Friday, January 27, 2012

Flashback Friday: Star Wars Cosplay

Hello all! We're starting a new regular feature here at Marilyn's Share and Tell Creative Diary, called Flashback Friday, in which we discuss some of our favorite past projects.

Over the past several weeks, we have been working on a set of cosplay costumes for a fan of Mortal Kombat (images to come!), which made us think of another costume we created for a fan some time ago.  This fan wanted a Zam Wesell costume (the bounty hunter in Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones) for a convention, and she went above and beyond in her research for the role.  She brought us a cardboard cutout from the theater so we could measure the stitch length on the costume, and even pictures of the actual Zam Wesell suit from the museum where it is displayed IN AUSTRALIA.  Now that's dedication!

Our final product!

Cosplay is extremely specific, from the fabrics, to the overall look and movements of the character. When I was at ComiCon in San Diego this year, I saw some of the most amazing costumes of characters that some of the wearers had worked all year to create. For the Zam costume, it took three months to determine the thickness of the neoprene alone! Then there were all the stitching tests, with and without backing. Neoprene... now that is one difficult material to work with. Doesn't anyone believe in cotton anymore??

Sourcing the exact thickness and shade of neoprene

According to Wikipedia, "cosplay, short for "costume play", is a type of performance art in which participants don costumes and accessories to represent a specific character or idea. Characters are often drawn from popular fiction in Japan, but recent trends have included American cartoons and science fiction." And let me tell you, cosplay is no joke. The intricate knowledge cosplayers have of the characters and dedication to every last detail of their costumes is fascinating, and inspiring! Most of the cosplay costumes we get requests for have been for characters that appear in American games, shows, or movies, but I look forward to the day someone walks in asking for a costume from Final Fantasy or Zelda: Twilight Princess... those will be interesting, to say the least!

Just as long as it doesn't involve neoprene... we've had enough of that for a lifetime!

Our cosplayer... and the original Zam, side by side!
If you could pick any character in the world, who would you be? Is it because of the costume, the powers, or the personality?