breastplate by joining it along the edges to the edges of the two holes you’ve made in the breastplate with contact glue.
You’ll end up with something like this.
And we’re done! ^_^
Now, all that’s left to do is to use putty to conceal the join lines, and to slap on a dash of white glue, and you’re good to go for detailing and a custom paint job!
Vote for us in Singapore Blog Awards 2012!
If you liked this cosplay tutorial, and the many other guides and tutorials on our blog, please do vote for us in the Singapore Blog Awards!
We’re dedicated to creating more quality cosplay and pop-culture related content, and your continued support will go a long way towards helping us realize this.
You can do so simply by clicking on the Vote icon, or on this link now.
Practically every character in Japanese games, anime and manga has one.
In this back-to-basics tutorial, we’ll teach you how to craft a stunt-ready greatsword for cosplay that’s as tall as you are, but light enough that you can tote it without looking like a complete klutz (unless that’s what you want).
We’re going to scratch build the Dragon Slayer from Black Rock Shooter in this tutorial, but with a bit of tweaking (it’s all about the blade shape, really), you can create practically any big weapon you like under the sun.
This tutorial will take approximately an hour to complete.
Stuff you’ll need:
1. Some EVA foam
2. Some Craft foam
3. A large piece of corrugated plastic board (also called PP, or polypropylene board)
4. A long PVC pipe or rod
5. Contact Glue
6. Scissors and a sharp box cutter/pen knife
7. White glue or putty
8. Paint (duh!)
You’ll also need a ruler and markers.
We’ll start by creating the blade shape. Draw out the blade shape on the PP board using a permanent marker, and cut it out using a box cutter or pen knife.
I created a paper template first, so I could be sure that the blade would fit just right, but you can skip this step if you’re confident with your measurements. ^_^
Draw out the blade shape on the pp board with a marker…
… then cut it out with a box cutter or pen knife. Be careful! ^_^;;
Trim the edges down with a pair of scissors if you need to to get rid of uneven cuts and bumps.
Trim it just like so.
Repeat the process, and you’ll have two identical pieces.
Next, we’ll create scour lines down the middle of the PP board and at the tip of the blade to create an angular wedge shape.
Cut lightly down the length of the blade shape with your box cutter, pressing hard enough to slice through the top layer of the board, but not all the way through.
Once you’ve made a deep enough scour line, you can simply bend the blade shape edgewise, and it will snap into a wedge shape.
Remember not to cut all the way through!
Do the same for the blade tip. In this case, I’ve drawn out the shape of the tip with a marker so I know just where to make the cuts. ^_^;;
Cut along the black lines. XD
You gotta do this twice, and it helps if your cut lines are as similar on both blade pieces as possible.
It’s time to assemble the blade!
Because the Dragon Slayer’s got a pretty unique, layered cross piece, I’ve cut out some craft foam just for that portion.
Cut out two foam squares…
… and paste it on both blade pieces with some contact glue. XD
Next, sandwich the length of PVC pipe in between both blade pieces. Spread contact glue all over the inner surface of one blade piece, and rest the PVC pipe in the valley created by the bend in the blade shape.
Apply some contact glue to the valley of the other blade piece, and along the edges, then join both blade pieces together. Be sure the pieces are both aligned neatly, and pinch the edges tight.
It’s just like making a PP board sandwich. XD
You should end up with something like this.
Yep. Close enough. *nods sagely*
And that’s about it! It’s pretty easy to create a greatsword base isn’t it?
But we’re not done yet! We’ve still got to wrap the blade with foam, and to do some detailing.
To create the handle portion, simply wrap the entire length of PVC pipe with strips of scrap foam, and then go over it with a piece of craft foam.
Craft foam gives you a comfortable, non-slip grip, and that’s really important when you’re swinging your sword around during cosplay performances.
Just coil a foam strip round the handle, like so.
Handle details can also be simulated with foam too. You just have to cut the pieces out, and join them in the correct shapes.
Paste on the rest of the handle details. XD
Finally, cut out large two pieces of foam (the edges should extrude slightly beyond the width of the blade, and paste it to the blade base on either side with contact glue.
Block off May 26 and 27 on your calendars, especially if you’re of the geeky persuasion.
That’s because SPORE Con is back for its fifth year running! Organized by our friends at Paradigm Infinitum, there’s plenty going down for fans of miniature and tabletop and board-gaming like Dungeons & Dragons, Warhammer, and Warmachine.
Check out SPORE 2012’s official poster, and don’t forget to pop over to the official website for more details.
SPORE 2012: Official Poster Art.
Our team will be there next Sunday too, so see you at the con! XD
After banging out so many superhero movies, you know that sooner or later, Marvel’s going to get their formula right. And true enough, they’ve got it spot on with The Avengers, which I had the opportunity to catch when the team was invited to the grand re-opening of the newly renovated and refurbished GV Jurong Point on Tuesday.
It’s an amazing piece of work that’s set to give you a total geekgasm – there’s a grab bag of heroes, dynamic action sequences that look like they popped right out of a comic book, stunning visual effects, and witty banter (yes, witty banter).
Director Joss Whedon (of Buffy fame) is certainly no stranger to the world of comic books (with his writing credits in the Astonishing X-Men, Runaways, and a whole bunch of Eisner nominations), and his style works wonders for something that might have been incredibly hard to pull off – it’s already difficult enough to deal with one larger-than-life character. When you have six (and one diva of a villain), that’s when things get a little tricky.
Needless to say, Whedon’s script rises to the occasion, framing the Earth as a world on the verge of destruction by a race of shadowy, techno-organic aliens. Said aliens are hovering just out of reach, and the very smarmy Loki (Tom Hiddleston) has cut a deal to be their herald.
Loki emerges in a S.H.I.E.L.D facility, “burdened with glorious purpose”, proceeds to happily massacre or brainwash the people around him, steals the proverbial macguffin, and kickstarts what’s arguably the most entertaining cinematic romp I’ve had the pleasure of watching in the past half-year.
One of the things that really stood out was the dialogue. It was superbly written and mostly intelligent (I was kinda imagining them in little speech balloons like in a comic book), and the story, which culminates in the near total destruction of midtown Manhattan by inter-dimensional invaders was just plain win.
Sure, there might be a few familiar scenes (some elements of the opening are strangely reminiscent of Buffy’s Season 7 finale), but Whedon’s a genius when it comes to creating spectacle and you’ve just gotta give it to him.
Similarly, the all-star cast was pretty good at their game. Robert Downey Jr. was remarkable as Iron Man as usual, while Mark Ruffalo, as Dr. Bruce Banner, held his own with a convincing performance as the troubled geneticist with anger management issues. Samuel L. Jackson was great as Nick Fury (as usual, since he’s Samuel Mother F*ckin’ L. Jackson), though I felt the others could have used a little more intensity. Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye didn’t leave much of an impression though (and he didn’t shoot any aliens in the knee either), and Scarlett Johanssen’s Black Widow… well, I just gotta say I’ve seen better femme fatales elsewhere.
I was also impressed by Clark Gregg’s Agent Coulson. Coulson’s a character that grows on you, and if you’ve been following his antics in the past few Marvel flicks, then I can bet you that he’s going to grow on you even more by the end of The Avengers.
The sound effects were great thanks to the cinema’s new Dolby 7.1 sound system and EAW speakers, and the plush seats made the experience really, really comfortable. There was also ample leg-room and the way the stadium-style seats were tiered meant I didn’t have to worry about “floating heads” getting in the way of the action.
We also got wind that GV Jurong Point was holding a buncha promotions to commemorate their re-opening, so if you do wanna watch The Avengers, and get your hands on some freebies at the same time, do check it out.
From now till 23rd May, their daily offers include:
Monday: Free coke drink with purchase of one large popcorn
Tuesday: $2 for two cheesy hotdogs (usual price $4)
Wednesday: All-day student pricing and $2 off on Nachos combo
Friday & Saturday: Free late-night parking at Jurong Point Shopping Centre
Sunday: Complimentary restaurant vouchers with every pair of tickets purchased before 2.00pm
It’s time for Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) again, and this year, we’ve got not one, not two, but five players in the market itching to give you, my geeky friends, loads and loads of freebies.
So what’s the game plan, and where should you head to get your comic fix Saturday?
For a start, there’s always GnB, an FCBD staple. They’ve got Ardian Syaf and Nicole Scott, both amazing, amazing DC artists in store for FCBD, where they’ll be meeting the fans and doing signings.
Not to be outdone is Invasion! Toys & Collectibles at Funan DigitaLife Mall. The store’s signed on local illustrator Shawn Yap (13wishes) for the event for prints and commissions.
Check out Shawn's take on The Avengers!
Shawn’s a cool dude who’s published his own work – the noir detective story “Jack Doe: Anonymous” in 2009, a 2nd book titled “Closets”, and is looking to put out his third – “Letters”, this year. He’s also worked on both video and tabletop games, and is looking to release his first card game soon.
Our friends from Harris Planerds have also announced that they’re doing FCBD in a big way. In addition to their anniversary sale, where you can get a whopping 60% discount from now till 20 May, Wendy Chew, better known by her online handle Mashi, as well as Rudy Ao, will be doing sketches at Planerds from 12 pm to 6 pm.
Walk-ins will also get grab bags with three free comics, while Planerds members will get a whopping twelve titles. How cool is that?
If you’re big on retail stores, and are in the vicinity of Books Kinokuniya, you can also check out their members only special for FCBD. On top of a 20% discount on comics for members, members are also eligible to pick up a free comic book bundle.
And finally, surprise, surprise. Our friends at Paradigm Infinitum are jumping into the comics and graphic novel market this FCBD. To celebrate the opening of their graphic novels section, they’re giving away comic books absolutely free. Yes, rather than just giving away FCBD goodies, they’re throwing in up to ten actual comic books from yesteryear. Can I say WOW!, or what?
Yep, this year’s FCBD is looking like a regular treasure haul. So it’s time to prep those bags of holding and bottomless sacks, folks.
International Cosplay Day Singapore (ICDS) is less than four months away, and as we promised in a previous post, here’s everything you need to know about this year’s festivities!
1. Event Theme
ICDS 2012 celebrates “Cosplay & Pop-Culture Diversity”. It’s an all-inclusive convention that transcends barriers by immersing convention goers in an eclectic fusion of Eastern and Western pop-culture elements.
2. Event Details & General Ticketing Information
Date: 26 August 2012
Time: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Venue: Blk 68, Ngee Ann Polytechnic (NP) Convention Center (check out the NP campus map here)
Tickets: $5 (available from July 2012 via www.gatecrash.com.sg, various event partners, and at the door).
This year’s special guests include U.S. based cosplayers Ms. Yaya Han & Ms. Jerry Polence, who will be visiting Singapore for the very first time, Mr Jay Tablante from the Philippines, and the cast and crew of COSPLAY: The Series from Indonesia.
Ms. Yaya Han is a household name in the global cosplay scene. She has more than a decade of experience as a cosplayer, and her costumes have won awards and acclaim throughout the U.S. She has been invited to appear as a Guest, Panelist, Judge, Performer and Host to over 100 conventions and other events all over the world.
Similarly, Ms. Jerry Polence is a U.S. based Filipina cosplayer, model, and blogger with an impressive international following. She has been in the cosplay scene since 2004, and has been featured extensively in various media.
Known in pop-culture circles as “The Geek with the Camera”, internationally acclaimed cosplay photographer Mr.Jay Tablante has collaborated with D.C. and Marvel to produce some of the most iconic and daring images in comic book cosplay of all time.
The cast and crew of COSPLAY: The Series will also be at ICDS, where they will be filming COSPLAY: The Series Singapore Special. They will also be performing at the event, and opening Singapore’s 2nd Annual Cosplay Chess.
COSPLAY: The Series started as a web series in 2011 and has since grown into a content and performance franchise. The team behind it calls themselves the Q-Cosushinkai Project, a congregation of unique and talented cosplayers, performers, musicians, artists, writers, designers, and filmmakers. COSPLAY: The Series has since signed on to a professional artist management contract with PT NAGARAJA FMFE NUSANTARA to boost its professionalism in delivering the best possible content to its fans.
Cosplayers of both Eastern and Western pop-culture titles are invited to join the Cosplay Competition at ICDS.
Registration for the Cosplay Competition is open from now till 30th July 2012, and contestants stand to win cash prizes sponsored by our partners Anibee and Paradigm Infinitum. You can view the full details of the competition here.
You could also strut your stuff on stage in our Cosplay Catwalk. Check out how you can dazzle the stage here.
5. Artists’ Alley, Dealers and Sponsor Booths
Adding to the carnival-like atmosphere is the Artists’ Alley, myriad Dealers and Sponsor Booths.
Ms. Yaya Han and Mr. Jay Tablante will be holding signings at their booths at selected time slots, and fans can partake of a wide variety of pop-culture products.
(And if you’re interested in registering for an Artists’s Alley booth, do check out this page for more details!)
6. Singapore’s 2nd Annual Cosplay Chess
This year’s theme for Cosplay Chess is East & West, pitting characters from popular Japanese animation, games and manga against their counterparts from American comic books, games, movies and novels.
Some popular characters that will take to the stage this year include King Tryndamere from League of Legends, Sara Pezzini from Witchblade, Big Sister from Bioshock 2, Joker from The Batman, Gilgamesh and Saber from the Fate series, Vergil from Devil May Cry, and Sol Badguy from Guilty Gear.
With an early start this year, as well as better logistics support thanks to Ngee Ann Polytechnic and our sponsors, we expect higher production value, and greater quality overall.
We’re really excited about ICDS, and we hope you are too!
Don’t forget to keep tabs on our site and Facebook page for more exciting updates and details in the weeks to come!