[Flashback Friday] Big Apple Comic Con

Have you ever been to Big Apple Comic Con? It’s a New York City convention that was founded by Michael “Mike Carbo” Carbonaro back in 1995.

I can’t believe this con is this weekend! It’s happening so soon… I thought I had plenty of time but I’m still not sure what to cosplay and/or wear. I have great memories from this con last year…

Mangaka Toshio Maeda

From meeting Toshio Maeda to moderating a panel with Lua Stardust to watching the cosplay contest, Saturday was a busy but fun day!

The con is centrally location near Penn Station, so transportation is easy (trains, subways, etc.). You can also easily find public places outside to do photoshoots at, and there’s plenty of great food options in walking distance from the con.

Click here to see photos from my Saturday shoot last year! (I still need to upload the rest of the photos… my backlog is insane, oops.)

And at every con in NYC, there’s gotta be at least one Spider-Man cosplayer!

I have no idea who the Spider-Man cosplayer in the above picture was, but he was epic and I’m glad he agreed to a quick photo with me! Spider-Man is still one of my all-time fave Marvel characters (ever since I read the Amazing Spider-Man as a teenager!). 

You may have noticed my [Flashback Fridays] tag… I’m thinking of starting a new Flashback Fridays series where I write flashbacks to events or memories of the past. Do you like to reminisce? I love taking photos because if I don’t have photographic proof, I wonder if things never happened and they were simple dreams or made up in my imagination…

Click here to view a throwback to my first time at BACC (back in 2017!). It’s a gothic lolita look featuring my first lolita dress ever (a really old Bodyline JSK I got in high school).

If you’ll be at BACC tomorrow or Sunday, come say hi!

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Photoshoot Review: Murder by Cosplay

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At Another Anime Con 2014, I scheduled three photoshoots with Murder by Cosplay. It was my first time working with them, and I am so glad I did! Each day, I had one photoshoot. On Friday night, I had my Aoba Seragaki (DRAMAtical Murder) photoshoot. On Saturday, it was Mikasa Ackerman time (Attack on Titan)~! On the last day, Sunday, Murder by Cosplay shot my Maki Nishikino (Love Live!) cosplay. Be sure to check out their Tumblr and their Facebook!

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The people behind Murder by Cosplay are not just photographers… They are cosplayers too! They understand how to conduct photoshoots for cosplayers since they have experience being cosplayers themselves, and they are also very friendly and understanding. The photoshoots feel relaxed and stress-free; they asked me what I wanted to shoot and what sort of poses I wanted to do, so I never felt uncomfortable or awkward.

First, I’ll share each of my Murder by Cosplay photoshoot experiences.

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Totally not my phone.

1. Aoba

I felt so bad when I got to the photoshoot because I was running late. 😦 The photoshoot took place after dinner, and the restaurant I was eating dinner at had really slow service… It took a while to get the bill and then an even longer wait to get the change, so I had to call Murder by Cosplay and ask if we could move the photoshoot to a later time. They were very accommodating and said that it was fine, so I called them again when I finished with the dinner issue and quickly went to the lobby to meet them. My first time meeting them was fine; they were very friendly and introduced themselves and explained that they are open to trying to capture whatever photos I would like. I really wanted to get a photo in the elevator… And it took us several tries (pushing the elevator button a lot), but we finally got lucky and found an empty elevator! Before we found this elevator though, we took other photos while we waited. Here’s that precious elevator picture:

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This photoshoot was a lot of fun, and I’m glad that they were willing to listen to my ideas for poses and help me out. They even let me borrow their iPhone (since it was blue and matched Aoba perfectly)! They even caught a silly picture that I absolutely love…

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I present to you: Aobutt!

This Friday night photoshoot was a fun success! I am a very indecisive person, so I usually have trouble with thinking of poses; I am grateful for their patience with me. The photoshoot did not take long, but they captured lots of fantastic photos.

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Attack on Photoshoot!

2. Mikasa

At 10 am on Saturday, I met up with Murder by Cosplay for an Attack on Titan photoshoot! It was chilly outside, but my cosplay kept me warm (although the harness/straps were as annoying as ever). We found a nice area next to the convention center where there were lovely trees, so we took some photos there! We also found other locations outside the convention center, like a small wall in front of a grassy area, where we tried to capture some photos. I was happy that the photographers did not try to rush me. The Survey Corps straps are really annoying to deal with, and even though I modified them with velcro, they still slip around. I had to fix them in between photos, and I am glad that Murder by Cosplay did not mind.

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They also caught some cute candid photos! Here’s me fixing my straps:

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#HarnessProblems

Ahh… those straps will be the death of me… (But at least I got some lovely photos! <3)

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Sunny days are the best days.

3. Maki

On Sunday, I started off my last day of the con with a photoshoot with Murder by Cosplay! They were not familiar with Love Live!, so I quickly explained it to them and then we started picking locations for the photoshoot. I felt nervous because it was my first time cosplaying Maki and I was feeling stressed out over a variety of things, but Murder by Cosplay had a great positive energy and I was able to relax and come up with poses. They helped brainstorm for photoshoot locations and also helped with positioning some of my poses. It was easy to find nearby locations, and we made the photoshoot a fast one because my outfit was not very cold-weather-friendly (miniskirt problems…).

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It was a lovely sunny day on Sunday despite the cold, so we caught lots of colorful pictures. The autumn leaves were a beautiful touch in many of the photos. ❤ I liked the variety of shots I got from Murder by Cosplay: some of them look more like portraits, while others are more artsy-looking.

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Finally, my iPod matches a cosplay!

They also caught some silly photos, like me holding my skirt down. (By the way, it was really windy this day, so the wind was blowing my skirt a lot. The wind was evil.)

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I hate you, wind. >_<

If you have any questions about the photoshoots, feel free to ask me or Murder by Cosplay. All of the photoshoots were really fun, and I hope you like the photos!

There are many things I love about Murder by Cosplay‘s photography policies. They have reasonable prices, they are open-minded, and they are honest and respectful. They allow you to repost their photos, as long as you credit them. Their watermarks are in convenient places; you can see the watermarks, but they are not obstructive or distracting. The watermarks look professional and do not detract from the photographs. They also allow you to edit their photos, which is really exciting! I enjoy photo-editing, so I’m always happy when photographers allow me to edit the photos after receiving them. When the lighting is too dark, I mess around with the brightness and contrast to give the illusion of better lighting. For example, the Aoba photoshoot was done at night, indoors, so the lighting was not very good. We had the indoor lighting to work with, so the lighting was a bit awkward. Below, you can see a comparison photo of before-and-after my editing:

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I also became addicted to filters last year… So I will usually apply filters to photos (they’re so easy to use!) as lazy editing.

musicHere is a little blurb from them:

“Murder by Cosplay is a two-man studio co-founded by cosplayers Emile and Alex of the New England area.  Emile has been doing photography for the majority of his life, having studied the art of portraiture and site capture in college.  Alex’s field of study specializes in composition and design.  Together, both work to get the best images possible during photoshoots.”

I would definitely recommend Murder by Cosplay for anyone looking for affordable photoshoots. ^_^ Please check them out!

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Maki in her natural habitat.

If you’re a photographer and would like to meet with me for a photoshoot, don’t hesitate to ask! I love working with photographers. ^_^ Check out my Facebook page for cosplay photos by Murder by Cosplay and others!

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UNIQSO: I.Fairy Hanabi Circle Lenses in Violet

I know this WordPress blog focuses on J-Fashion, but I would also like to use this blog for in-depth reviews! If you are interested in circle lenses, please read on!~

UNIQSO sponsored a pair of circle lenses to be used for cosplay, and even though I received these lenses for cosplay, I will definitely wear these circle lenses for non-cosplay purposes too! I can wear them for lolita fashion, or even casually if I do not feel like wearing glasses. If you just want to see the final review for the circle lenses, scroll down to the bottom of this post!

If you want to buy something from UNIQSO, be sure to use the coupon code “xiaorawr” for 10% off!

The Rundown: 

Here is the original package that I received in the mail:

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The package did not take too long to arrive at my doorstep, and I had no problems with customs. The shipping method that UNIQSO used was reliable! They even marked the package as a gift, which is great.

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Inside the package, the contact lens case and the box with the circle lens tubes were safely inside! I was pleased that the circle lens tubes were wrapped in bubble wrap to ensure extra protection.

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I soaked my new circle lenses in contact solution overnight, and then the next day, I wore them for the first time to costest Nishikino Maki, a character from the idol anime Love Live! School Idol Project. The name of these lenses are I.Fairy Hanabi Circle Lenses, and the color is Violet.

The Look:

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I took so many selfies when I costested Maki! I cut and styled the wig the day before the costest; I am happy with how the wig turned out, but I may need to re-trim the bottom lengths. Enough about my wig though; let’s talk about these amazing circle lenses! I love the I.Fairy Hanabi design. It’s subtle, but very pretty! The little swirls are cute up-close. The ring of violet color is thin, but vibrant. The thin ring also makes my pupils look very large, which I think gives my eyes a very cute dolly effect. There is also a black limbal ring which gives great definition!

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I put in these contacts before testing my cosplay or doing any makeup, and when I first put them into my eyes, there was no stinging or discomfort. They were not difficult to apply at all! I usually have some trouble with circle lenses, especially when they have large diameters, but these slipped onto my eyes without any problem. I did not need to use any eyedrops before or after! I wore the circle lenses for the whole day, and my eyes did not feel dry or irritated. The circle lenses did not slip around in my eyes either. I would highly recommend the I.Fairy Hanabi circle lenses!

Here are some up-close and cropped photos of just my eyes so you can check out the circle lenses in more detail:

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In certain types of lighting or angles, the difference between my real pupils and my real irises can be seen since the colored irises of the circle lenses are a thin ring that reveal some of my natural irises. As seen above, you can see my small black pupil and my brown irises. I think it looks a bit odd, but it could also give a very cool and pretty effect to your eyes!

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In other types of lighting or angles, my brown eyes and pupils blend together to look the same. This makes it look like the entire area inside the circle lenses’ irises are the pupils! I love this dolly eye effect.

Final Review:

Overall: ☆☆☆☆☆

Communication: ☆☆☆☆☆ Throughout the sponsorship process, UNIQSO was great with communication! Their representative was very polite and kind, and also responded to my questions in a timely manner. They explained the terms and conditions clearly, and also provided a tracking code for my package.

Packaging: ☆☆☆☆☆ As stated in the first section of this post, the packaging was amazing! I definitely trust UNIQSO to ensure that their products are undamaged. I have purchased from UNIQSO before, and never had any problems with their packaging or shipping.

Style: ☆☆☆☆ Very cute design, but I think it looks better from a distance rather than up-close in certain lighting. This is very minor though; the style is still amazing.

Color: ☆☆☆☆☆ Very vibrant violet!

Comfort: ☆☆☆☆☆ One of the most comfortable lenses I’ve ever worn.

(☆ = Most negative/Not good at all, ☆☆ = Not that good, but okay ☆☆☆ = Neutral/No opinion/No answer, ☆☆☆☆ = Great, ☆☆☆☆☆ = Most positive/Fantastic!)

You can find the violet circle lenses featured in this post here. I.Fairy Hanabi also has the following colors: Blue, Brown, Gold, Green, Grey, Pink, and Red!

If you want to purchase from UNIQSO, Be sure to use the coupon code “xiaorawr” to receive 10% off your order! UNIQSO carries many circle lenses, cosmetic products, wigs, and more!

All your queries regarding circle lenses are answered here in Circle Lens E Library!

Feel free to ask me any questions!

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