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Hey everyone,

So, I've definitely been thinking long and hard on this, and it's time. DeviantArt is an amazing website. Or, at least, in this photographer's opinion, used to be. I still think it absolutely has its uses, and I've met some incredible friends through this website. But, over the past two years, I've noticed a steady decline in the number of people that I've met and connections I've made. Or rise in the number of friends who've left the site altogether. This pretty much directly coincides with the rise of other websites (sad but true), as well as an influx of disgusting, inappropriate, and/or weird comments being left pretty much everywhere (inbox, on deviations, on walls) by people who seem incapable of reading comments left on deviations/interacting in a way that is socially acceptable. (And this is not to say other websites are perfect, they're not, but there seem to be more effective ways to deal with the idiots on them).

It's made for a very frustrating experience.

So, I've decided to take a giant step back from DeviantArt. I'm not leaving altogether, as I still want to support my friends and fellow artists on this website. What I have done is as the title of this journal says, reduce. I cancelled my premium membership. I've knocked down the number of Deviations that I have from 27 pages in my gallery to 10 (leaving a sort of "greatest hits", if you will). I might upload one or two new things in the future, but I wouldn't expect too much in the way of frequent updates. I've gotten rid of journals that weren't features or rants/opinion articles on topics I feel are important.

To all of my followers, I want to thank you so so much. You all have been fantastic about being engaging, respectful, and encouraging over the years. If you're still interested in following my work/working with me/want to keep in touch, I'm going to leave some links below to places where I'll update more frequently. If not, I completely understand.

Thank you all very much.

...see you space cowboys...

Facebook: www.facebook.com/mindfallmedia
Twitter: twitter.com/Mind_Fall
Instagram: instagram.com/mind_fall/
So, my last journal was yet another Ask a Question/Receive a Feature! I really enjoy these, and seven people took the time to ask me some really great questions! I'll be linking to them, putting up their questions, my answers, and some featured work!!!

Without further ado:

1. Rurounichan:iconrurounichan: asks "What's your dream photoshoot?"
Answer: Oooof, that is a tough question. I have so many ideas that I want to do, I can narrow it down to a top three? I hope that's okay! 1. A back alley shoot with a Jill Valentine cosplayer (Resident Evil 3), and some zombie extras! Blood everywhere! Epic shots! Survival horror! 2. I would really like to shoot a plugsuit Asuka in a pool that I could dye red. Or maybe find some way to dye part of a river or lake with something that's environmentally safe. 3. I really really really really want to do a Cloud/Aerith shoot in a church!

Featured Work!:
Yami no Matsuei- Don't Call Me Kid!! by Rurounichan SAO- Bring It On! by Rurounichan HOTD- The World Is A Boring Place....Til Now by Rurounichan

2. Shu-Maat:iconshu-maat: asks "Oooh, very interesting! Tricky question: did it ever happen that someone asked you for a photo at a con, but their costume hadn't any appeal for you? How do you react to those situations?"
Answer: The good questions keep coming! I suppose I've been incredibly lucky in that I've always organized private shoots, so I've never had that happen to me. However, I certainly don't mind taking shots of costumes that I don't have any particular interest in, especially if someone takes the time to seek out my photography at a convention. I guess the closest I've come to that situation is when people ask me to shoot costumes and I just don't have time :/ When that is the case, I'm upfront with the fact that my schedule is just too full to accommodate their request. Hope this answers the question!!!

Featured Work!:
Alice - Sakizo's Wonderland by Shu-Maat Cosplay - Seth ninja outfit by Shu-Maat ASOIAF: Ellaria Sand by Shu-Maat

3. PaXingCai:iconpaxingcai: asks "What do you like the most about dating a cosplayer and has that given you new inspiration?"
Answer: What I like most is that we're both insanely creative people, and we're both very passionate about a LOT of the same topics, be it movies, anime, comics, games, other nerd stuff. The amount of collaboration that we're able to do, the feedback we can so easily bounce to one another is unlike anything I've had in a relationship prior. It has definitely given me a ton to think on, and it's breathed a lot of new life into my work :)

Featured Work!:
Body Electric by PaXingCai Speaker for the Dead by PaXingCai Kingdomless Princess by PaXingCai

4. StarDustShadow:iconstardustshadow: asks "What's your favourite shoot you've ever done?"
Answer: Hahahaha, crap. I have nooooo way of being able to pick this. I've done a TON of shoots that I'm really proud of, especially recently. I think the flipside is that as I continue to grow, I look back way too critically on past work as well. I can give you this much. Starting at Katsucon 2014, running through now, I'm probably MOST proud of that run of work that I've done.

Featured Work!:
Let's Have a Battle -Pokemon B/W2- by StarDustShadow Renegade Shepards -Mass Effect 2- by StarDustShadow Right and Left Hand of the Divine -DAI- by StarDustShadow

5. Greyroamer:icongreyroamer: asks "What was your favorite shoot and your most challenging shoot?"
Answer: Welp, I'm going to point to the above question for the first part of yours, sorry to cop out like that! I just really don't have one shoot that I favor over any others. In terms of my most challenging, in recent memory, it would be the Asuka shoot I did with youraveragenerd in Baltimore in March of 2014. While I've shot at EVERY spot that the BCC has to offer, we purposely went looking around other areas in the Inner Harbor that were less frequented. It resulted in a lot of being chased off properties, or asking permissions of security guards, and running around. Plus, a TON of strange looks (which frankly don't bother me XD) as we were doing so not during Otakon. But, in the end, it was absolutely worth it. Asuka (2) [March 2014]

Featured Work!:
Susie 0616 by Greyroamer Revy 0410 by Greyroamer Mara Jade 0363 by Greyroamer

6. LuckyGrimCosplay:iconluckygrimcosplay: asks " What is your favorite piece of camera equipment to use and why??"
Answer: Without a doubt, it is my 80mm-140mm lens. It has a produced a LOT of my better work over the past two years, and it's just so easy for me to work with. A lot of my older lenses weren't so great, this was the first one I bothered to invest a little in (and I got it for a steal when I bought my new camera body!)

Featured Work!:
Wonder Woman by LuckyGrimCosplay Phoenix by LuckyGrimCosplay Snow by LuckyGrimCosplay

7. koki-babii:iconkoki-babii: asks "What is it about photography and cosplay that brought you where you are today?"
Answer: That is definitely one heck of a question XD Cosplay photography has brought me SO much over the years. Honestly, not all of it good. There has been plenty of drama, missteps, broken friendships (or rather, finding out who my friends actually are), and all of the usual dramallama business that one can expect.

That being said, I've met some of my best friends through these intertwined hobbies. I've seen and done some things that just left me grinning like an idiot because they were so awesome. I've made connections I never dreamed of having before I started. It's driven me to heights that I didn't think I'd ever achieve in terms of learning my craft and the post processing behind it. And what's crazy is that I have so much further to go to catch up to the photographers I idolize. I've come a looooong way, but I'm nowhere near where I want to be, if that makes sense? But cosplay photography also drives me to not only better myself, but I want to ensure that the models that I work with have the best photos that I can give them. I want to try as hard as I can to make sure that all the time and effort they put into their costumes shows up through my lens.

I've learned that there is always something new to learn, always a new goal to strive towards, and that there is always someone out there who can teach you something you didn't know before.

Featured Work!:
me as Yoruichi by koki-babii pEaCe by koki-babii Gothic Lolita by koki-babii




Alrighty, folks! So there you have it! Please check out all of these amazing people who asked me questions!!! Be on the lookout for the next one of these journals if you liked it and wanted to participate!!!


...see you space cowboys...

~C
Hey everyone,

So, I've been scratching my head for a couple of days now, trying to figure out what my latest DA journal was going to be about. I definitely wanted to do a new one as my last is from June 30th! My last poll showed far and away that y'all wanted me to talk about Cosplay/Cosplay Photography. Problem is, I was not quite sure what to talk about. Luckily, my roommate (@ realevilgenius on Twitter) gave me the basis for the idea I've now come up with. I've done a few journals now covering differing areas of the "Cosplay/Cosplay Photography" topic (I'll link them below):

A More Serious Note before Massive Otakon UpdateSo this is a note that's going to take a more serious (and bitchy?) tone. The whole "Otakon-in-Review" journal will be full of my normal terrible wit and lame attempts at humor as I recall my Otakon, but I guess I wanted to make a journal for some of the undercurrent of what's been going on. Sort of a bit of some of my annoyances, and observations as of late. If that's not your cup of tea, cool beans by me, you can skip this entry and wait until the next one. Or, if you want to gripe/observe along with me, please, seriously, be my guest.
Before any of this begins, please note that I will be going through my shoots by the days that I shot them. We're part of the way through Friday now, so hang in there! If you want to check out stuff, I have a gallery up here titled "Otakon 2011", I also have previews up on my facebook page: http://facebook.com/mindfallmedia
If you worked with me, you will be receiving a link to a MobileMe gallery that will have edited, full sized pictures available for
This shit has got to stop (please read)Okay. This is going to be a brief vent before I continue photo editing. Honestly, I have no IDEA whether or not me saying it will change anything. But if I can wake one person up, or get the word spread further out there, then GOOD.
My next post is going to be how f'ing incredible AnimeUSA was. I cannot even begin to describe it. I had more fun there than at Otakon. But, despite the massive amounts of amazing, I noticed one very disturbing trend. There are fucking weirdos and creeps that don't fucking listen to cosplayers. Allow me to further explain as that is kind of an open-ended statement that I will most likely amend once I think of better wording.
Multiple times, throughout the weekend, I was either participating in photoshoots/opportunities, taking some shots myself, or being a bag carrier. And at multiple times, there were fucking weirdos that would come up and bother/harass the cosplayer/s. From insisting on poses that the cosplayer clearly stated they were uncomfortable with,
And, most relevantly: So...You Want To Be A (cosplay) Photographer?Ladies and Gentlemen, due to an overwhelming response of "Yes" on one of my latest polls (I think it was something like 35-3 in favor), I'm going to write this journal about my experiences when it comes to photography, and, in all honesty, a majority of it will be aimed at cosplay photography given that that is what I have done the most of since I decided to get a bit more serious about photography. I also feel like it is very important to say that I'm not at all, in any way, saying that this is the "right" way of doing things. What I write about in this journal, and what I say are my own opinions, formed from 4 years and multiple conventions/outside shoots worth of experience. You all are more than welcome to agree or disagree with me, and I invite you to share your thoughts in the comments section, as well as ask me any questions you might have (PLEASE keep it respectful, folks).
Also, I'm warning ya now, this is going to be a long journal. So brace yourselves!  (You might



And, I'll be honest, this particular journal comes from a number of ideas and subjects. I read an amazing article about posting images online, and I WILL be linking that here shortly. I also read about a various number of things coming out of NYCC. I'm going to address different subjects as I can, so stick with me! I will be referring to various outside sources, they will be credited, and l will be linking to them!

Protecting One's Work Online:


This is a huge one for me, honestly. When it comes to my photography in general, not just my cosplay photography, I'm very very guarded. I watermark everything I post, I put information in the file data via Lightroom, and I try to be very very vigilant when it comes to that sort of thing.

The reason for this is simple, I've had my work taken and used before. Some people have just taken it, either edited out my watermark, or just slapped theirs on top of it, and claimed it as their own. I've also had people alter my images (which makes me cringe to no end, no photographer wants that to happen without their explicit permission). I've also had people attempt to profit off of my images as well.

It can be a massive headache. There is a reason I try to limit the amount of work I put out these days. Once upon a time, I used to post a majority of my shots on the internet, but that is no longer the case (Partially because I'm far more selective about what I want online these days, but also because it limits the work I have to do in terms of reverse Googling) . I have a general C&D ('Cease and Desist' if anyone is unfamiliar with the abbreviation) ready to go at all times. For me, personally, it's about being smart with when and where I post things.

I spoke with one of my closest friends and fellow photog, SoulFirePhotography, and she had this to say about protecting one's images when posting online:

~ Post photos online at about 75 pixels per inch. (High enough quality to appreciate, but low enough to make doing anything with them difficult.)
~ Put both a watermark and a discrete watermark. (along an edge or in a piece of the photo that people wouldn't notice to delete.)
~ Put in the copyright information into the file data itself.
~ Regularly reverse-search your work on Google. (only do it for your favorite or most popular pieces unless you have tons of time on your hands!)

To wrap up this segment, I'm going to link the article I referenced earlier in this post. Sarah Ann Loreth is the author (and an amazing photographer), and her website has some really great articles. When it comes to the topic at hand, I'm going to close out by linking you to her article that really takes everything I just typed about and elaborates very well on it!: sarahannloreth.wordpress.com/2…

Protecting One's Self Legally:


While I haven't gotten many questions personally about this topic in a few months, this is a question/topic I see pop up ALL THE TIME on DA, on Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram, etc. And not just for cosplay either. As a photographer, or, as a cosplayer, when a photo is taken, what rights does each party have? Honestly, I could go into a lengthy spiel about both sides of the fence on this, but BGZ Studios posted an excellent article 14 months back that covers a lot of this more succinctly than I feel that I can:

bgzstudios.com/blog/photograph…

I want to add in something about this from a legal perspective, brought up to me by Flying-Fox during a conversation: READ EVERYTHING before you sign it. Don't short change yourself by simply signing a piece of paper (or a digital app, depending). She also mentions the excellent point of finding out, before paying for/participating in a shoot, if a release form needs to be signed.

I will say that talking with a photographer and/or cosplayer (depending on who you are) ahead of time is the easiest way to solve most disputes that will arise. You can also hammer out details of when/where the shoot will take place. I know that when I plan shoots, conversation before hand is a must for me!

Protecting One's Self Physically:


This, to me, is one of the biggest topics, and it warrants discussion. On both Twitter and Facebook this weekend, I have seen repeated accounts of groping (or other physical abuse) and/or verbal abuse by multiple cosplayers. Some of whom I know very well, some of whom are big names in the community. It was a theme. And, as conventions/the convention scene get bigger, this seems to be a very common topic of discussion.

Let's go right here and say this: I do not, in anyway, support harassment or abuse of any form. I find it to be disgusting, and if it happens in front of me/during a photoshoot of mine, you're damn right I'm going to physically interpose myself. I have before, and I will gladly do so again in an instant. No one should feel scared for their physical well being because some creep or weirdo has decided they need to make their presence known. I won't tolerate it.

I also feel that we, as a community, should try and come together on, at least, this. Drama is a thing that this community can't help but indulge itself in. We all know this. But there are certain things we can do to change perceptions, and this is one of them.

That being said, while I really want to work towards an ideal that includes a scene free of harassment, in the interim, here's a list of advice I've gathered or experienced when it comes to protecting yourself both at a convention, and during private photoshoots (If you feel I've left something out, please feel free to include it in the comments below!):

~ ALWAYS bring someone with you to a photoshoot. (For me, I love meeting new people, so anyone who works with me is encouraged to bring someone along, be it a handler, another cosplayer, etc, particularly if you've never worked with me before.)
~ Let someone know where you're at/how long you'll be while shooting! (Ideally, you've brought someone along. Still, it's a good idea to let your friends [that aren't with you] know where you are shooting, location wise, and when the shoot starts and ends.)

minniemoon adds in the following!:

~ Do NOT be afraid to report someone for inappropriate/lewd behavior. (Take a picture if you can, report the person to officials.)
~ Don't be afraid to get loud if someone acts inappropriately towards you. (This lets others near you know what's going on, and hopefully stops the individual from further harassment.)

Flying-Fox had this to say!:

~ ALWAYS bring your phone with you! (And make sure it's fully charged!)
~ Don't follow someone you don't know if you're by yourself! ("If a photog I don't know comes up to me in a con setting, surrounded by people, and asks for some photos, fine and dandy. However, I'm not going to a remote or offsite location if it's just the two of us.")
~ If you think your costume is going to fall apart for any reason, bring a coverup.
~ If you have to walk outside the con area (particularly if your costume is sexy/revealing), bring a coverup as well.


Alrighty folks, so this wraps up this journal. I hope it's been informative! Obviously, if you have any questions or want to add in, feel free to comment!

...see you space cowboys...
  • Listening to: "Down the Road"- C2C
Yes, I put a smile-y face in my journal title. DEAL WITH IT.


WELL, now that that is out of the way, it's time to get down to answering those TOUGH TOUGH questions XD And, of course, showing you all the questioners' amazing works! Let's get to it!

Questions from this journal!: fav.me/d7nezml

1. DosikLens:icondosiklens:
Question: "What aspect of visual art do you find most compelling? Lighting? Emotion? Movement? Ext."
Answer: I could cop out and say "Everything!" In truth, there are multiple elements that I care about and pay attention to, but, at the end of the day, I think what I'm looking for from an image is simple. The Story. What kind of story is the image telling? How you light it, what kind of emotion you show, be it the background/setting, the pose/motion/expression on the model's face, etc etc, it all adds up to a story. And to me, that is the most compelling thing. There are plenty of images I've favorite-d that I don't like the source material, but the image was so well done, that I liked the story it told.

Featured Work:
Maya 2 - Borderlands 2 by DosikLens Lightning - The Pedals by DosikLens Untitled Pascal Shot by DosikLens


2. R-Legend:iconr-legend:
Question: "What are the Top 5 Greatest Cosplays that you've done photoshoots of?"
Answer: Pfffffttttt *water sprays everywhere* Honestly, there is no way I could sit and rank the photoshoots that I've done in terms any of them being "The Greatest". I work with waaaaaaay too many talented cosplayers and models. However, I will list out 6 or 7 cosplay shoots that I feel were landmarks for me:

Panty and Stocking (Otakon 2011)- Up until this convention, so about three years worth of convention shooting, it'd been really hit or miss with me. I understood the basics, but had never tried to take it to the next level. I was a very average photographer who got good shots by virtue of taking THOUSANDS of photos. I'd say maybe 5 in every 250 I took were usable. During this convention, I decided to change it up. Due to some controversy/drama in the community, I went into this convention with a HUGE chip on my shoulder, and it definitely marked the turning point. The first time I felt as though I "leveled up" so to speak. (Side note, my shoot with melvinopolis as Sailor Neptune was a close second here. It turned out SO WELL too):
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Painted Lady Katara (Katsucon 2012)- FushichoCosplay and I have worked together numerous times throughout the years. She and I have this wonderful, derp-tastic chemistry that allows us to get really great shots together. This shoot remains one of my favorites because I adored this episode of Avatar, and it was really special to get a chance to be one of the first photographers to shoot this costume (I pulled the photo from her gallery because she has a better image size up, hah):
Katsu '12 - The Hidden Identity by FushichoCosplay

Ms. Marvel (Otakon 2012)- I'm a HUGE superhero/superheroine fan. I adore comics, and Carol Danvers/Ms. Marvel is one of my absolute favorite characters. LeapingLeigh makes a perfect Ms. Marvel. I remember her asking me if there were any costumes I thought she should do, and I immediately went to this. She and I did a TON of superhero shooting in 2012, good year, and I really want to work more with her and whiskers. I also remember this shoot, and just how every shot I took was perfect. In truth, I really really really really want to do another shoot with her in this costume now that I have my new camera!:
<da:thumb id="319305907"/>

GenderBent Connor [Assassin's Creed 3] (Private Photoshoot 2013)- MurderNurse. I believe I have worked with her as much, if not more, as any other cosplayer I've worked with. We always have an amazing time. This shoot was particularly memorable for me because we spent the day traipsing around a state park, getting awesome shots, and just talking. It was really relaxing, and a ton of fun. I still need to edit together the video I also shot during this shoot. Look for that on YouTube...soonish XD:
<da:thumb id="388994757"/>

Tie for Conventions Shoots in 2013- Caprica Six (DragonCon 2013) & "Evil" Belldandy (Katsucon 2013)- FireLilyCosplay and AmazonMandy. Two ladies who I'm totally not worthy of taking photos. They are SUPER talented, and are good friends of mine. And honestly, in meeting both of them, they were cool/super nice to me before they ever saw the quality of my work during a shoot. I love working with each of them, and 2013 produced my best works with them yet!!! (I'm hoping 2014 ups that mark!!!)
<da:thumb id="418829333"/><da:thumb id="356131931"/>

Asuka [Eva 2.22] (Private Shoot 2014)- youraveragenerd and I have mainly done Sailor Moon shoots together (Not that I'm opposed to this!) We branched out twice, once at Katsucon, and then this year, we got together in Baltimore and ROCKED an Evagelion shoot. Seriously, this year has marked me making gains photography wise in leaps and bounds, and this private shoot definitely showed me that the sky's the limit!:
Asuka (2) [March 2014] by MindFall

Elsa [Frozen] (Ellicott City Photoshoot 2014)- I didn't really get to shoot with Flying-Fox that much during 2013. And I got a grand total of six shots during my best chance (the Ellicott City Phootshoot 2013). SO, we plotted that epicosity would be had during the EC shoot of 2014, and honestly, it's some of the work I'm happiest with to date:
Elsa, Ellicott City Photoshoot 2014 by MindFall

Also, this is just what I'm remembering this late. Literally off the top of my head. I'm leaving so many memories/shoots out, and I guarantee you that I'm leaving out people that I'm going to feel guilty about later. These were the biggest landmarks that I remember right now. I'm sure if I was really to sit down and go through my gallery, I could find twenty more.

Featured Work (R-Legend):
Hotshot Cadet by R-Legend The Light by R-Legend I Have The Power by R-Legend

3. AngelSamui:iconangelsamui:
Question: "What is your favorite spot at Disney World?"
Answer: The Magic Kingdom, hands down. Epcot is a close second, and I'm a fan of Disney Hollywood Studios, but to me, The Magic Kingdom is my absolute jam. It has my favorite ride (Pirates of the Caribbean), and I just tend to have the most fun at Magic Kingdom.

Featured Work:
Gogo Yubari by AngelSamui Reinette Sitting by AngelSamui Super Sailor Neptune and Uranus by AngelSamui

4. PaXingCai:iconpaxingcai:
Question: "What out of con location would you like to shoot at the most regardless of price or distance?"
Answer: After doing a bit of research, New Zealand. www.wildernessshots.com/new-ze… plus, they have AMAZING beaches. The entire country has some incredible shoot locations, and I'd get to visit the LoTR set that way XD I would definitely require  the cosplayers that I brought with me to have multiple costumes lol

Featured Work:
Dark Mage by PaXingCai Elf by PaXingCai Cheeky Priestess by PaXingCai

5. ToxicRainbowsx:icontoxicrainbowsx:
Question: "Where did the username "MindFall" come from?"
Answer: Ha, This is a question that I don't think I've answered in this forum before. Nicely done! :D So, the name MindFall comes from MindFall Entertainment, which actually comes from my high school days. My junior/senior years, I hung out with 3-4 other gentlemen who were all also into video games and anime. Some had very very basic coding skills. At the time, I fancied myself an artist and a writer, and we had two others who were good with graphic design. We were determined to build our own universe, launch a game, launch a comic, and books. Needless to say, this fell through before we all broke off and went to separate colleges. However, when it came time to pick a name to start going by for Photography and Film stuff, I decided to use the name as a tribute, but changed it to MindFall Media, because it was shorter, and just a touch different.

Featured Work:
My Glasses! by ToxicRainbowsx Out of Reach by ToxicRainbowsx Tug-Of-War by ToxicRainbowsx

6. Ashbrie:iconashbrie:
Question: "Have you been in the mood to shoot any particular costumes as of late?"
Answer: ALL THE SUPERHEROES! Not, but seriously, in terms of superheroes, I've been dying to shoot Black Widow (which I've done three times this year!), Kiani and Fathom (Aspen Comics), Psylocke, and Red Sonja. I've been really wanting to do a Thor shoot as well. Other cosplays that I really have been wanting to shoot= Daenerys Targaryen, Tharja, Zero Suit Samus, Jack Harkness, Oliver Queen/Arrow (CW's Arrow), annnnd Commander Shepard!

Featured Work:
<da:thumb id="375096550"/><da:thumb id="367743075"/><da:thumb id="452046835"/>

7. TifaIA:icontifaia:
Question: "If you were trapped on a desert island, and you are only given 10 rolls of duct tape to survive, what would you do with it?"
Answer: Ahhhhhh, the hardest hitting question of them all. Well, I can tell you that I would use 5-6 rolls of tape to help with the construction of some kind of permanent shelter. However, I wouldn't use it directly. In extreme temperatures (either cold or heat), duct tape loses its effectiveness. So, I would braid it into the world's most persistent rope (and hope that I got 10 quality rolls of the stuff, and not 10 crappy rolls), and use said rope to tie branches and leaves together. Anything I could find to tie down. The remaining rolls would be rationed evenly between having spare rolls for repairs to the living structure, and other inventive things I'd try to do. (Crude traps with duct tape anyone?)

Featured Work:
The Mind's Eye by TifaIA Darkness by TifaIA Growing Up by TifaIA

8.melvinopolis:iconmelvinopolis:
Question: "What's your favorite color(s) to play in MtG aaaaand what MtG cosplays would you be most excited to see and/or shoot? (I'm getting excited about Avacyn again now that my wings will be on their way to me soooon~)"
Answer: Ahhhh, Magic. I tried to get out. Twice. It's sucked me back in both times. Color wise, I'm a White/Red player, but I've forced myself to branch out and play Blue as well. I've got a solid Standard deck currently, but I don't love the standard environment. I'm going to be looking at retooling my deck a bit once M15 comes out (NEW AVACYN, YAAAAASSSSS).

As far as Magic the Gathering cosplays, I'm really really really wanting to shoot Avacyn, and Liliana of the Veil. Those are the top two costumes I want to shoot. Jace is a close third!

Featured Work:
DC 2013: Liliana by melvinopolis RWBY: Black Cat by melvinopolis Otakon 2013: In Command by melvinopolis


Allllllrighty folks, so that's it for me here! I love doing these, so please feel free to participate the next time one comes around!!!!

As always:

...see you space cowboys...

  • Listening to: Heart of Courage- Two Steps From Hell
Hey everyone!

Wow, so it’s been almost 2 months since I’ve written a journal. I apologize, I’m not gone, just crazy busy with work and shoots and what not! For example, in the past month, I was lucky enough to go to Zenkaikon for a day, as well as attend the Ellicott City Photoshoot as an invited guest photographer (My third straight year going!). Needless to say, I haven’t had a lot of time to sit down and write out a full journal. I’ve also got a lot of great stuff coming up. I’ll be in a wedding in Disneyworld in June (which does mean I’ll miss AnimeNEXT as it’s the same weekend). I’ll be attending Dragon Con once again this year, and I plan on being at Baltimore Comic Con for at least one day as well! I also have planned shoots coming up with Interstella5 and MurderNurse so look out for those! I’ve posted everything that I’m going to on here from Zenkaikon, but you can expect to see Ellicott City stuff filtering on to here soon. I will also be starting to take down a LOT of my older work in an effort to clean up my DA.

One thing that I want to do more of this year is Superhero/comic book shoots. Now, this is not to say that I’m going to completely abandon doing other cosplay shoots, (as I’m jazzed about all the Sailor Moon stuff) but I definitely have some cool plans in the works! Hopefully, y’all will start seeing that in the back half of the year!

So, one of the things I’ve talked a lot about during 2014 is me not just sitting behind a keyboard and whining or complaining about the drama and sour-ness in certain parts of the community. So, in addition to just trying to be more upbeat and positive when I’m out during cons or shoots, I’ve decided that I’m going to start doing interviews. I’m going to interview cosplayers and cosplay photographers. I want to talk about what got them into it. What they love about our hobby. I want to talk about their passions and inspirations. Things that actually mean something. So be on the look out for that. I’ll probably start it off as written interviews, and I might move to recorded interviews depending on how it goes. I haven’t decided where I’m going to start these interviews, probably here.

SO, my last journal I promised that I would discuss cosplay photography “tips and tricks”. I’ve done this before, so I apologize if there are repetitions. I’m also going to hit a disclaimer right here: This is all from my own personal experience. Since I’ve done plenty of paid work, I guess you could consider me a “professional” but I’m in NO WAY saying this is a be-all/end-all list. These are my opinions, take them or leave them as you will.

1.) Respect: Have it for others, do your best to show it. This can be very hard, especially given how tumultuous and drama filled our community is these days. In all honesty, there are plenty of people in the community I don’t like being around or speaking with. However, trash talking or just being negative does absolutely nothing for you or anyone else. It makes you look petty and small-minded.

(Side Note: If you have to vent, do NOT go blasting your feelings in public or on social media. You never know who is watching or will see/hear what you’re saying. There are plenty of people whom I will refuse to work with because I witnessed insane drama or rude behavior, both in public places and on FB/Twitter.)

2.) Positive Attitude: I feel that this goes hand in hand with my first point. I, personally, enjoy kidding around and just being a general goofball during my shoots. (I think this is evidenced by my derp albums). I want a relaxed feel during shoots, and I want to inspire/be inspired and allow for improvisation. It’s not always easy to stay upbeat, especially if crap happens, but I find that having a positive attitude just allows for a shoot to go such much better.

3.) Conduct Yourself in a Professional Manner: I don’t care if you don’t consider yourself a professional. For the most part, at least for me, cosplay photography is a hobby. That being said, I do my absolute best to conduct myself as a professional. That includes communication, being on time, and treating my subjects with respect/watching out for them as much as is appropriate. Obviously, I like to have a good time (see point #2), but if you want people to work with you again, half of that decision is what I just stated. You can take magazine worthy pictures, but if you’re a creep, dick, or moron, chances are people won’t enjoy or prefer working with you.

4.) Know. Your. Equipment.: Seriously. There is a reason I try and book a warm-up shoot before every major con/shoot that I do, especially if I have new equipment. I’ve seen photographers lose the confidence of their models as they fumble with new gear during a shoot. Practice and learn before hand.

(Side Note: I’m NOT saying don’t experiment/try new things. Doing that has led to some of my coolest shots. But at least have the fundamentals down on what you’re doing. You want to be able to walk away with something to show from a shoot/having something to give the cosplayer who took time to work with you.)

5.) Location Scout/RESEARCH: If you have the time, I feel as though these two things can enhance or save a shoot. If you’re at a con, have more than one location in mind for a photoshoot! I research the shoots I have lined up, as well as shoot locations compulsively. Because I want to know my layouts, I want to be able to have an idea of the feel that I’m going for during the shoot, and if a location is blocked off, occupied, closed, or weathered out; I want a backup.

6.) Don’t Be Afraid to Direct a Shoot: I’ve been fortunate enough to work with professional models, both during cosplay shoots, and outside of cosplay. I’ve also worked with people who don’t have as much experience. Point #5 on here will help with this. You want to have an idea in your head of what you’re going for. If you’ve ever watched me work (and for those who haven’t), I’ll constantly be shifting angle, giving directions, making adjustments to pose or position. I’ll show the cosplayer what poses I’d like to see, and ask them what they feel comfortable doing/what pictures they’d like to get from the shoot. I’ll give them someone to play off of emotion wise. To be fair, this is a skill I learned in film schools and perfected on sets. But it’s totally doable, and I feel I get more out of a shoot when I do this.
(Side Note: This does NOT mean that I take over a shoot. I have in the past when the cosplayer just didn’t know what they wanted, but collaborations are the best. You want the cosplayer to have input. Listen to them, talk with them, ideally beforehand XD)


So, admittedly, this has been geared towards photographers, but I’m definitely interested to hear what cosplayers have to say! Leave comments, let me know what you think. Experiences, thoughts, things you think people should know! (Do me a favor and keep it drama free!)

...see you space cowboys...

~C
  • Listening to: The Marshall Mathers LP2
So, this year was definitely frustrating for me. There was a lot of things that either went sideways, or just didn’t work out like I was hoping they would. Needless to say, there was a LOT of venting, and just realization about a great many things that I won’t bother listing here. I think I’ve finally got my head right (or, at least, I’m heading in that direction), so I anticipate 2014 being much better for me. I’m excited. Plus, I need to “break in” my new D7100 at a con!

Next convention for me will be Katsucon 2014. (Also of note, check out this link from myself and SoulFirePhotography for Katsucon!- docs.google.com/forms/d/1Ic1W0… )


2013 statistics!

Conventions attended: 4- Katsucon, the Ellicott City Photoshoot (...shut up, that’s home Con for me XD), GenCon, Dragon Con

Photoshoots Per Convention: Katsucon (46)- (I will never be doing that many again), Ellicott City Photoshoot (10), GenCon (2), Dragon Con (23)

Photoshoots Outside of Conventions: 5 -Assassin’s Creed III Genderbend (MurderNurse), Attack on Titan (Mostflogged & co.), Dawn (Dela-WHERE),  Reis- Final Fantasy Tactics (Dye-Another-Day), Lani- Final Fantasy IX (Dye-Another-Day)

Total Cosplay Photoshoots for 2013: 86

Cosplayers I worked with the most!:

FireLilyCosplay:iconfirelilycosplay:-:5- Minerva (Assassin’s Creed II),  Rinoa (Final Fantasy VIII), Caprica Six (Battlestar Galactica), Silk Spectre (Before Watchmen), Lara Croft (Tomb Raider: Underworld)

Mostflogged:iconmostflogged:-:4- Sailor Neptune (Sailor Moon), Hanji Zoe (Attack on Titan), Luffy (One Piece), Haruko (FLCL)

Starlightslk:iconstarlightslk:-:3- Lord Raptor (Dark Stalkers),  Cammy (Street Fighter), Morrigan (Darkstalkers)

MurderNurse:iconmurdernurse:-:3- Viola (Witch’s House),  Genderbent Connor (Assassin's Creed III), Witch (Halloween theme!)

FushichoCosplay:iconfushichocosplay:-:3- Homura (Madoka Magica), Arisa (Green Lantern), Sailor Mars (Sailor Moon)(Artwork Variant)

melvinopolis:iconmelvinopolis:-:3- Fuu Hououji (Magic Knight Rayearth), Liliana (Queen’s Blade: Rebellion),  Sailor Jupiter (Sailor Moon)(Artwork Variant)


Talk to y'all next year!

...see you space cowboys...

~ C
  • Playing: Baldur's Gate II
Hey everyone! First of all, ummm hello to the 40+ new watchers that just popped up over the past 48 hours. Thanks to everyone who visited my page (I think I jumped 2000+ pageviews also?)! Was there work of mine that got shared somewhere? Someone let me know! XD Either way, welcome!

Okay, sooooo, my last journal asked for questions to answer! I will be answering them here, as well as posting three of my favorites of the question-er's DA galleries! Without further ado, here we go!:

BladeAlchemist:iconbladealchemist:
Question: "Hrmmm...What is your favorite film genre and why?"
Answer: Honestly, probably a toss up between Action, Sci-Fi, and Fantasy. Horror and Thrillers come in a veeeeery close second.

Featured Work:
Back Drop by BladeAlchemist Power Trio by BladeAlchemist Hate to tell you, baby... by BladeAlchemist

2. PaXingCai:iconpaxingcai:
Question: "What is it about cosplay photography that keeps you coming back? There are other creative things to take pictures of like larp and outdoor activities, fetish modeling etc so I'm curious what the main appeal is to you."
Answer: Honestly, I think it's my love for the characters that I get to shoot, and the ability to collaborate with amazing people to recreate iconic shots, and to add just a little bit of our own flare to pre-established canon and what not. There are so many characters that I love to shoot, and I've met so many amazing people that transform themselves into these characters.

LARP'ing doesn't really appeal to me because I don't feel a lot would translate well, photo wise. As far as other things go, I'm actually trying to expand my horizons. I've shot a LOT of soccer, baseball, and a few pro-wrestling shows, I'd love to shoot football at some point. As far as fetish modeling goes, I'd have to meet a fetish model who's willing to work with me that's somewhat local to me XD Maybe someday!

Featured Work:
Graveryl by PaXingCai Recovering by PaXingCai Wanderer by PaXingCai

3. Chibifangirl01:iconchibifangirl01:
Question: "When did you become interested in cosplay and photography?"
Answer: I started doing photography back in middle school and high school (2001-2004). I was pretty technologically illiterate so I got frustrated and stopped. My interest picked back up in 2008, in college after I had a lot of training and practice. My first convention doing shoots was Otakon 2008. Haven't looked back since!

Featured Work:
36 Animal I Have Become by Chibifangirl01 Gothic Chic: Baby Doll by Chibifangirl01

4. PigeonFoo:iconpigeonfoo:
Question: "Where do you like to focus your cosplay photography, style wise? Big, elaborate costumes with all the bells and whistles or more simple and down to earth costumes?"
Answer: Honestly, and I feel like this is a cop out answer, but both. Really, what I focus on is characters that I like/identify with, either because of character design, or because of character arc/development. To me, I've found that if I like the character, it's so much easier for me to find ideas and get those creative juices flowing. So if it's an over the top design or simplistic doesn't matter as much, both are equally good :) I will say, as a side note, that I've found that elaborate costumes make it harder to get amazing locations, as most of the time I end up shooting them in large rooms, and focus on simplicity, with a lot of emphasis on portrait work, or close up details. Simpler costumes I will try and find more crazy (but appropriate) locations for because it's easier to move in and out, saaaaay a forest, if there are not crazy or ornate costume/costume pieces involved.

Featured Work:
Snow Flake by PigeonFoo

Mature Content

Chromium Content by PigeonFoo
The Updated FOO by PigeonFoo

5. bonnafett44:iconbonnafett44:
Question: "Have there been any cosplays that you have dreamed of photographing? If so, what are they?"
Answer: Actually, yes! I have a list on my main profile page here (on the right hand side) that lists allll the costumes I want to shoot! I'd love to do more Phoenix, Ms. Marvel, Supergirl, and Black Canary. I'd also really really REALLY like to do a shoot with a Stephanie Brown Batgirl cosplayer.

Featured Work:
Supergirl Kara Zor-El by bonnafett44 Jinora . by bonnafett44 Princess Yue by bonnafett44

6. koi-ishly:iconkoi-ishly:
Question: "Inspiration and motivation is something that I think every one struggles to conquer. What are you doing to try to get back into the swing of things?"
Answer: Honestly, my approach tends to vary depending on how far down the proverbial rabbit hole I go. I guess if I had to try and choose an overall theme, it's that I tend to throw things against a wall, and see what sticks. For example, with photography, I'll do massive amounts of research online, then I'll go out and shoot thousands of photos...and delete them. I won't even bother doing anything more than look at them. Pick them apart, and then do it again, just so I don't fall back on old habits or using the same shots. Other times, it's trying a new type of photography, or branching out on one that I've already done. I'm an individual that's very driven by emotions and I'm very easily inspired visually. The trick is taking that excitement and that passion and getting it translate.

Featured Work:
Shaded Fluttershy - Galla dress by koi-ishly Air Kisses by koi-ishly Dark and Light by koi-ishly

7. GunKatCosplay:icongunkatcosplay:
Question: "My question, since you said that you didn't care what it was about is: Why is a man hole cover round?"
Answer: Well well, last time I checked, this was the ole "catch you off guard interview question". I've actually thought up a couple of different answers, but I think the most logical ones are that a round manhole cover can't fall through it's opening that is also round.  On top of that, they're easy to move (by rolling out of the way, etc), and are easy to mass produce. Whether any of those answers are actually true, wellllll, I have no idea XD I'd like to think that the answers I came up with are correct. Also, we need to work together at some point!

Featured Work:
Perona details by GunKatCosplay Atashi and Me by GunKatCosplay Sailor Jupiter by GunKatCosplay

8. TheBigTog:iconthebigtog:
Question: "No question today.  Just welcome back!"
Answer: Annnnd a feature for you... :P

Featured Work:
Poolside, Honey style! by TheBigTog Lifetaker by TheBigTog The Calm Behind the Storm by TheBigTog

9. Dancing-Squirrel:icondancing-squirrel:
Question: "what he said!!!"
Answer: Annnnnnnnd a feature for you... :P

Featured Work:
Sayaka by Dancing-Squirrel Nina by Dancing-Squirrel Autumn breeze by Dancing-Squirrel

10. EveilleCosplay:iconeveillecosplay:
Question: "If you could travel anywhere in the world to do an on location shoot where would it be and why? :3"
Answer: At this point, I want to do a shoot on an isolated beach somewhere in the Caribbean. I want white sand, water that I can see through to the bottom, and the ability to enjoy myself as I shoot. I would totally turn it into a vacation XD Plus, there are SO MANY things you could do, character wise, or just general pinup/fashion wise with a location like that.

Featured Work:
Battlestar Galactica - Caprica 6 by EveilleCosplay Cold Shiny Hard Plastic - Mean Girls by EveilleCosplay Poison Ivy - Batman by EveilleCosplay

11. Rurounichan:iconrurounichan:
Question: "Which convention is your favorite to photograph?"
Answer: Katsucon. I've been to quite a few conventions, and there is not a one that beats out the Gaylord for locations. There are so many different looks all in one spot that it is just amazing. Seriously, if you're going to go to a convention to get and/or take photos, Katsucon is the one to beat, in my mind.

Featured Work:
HOTD- It's Heavy by Rurounichan PH- Don't F*** With A Nightray by Rurounichan DRRR- God Of This City by Rurounichan

12. MurderNurse:iconmurdernurse:
Question: "What cosplay[s] do you fanboy over every single time you see it? :3"
Answer: Oh man. Any good Bat-family costume will get me excited (particularly Stephanie Brown Batgirl). Black Canary and/or Green Arrow. Phoenix (or any variation there in). There are also certain more obscure characters that I would die to see in person. The Magdelena (I saw one at Katsucon two years back, but she had so many people wanting photos I couldn't get close enough to ask), or Red Sonja. And a good Spike Spiegel. Hell yes, Spike

Featured Work:
This Body Feels Much Better.. by MurderNurse Gentle Creature by MurderNurse Haunting Ground by MurderNurse

13. MilkyPamyuPamyu:iconmilkypamyupamyu:
Question: "Spicy Nacho or Cool Ranch flavor for Doritos?"
Answer: Spicy Nacho every time. Cool Ranch is okay, but after a few of them, I'm usually like "Gaaaaah, this isn't actual ranch!" It sits upon a throne of lies!

Featured Work:
May The Sun Extinguish Itself by MilkyPamyuPamyu Two sides of the same coin by MilkyPamyuPamyu Galeforce by MilkyPamyuPamyu
  • Listening to: Get Lucky- Daft Punk
So, I've purposefully been avoiding a decent amount of social media for the past few days. Honestly, since before GenCon, I've been feeling...off. The past few days have let me really examine that, because frankly, between GenCon, Dragon*Con, and work, I haven't had a lot of time to think or breathe. It's been a blur. BUT, upon further examination, here's kind of my stream of thoughts:

First and foremost, for the past year, there has been an increasing hostility growing within the cosplay community. Frankly, it's ridiculous. I have a million guesses as to what's causing it, and why, but I could seriously spend a whole journal writing about my thoughts on that. But I've seen cosplayers be really cruel to other cosplayers. I've seen photographers and cosplayers get into it repeatedly, both on the internet and in person. Hell, I, myself, have been on the receiving end of elitism, downright rudeness, and hostility over the course of the past year from both cosplayers and photographers. I consider myself to be a goofy, fun loving guy (who a lot of people probably find annoying, but I digress), and just the whole attitude that I seem to encounter has really turned me off. It's honestly made me very hesitant to work with people I don't already know, because I've had mostly awful experiences recently when it comes to reaching out to work with new people. And it most certainly doesn't make me want to continue spending hundreds of dollars traveling to conventions.

Second, and this is more of a personal thing, but I'm incredibly frustrated with both my equipment and what I view as a lack of evolution when it comes to my photography. I'm working on the equipment aspect of things, starting with investing in a new camera, so that should be fun. As far as my photography goes, it's not that I'm not proud of the work that I do, I just feel as though I've been lacking inspiration, or the ability to push myself to that next level. I don't know why, but it's a strong reason as to why I feel the need to take a step back. I need to find my muse, find my inspiration. I would say work with new people, but recently, that's been more of a bust than anything else. I feel like this paragraph contains the things that are the most easily fixable out of all that I'm going to type. Buying new equipment is going to help expand my horizons (helloooooo lower light shooting), and I think that time and seeking out different things will help to solve my need for inspiration. Gotta get out there and find my muse. I just need to figure out where to look.

Lastly, overall, I'm feeling burned out. And maybe a bit used? If I seem like I'm whining, I apologize, I did say this was a stream of thoughts. I do shoots for free. And on average, I'm taking at least 2000 photos at a convention. Now, GenCon wasn't bad at all, because I did a grand total of two photoshoots, and Dragon*Con has been quiet so far, but for other things, I've had people riding me about getting pictures back. What's also really frustrating is that I work hard on said pictures...and then I don't see them get put up anywhere, except for maybe my page. It turns out to be a very WTF kind of moment. You kind of wish that, if someone DIDN'T like the work, they'd tell you, but it really doesn't seem to be that way. It also makes me wonder why the fuck I just worked my ass off on those photos. I have a life outside of this. Friends. Work. I've got a stack of reading literally half as tall as I am. I mean, hell, I could always be playing video games or Magic or something. I personally love doing photos most of the time, but the only reason I get them up quickly is because other people tell me they "want them". Honestly, I'd rather sit on the photos for a while, slowly choosing what I want to edit and trying different things. Another random annoyance of mine is that, and this is certainly not everyone, but I feel like there are definitely people I do not hear from at all...unless I'm at a convention. It's incredible how my phone goes from silent to blowing up anytime I attend a con. :/ Whatever, again, whining, I know, but I figured I'd put everything out there, since I'm doing this journal.

So, now it's all laid out on the table. Huzzah. Now, here's what I aim to do about it. I'm stepping away from Cosplay Photography for a while. I will get Dragon*Con photos finished. I also promised a friend that we would shoot her amazing costumes, so you can look forward to that as well at some point in the near future.

Other than that, I do not intend to shoot cosplay again until 2014 unless some AMAZING opportunity comes up. I need time to draw upon new inspiration. I have a (not literal) million other side projects I want to do, and I fully intend to pursue that now, plus trying other styles of photography. I've gained a lot of new watchers recently, and I want to say thank you so much for your support. This page will not go silent completely, nor will the Facebook page (www.facebook.com/mindfallmedia), just expect to see Dragon*Con and that private shoot get spaced out until next year in terms of uploading.

Thank you all again for listening (and by listening, I mean reading). Your support here, and on FB is honestly what keeps me going most of the time. I'm going to take some time, focus on getting all this taken care of, and hopefully I'll be back full force next year. Obviously, if anyone wants to ask me questions, just drop me a line or a comment, and I'll get back to you as soon as I can.

...see you space cowboys...

~C
  • Listening to: Battlestar Galactica OST
Because this has been a bit of an issue recently both here in the comments sections, and on my Facebook:

Ladies and Gentlemen, I do not and will not tolerate harassing or crude comments on my photography when it comes to the models I work with. If you want to take shots at me or the work that I do, fine, whatever.

HOWEVER, I do not care to hear what you would do to the models, for them, with them, etc etc. Keep your fantasies and your fetishes to the pages that put work out for that. If it happens on my work, either here on DA or over on Facebook, I will block, ban, and/or report you. Seriously. Keep it to yourself and grow up. It's not cute. It's not funny. Yes, the models are very pretty. No, they will not respond to you.

Period. End of discussion.


/end rant.
Alrighty, soooo, ten of you asked questions, and thus ten of you shall have your questions answered and I will also select three of my favorite works of yours to display! Without any further ado:

1. FeelinPeachyKeen:iconfeelinpeachykeen: asks: "So what made you pick up photography?  And, what drew you to cosplay photography specifically!"
Answer: So, I picked up photography initially because I had grown incredibly frustrated with drawing. I used to draw all the time, however, I was never quite good enough to take these amazing images that were in my head, and get them down onto paper. I took a photography course my Freshman year of college, and was amazed at how much I could do with it, as well as how much it tied in with what I was learning for Film/Video. As far as what drew me to cosplay photography, it was all my friends who were participating in it. I've never considered myself a very good cosplayer, and this was a way I could participate in that whole experience!
Kureha- At the ready by FeelinPeachyKeen BRS- Blue Fate by FeelinPeachyKeen Elesa ID by FeelinPeachyKeen

2. xAkiRose:iconxakirose: asks: "What is one of the best memories of your experiences as a cosplay photographer? c:"
Answer: Wooooow, this is probably one of the tougher questions I've had to answer. Mainly because SO MANY pop to mind. The beach shoot I did with AmazonMandy at this year's Katsucon. The Final Fantasy XIII photoshoot I did with you all at Otakon 2012. Both Ellicott City photoshoots (2012 & 2013), every Katsucon I've been to, shooting with Terrasolo at Baltimore Comic Con last year, AnimeUSA 2009, where I officially got to know CaptainMiles, cupcake-rufflebutt, and Windaria. I could go on and on. It's really a shame that community is beginning to splinter and fragment as much as it is these days, I've met some of my best friends through the Cosplay/Cosplay Photography hobby. And had some of my best memories.
Razor Gale by xAkiRose It's Happening by xAkiRose Princess of Light by xAkiRose

3. PaXingCai:iconpaxingcai: asks: "How far would you go to get the perfect shot in terms of driving, climbing, sneaking into places, balancing on stuff, hanging over edges etc?"
Answer: Haha, I have done a LOT of crazy things to get the "perfect shot". I've stood in a freezing Potomac river (amongst other bodies of water), I've climbed on top of multiple buildings/parking structures to get the right downwards angle, I've laid down in the middle of roads. As long as I'm physically capable, I will do whatever I can to find/capture the right shot.
Recovering by PaXingCai The second Child by PaXingCai Dragon of the Earth by PaXingCai

4. TifaIA:icontifaia: asks: "What the crap is your arm length so I can finish your yukata! XD I have everything cut out and the main body done, just need that one thing. Okay if you want a real question (first one is still valid!) what has been your favorite photo gig outside of cosplay?"
Answer: I will get the answer to that first question asap! I just need to remember to do it XD As far as my favorite non-cosplay photo gig goes, it's probably a tie between getting to be a ringside photographer for the ECWA and getting to shoot this amazing band called Local Demise.
I Can Be A BadAss With Roses! by TifaIA Darkness by TifaIA Taking Back Omega by TifaIA

5. EveilleCosplay:iconeveillecosplay: asks: "After E3 this week, any new games you're really looking forward to?! :D"
Answer: Hands down, Mirror's Edge 2. That is going to be an amazing experience, me thinks/hopes. Seriously, I have waited for that announcement for SO LONG. (For those who are curious: www.youtube.com/watch?v=fB4ZZ-… )
Sailor Jupiter - Kiriban Upload by EveilleCosplay Suspenders - The Fifth Element by EveilleCosplay Poised - Magic Knight Rayearth by EveilleCosplay

6. starwind824:iconstarwind824: asks: "YOU ARE COMING TO NYCC RIGHT? RIGHT?"
Answer: Sadly, my friend, I will not be in attendance for NYCC. Dragon*Con is like two or three weeks before, and between that and GenCon being the month previous, I do not expect to have the funds, or time off to be able to attend. I can't wait to hear your stories about it though!
Respect the Trick Arrows by starwind824 Cult of Personality by starwind824 UXM 137 2013 remix by starwind824

7. bonnafett44:iconbonnafett44: asks: "How far do you generally travel for conventions? What was the furthest you traveled for a convention? Where are you located? (east coast, midwest, etc.) And finally would you ever want to travel far for a convention?
... It's a lot of questions ha! Sorry"

Answer: Generally, the conventions I travel to are within a 200 mile radius of where I live (MD, NJ, PA, or VA). The furthest I've ever traveled for a convention was out to AnimeCentral back in 2009 (which was about 730 miles-ish). That convention was really fun though, and I hope I get to go back someday. I'm located on the East Coast in PA, near DE and MD. As far as traveling to a convention, I'd really love to go overseas for a foreign con, I think that'd be a blast. I also need to hit up the West Coast as well!
Kyoshi Warrior Suki by bonnafett44 Lockhart by bonnafett44 Cinderella by bonnafett44

8. satsuyurami:iconsatsuyurami: asks: "What's your first convention?"
Answer: I'm going to cover both angles with this question. My first convention of the year is usually Katsucon, although it's been MAGfest before. My first convention ever was Otakon 2005.
Black Widow by satsuyurami S m i l e by satsuyurami Claire Redfield by satsuyurami

9. LadyofRohan87:iconladyofrohan87: asks: "What's a personal goal you've achieved through photography? (be it a certain skill acquired, shooting at a certain location or a particular character, etc)."
Answer: Getting to cosplay Sully! XD But more seriously, I think the best thing that I've achieved is gaining a lot of friends. From a "professional" standpoint, I've really learned about retouching and post production photo editing through cosplay photography.
2013 DevID by LadyofRohan87

10. TheBigTog:iconthebigtog: asks: "What is your least favorite aspect of cosplay photography?"
Answer: Honestly, it's become the drama and ego that has surrounded the hobby. And, I'm not talking about having a bit of an ego. I think, on some level, every performer, artist, or person putting their work on display for public consumption has to be able to tell themselves they're awesome and the best (I'm the first to admit I have an ego myself). But, recently, there has been a stunning lack of respect in the hobby, and it's really driven me away from doing convention shooting. It's just recently been dramadramadrama, and I don't have time for it. I feel like having respect and being able to be amicable, even in disagreement, would have helped resolved the multitudes of dramas that popped up in the past few months.
Tennis.  For Your Trip Back To Hell. by TheBigTog The Lead Star by TheBigTog Nazis Beware! by TheBigTog
  • Listening to: Stephen Lynch
Here are the latest answers/features to my Ask a Question/Get a Feature journal gimmick-thingy. Enjoy! Hopefully I answered all questions satisfactorily!

FireLilyCosplay:iconfirelilycosplay:
Question: "Has the sleeper awakened?"
Answer: Father! Father! I LIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIVE! But no, seriously, it's been far too long, so I'm slowly but surely getting things into motion again. My first step is to finish my Katsucon stuff.
Features:
Aya and Aya - Parasite Eve by FireLilyCosplay Ezio, Master Assassin - Assassin's Creed by FireLilyCosplay Silk Spectre - Before Watchmen by FireLilyCosplay

satsuyurami:iconsatsuyurami:
Question: "What's your least favorite food?"
Answer: That would definitely be sardines. I don't know what it is, but I just cannot get past my intense dislike of them.
Features:
Ada Wong by satsuyurami Castlevania : Shanoa by satsuyurami Tekken: Wanna some again? by satsuyurami

Flanna:iconflanna:
Question: "Have you ever considered/do you plan coming to Otakuthon one day? (Our biggest convention here in Quebec, Canada) :3?"
Answer: I have honestly thought about it, but I've never explored the idea in depth. I've never had the money or time. Hopefully in the future, though! Maybe 2014?
Features:
Litchi- Kagutsuchi's Lady by Flanna Kallen- Ace of the Black Knights by Flanna The Original by Flanna

EveilleCosplay:iconeveillecosplay:
Question: "If you could go to any convention, cost not a concern, what do you want to go to the most?"
Answer: The London MCM Expo. Honestly, I've always wanted to see what a con is like overseas, and a LOT of my friends over there constantly post and talk about it. I've heard a lot of great things, and I'd LOVE to see it for myself.
Features:
Cruella deVille - 101 Dalmatians by EveilleCosplay Sailor Moon - Soldier of Caring by EveilleCosplay Suspenders Leeloo - The Fifth Element by EveilleCosplay

moonys-autumn:iconmoonys-autumn:
Question: "What's your favorite Zelda game and why? And if you aren't a Zelda fan, what're your top five video games that Tomb Raider is now part of?
Answer: Ocarina of Time because it was just incredible, pluuuus nostalgia. As for my top five video games: Mirror's Edge/Golden Eye (couldn't decide), Tomb Raider, Mass Effect 2, Contra (original NES), Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn
Features:
The Hunter by moonys-autumn Southern Comfort by moonys-autumn Pretty Wings, Sharp Stings by moonys-autumn

starwind824:iconstarwind824:
Question: "1) HOW DOPE IS TOMB RAIDER! No seriously, I'm like 7 hours deep and doing a ton of exploring now that I'm almost done with the story.

2) WHO DO I HAVE TO KILL TO GET SOME RESIDENT EVIL PHOTOS/GET YOU TO SHOOT IN NYC?

3) WHY AREN'T YOU READING HAKWGUY (unless you are)?!?!?

4) I AM FULL OF SHOOT IDEAS, LET US PLOT SOON, YES/YES? SHOULD I JUST TEXT YOU MY IDEAS??! MANY OF WHICH INVOLVE DRESSING CARRIE UP AS NU-LARA!

5) Re: Next con- Awesome Con IS in DC dude, let us not forget that! Also in the aNEXT vs. Colossal debate, my vote is for Heroescon in Charolette that weekend.

Answer: 1. Tomb Raider was amazing! I loved every second of it. The dopest game of the past few years. 2. Your RE photos are coming! Chizizzle! 3. I'M NOT READING HAWKGUY BECAUSE I'M NOT A HUGE FAN OF THE ART! Maybe I'll revisit it soon. 4.  Yes, let's definitely discuss ideas! Message me!!! 5. I probably won't be at either one, tbh. With everything lately, I just have very little motivation to go to more cons.
Features:
Bundle Up by starwind824 Enter the Red Hood, ignore his mak by starwind824 Got you all in check by starwind824

minniemoon:iconminniemoon:
Question: "What is it that you enjoy most about cosplay photography?"
Answer: What I enjoy the most about cosplay photography is that I get to collaborate with the cosplayers to create images that fit their character, or, we recreate more famous images from the source of their cosplay, but with our own spin on them. It really is awesome when everything goes right, and it's what keeps me coming back.
Features:
Celestial Fire by minniemoon What? by minniemoon At a Distance by minniemoon

PaXingCai:iconpaxingcai:
Question: "Question would be what is the most frustrating and hard to shoot well pose that cosplayers do?"
Answer: To be completely honest, I don't think I've really come across one pose that all cosplayers use that is hard to shoot. I'm constantly trying to find the best angle to shoot the variety of cosplayers I work with. If anything, I would say the most frustrating scenario is if a cosplayer has only developed a few poses for their character. I certainly don't mind directing a shoot, but I like it to be a collaboration more so than myself telling someone how to pose.
Features:
Would you like to know a secret.... by PaXingCai Ready Stance by PaXingCai

Mature Content

Chigusa Nana by PaXingCai


tsubasahime:icontsubasahime:
Question: "What are your favorite pictures to take? Do you prefer to tell stories, capture characters, something else? What makes a picture most exciting for you as a photographer???"
Answer: I would say I'm more preferential to either Comic Book or Video Game shoots. Probably because I'm more into that stuff than anime these days (although there are certain series I will either rewatch, or have picked up.). When it comes to what kinds of photos I prefer, it depends on how long I've been planning for it. I love being able to tell a story in a shot, but I also love character portrait shots. So, for more private shoots, I'll try a mix of both. At convention shoots, I go more for awesome portrait shots first, if I can, story telling second. I think action or movement shots excite the most as a photographer.
Features:
Fight the Power by tsubasahime Gurren Lagann- Yoko and Nia 1 by tsubasahime My Little Pony- Queen Chrysalis 1 by tsubasahime

WisteriaWings:iconwisteriawings:
Comment: "I don't even know if I'm going to Anime Next this year. And if I do it will be for a quick visit and heading back home. I really am cutting back on my convention adventures this year."
Response: Agreed. I'm just really burnt out on Anime cons in general, so I'm looking to do something different. Maybe more private shoots? Either way, if I go, it'll be solely to hang out with friends. I'm not so hot on that con center for photos.
Features:
Waiting in the Wind by WisteriaWings Go Get 'Em Tiger by WisteriaWings Cover Girl by WisteriaWings

Alfred909:iconalfred909:
Question: "With all of your skills working within the photographic area, have you ever considered getting into video? What kind?"
Answer: Haha, actually, film is where I got my start. I have a Bachelor's of Science with Honors from Drexel University in Film/Video. I have worked on a variety of different things (lists are here, you can also find me on YouTube- IMDB: www.imdb.com/name/nm3768230/?r… and Facebook: facebook.com/mindfallmedia), and I really really like it. I honestly wish I did more film work currently, and need to get back into it.
Features:
Miik by Alfred909 Winter and Spring by Alfred909 Sunset by Alfred909


bonnafett44:iconbonnafett44:
Question: "What first started you into photography?"
Answer: I took a digital photography class my freshman year in college. I had been going to conventions for a few years (throughout high school), and I started noticing really awesome pictures coming from those cons. I decided I wanted to help create those images. So my first few  cons in college, I worked with my friends who did cosplay, and practiced practiced practiced. From there, it's kind of taken off a bit, and branched out for me.
Features:
Jinora the bookworm by bonnafett44 Powergirl by bonnafett44 Raven by bonnafett44

LadyIkari:iconladyikari:
Question: "What is one of your favorite shoots this year so far?"
Answer: Of what I've edited so far, it's probably the Belldandy shoot I did with AmazonMandy. It was a re-do from the previous Katsucon, and I really feel like we nailed it.
Features:
Dance Gypsy Dance! by LadyIkari Fallen Flower by LadyIkari Hello Suga by LadyIkari


PanickyKitty:iconpanickykitty:
Comment: "It was great to meet you at Katsucon! I had a lot of fun shooting with you, and I know Koneko did too.

BBYO were certainly not the politest/nicest/most professional people. I got caught in an elevator with a few other Katsucon-goers when a bunch of their kids came in and basically assaulted us by rushing in and slamming us against the walls/window to pack into the car and then set off the weight limit alarm. Very unpleasant.

But on the other hand, there were definitely more wonderful parts of the con as opposed to bad parts. Such as meeting photographers such as yourself!

I'll be at AnimeNEXT this year, hope you there!"

Response: It was great getting to meet and work with you as well! I'm still debating about AN, we will have to see XD
Features: (photos from youraveragenerd)
Panty Take I - 02 by youraveragenerd Panty Take I - 03 by youraveragenerd

bettiebloodshed:iconbettiebloodshed:
Question: "What do you think is the hardest part of photography for you?"
Answer: I've two parts that stick out as harder than anything else for me. Number one is, during the shoot, making sure I have enough photos with enough variety (angle, pose, etc etc) that I have a lot to work with in post. The other thing is making sure that I use my post programs to enhance the photo, but not overdo it. It is a very fine line to walk, and it's taken me a ton of practice to get to a point where I enhance the photo without making people look like dolls.
Features:
Ms. Marvel NYCC 2011 by bettiebloodshed My Lady Story by bettiebloodshed Gem #2, SDCC by bettiebloodshed

fotofong:iconfotofong:
Question: "What's your technique for getting good shots when you're stuck in a crappy location?"
Answer: Ideally, I'd just move to a better location. But, for the sake of the question, if I'm forced to make the best of a bad/crappy location, my go-to technique is to go closer to the cosplayer, go for more portrait style shots, and also find unique angles. The more I can disguise where they are and focus on the costume, the better the photos.
Features:
Deep Purple by fotofong Camellia Gumi by fotofong To Here Knows When by fotofong

emilymuse:iconemilymuse:
Question: "My questions that I probably asked you at Katsucon as well is what originally got you interested in cosplay photography?"
Answer: To steal from my earlier answer, as I started to become more aware of the photos coming from the convention/cosplay scene, and as some of my friends got more and more into cosplay, I decided I wanted to help create awesome photos. It seemed like a lot of fun, and a way to combine a growing hobby of mine with something I loved.
Features:
Pin Up Yakuza by mikomiscostumedworld Serene Sketching by mikomiscostumedworld Black Canary by mikomiscostumedworld

FoxesOnBoxes:iconfoxesonboxes:
Question: "What cameras/equipment do you usually use along with programs for editing photos?"
Answer: For shooting, I work with a Nikon D3000 and SB700 speed light. I also will borrow or rent lights and backdrops for private shoots. As far as programs, I'll use Adobe Lightroom and sometimes Aperture depending on where I'm editing.
Features:
Damn Thing's Gone Wild by FoxesOnBoxes:thumb360497510: She's Got A Dark, Dark Kiss by FoxesOnBoxes

Windaria:iconwindaria:
Question: "...so you're welcome to stay at my place and join us for another year of secret gardens and late-night adventures with our buddy Arbor Mist. Because what else would we do at ANext?"
Answer: We would do absolutely nothing else XD But yes, I will let you know if I'm going to AN so we can plan and do crazy things. It's allll up in the air right now, haha.
Features:
[HISTORICAL AURORA] Skies Like A Sleepyhead by Windaria [SHERYL x RANKA] Orbit the Stars by Windaria [URANUS] Rusted Wheel, Planted Still by Windaria
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So this is my second to last entry of this year, barring some sudden developments (the last one will be answering TifaIA's questions regarding my uses of lighting, scouting, etc., as well as some other general advice. Side note: if you want me to answer questions about my thoughts on topics, leave a comment or send me a message.)

So, wow. 2012. This year started out crazily, and kind of dropped off in terms of production. Mainly due to the fact that I missed two cons I planned on attending (New York Comic Con and AnimeUSA). I met and worked with so many people. I also got closer to a lot of people. It's amazing what my hobbies have given me in terms of skills, friends, and networking. As far as progression with my photography, I think I've made huge strides, but I definitely had some setbacks (Otakon being my most notable example, unfortunately). My studio style work has flourished, thanks in large part to two photographers who have taken me under their wings. (I can also throw a shout out to JeanneKilljoy for being the model for a lot of that.) Overall, I'm pumped about this year's work, and I cannot wait for next year!

Next convention for me will be Katsucon 2013!



2012 statistics!

Conventions attended: 4- Katsucon, AnimeNEXT, Otakon, Baltimore Comic Con

Photoshoots Per Convention: Katsucon (24), AnimeNEXT (20), Otakon (24), Baltimore Comic Con (12)

Photoshoots Outside of Conventions: 20: Shanoa (Castlevania), Supergirl (DC Comics New 52), Black Widow (Marvel Comics, Variant), Psylocke (Marvel Comics), Yellow Ninjetti (Power Rangers), Fiona (Haunting Grounds), Battlesuit Jill (Resident Evil 5), Black Widow (Marvel Comics, Original), Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games), Leeloo (The Fifth Element), Lightning Farron (Final Fantasy FFXIII-2), Rogue (X-Men), Elektra (Daredevil, Marvel Comics original) and the Ellicott City Photoshoot: Ame-Comi girls (DC Comics), Queen's Blade, Merida (Brave), Korra (Legend of Korra), A.B.A. (Guilty Gear), Noel Kreiss/Serrah Farron (Final Fantasy XIII-2), Lightning Farron, Fang, and Vanille (Final Fantasy XIII), Elesa (Pokemon)

Total Cosplay Photoshoots for 2012: 100


Cosplayers I worked with the most!:
1. :iconjeannekilljoy: 8- Black Widow (Marvel's The Avengers), Psylocke (Uncanny X-Men), Yellow Ninjetti (Power Rangers), Astronema (Power Rangers), Domino (X-Force), Rogue (Ms Marvel vs Rogue featuring LeapingLeigh), Rogue (Uncanny X-Men), Elektra (Daredevil),

2. :iconfirelilycosplay: 4- Luka (Vocaloid, kimono variant), Quistis (Final Fantasy VIII), Lightning Farron (Final Fantasy XIII), The Red Queen (based off a work by CrimsonCobwebs)

3. :iconpixiekitty: 4- Miku (Vocaloid, Meauw variant), Miku (Vocaloid, kimono variant), Vanille der Oerba (Final Fantasy XIII), Earl Grey Tea (based off a work by sakizo)

4.:iconbratkartoffel: 4- Rose Tyler (Doctor Who), Katniss Everdeen(The Hunger Games), Effie Trinket(The Hunger Games), Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games, Arena setting)

5. :iconfushichocosplay: 4- Ami Mizuno (Sailor Moon, Fruit Group artwork variant), Rei Hino(Sailor Moon, Popstar Rei variant), Painted Lady Katara (Avatar: The Last Airbender), The Dark Card (Cardcaptor Sakura)

6.:iconmelvinopolis: 4- Makoto Kino (Sailor Moon, Fruit Group artwork variant), Azula (Avatar: The Last Airbender), Saint Tail (Saint Tail), The Wood Card (Cardcaptor Sakura)

7.:iconmostflogged: 4- Rei Hino (Sailor Moon, Fruit Group artwork variant), Kanaya Maryam (Homestuck, Racerstuck variant: based off of artwork by animegirl000 sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos- ), God Tier Vriska (Homestuck featuring cafe-lalonde and shadowhearts), Kanaya Maryam (Homestuck, Bunnystuck variant: based off of artwork by animegirl000 i40.tinypic.com/s5aclk.png)

8. :iconleapingleigh: 4- Supergirl (Supergirl, DC Comics, New 52 variant), Ms. Marvel (Marvel's The Avengers), Ms. Marvel (Ms Marvel vs Rogue featuring JeanneKilljoy), Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games, chariot costume version)

9. :iconwindaria: 4- Zelda (The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time) Sailor Uranus (Sailor Moon), Ryoko (Tenchi Muyo, battlesuit variant), Celes Chere (Final Fantasy VI, based off a work by sakizo)


So that's it from me! ALSO, I WANT TO KNOW FROM ALL OF YOU WHAT YOUR FAVORITE OUT OF ALL THE PHOTOSHOOTS I DID THIS YEAR IS! or WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE CONVENTION MEMORY WITH ME?!

...see you space cowboys...
  • Listening to: Walk Off the Earth
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Alrighty! SO, my last journal was a chance to ask me a question, any question. In response, I would answer the question and feature three of my favorite deviations from the question-asker's gallery. So, without further ado, here are the questions, answers, and features!

1. melvinopolis :iconmelvinopolis:
Question: Maybe a weird question, but oh well...When shooting from a series you like a lot or even just kind of enjoy, do you have more fun shooting the main characters or minor characters? And secondary question, how do you go about shooting from things you don't know well/at all or things you don't particularly like?
Answer: For the first question, if it's a series I love, I have fun shooting the characters no matter if they're main or minor. Just the thrill of being able to recreate the feel of the show/game is usually what I'm aiming for. Even if it's not an exact recreation of the source material, getting people to comment with things like "oh, that's just like (fill in the blank character/show/moment)" is amazing. As far as shooting things I don't know well or don't like, honestly, that usually only happens when a good friend really wants photos of a costume. I let them know ahead of time I'm not super familiar with the series, so they can prep more poses. I then proceed to do some research, watch clips/snippets, and just try and picture ahead of time what I want to do with the shoot. It definitely helps to know where I'm shooting.
Fanime 2012: More Than Friends by melvinopolis D*C 2012: Kaine/Escape by melvinopolis Otakon 2012: Country Bred by melvinopolis

2. wolvendancer :iconwolvendancer:
Question: Have you seen Castle season 5, episode 6? It's called "The Final Frontier" and I think you'd appreciate it.
Answer: YES. I loved this episode. As much as I've been digging Castle, in recent years, I feel like the writing tone has changed a bit to go with less tongue in cheek and more cop procedural, which is okay. However, this episode is so reminiscent of what got me watching Castle in the first place. SO. GOOD. So many classic lines, and I love even more that it was directed by Jonathan Frakes.
Fairyland by wolvendancer Sky Eyes by wolvendancer I may or may not have... by wolvendancer

3. RileeDavenport :iconrileedavenport:
Question: If you could have me make you ANY cosplay costume, no budget, no timeline, no limits, what would it be?
Answer: I would absolutely love to have a Battlestar Galactica military uniform (2.bp.blogspot.com/_2Q9Wt_el1aE…). They are seriously SO. BADASS. I really really really would love to cosplay Adama someday. Just to say I did. Definitely a dream cosplay.
Black Widow by RileeDavenport Fan Club by RileeDavenport Jumper by RileeDavenport

4. EveilleCosplay :iconeveillecosplay:
Question: Out of all the costumes that you would love to shoot in the future (you know those listed in your want to shoot album) what costumes do you want to shoot the most and why?
Answer: I would say that the top three costumes I'm dying to shoot are Stephanie Brown's Batgirl, Scarlett Witch, and Kasumi. I really really really loved Stephanie Brown as a Batgirl during her brief run (FUCK YOU DC), and I think I've finally gotten good enough to do that shoot justice. Scarlet Witch is something I've wanted to do because I read the Avengers (and Avengers: West Coast) as a kid, instead of bed time stories, so that character has some meaning to me, and Kasumi was the first fighting game character I ever played. And, once again, I think I'm at a place to where I'd really like to try and do some action shots, and I can do that justice now that I know more, and have a better flash, etc etc.
Panty and Stocking - Naughty by EveilleCosplay The Fifth Element - Perfect by EveilleCosplay Star Wars - A New Hope by EveilleCosplay

5. BahamutNight :iconbahamutnight:
Question: If you had a chance to redo any shoot you did in the past, which shoot would it be?
Answer: Wow, tough call. Honestly, in recent memory, the one that stands out in my mind is Mostflogged's Homestuck bunnies group from Otakon 2012. I thought I had a good setting and decent lighting, but I really messed it up. And I honestly feel really really really awful about it, because large groups like that are hard to put together. It drives me crazy that the photos came out so poorly, especially because I thought I had it down.

I felt that from about Katsucon 2011-Otakon 2012, I was on a roll in terms of photos (Otakon 2012 really took me out of my element). Anything before that, I just didn't have enough knowledge, and those shoots were learning experiences, so I probably wouldn't revisit just because I've mentally moved on. So yeah, there ya go!
Alice by BahamutNight Guardian by BahamutNight Street Fighter by BahamutNight

6. xonlx :iconxonlx:
Question: Chicken or Beef? You said ask anything
Answer: Oh man. Honestly, it reallllly depends on the day. I love them both so much ;_; If I haaaad to choose. Steak. Steaksteaksteak. lol
Magic Magic by xonlx Pose by xonlx Royal Red by xonlx

7. EternalZarya :iconeternalzarya:
Question: What is your favorite convention to shoot at? (in terms of lighting, scenery, etc.)
Answer: Hands down, Katsucon. There is literally a setting you can find for any cosplay. I don't think I've run into a series yet that I couldn't go "Oh, we'll just shoot it here!". It's so much better than a lot of the East Coast cons.
Jill Valentine Cosplay 17 by EternalZarya Jill Valentine Cosplay 20 by EternalZarya Tear Grants: Tales of the Abyss by EternalZarya


That's all for now! Catch you all next time!

...see you space cowboys...
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Whew! Okay, so finally my last Otakon batch is done. And I sincerely doubt you will see "_____ , Otakon 20__" attached to my photos again anytime soon. Who knows, that may change if something drastic happens, but I doubt it. Now then, I have a journal that was surprisingly well responded to! Plus, it was really fun to get to go back down memory lane for a bit. So, for those of you who didn't catch it, I asked my watchers "How did we meet/what was your first impression of me?". If we hadn't met, I asked "how you found out about my work/DA page, and first impression of my work"?

So, without further ado, the responses and my features:

1. propsofprophecy :iconpropsofprophecy:
Response: "I first met you in an apple store. My first impression was that you projected well."
Wonder Woman Sketch by propsofprophecy Red Sonja sketch by propsofprophecy Star Wars a New Musical Hope by propsofprophecy

2. MurderNurse:iconmurdernurse:
Response: "I was looking for photographers for Otakon, I believe. Friend pointed me to your dA gallery and I contacted you to shoot. I thought you were very professional, fun and a blast to work with. I was just starting out in cosplay modeling so I was nervous about being inexperienced, but you made me feel very comfortable and didn't treat me like I didn't know what I was doing [even though I didn't].

Now that I've been doing enough cosplay modeling where I can call myself experienced, I've worked with many photographers in and out of cons, and yet very few I can call a friend. I know I can go to you on a personal level, without the camera, to talk or get advice. I think you're just a great person, who can make people smile, laugh and feel so relaxed around you. It shows in your pictures that your models are always comfortable with you and it's what's made you one of my favourite photographers to shoot with, and also someone I MUST see/hang out with at conventions. =] "

Ezio Auditore by MurderNurse Goddess of Mischief by MurderNurse Just A Little Girl by MurderNurse

3. PaXingCai:iconpaxingcai:
Response: "I first met you at Katsucon and was pleasantly surprised with how cool you were! I was really debating bailing on shooting since I was in another costume first and pretty tired from the drive so I'm really glad I decided to go ahead with shooting. You were totally laid back and funny while being professional which is just a great combination to work with."
Satsuki Yatouji by PaXingCai Blue Qipao by PaXingCai Sniper Rifle by PaXingCai

4. tsubasahime:icontsubasahime:
Response: "You contacted me about doing a photoshoot of my Yoko cosplay on DA this time last year! We first met, however, at AUSA 2011! You were one of the first photographers I'd ever shot with and I was really nervous! But you were so laid back and easy to work with that I had so much fun. First Impression? Really nice and knows what hes talking about."
:thumb319364819: Do the Impossible by tsubasahime Inori by tsubasahime

5. Blackout-Resonance:iconblackout-resonance:
Response: "We met when I pretty much bulk-faved your entire gallery after finding Cowboy Bebop shoots. xD Then I liked your page on Facebook and then you added me. And one of these days we'll actually meet in person!"
CCC2012: Travis Touchdown by Blackout-Resonance CCC2012: Jedi and Slave by Blackout-Resonance CCC2012: Loki and Black Widow by Blackout-Resonance

6. MilkyPamyuPamyu:iconmilkypamyupamyu:
Response: "We met this weekend at the shoot haha =P / and I thought wow this guy has lots of charisma and is fun to shoot with!
We should work together again some time!"

I'll take care of this one by MilkyPamyuPamyu Oh by MilkyPamyuPamyu I Want You by MilkyPamyuPamyu

7. xAkiRose:iconxakirose:
Response: "Let's see... We met at AUSA 2011. I saw cafe-lalonde on the balcony and ran out to say hello, then proceeded to show them how my gunblade transformed! HeadphonesStudios asked for a photo or two, then you came up and asked if I was busy and had time for a photoshoot down the street. Of course, I said yes (because I knew your work on dA) and was very excited because it was my very first photoshoot!

My first impression of you was that you were amazing and extremely kind to be offering photoshoots to someone. I was sort of nervous, but you know what you're talking about and made things very fun and enjoyable. Making my first experience in a photoshoot an extremely comfortable one! :D "

Etro's Champion by xAkiRose Beach of Chaos by xAkiRose SANCTUARY by xAkiRose

8. Kusariku:iconkusariku:
Response: "Didn't I answer this one before? We met at Katsu '11, where you were my ride back to the airport after the con. We had met briefly prior, but this was when we actually got to talk and shit. Definitely one of the most enjoyable road trips i've been on since we had to get all the way back up to PA lol

First impressions? The same as my opinion now, one of the best photographers to work with and one of the coolest dudes I know."

CH - Outlaw by Kusariku HS - Kids: ROCK OUT by Kusariku Blazblue - The Grim Reaper by Kusariku

9. moonys-autumn:iconmoonys-autumn:
Response: "We met at Anime USA 2011 when I tagged along with my bestie Jessica Jolt on her X-Men photo shoot because I was dressed and didn't feel like hanging back in the hotel room waiting for everyone else to be ready. XD Upon meeting you I got suddenly nervous that I was going to be in the way, but you did not seem to mind my trailing after everybody, and even helped me over a plane of dirt! Then you asked to take my picture when you were done with Jess and Chris and I was actually pretty over the moon because I was super nervous about the costume. ;u; But where I got a lot of dirty looks from other Sailor Moon cosplayers all day because... I dunno, elitism? You were one of the people who was just downright nice to me and made my day and I couldn't wait to see the pictures and hoped maybe we could be friends.

-phew- tl;dr WHAT A NICE PERSON."

Mr. Hat Trick by moonys-autumn Hear the Call Of Thanatos... by moonys-autumn Enjoy the Nuerotoxin... by moonys-autumn

10. JeanneKilljoy:iconjeannekilljoy:
Response: "I know I definitely met you back at AnimeNEXT 2011. I was trying to set up a last minute shoot for my Blondie cosplay since I literally got it in the mail the day of the con. Danni (Murder Nurse) suggested you and I trusted her judgement so I don't even think I looked at your previous work. You took some bangin shots of my Blondie, which I believe is still above my info on dA. We played some DOA beach volleyball and you flung me like 20 feet in the air (best action shot ever!). You left an awesome first impression, not to mention a bruise on my ass when I hit the ground xD

Since then we've shot a bunch of times and have geeked out over everything from video games to comics to wrestling. You're a great friend, and as a model/photographer duo, we are Team X-Treme aka the best in the world =P "

Rogue in the Mansion. by JeanneKilljoy Domino. by JeanneKilljoy Scarlett Vixen by JeanneKilljoy

11. cupcake-rufflebutt:iconcupcake-rufflebutt:
Response: "NOPE NOPE NOPE. I met you at Tekkoshocon, where you randomly took a picture of my Kingdom Hearts Aerith. :D And I honestly don't think we "met" (ie, exchanged words) at that con, so I didn't have ANY first impression of you, LOL. When we later met up at AUSA I was surprised that you weren't the person (I think it was some actor?) in your avatar. XD  " Note: She is totally right, I just didn't count Tekkoshocon as a meeting because I ran up for a picture and I don't even know if I introduced myself XD
Dear Friends. by cupcake-rufflebutt Eternal. by cupcake-rufflebutt Goddess of Spring. by cupcake-rufflebutt

12. WashuuOtaku:iconwashuuotaku:
Response: "I don't believe we officially meet, but we were in the general area several times and breathed the roughly same air. It's awkward for me to get to know people at cons and I've been going to cons since 1996... so yea, take the picture and move on. ^^;

I'm always learning too, and my photography over the years shows it."
Side note: We met three times over the course of Otakon XD
Animazement 15: Solid Snake by WashuuOtaku Sengoku Basara 09 by WashuuOtaku MomoCon 2011 - Sailor Moon and Sailor Chibi Moon by WashuuOtaku

13. KosuHime:iconkosuhime:
Response: "I'm pretty sure we met at Otakon in 2010. At least, that's the first time I remember working with you. I was dressed up as Sailor Mars and you whisked me away from Sonja to do a quick shoot with you xD It was my first time working with someone besides Sonja so I was suuppeerr nervous but you were a sweetheart and helped me out. We don't hang out much [because, you know, different states and all] but whenever we all get together at cons we have EPIC FRIENDSHIP TIMES. I enjoy working with you because you're chill and you get super excited about pictures which in turns makes me hyper-energetic working with you."
:thumb305803961::thumb279875472::thumb244150534:

14. TheBigTog:iconthebigtog:
Response: "Dude! I met you for the first time at AnimeUSA 2011. I was half-asleep after my shoot with Murder Nurse and Jeanne Killjoy so I lied down and I noticed this jovial and and hyper-enthusiastic photographer doing a shoot. I had a funny feeling it was you from what I read from you on dA and from the photos of yourself that you posted as my reference. So I decided to ask if it was you and you actually took a few minutes off from your shoot to chat. So yeah... very positive first meeting."
The French Mistake by TheBigTog Beautiful Music by TheBigTog Snake in the Grass by TheBigTog

15. ValNika:iconvalnika:
Response: "I want to meet you in person so bad! Han-pan (spikensalem) tried setting us up for a shoot together but it never happened. But you seem so cool and your photography is fantastic!! Are you going to be at Anime USA?" Note: Probably not, AUSA as a con didn't really do it for me last year, and they moved it into DC this year...and I despise driving in or around DC :/
FFVII: Battle Ready by ValNika Original Woodland Elf: Innocence by ValNika FFVIII: Look Up by ValNika

16. Lostdreamz82:iconlostdreamz82:
Response: "I first meet you at Katsucon 2011 for a photoshoot as Nia, and first impression was that you were professional, very polite and fun to work with even with just meeting you!!"
Icey Punk by Lostdreamz82 Entwined futures by Lostdreamz82 leaving it all behind by Lostdreamz82

17. Windaria:iconwindaria:
Response: "PARKOURUSA 2009/This guy is wacky as hell. We need to be friends immediately."
[HISTORICAL AURORA] Seldom All They Seem by Windaria [ASAMI SATO] Red White Blues in the Sky by Windaria [RIVER SONG] The All-Knowing River by Windaria

18. Barista89:iconbarista89:
Response: "I met you while you were doing a photoshoot with BladeAlchemist as Morrigan. I thought [and still think] that you were awesome, fun to be around, and made the photoshoot super fun, even though I was just spectating. "
Sir, may I see your hat for a moment ... by Barista89 Lieutenant, I wasn't aware you owned a dress.... by Barista89 The White Queen by Barista89

19. spikensalem:iconspikensalem:
Response: "We met because of Laur-face and Tom! ^_^ Tekkoshocon 2009, the con of epic failsauce. But we got to see your film and hang out with you guys and holy carps that was my favorite part of the entire weekend ; A;

My first impression of you was that you were hysterical, really comfortable to be around, and super humble. I liked that about you. ^_^ "

Up here, Bats by spikensalem Red by spikensalem Enchanted Forest by spikensalem

20. AngelSamui:iconangelsamui:
Response: "
We met at Katsucon 2012 and you seemed very nice. I loved how much interest you showed in my costume and making sure my friend Mandy and I looked great. I was so honored that you spent so much time with us. :) "

Princess Neptune by AngelSamui Belldandy - My Open Arms Will Welcome You by AngelSamui Pirates and a Traveler by AngelSamui


And there you have it folks! Seriously, I'm blessed to know so many amazing and incredible and talented people! Please go check out their pages and the work that they've done!

Until next time, as always:

...see you space cowboys...

~Corey
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Wow! It has been one hell of a week! I had 4 straight days of work that were fairly hellacious. I followed that up by attending the Ellicott City photoshoot at what was formerly the Patapsco Female Institute. That was a LOT of fun, and I really hope another one gets organized soon. I have some great pictures from that, and I can't wait to share them, but obviously Otakon 2012 photos are priority. Speaking of which, please forgive me, my amazing followers, for the flood of photos that just happened, as well as the flood of photos that has yet to come!

Speaking of Otakon (while we're randomly speaking of things), one of my friends (*cough Windaria cough*) made a comment at Otakon that I found mind-blowing. It went something along the lines of: "It's weird when I hear people call you MindFall, because I knew you before you were..."

Now, the goal of this is not to toot my own horn. I acknowledge that I've come a looooooong way with my photography, as well as building a reputation and credibility as a photographer. However, I also acknowledge the fact that I've got so much more to learn. Anywho, the point of this particular paragraph was actually that her comment got me thinking about how we met. (At AUSA 2009, during a Final Fantasy photoshoot. Which is also where I met cupcake-rufflebutt and CaptainMiles also.)  Now, y'all know how I love to do the "Ask a Question/Get a Feature". Well, that needs a break, so I'm pulling out a new game. Here we go (below):

How did we meet?/First impression of me?

So here's my gameplan. I have so many new watchers and I want to feature people dammit! SO! If we have met in person, please leave a comment answering the two questions that are in bold above. In return, I will feature your work in my next journal!!! If we haven't met in person, please tell me how you found out about my work/DA page, and first impression of my work! I'm excited to see these responses! :D

Final notes: Thursday and Friday of Otakon are posted. Please enjoy! Saturday and Sunday coming very soon!

Also, I have a Facebook Page too! Check it out and "like" it please? www.facebook.com/mindfallmedia

As always, until next time:

...see you space cowboys...

~C
  • Listening to: Super Mash Bros
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To begin with, I think I'm going to stop saying "last post before..." It never seems like that particular post/journal entry/etc is my last before whatever event I mention. Now, that being said...

Here's how I feel about my latest poll:


But in all seriousness, wow. The responses have been really coming out, and that is exactly what I was looking for, there have been a lot of great points both for and against, and there has been a lot of support for me. Which I am extremely grateful for.

Due to some of those responses though, I felt the need to clarify my position. To begin with, for me, this poll is exploratory. It is in no way an indication of a concrete decision for me. That's why I put it up in poll form, because I knew I'd get some interesting responses. Now, on top of that, here's why I even bothered asking the question:

For me, convention photography has always been about the fun, meeting new people and creating memories and images. By now, I've posted it multiple times my feelings about cosplay photography, but here is a link to the most pertinent journal of the past that sums up my feelings: mindfall.deviantart.com/journa…

So, I've really struggled with the whole charging debate. I'm fortunate enough to have a living situation and job that really allow me to both pay my bills (yay for huge student debt), AND save up/go to multiple conventions every year. Now, I do plan on moving in the next year and a half, and at that point, rent will kick in at a much higher rate, meaning that conventions will have to be cut back anyways. So it's not a "I can't afford it, help me pay" issue. But, at this point, so many people have mentioned that I should charge, that I've thought it's worth at least a discussion.

In terms of, "do I think my photography is quality enough that it is worth paying for". Yes. Yes, I do. Since Otakon 2011, I've felt that my photography has taken a massive leap in both quality and understanding of a lot of the fundamentals that I wasn't necessarily using before. I've also been working a LOT with a local photographer/friend of mine, www.facebook.com/SM.SullivanPh… , to improve the quality of my work. This has included a pro wrestling event, multiple fashion shoots, and some cosplay stuff as well.

In the end, though, this is not an easy decision because I KNOW how much money cosplayers drop into costumes. Conversely, I know that I've spent a couple grand on both equipment and editing software. There is no easy way to decide for me, there is no right or wrong. Honestly, if I did start charging, it would be to help offset the costs of badges and hotel rooms, but again, I'm fortunate enough to where I can afford those, so yeah. If this was just a financial/business decision, I would have started charging years ago.

At the end of the day, I just don't know. I'm seriously conflicted. My instincts tell me that what I'm most likely going to end up doing is just cutting WAY back on the number of photoshoots I do per convention. And I'm not talking about cutting from the 20-30 I average to, say, 15-20. I'm talking about cutting down to 5-10. It would suck because I hate turning people down, but I think that is what would work best for me. Still, nothing is set in stone, and I certainly haven't made any sort of decision on this, I just wanted to my thoughts out there.

Thanks.

...see you space cowboys...

~C
  • Reading: n/a
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To kick it off: I could really use some more views, likes, and shares for my Dark Knight Rises trailer! Please help me out! www.youtube.com/watch?v=SjjDn2…

1.) SoulFirePhotography :iconsoulfirephotography: asks:
"What sort of mindset do you approach a shoot with? Is it a more relaxed approach or more businesslike and why?"
Answer: It really depends on what kind of shoot I'm doing. You'll find me with a bit more serious attitude if I'm working a paid job with people I've never worked with before. I want to create a good first impression so that way, down the road, I can feel more free to come in relaxed.

On the flipside, when it comes to cosplay photoshoots, I always try to come in relaxed. If I'm working with someone I've worked with before (which is 8.5/10 times), then they know I like to have fun, and get excited, and act goofy. But I also want to be relaxed if I'm working with someone new so they don't feel uncomfortable, as I want to come across as not a creeper, haha.
Super by SoulFirePhotography By the Goddess by SoulFirePhotography Night Life by SoulFirePhotography Regal by SoulFirePhotography 3rd Street Saint by SoulFirePhotography

2.) EveilleCosplay :iconeveillecosplay: asks:
"When you work with a cosplayer for the first time is there anything you'd like them to know about you/how you work during your private shoots?"
Answer: Haha, this is an excellent question! Honestly, there isn't too much information to say. I try not to be demanding, because I know how conventions can be. Honestly, I like to try and get the shoot going on time, but if that's not possible, I like to be kept updated. Other than that, I will definitely have some poses and ideas, and I'm sure that the cosplayer I'm working with will as well. If you don't feel comfortable working with me one on one, I'm cool with you bringing a friend. Beyond that, have fun, because we're both there to make awesome photos happen and to have a good time!
Sailor Moon - Senshi by EveilleCosplay Panty and Stocking - Blonde by EveilleCosplay High School of the Dead - Kendo Captain by EveilleCosplay Final Fantasy XIII - Epic by EveilleCosplay Princess Mononoke - Warrior Princess by EveilleCosplay

3.) PaXingCai :iconpaxingcai: asks:
"Which do you prefer to shoot more, costumes and characters you like/are attached to or really impressive looking costumes where you have no idea what they are and why?"
Answer: For me, I would much rather shoot costumes and characters that I like/are attached to. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely shoot impressive looking costume if asked, because I love my friends. However, I find that I, personally, usually get more out of a shoot if I know the backstories, and the histories, and have a love for the character/s I'm shooting.
Immortal Witch by PaXingCai X Younglings by PaXingCai Welcome to the Danger Zone by PaXingCai Summer Festival by PaXingCai Seems somebody put out the moon by PaXingCai

4.) TifaIA :icontifaia: asks:
"What is the last thing that you have downloaded?"
Answer: Super Mash Brothers' latest album, Miley High Club. They are phenomenal mash up artists, and I can put on their albums and list for hours on loop. Bonus, all three of their albums are free on their website!
Outlaw Superhero! by TifaIA Knock Out~ by TifaIA Civilians, please take cover by TifaIA Whatever You Desire by TifaIA Maiden of the Dusk by TifaIA

5.) Blackout-Resonance :iconblackout-resonance: asks:
"If you could go to one location anywhere in the world for a photoshoot, where would you go and why?"
Answer: Ooooh, tough call. And, since it's theoretical, I would say that my choice would have to be Disney's Magic Kingdom in Orlando, Florida. Given how many different looks there are in that park (and in my pretend scenario, my self and my cosplayer have an empty park, and free run of it), I think that would be a DREAM to shoot there. Snapping back to reality, I really really really dig the Gaylord in Oxon Hill, MD (Katsucon), because of how many amazing locations there are just in/around one hotel.
The Sneaky Hunter by Blackout-Resonance .Temptation. by Blackout-Resonance Skyrim: The Wench by Blackout-Resonance 8-Bit Pikachu Tattoo by Blackout-Resonance C l o c k w o r k by Blackout-Resonance

6.) moonys-autumn :iconmoonys-autumn: asks:
"What do you think of cosplay photography books like "Cosplay in America"? Would you ever aspire to put a book of your own photography together?"
Answer: I absolutely love books like that. I think that, given the immense talent that Ejen has, combined with a really slick layout and promotion of that book, and you have a way of establishing cosplay photography as a noticeable style of photography. I try and actively support those photographers that put these books together, and I do confess to toying with the idea of putting a book together. To be completely honest though, I probably won't look too hard into putting that book together until I start winding down my time as a convention photographer. I don't see me "quitting" cosplay photography, well, so long as I have friends making incredible costumes, but I do see me moving on to do other styles of photography, and vastly cutting back on the number of conventions I go to.

tl;dr? I love Cosplay in America, and I would love to do a book like that myself someday, but probably not until I start going to less cons and doing other types of photography.
The Risen Prince by moonys-autumn I Am the Solution by moonys-autumn Hear the Call Of Thanatos... by moonys-autumn She's Got Claws by moonys-autumn Enjoy the Nuerotoxin... by moonys-autumn



Well, that's all I have for you now! For those of you working with me at Otakon, I'll be sending out messages very soon confirming times and contact information! Peace!

As always, until next time:

...see you space cowboys...

~C
  • Listening to: The Real Folk Blues- Yoko Kanno
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Ladies and Gentlemen, due to an overwhelming response of "Yes" on one of my latest polls (I think it was something like 35-3 in favor), I'm going to write this journal about my experiences when it comes to photography, and, in all honesty, a majority of it will be aimed at cosplay photography given that that is what I have done the most of since I decided to get a bit more serious about photography. I also feel like it is very important to say that I'm not at all, in any way, saying that this is the "right" way of doing things. What I write about in this journal, and what I say are my own opinions, formed from 4 years and multiple conventions/outside shoots worth of experience. You all are more than welcome to agree or disagree with me, and I invite you to share your thoughts in the comments section, as well as ask me any questions you might have (PLEASE keep it respectful, folks).

Also, I'm warning ya now, this is going to be a long journal. So brace yourselves!  (You might have also heard some of this before from previous journals!) Without any further ado, let's begin!

I'm going to begin with some suggestions for do's/don'ts as well as etiquette that I try and follow when it comes to cosplay photography.

1. Be respectful: This can be really hard to do with the attitudes that are becoming prevalent, but I find that the easiest way to get to know someone or to work with someone is to be polite and respectful. There are certainly people that I don't get along with in this hobby but I've found that drama and gossip only get you further sucked in, and leaves everyone with bad feelings and more drama.

2A. If you want to work with someone, ask: Honestly, the worst thing that anyone can say is "no". As a photographer, I've worked with so many amazing individuals because I saw their work and sent them a message, and we found a way to make epicosity happen. I've also gotten so much good advice and amazing critiques because I asked for them (Katsucon 2012 with drteng springs to mind, as well as multiple sessions with SM Sullivan photography www.facebook.com/SM.SullivanPh…) Bottom line, cosplayers want photos of their work, and there have been very few times where I've had someone say no when I asked to work with them. To quote: "You miss 100% of the shots you do not take..."

2B. conversely (and especially at conventions) No means no. Period.: I've railed about this before: mindfall.deviantart.com/journa…, but seriously, no means no. Now, first of all, I tend to do private shoots instead of random hall photography at cons, but even I know it's respectful to ask for a photo of a cosplayer, mainly because they have time to present their best side/pose for a photo. Cosplayers work hard, and they want to look good in said photos. I'm talking about sniping shots and just walking up and taking pictures. Or worse, being a fricking creep about it if someone says no to a particular pose or getting their picture taken. That kind of behavior only makes you look like a stalker and a douche. Ask before you take a picture and respect the answer that is given. That is all.

3. Know. Your. Equipment.: When you get a new camera or piece of equipment...get comfortable with it. I cannot tell you how uncomfortable I've seen models become when their photographer has a brand new camera or piece of equipment and decides that the first time they'll use it is during a shoot. Seriously, it's going to make cosplayer nervous about how the pictures are going to come out, and it'll most likely be frustrating for you as you won't know the settings, and that can certainly be frustrating in and of itself.

4. Do your homework!: This is a generalization, but I intend to cover a couple of things under this topic. Plainly, when it comes to photoshoots, put in the work. If you're photoshooting from a series or game or books (/whatever else there is out there), do some research. Look up some poses, talk with your model to see how they feel, get familiar. Speaking of that, whether it's an outside shoot or at a convention, know what the areas you're shooting in are going to be like. Do location scouting (film/photography jargon for looking for areas to take photos). Know where your light is coming from and how much you have. Does it have power outlets? Does it have furniture or things that can be used as set pieces? How will it look if you have a flash attached? Does it match the costume your model is bringing? All of this can make or break a shoot, honestly.

5. Conduct yourself in a professional manner: I realize that I'm not really a "pro" photographer in the eyes of many people. I've done paid work before, but most of the things I do are TFCD. Regardless, I consider myself to be a professional. That means that I try and conduct myself like a professional. I want to be on time to a shoot, and if I'm not, I'm in touch with my model letting them know why/when I'll be there. I try and get phone numbers from everyone, and make sure they have mine. I'm respectful and courteous while "on set". I'm constantly trying to make sure my model is both having fun and comfortable with what we're shooting (There is a wide range of what people are comfortable/like with when it comes to poses, moods, lighting, and styles of shot).

6. Have fun!: This is pretty self explanatory. Crack jokes, smile, laugh, have a good time, photography is about capturing moments, and I find it much harder to work if things are tense and uncomfortable. I find that if I act like the goofball that I am, most of the times, the people I'm working with also relax more, and it ends up being a lot more fun.

7. Remember that the work you do is a collaboration: I can't count how many times I've heard a model say that they love working with me because I ask for input, show them the pictures we've taken so far, and make sure they're comfortable. Honestly, to make the magic happen, both the photographer and the model (in this particular journal's case, cosplayer) need each other. I approach every photoshoot having ideas in mind (see #4), but I'm also relying on the person that I'm working with to bring stuff to the table as well, and I find that you get better results with that kind of mentality. Now, to be fair, and to disclaim, I have a particular shooting style that works for me. I've developed it over years, and it's not going to be the same all over. This is just how I feel on the subject.

8. Listen to feedback and requests: I feel like I should note here two different things. One, I very very rarely give out unedited photos. I've been burned more times than I care to count because certain people are dicks and take credit for work I've done. Two, I tend to promote myself and my pictures by putting a watermark somewhere on the photo. I've heard complaints saying that it "ruins the shot" but frankly, I don't care. I try and tuck my watermark out of the way, but I like people knowing who took the photo. (Haha, yes, that's my ego talking). Advice to budding photographers, protect your stuff. Very rarely will someone else for you. Now then, onto the main point of this point, listen to feedback. Some models will see a photo and have certain request about the way editing was done, or the way things were cropped or cut. Honestly, 9.5 times out of 10, I accommodate them because it's really not that hard to make changes to a file and save it as a different one than the one you yourself put out there. I'm also very willing to listen if someone wants something taken down. Now, there will definitely be discussion there, and there will have to be a good reason, but remember, it's a collab, and your models have a say as well (unless they signed something that says otherwise...but generally, that doesn't happen in cosplay photography).

9. Plot out your time/allow for changes/plan accordingly/be flexible: This is something that, especially in cosplay photography, especially at conventions, you need to plan things out if you're going to do private shoots! Now, I know not all the photographers do private shoots the same way that I do, but if you're going to to do something similar, you need to understand some things. First, a LOT of cosplayers do multiple costume changes, and will be involved in multiple photoshoots and gatherings. They may need to go back to their hotel to change or fix something, or they may be coming from the opposite side of a convention center. I usually plan for hour long shoots. It doesn't generally take me an hour to do a good shoot, but I like having that leeway, and I think that the people I work with like it as well. Second, things are fluid. I know that I've had to cancel or reschedule things at cons. It happens. There's really no reason to be upset or mad, just roll with the punches and have a plan B (or sometimes C).

Alrighty! So that wraps up the do's/don'ts and most of the etiquette stuff. Let's talk about my opinion when it comes to photography, and in particular cosplay photography. It's definitely something I love to do (as if you all couldn't tell XD). At the end of the day, I think what photography is all about is collaborating with others, working at improving your craft, either by getting out and trying new things, evolving your style. I can't stand stagnation. I'm not the same photographer that I was back in 2008 when I started being a cosplay photographer, and thank goodness for that. I view photography as something that should be explored, new things tried. Now that's not to say that you shouldn't have some signature shots/poses, I know that I have some stuff you'll see throughout my shoots! Overall, I love trying new things, and taking pictures of new costumes just as much as I love revisiting costumes with more experience than I previously had. I think, when it comes to cosplay photography, what I love about it is that I get to take pictures and help create a moment of a person's interpretation of a character from their favorite game, show, or movie. With cosplay, and especially being a cosplay photographer, I get to help capture images, help recreate scenes, and work with so many different people who often have a shared mutual love for an anime or videogame. So, photographers out there, I'd love to hear your thoughts in particular here!

Finally, let's talk techniques! Honestly, there isn't too much that I do that is different from anyone else. I scout the area ahead of time, and when I get back, I make necessary adjustments to my ISO, shutter speed, f stop, and white balance. I'll switch up lenses, and take test shots until I'm satisfied. While I'm shooting, you'll pretty much see me turn the camera every which way as I look for the right angle (I'm a fan of vertical portraits as well as Dutch angles) to capture what I have in my head. What does everyone else do?

So, wow, that turned out to be a long thing! I want to hear what everyone else has to say, comments, questions, etc!

Until next time, as always:

...see you space cowboys...

~C
  • Listening to: Frank Sinatra
  • Reading: n/a
  • Watching: Legend of Korra
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To start with: I only have two webcomics that I read with some frequency anymore. For those of you looking for some awesome webcomicness, check out these two megatalentedsuperawesome ladies' webcomics!

Final Arcanum: finalarcanum.smackjeeves.com/
Kandid: kandid.crystalkan.com/

NOW THEN, on to answering some questions and other fun stuff!

1.) Lostdreamz82 :iconlostdreamz82: asks:
"...which is you favorite convention to do photoshoots at?"
Answer: Hands down, that would be Katsucon. I've been to a lot of different conventions, and to me, Katsucon always ends up being the convention where I feel I have TONS of options, and am usually able to find a backdrop for anything that I want. The Gaylord is just an incredibly photogenic spot!
leaving it all behind by Lostdreamz82 Entwined futures by Lostdreamz82 Look over here Kuro by Lostdreamz82

2.) melvinopolis :iconmelvinopolis:asks:
"Hmm...Now that you've done some of the big "dream shoots" on your list, what are some costumes now that are on your wishlist? Also, if time/money wasn't an issue, what conventions (outside the usual ones you go to) would you like to attend?
Answer: Haaaaaa, there are so many costumes I've got left that I want to shoot! If you check out my main page, down below my ID and Convention list, I have The "MindFall Wants to Photoshoot These Costumes" List XD  I update by listing the costumes I have yet to shoot (Female and Male), and I have a list of those I've already done! (All in alphabetic order!) (You've helped me cross off a big one :D) So check it out, and if you're planning anything on my list, definitely let me know! As far as the second question. Hands down, San Diego Comic Con. I want to go soooo bad.
Katsucon 2012: Little Garden by melvinopolis Katsu 2012: Moustache ID by melvinopolis Katsucon 2012: Phoenix Princess by melvinopolis

3.) HeadphonesStudios :iconheadphonesstudios: asks:
"You wake up after being in suspension for 9999999... and there's a zombie invasion. Which video-game weapon would you choose to face them off with?"
Answer: Hrmm. This was a tough call, however, in the end, I would choose the SSV Normandy II. I would have the best weapon, and a means of a escape with any survivors I managed to rescue XD
Photo: Katsucon 18- Camellia Gumi by HeadphonesStudios Photo: Serah Farron- Draw Your Weapon by HeadphonesStudios Photo: AUSA 2011- Jesse Quick by HeadphonesStudios

4.) ValNika:iconvalnika: asks:
"If you had the power to turn the world into any video game, which would it be? It would be a permanent change, and affect everyone on earth. Everyone would become permanent players/characters in the game as it was now the new reality.
Answer: Oh wow. Very interesting question! Also, tough, because a LOT of the games I like have a dystopian vision, or, have something seriously wrong. (Darkspawn, Reapers, Zombies, Enemy Combatants out the nose... etc etc.) Buuuut, I'd say probably switching today's timeline into the one from Resident Evil. Why? Because I'd be the biggest zombie killing badass XD Terrible, I know, but I honestly don't have anything else I'd really want. (I'd rather face zombies than Darkspawn or Reapers XD)
FFVIII: Wanna Dance? by ValNika ME2: FemShep Reporting for Duty by ValNika FFVIII: JUMP! by ValNika

5.) xxAxelstar:iconxxaxelstar: asks:
"Well since you like doing video also (what I plan on going into in the future) what is your favorite movie?"
Answer: Ffffffff, this question. This question is the bane of my existence. XD I honestly don't have a singular favorite movie. It's impossible for me. I can give you a top five for me at the moment (1. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, 2. Howl's Moving Castle 3. Pulp Fiction 4. Die Hard 5. Underworld (Extended/Unrated cut)...) but honestly, that's subject to change on like a day to day basis XD  Film school broke me of having just one favorite movie XD
:thumb290861237: Furniture~Greed by xxAxelstar Inner Moka~ by xxAxelstar

6.) Blackout-Resonance:iconblackout-resonance: asks:
"If you got a tattoo what would it be of and why?"
Answer: As of right now, I don't think that I would get a tattoo. For me, a tattoo would have to be something I could live with being on my body for the rest of my life, and there just isn't anything that has made SUCH a deep impact on me that I would do that. If I had to pick something, I'd probably get either the STARS or Umbrella logo.
Childhood by Blackout-Resonance 8-Bit Pikachu Tattoo by Blackout-Resonance R o s e by Blackout-Resonance

7.)TifaIA:icontifaia: asks:
"What is your life's motto that you would wear on a t-shirt?"
Answer: Tough call. Really tough, actually. But recently, my approach to life has been a duality of "Live life to the fullest" (I know, lame), and "Whatever happens, happens." I'm more so inclined to wear the second on a shirt.
Moogle and Mercury by TifaIA Let's Dance Boys by TifaIA Eyes Unclouded by TifaIA


So there you go! That's everyone who asked a question!

As always, until next time:

...see you space cowboys...

~C
  • Listening to: &quot;Buddy Holly&quot;- Weezer
  • Reading: n/a
  • Watching: The Unit
  • Playing: n/a
  • Eating: n/a
  • Drinking: n/a
(Edited for Grammatical Stuff :( I can't english)

Annnnd, I'm back.

Where did I go? Well, before that, I want to thank you all. Just once more. I promise that I'm not trying to boast or anything like that, seriously. I'm just humbled by the fact that I've hit 51,000+ pageviews, and 500+ watchers. Never in my life did I think this DeviantArt page would get that much attention, much less merit people clicking that "+watch" button. Thank you all so so much for supporting me, and I intend to keep going and trying to take the best, most exciting photographs possible.  Thank you all so much!!! (I'm done, I promise!!!)

Okay, down to business. I'm back from vacation. I took a week long vacation down to the sunny beaches of Orlando, Florida. I hit up Disney and Universal Studios' Islands of Adventure. Let me tell you, I had an absolute blast. I did everything, from visiting the Magic Kingdom, to traveling into the "worlds" of Jurassic Park, Harry Potter, and Marvel Comics, to performing live for 1,000 people (this is a true story. In Disney's Hollywood Studios, they have something called the "American Idol Experience". 400 people per day try out, I made it into the top 24 lucky enough to compete in front of a live audience for a chance to audition for the American Idol judges. I didn't win, but it was still a blast). And now, I'm back, I'm refreshed, and I'm ready to start filming and photoshooting like a madman.

And since we're talking shameless self-promotion, there's a couple of things I'd like y'all to check out!

If you haven't already, I have a Facebook fan page! Please give it a "like", or not, it's your call! But support is definitely appreciated! (facebook.com/mindfallmedia)

You should also start following @MagicalPiracy on Twitter. Why? Because the infamous CaptainMiles and I are working on something that we think is pretty awesome, and we want all the feedback we can get for it! So give us a follow, and in the next week or so, be part of the opening stages of what we feel is something that is pretty awesome!

That's all! /end shameless self-promotion.

Now then, here's where it really counts. I two things left to talk about before I sign out for the night:

Numero Uno, I want to do another Ask a Question, Get a Feature, which starts, NOW. Here's how this works for those un-initiated. You ask me a question, ANY question here in the comments section of this journal entry. In the next journal entry that I do, I will post your question, my answer to your question, and I will post three of my favorites of your work. Seriously, folks, I want to get back into the full swing of things! Hit me with what you got! Let's do this!

Secondly, I'm still trying to improve photoshoots that I do with cosplayers and/or other photographers. SO, I have a couple of questions for you that I'd like you to respond to down in the comments. Cosplayers/models- What are some of the best photoshoots you've had? With whom? Why? Photographers- What are some of the best photoshoots you've done? With whom? Why?

So, if you're doing both, post the question for me/the next journal first, then, on a separate line, your answers to my questions and/or comments. Help me keep track, thanks! XD

Anywho, that's all for now, SO...

As always, until next time:

...see you space cowboys...

~C
  • Listening to: &quot;Clint Eastwood&quot;- Gorillaz
  • Reading: n/a
  • Watching: The Unit
  • Playing: n/a
  • Eating: n/a
  • Drinking: n/a