con lessons learned

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Caesar
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con lessons learned

Post by Caesar » Sun Apr 08, 2012 5:20 pm

a thread for all the obvious mistakes we feel we made that we hope to not repeat

mistake number one, assume close proximity to the convention renders a hotel room useless... it is very very useful, in fact vital if you want to avoid either having to wear a long red cape in a crowded train then bus, carry a change of clothes with you until your arms collapse, have to keep track of six different phone numbers to ensure you have access to the people nice enough to keep your stuff for you, or royally piss off any hapless parent who agrees to shuttle you back and forth, (especially if you have a sibling who requires the same treatment, and refuses to agree to come and go at pace with you.)

Mistake number two, precious bodily fluids... they are precious, a hip flask would be a very useful thing, especially when most of the water coolers run dry and the remaining ones have a tad too much chlorine in them.

Mistake number three, going to the 21+ drinking party without a date, and actually buying any kind of drink there... 11 dollars for a glass of merlot, and when I say glass I really mean a small plastic cup about the same size as the ones used for those water cooler things.

there is no four

to be continued.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by meerkat » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:49 pm

I'd say letting kids into the dance is a lesson learned. That poopy NEEDS to be 18/21+ in the future. There's absolutely no reason either to be letting individuals who are obviously already hammered into the dance.

As for the water, didn't have any problems :P

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Shinden » Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:21 pm

Nothing good happens after 12:00 AM outside of the convention centre and hotels.

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Caesar » Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:37 pm

scd250 wrote:I'd say letting kids into the dance is a lesson learned. That poopy NEEDS to be 18/21+ in the future. There's absolutely no reason either to be letting individuals who are obviously already hammered into the dance.

As for the water, didn't have any problems :P
I would qualify that statement with, hammered to the point of irrationality. I see no reason why I can't have a few drinks before it. After all, its not my fault someone got creative with their chemistry kit and ruined my post hentai dubbing plans... which were to essentially dance until closing.

Still irked by that.

That is assuming what my sister told me is accurate, and she was in the dance.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by LilyKing » Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:50 pm

Snag Sephiroth for $25 before someone else does.

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Quirk » Sun Apr 08, 2012 10:10 pm

1. Try not to miss every photoshoot.

2. Don't forget there are children at this event.

3. When someone stops you for a picture, ask them to take one of you with your own camera.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Ex-Shark-Virtue-005 » Sun Apr 08, 2012 10:32 pm

Don't make a crazy huge and cumbersome weapon that weighs a lot. Carrying it around will suck. Carrying it around in the Artist Alley will suck even more.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by PetersburgRush » Sun Apr 08, 2012 10:47 pm

With all the escalators going up and down, be mindful of footwear, even with cosplays. I'm still going around semi-limping.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by connap22 » Sun Apr 08, 2012 11:08 pm

order commissions first thing Friday, don't wait till Sunday xp

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Shinobi Kitsune » Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:53 am

if you're going to wear 4 inch heels for two days, for an extended period of standing, a month of training doesn't cut it. No matter how good your insoles are! And pain killers only work for maybe 40 min before the pain works through THAT. And if you want custom fangs...look for the small signs, worked in at random booths, not a booth just for that (check all venders, even if it's not the kind of stuff you normally go for). And don't wait until Sunday to get it done.
As a final note (thanks to my boyfriend..as my costume held together beautifully all con long) for the love of all that is above...wear your costume before con day. Walk around your house/apartment. Get a feel for how it moves, how hard it is to go up and down stairs, sit...etc. And if your attachments come apart! You don't want to spent the first 20 min of the con in the costume fix station, watching your mates fix themselves.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Xias » Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:59 am

Caesar wrote:
scd250 wrote:I'd say letting kids into the dance is a lesson learned. That poopy NEEDS to be 18/21+ in the future. There's absolutely no reason either to be letting individuals who are obviously already hammered into the dance.

As for the water, didn't have any problems :P
I would qualify that statement with, hammered to the point of irrationality. I see no reason why I can't have a few drinks before it. After all, its not my fault someone got creative with their chemistry kit and ruined my post hentai dubbing plans... which were to essentially dance until closing.

Still irked by that.

That is assuming what my sister told me is accurate, and she was in the dance.
Especially if you follow scd's suggestion and make it 21+ (or even 18+ at least, which is LONG overdue), yeah, I don't know why you would stop anyone for being "hammered". Unless our definitions of hammered differ, I think you can be pretty drunk and still function, especially at a party.

I do agree that letting in obviously drunk minors, probably not a good idea though.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by TokuBreaker » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:00 am

1. Wear something comfortable for footwear to the dance, a pair of brand new steel toed boots that have barely been worn in the week of having them do not count.
2. if u go to a panel, or host one, make sure any bags or materials you bring a taken with you before you leave. (i helped with the tokusatsu panel and my friend who was the primary speaker lost his bag there)
3. Don't cross paths with cosplayers who wear full hear head gear, they might not be able to see that well, NOR HEAR THAT WELL
3.5 dont be offended if the man in the helmet seems to be ignoring you, he might just not be able to hear you

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Elli21486 » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:30 am

1. Keep your camera on at all times. I use a video camera and it takes about a minute before I can use it. I have missed many decent shots that way.
2. Autofocus...It can be your friend or your enemy. Make sure to test your settings beforehand.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by heartstarmagick » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:06 am

1. A diet of junk food, meal bars, the occasional actual real-food meal and coffee can and will catch up to you in the worst of ways by Sunday. Lesson painfully learned.
2. Always carry a wig comb.
3. If you think you're forgetting something, you probably are.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Viajeras » Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:20 am

This should have been obvious to me before the con, but always try on your entire cosplay before the actual convention to make sure all of the pieces fit together right. It will save you so much grief during the weekend. D:
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by VirtualPlay » Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:36 am

Make absolutely sure that you can stand rooming with the people you're sharing the hotel with. It doesn't matter how good of friends you are, hotel rooming can bring out the worst in some people.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by VanceVanhite » Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:39 am

VirtualPlay wrote:Make absolutely sure that you can stand rooming with the people you're sharing the hotel with. It doesn't matter how good of friends you are, hotel rooming can bring out the worst in some people.
True that. I was originally rooming with some buddies of mine from Vermont, but I found a backup room here on the forums instead. I'm SO glad I did, because my friends from Vermont decided to jam-pack 8 people into a 2 bed room.
I'd rather sleep on the backup room's floor (as I did) than sleep in the bathtub in an extremely crowded room like I was going to have to.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Kico_kun » Mon Apr 09, 2012 9:11 am

Don't wait till later to take a photo of a great cosplay.

Also don't be afraid to ask Japanese Idols for hi-fives =(

Bring your own camera

Them be my three ^_^

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Caesar » Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:02 pm

PetersburgRush wrote:With all the escalators going up and down, be mindful of footwear, even with cosplays. I'm still going around semi-limping.
and long ass capes... they have a tendency to get stuck in escalators...
"Pale Death beats equally at the poor man's gate and at the palaces of kings." Horace

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by eidna » Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:54 pm

Kico_kun wrote:Don't wait till later to take a photo of a great cosplay.
Ugghhh this. I missed so many I wanted pics of - notably a Chibi Moon who had the best styled wig I'd ever seen for that character.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by akisearu » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:18 pm

1. Do not bother bringing fabric and supplies to make cosplay nights of con. Does not work.
2. Do not mix red bull with monster energy drink with 5 hour energy. Just sleep.
3. Photoshoots need a leader, a plan, and lots of ice-breakers.
4. Always hi-five people on escalators.
5. Bring a bag for all your stuff (including a sweater cuz it was cold. Even through my Fai coat it was coold. And something to eat.)

Tho I think the most important thing I learned was to release your inhibitions. ^^
Do that weird pose.
Hug that awesome person.
Go to that hentai panel even if your friends won't come with.
fendoffconwithdrawalwithzenkaikonhopetoseeyouthere^^

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Kyncha » Mon Apr 09, 2012 3:29 pm

1. BRING COMFORTABLE SHOES/FOOTWEAR. This was a big one for me and I'm sure my feet hate me for it.

2. Take more pictures. There can never be enough. (and I saw so many Inga's ; A ; )

3. Wearing clothes with pockets is definitely something I learned. Carrying stuff in my hand or having my boyfriend carry it isn't as good of an idea as I thought.

4. Browsing the Artist forum couple of days/a week before the con definitely helped figure out what I was going to get in the Artist Alley, so I wasn't blocking walking space like other people/didn't have to spend as much time in there(not that I didn't enjoy it lol).

Anndd, I think that's it..

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by RC » Mon Apr 09, 2012 3:40 pm

1. Never borrow your mother's boots without trying them on first!
2. If you are dependent on your pipe to walk, do NOT leave it out of reach. A Belarus will appear right when you cannot stand and are stuck sitting in a corner...
3. Remember that certain compression shirts may make you not feel hungry and that if you haven't eaten in 12 hours, you are hungry whether you feel that you are or you do not.
4. If you're going to buy someone a birthday present, do it on Sunday! You can buy more for the same amount of money- better gift! (I accidentally waiting until Sunday; worked out well).
5. Do not over book yourself; do not tell three plus groups of friends that you will hang out with them outside of the dance while it is going on (if you're like me and can't go in for one reason or another).

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Cyspark » Mon Apr 09, 2012 5:02 pm

1. Always carry your phone charger with you. Especially since using the iphone camera is better than my digital camera then realizing you sucked up all the power in your phone instead of making a call. You won't believe how hard it is to find a roommate with the hotel keycard without it.

2. When in the hotel room bring a trash bag since we all know that those tiny trash cans will be filled up before Saturday with multiple people leaving there trash all over the place. They also double as a lifesaver when lugging around those Gundam model kits, the dealers give you a tiny bag for the huge model that you know will snap in like 15 minutes.

3. For everyone that takes the T, always carry atleast $5 bill, it's ridiculous how many times that I had to break a 20 just to so I could take it.

4. When buying wall scrolls keep a couple of rubber bands handy instead of lugging them around the dealers room.

5. Carry some sort of drink with you. I was carrying some fruit punch that I was continuning drinking throughout the day.

6. If you are up before any events start and have the time make the trip to your bank in the morning. I usually head to an ATM that day to have my spending money. I don't leave it in my room.

7. SHAWS IS A LIFESAVER

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by NobiZero » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:56 pm

Don't yank on your costume. You will rip it.
Politeness is awesome, as is the reaction to politeness.
EAT FOOD.
Keep track of your props.
Pleather is terrible at keeping cold or heat out.
Rooming with good people is essential.

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by NekoRyuzaki » Mon Apr 09, 2012 9:01 pm

Take breaks when you can
learn to say no
Manage money wisely
Dont try to hard it can ruin it :3
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Firefly Rhapsody » Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:49 pm

My lesson learned? Arrive on Thursday instead of Friday, even if it means paying a bit more for the hotel room. That way there were will be less of a chance of mistakes for the room.

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by ARagingClue » Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:19 am

Caesar wrote:
PetersburgRush wrote:With all the escalators going up and down, be mindful of footwear, even with cosplays. I'm still going around semi-limping.
and long ass capes... they have a tendency to get stuck in escalators...
Image

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by tokyograndpa » Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:59 pm

1. Duck tape solves everything. EVERYTHING. Bring a roll with you always.

2. Even if you're not that passionate about the way a panel sounds, go to it. You will probably enjoy it a lot morethan expected.

3. You can have fun people-watching. Even in the formal ball with a foot injury, there is still a way to have fun.

4. If you don't want to do pairing photos because of you own preferences, be creative and work around it. There are lots of cute platonic poses to take, and people may be counting on you- it would make their weekend!

5. GET A ROOM AT THE SHERATON. You may think that you can handle a three-block walk to your hotel... but between staying out until the wee hours and having to walk back, and scheduling multiple costume changes (and getting sick of lugging around garment bags!), you will regret it. No matter how freakin' nice the Lenox is and how much the staff gets a kick out of you.

6. Being nice pays off. It really does. High five, ask for photos, compliment people, politely and tactfully stalk them, hang aorund with them after photoshoots- you might just make some really great new friends!

7. Always carry water.

8. Always carry snack bars.

9. Plan around the lines at food places.

10. Either coffee is disgusting or Dunkin Donuts just makes it really bitter. But either way, don't get some.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by AnonEMouse » Tue Apr 10, 2012 2:33 pm

I was dressed as Solid Snake from MGS2 all weekend.
The base was a performance shirt and leggings. i.e. No pockets

Having a room was a God send
I had 4 tiny glass bottles in pouches, but a hip flask is what I really needed to stay hydrated
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Cyspark » Tue Apr 10, 2012 3:36 pm

1. Preregister beforehand at least a few months in advance

2. Get there on Thursday to scout out your room arrangements and the surrounding area for foodstuffs

3. Make a list of things you are looking for before heading into the dealers room

4. Buy the occasional grab bag (you might get lucky)

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by ErinErin » Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:37 pm

1. Dunkin Donuts inside the Shaw's never had a line, don't bother the one near the Hynes

2. Eat at odd times to avoid lines

3. Dig through the piles and bins of old used manga and anime in the Dealer's room, you can find some hidden gems for a great price.

4. 20 mins in the hot tub cures all con pains

5. If you have huge gaps in your schedule, take a nap.

6. Don't get wasted Thursday night at the hotel bar when you volunteered to be at Artist Alley for opening (almost shortened that to AA but then that statement would mean something else entirely haha).

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Re: con lessons learned

Post by mahoukiyoraka » Tue Apr 10, 2012 8:16 pm

1. Stay at the Hilton always. I literally walked 30 seconds outside of the Sheraton lobby to the Hilton. The price was MUCH MUCH MUCH more reasonable. In addition, bag check was free both before check in and after check out. The staff was nice and I got the room I requested.

2. Bring a water bottle. Even if you don't think you need one, you will and you should.

3. Continue to be angry at anyone wearing pointe shoes. I am a Princess Tutu cosplayer as well, but wearing pointe shoes to a con is ridiculous and dangerous, regardless of experience.

4. Don't give into your lazy friends. Get out and do things. Go to panels and events.

5. Although I hated that I did it... avoid autographs. My weekend was so much more clear because I wasn't waiting for autographs for 2 hours.

6. Utilize the hotel's pool and hot tub. It's a wonderful time.

7. Sleep before driving 6.5 hours home in the dark.

8. Only buy things you can't get elsewhere for cheaper. I considered buying manga so many times, but decided against it.

9. Walk 5 minutes down the street to eat at Uno's. Much better than the 1.75 hour wait at the Cheesecake Factory Saturday night.

10. Although leaving at 5AM sucks, it is worth the less money to have a hotel Thursday night.

11. Park at a T station. Riverside cost me under $15 for the weekend.

12. Make a list of items/costumes you brought. Helps keep track of everything when you're packing up to leave.

13. Bring a wig comb, scissors, and a hot glue gun. Hot glue fixes all problems.

14. Be better at organizing photoshoots. Make sure ONLY the people who were agreed to be there are there and don't let those additional 15 random people come and ruin your time.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by jessikwa » Tue Apr 10, 2012 8:58 pm

Don't drink a bottle and a half of sake on Friday night. Was feeling that pretty bad during the first half of Saturday. =/
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by masterofplush » Tue Apr 10, 2012 9:30 pm

1. Bring a doctors mask or something that will block germs, even if it doesn't go with your cosplay. You can always take it off for pictures and its worth it not to get sick (like I have managed to be after every con for four years running), or in the event of being sick at con, you don't get others sick.

2. Book at the Sheraton, if you friends didn't get you their share of the money find alternate arrangements that will get you there instead of a mile away, especially if you are going to the 18+ things .

3. While it does take a bit to get used to there is nothing wrong with watching hentai in a room with a bunch of strangers and your friend, especially the hentai dubbing. It can be a fantastic time, even if you lie about where you where later to your hotel mates.

4. Don't be afraid to ask for her number it can't hurt to ask and you'll be cursing later that you didn't.

5. Don't be shy, past years I was very much a wallflower at the con and this year I decided I would be more outgoing, it payed off.
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by AnnaNeko » Wed Apr 11, 2012 3:09 pm

A quick nap is your friend. Seriously, just 40 minutes on a friend's bed in the middle of the day will keep you alive 'till 2am

Food is good for you, be sure to have some. And not just "gobble down a taco while running to that thing..."... Like, actually sit down and have a proper sammich with fries or something

Keep some form of small nibbles on you/in bag. I always have some random candy for quick energy boosts, plus give them to friends when we're in some crazy long line for something and that planned dinner is still hour away. ...and can also give them out to awesome cosplayers - makes for good ice-breakers ;)

Take your "dealers room" budget, and separate into 3 piles. Keep only 1 with you each day... Keeps impulse buys slightly under control
why, yes, I have been goin to this con since day 1. Wanna brain-break on the age math?

AB '17 cosplay check
[Friday/Saturday] Lisbeth - Sword Art Online
[Saturday night] Nozomi - LoveLive!

anotheranimenerd
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by anotheranimenerd » Wed Apr 11, 2012 10:04 pm

1. Get in line EARLY. I ended up missing meeting both Voice Actor's I wanted to meet because they cut me off.

2. To try and man up. I was to shy to get in the FMA photoshoot and missed a good chance. I was talking with one of those cosplayers that was there since I found them online and they said I should of gotten in.

That isn't that much but I'll probually think of more later...
2012- Sheska, FMA
2013- Jack Frost, ROTG
2014- human!female Monobear, DR(2) / Dave strider (Homestuck)

doubleViga
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by doubleViga » Wed Apr 11, 2012 10:11 pm

No matter how crazy people say you are, doing two cons in one weekend is ALWAYS worth it.

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Vulpixi_Misa
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Vulpixi_Misa » Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:30 am

1) Even though it's fun and all, remember to wash your hands after those high-fives on the escalators. You know, germs and what not.
2) Bringing your camera battery and phone charger are the best ideas ever. Because you will not regret it.
3) Do take time to sit around for a few minutes, just to rest your feet and charge your electronics. People watching is fun and you probably find more cosplayers that way.
4) Go to photoshoots! You meet the best people and have the best times there!
5) Take ALL the pictures!
6) Dress according to the weather. I know most of us were inside but if you plan on being at a photoshoot outside and it's 40 degrees with a lot of wind and you're wearing shorts and a sleeveless hood thing, not a good idea. (Or just hope that others are just as cold so you can relocate the photoshoot)
7) Nothing really happens on Sunday. >3>
8) Make sure you get tickets to things. If you do, just forget about the line and go a few minutes after seating. I got into the masquerade in 2 seconds. Sure, I got a back seat, but if you know they have the screens like they do here, it doesn't really matter.

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BlitztheComicGuy
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by BlitztheComicGuy » Thu Apr 12, 2012 1:53 pm

My single greatest lesson: NEVER, EVER, EVER, TRAVEL FROM DC TO BOSTON BY BUS.
Conventional Wisdom, What happens at the con DOESN'T stay at the con
Far Out There, the webcomci where things happen... IN SPACE!

yunaofparadise
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by yunaofparadise » Sat Apr 21, 2012 1:31 am

Don't bring a coat if you're going to be inside all day...Carrying something extra is annoying.

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TheNerdyFeminist
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by TheNerdyFeminist » Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:22 pm

mahoukiyoraka wrote:3. Continue to be angry at anyone wearing pointe shoes. I am a Princess Tutu cosplayer as well, but wearing pointe shoes to a con is ridiculous and dangerous, regardless of experience.
THIS! I only wore mine in the Masquerade and for a photo shoot, and even that hurt. plus walking around in those things even for a few minutes is a bitch, I don't know how girls who wear them for long periods of time manage to do it.

going off of that, I would like to apologize to all the elite ballet critics in the audience who cringed at my performance. trust me, I can't even watch the video without wanting to puke. I am just getting back into pointe after a 5 year hiatus and I was nervous, but all the same, it was bad and I feel bad.
yunaofparadise wrote:Don't bring a coat if you're going to be inside all day...Carrying something extra is annoying.
a coat or jacket, yes. but a light sweatshirt you can bundle up and tuck inside a tote bag is a wonderful thing. even that extra layer is a godsend when you're walking back to your apartment/dorm/hotel in 40 degree weather. then again, it depends on how warm your cosplay is.

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Yukito Kunisaki
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by Yukito Kunisaki » Sat Apr 21, 2012 5:14 pm

akisearu wrote:
3. Photoshoots need a leader, a plan, and lots of ice-breakers.

Yep.... it got too close before any plannings actually happened. A week advance is NOT a good idea. .-.;



For me...

- Mingle with people more. I am an AMV maker. I meet the AMV makers all the time throughout the con, and sometimes on Thursday at the AMV dinner, but I never speak up.
- Never get a hotel at the Sheraton. Second year I had friends in that hotel, and the rooms were below average. (Fuzzy TV, No fridge, Elevators tried eating us every time we went to the room, among other things)
- Always try to meet new people, and if possible, get contact info. The more people you meet with at next years con, the more fun it could be.
- Always try to make it to the 18+ events. Last year, I only got to Extreme Geek. This year, I got to Extreme Geek, Hentai Dubbing, and the "Kill your childhood" events. Was pretty pleased.
- Lastly, get commissions out of the way 6 months in advance, because though commissioners say they CAN do it in that much time, doesn't mean they WILL do it in that much time.

lizardred75
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by lizardred75 » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:15 pm

always bring backup tools for cosplay especially if ur cosplay is well known crazed fans have been known to attack on sight:)

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MomoMiraculous
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Re: con lessons learned

Post by MomoMiraculous » Tue Apr 24, 2012 10:22 pm

-Red Bull is your friend, especially when you get a total of 10 hours of sleep for the whole weekend. (Thursday night was killer)
-Sewing at the wee hours of the morning may seem like a good idea at the time, but it probably isn't
-Never cram 3 people into a double bed...doesn't work and you WILL get a cold from sleeping on the floor
-Actually RECORD stuff with the video camera you bring. You never know when something amusing will happen
-Driving, despite everything, is STILL easier than lugging a ton of stuff on and off a subway train. NEVER doing that again!
Planned Cosplays for AB 2018
SPACE BABY!
Duo Maxwell-Gundam Wing
Pidge- Voltron
Uraraka or Deku- BNHA
Chat Noir- Miraculous Ladybug
Nora- RWBY
Adrien Agreste- Miraculous Ladybug

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