Monday, December 26, 2011

New Life

Fuh...it has been a busy month in December with CF preparation, shifting and now, the Cosplay Ball to attend to. Nevertheless, I've enjoyed the course with ups and down. Will do a short update of recent activities here.

Right after AFA, I went for two shoots: Carol of Ouke no Monshou by Anthony Lee and Isis of Ouke no Monshou by Thomas Kuan.

Carol
It felt weird to cosplay her mainly because I never plan to cosplay this character in the first place. I felt that I couldn't carry out her character even in photography. Secondly, I disliked Carol in the manga Ouke no Monshou. Lol...so the confession is...I shoot for the memory sake of the costumes and accessories I've made over three weeks before AFA. Nevertheless I loved them all and I'm glad to say Carol's costumes and accessories had found new owners who really appreciated the character :) 




Isis
She is the reason I follow up the manga. My cousin sister used to read them when I was five or so. It was in chinese so I didn't understand a thing except that I like the way Isis is drawn. Later I pick up the manga again online and felt for Isis. She is depicted as a mad-brother-lover and ruthless evil person who is all out to kill Carol. Put that asides, I admired her passion for what she loves. Many overlooked her affection for her brother (mind you in Egypt royalty, this is acceptable) during the earlier days when she cried over the loss of her brother. What Memphis did? Changed his heart within 2 pages of the manga after seeing a blonde for the first time in his Middle-East life. Sad. Shallow. I felt deeper for Isis, the supposed Queen of Egypt was stripped off everything that was supposed to be hers. 












Didn't plan to join AFA in the first place, so Isis was supposed to debut when I found a Memphis. Lol...things don't always go they way we plan, huh ;)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Room Hunting: the quest for my dream room.

I was down in JB and SG for the last four days, hunting for a room to stay. Three agents, six rooms. Six different environment and story to share. I dislike one of the basket agent for leaving my at Commonwealth-wrong-address the first night but oh well...he turned out to be the best after all. Location and names will not be disclosed to protect privacy.




Room 1 - I arrived about 30mins earlier to check out the surrounding. It was gorgeous, HDB with food stall everywhere, clinics, library and bus stand all within 5 to 10 minutes walking distance. I fell in love with it instantly knowing that it's a 15 minute direct bus ride to my work place. Unfortunately, the room is not in any of the HDB. It is almost a store room above a restaurant. There is no proper gate, it's dirty, messy, everyone's clothes everywhere. There is no living room, only a toilet shared by 5 people linked directly to the dusty kitchen. The room is about 1.3m x 2.5m. No joke, a bed and a cupboard leaving space enough for one to walk three steps into bed and three steps back the door. I really think it's a store room. Agent said the owner willing to reduce SGD500 to SGD460 because I'm a professional. Kthxbai.

Room 2 - a bit far from my work place. The room is vast! I can do a little ballet twirl within it, a bed, a wardrobe and a study table. The owner is an old lady. The moment she sees me, she asked for my passport. Huhu...nice intro, lady. Everything is cool except for the distance and her paranoia - she asked for my work schedule because she wants to know what time I leave and come back to the house. I asked if my family can drop by to visit me (not staying over, mind you) and she said the visitor must give her their passport when they come. Crazy...kthxbai. The only thing which made me contemplate was the combo of SGD400 + vast room. Distance, transit and paranoid owner overruled.

Room missing - Went there with the given address, no such block number. Call the agent for direction until no credit. Went back furious and swore I would strangle the agent the next day.

Room missing - text the owner on day 1 if i can view her room, 'sure'. I asked if I can view at 5pm, 'after 6:30pm'. Then I asked for the full address to view the room at 7pm, 'today no view. Come tomorrow'. I text her again for the address to view tomorrow, 'confirm with me tomorrow'. Text her the next day for the address, 'view only after 7:30pm'. Kthxbai.

Room 3 - this is my dream room! High floor, vast room, big windy window. Bus stop and cheap food court immediately below, dozens of shops nearby as it is almost in the heart of the city. Fell in love with it instantly. It's a bit costly but it's REALLY near my work place. The only thing is...it's an Indian family. I'm not talking about the racist issue but I'm afraid we will be culturally different.

Room 4 - Basket agent back in action. This one has been voted the scariest owner from me. She should be in her mid thirties, married with no children. A heavily renovated 5 rooms HDB to 3 rooms. Her room and living room is damn big. Being big is one thing, clean as well but it is so freaking messy and mismatched. One cupboard here for her husband golf trophy. Another cupboard there for praying stuff and another for feng shui stuff. A carpet here and a carpet there. So rich get a terrace la, renovated until...One room rented out to a local girl was quite vast. Viewing my room was sad, it was a segregated room from the first girl's. She got the bigger part, mine was half the size because there is this huge luxurious cupboard embedded into the wall. We both get the same rental SGD600, talk about being fair huh. She will clear two decks of the cupboard for me and the rest is her stuff. Which means, she can come in anytime to grab her stuff. We are not allowed to lock our rooms by the way and even my mom cannot visit because she said her house has many things (a feng shui maniac I would say) and she won't know if MY visitors take them. Swell.  She said, 'SGD600 you must understand this...my house no children and no old people'. You will age one day too, horrible person! Nevertheless, nothing is as bad as her next statement, 'You cannot use the washing machine. My husband is a business man and I don't allow women clothing to touch his. Kthxbai you superstitious freak. Before I leave she told the agent to convince me to pay deposit fast because she felt that we can click. Crazy woman, you. Get away from me!

Room 5 - Voted second scariest. The bus stop is quite near but the living environment is scary. It was like a market in the house with toys here, magazines there, lots of praying statues almost a temple by itself. Other housemates are a local guy and a Taiwan guy student. The moment she found out my nationality, the old lady owner got interested in talking about the politics, which party am I voting for and she kept whispering things I cannot hear properly. She is definitely the gossip queen type. There is a guy currently staying in that room, there is a strange smell with broken cupboards and missing knobs and all. The guy is leaving on 11th and she wants me to move in 11th itself. My agent told her i can only get there earliest 3rd week and she went on ranting about how much money she will lose withing that few days. My agent told her about my profession and he may not be able to find a tenant exactly on that day. She told the agent, 'sure can! It doesn't matter what he or she works as long as got work permit.' Kthxbai. Can you imagine if I pay her the rent a day later? She probably go tell the whole HDB about it. Swt...forget it.

Room 6 - Bus ride is 15 minutes but the bus stand is like miles and miles away o.O the thing is, I'll be staying in a really vast room (I love the study table so much T.T) with a lady and her maid. Both of them will be out from 9am to 5pm. They are very flexible on cooking and my time in and out. Can have visitors but no staying over. Sounds good to me, smells like...FREEDOM. I am really happy with the room and so does the owner :) I liked her already unlike the rest who doesn't really see me as a person. Unfortunately...it's really tedious for me to get to my work place.

At the end of four days, I'm left with Room 3 and Room 6. It was a tough decision between distance or freedom. Between a good owner and a family with different culture...finger crossed for the right decision!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

AFA 2011

This is gonna be one difficult post to write without a mixture of disappointment and pessimism. This project started off really exciting but as it dragged for over a month after preliminary under a pathetic organization, it got really tiresome. Many said that AFA is the battle of armors to begin with. I ran through the marking scheme on their official site:

25% on costume ACCURACY (not GAR-ness, mind you)
40% on performance (30% entertainment and 10% technical effects, that is your LED, bling bling, flying here and there) 
In character 15%
Workmanship 15% (sendiri mali, commissioned/tailored-made, neatness, durability that sort).




After running through these, I thought it isn't so bad. Surely they didn't mention only armored cosplay can participate and share the chance of winning. So I pick what I do best, cloth based costumes rather than to venture into armored thingy where I'm not experienced enough and risk ridiculing myself on stage with stuffs falling apart and restricted mobility. I picked Ouke no monshou - Isis and Carol. For your information, the chest piece, head gears and accessories are not easy to make. The specific beads (imitating ancient Egypt accessories) were hunt for with wires to bends and fingers cut. It's a form of craft art. What do we get in the end? A majority of critics that says, 'their costume isn't much' and 'why did they chose such costume?' Why can't I? Because you know that only armored costume stand a chance to win?

So I went on, building stage props to bring a bit of Egypt on stage. I said before and I will say it again - every little details and props matters to me in delivering a complete performance. I had enough of people telling me the judges don't see this, they don't care that, they won't check so much et cetera. It's my style, it's the little things which makes a difference...BUT only for people who care. Then we come up with a 2:57 min skit to adhere to their rules and regulations of 3min skit limitations. Ref: http://www.animefestival.asia/rcc2011.html

Guess what? Usagi said she hope the skit was longer and guess what? There seems no penalty for longer skit. FML. I asked the organizers before hand if there were penalty referring from last year skits. Guess what? No answer. You know why? Because Msian team has always been taken lightly, they never win anyway, who cares what they do on stage and how long. Who cares what they need since they are going to screw up anyway. 

WE PROVED YOU WRONG. WE WERE DEAD SERIOUS ABOUT THE COMPETITION.   

It was sad, sad that we were treated by trash from the day we were selected all the way till the first day we arrived. Everybody talks to everybody except the Malaysian team. There were no reputable people from our country to fend us in AFA in any way. We were on our own. Our team were lucky to have Sky and Yuan to help out. There were several local friends who constantly giving us moral support and of course, we were lucky to have a friendly friend of AFA to guide us, Michelle. Things were only slightly better after the rehearsal. 

Put all the sad things aside, I was glad to have met several friendly Singaporean cosplayers. If there is one thing that pulled us through the whole difficult weekend, it would be the present of supportive friends both local and Singaporeans. At the same time, I did witness the awesome armor of Thai cosplayers and awesome weapon from Philippines. It was an eye opening event. 

AFA was supposed to be my last major event for cosplay BUT now I'm burning with rage. I will be back, more aggressive and violent than ever (in the positive way =.="). I really hope the public don't take Malaysian cosplayers lightly anymore. Sheesh...totally against my believe for cosplaying what you love and not what people want you to. Argh!

So much positive comments...where went wrong then? Y U NO JUSTIFY *memeface.jpg* Y U NO PUT 50% COSTUME?? THEN I CHOOSE SOMETHING ELSE: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MZH79E21W4&feature=share
The video where someone commented that the costume isn't much: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o6DdeRefxGg
The video where they don't even bother recording till the end: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hy2GJOVmaKY 

A Letter to AFA Cosplay Organization

Being the person who experienced stuff first hand, it was like a wicked bullet to bite and dust to swallow. I've written this email to one of the organizer. Chances is, I will be ignored, the email deleted and we will be left in the dark again until last minute next year by their selected irresponsible local partner but what the heck, it's worth the try.

Hi Mr. SW,

I'm writing this email concerning our future representatives for AFA Regional Cosplay Championship. This year, we went though lots of last minute information, changes, miscommunication and wrong information which burdened the selection altogether. We have seen how the representatives from other countries were selected and they are truly, worthy of envy - proper stage, lighting, good sound system, reputable judges, almost a cosplay event by itself. What do we have? A corner of a shopping center with close to zero lighting and poor sound system we had to use handphone over the mike - all due to poor organization and last minute information. This is rather demoralizing for our cosplay committee. Due to the last minute information as well, we were reduced from five teams to only two teams for selection. 

I am pleading that for next year, please kindly approach our cosplay committee rather than an event company to organize the AFA RCC representative selection. Please allow us to conduct a proper selection and this can only be done when the committee (your partner or representatives) from Malaysia consists of people with cosplay background or people who have the experience in organizing actal cosplay events. 

I understood that it may be down to business at the end of the day so it is agreeable that you look to event companies to assist in publicity and profit but once again, we plead that the cosplay portion can be given to the cosplay community to conduct. We can assure you we will do a better job given the chance as we too, desire for the positive growth of our cosplay community here. Disregard of how Malaysian cosplayers were viewed previously, I do hope you take note that we are serious about this competition now. We, the Malaysian Cosplay community wish to send our best representatives for international competitions as well. 

Please kindly reply upon consideration of our request. Thank you.

Regards,
Venus

Friday, November 4, 2011

Too Much At One Go

Let's see...I don't remember what I've missed after Anicom. Hmm...after the third week competition where I participated as Kakyuu, the transformed version, I was so sure I would be bored to death till my work starts in January. So I quickly bugged Yukito, Marianne, Anthony, Kenneth and Joseph to plan yet another Christmas & New Year Eve Cosplay Ball in a hotel ballroom :) CosplayBall2011

Then...backside itchy, participated in AFA despite being so last minute. Completed the costumes with handheld props within 10 days. I don't remember sleeping much and I had all ten fingers pricked in the process of making the accessories. So here goes...Ouke no Monshou, a manga debuted in 1976 if I'm not mistaken. 

How I come to know about this manga? I was very young when my cousin sis used to rent comics from Pudu Plaza. I can't read what more to understand the content but I've always like the way Isis was drawn - the sharp eyes, delicate frame...I didn't know she was called Isis till I actually read the translated version much much later. Still, I preferred her than that blonde Carol. Everything is too perfect for Carol, four apparently hot-looking princes from four different countries wanted her. Bah, Isis for me ;)




 Currently really stressed out for AFA. I wanna throw in my best cuz it's gonna be a one shot thing before my dull working life starts T.T I love cosplay very much. It made me a happier person *kicks of the stressful part*

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Quistis Trepe

When I was planning this project, flashes of memories from high school flooded me. Fell in love with Final Fantasy VIII back in high school, dream about attending Balamb Garden daily rather than putting on those cotton uniforms to Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan So And So. The one I fancied the most if Quistis Trepe. It seemed like we have plenty in common, being given too much responsibility in comparison to her peers. The 'dai ka jer' role of looking after everyone but ended up hurting alone. Sigh...stupid Squall. Anyway, I prefer Seifer for her ;) first time debut in a photoshoot and first time working with Valkyrie Holic a.k.a May as Rinoa. It was fun ;) thanks to Blur and Joseph. Loc: Putrajaya High Court.





Later, I participated in Anicom with the help of May (Fujin) and Blur (GF Tonberry). They are awesome! It was pretty last minute, as usual. Lots of stress but at least we had lots of fun at the end of the day :)

Video: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=279957465367100

Heading to Singapore, Yes? No?

After graduation and even before convocation, I've attended interview and secured a job placement in S'pore. That's two months ago and guess what? I'm still here! Woot! Woot! *confetti*confetti* So, from July to September to October and now, January. I don't think I am ever leaving this place =.="
Now...the process of going from


to       










...is so complicated for me.
1. Wait for S'pore parcel of documents (rotted a month at home)
2. Compile documents (rushed for deadline for submission) called S'pore for dunno how many times and nobody answers. Out of 9 emails, only two returned.
3. A trip to LJN for certs of verification (they told me NO NEED retention of name cert) - RM30
    - they were rude and not helpful.
4. A trip to High Court to translate BM certs to English (been directed here and there only to end up at the first place) - RM210
    - the guards at the front desk were rude to me and my mom as though we are criminals.



5. Went to make passport, drove to Jabatan Imigresen at Presinct 2 only to be directed to Presinct 15.
6. My courier failed me in delivering the dct withing deadline...FML.


7. Drive down to S'pore to hand in my dct and SHE WANTS the retention of name certs.
8. Went back to LJN for retention of cert (told me to wait 2 weeks) - RM50
9. 3 weeks later, I receive the retention of name cert in my mailbox, all crumpled up. FML.
10. Photocopied and went back to High Court to be certify true copy and HE IS TOO BUSY TO COP AND SIGN TWO SHEETS OF CERTS> FML x 9000.



Orz...couriered it again today and finger crossed till patah that they receive it and no more missing documents. I officially have PutrajayaPhobia!! Red tapes, yellow tapes, rude people, not helpful people, being directed here and there and back here again and then there! Arrrgggh!! The amount of time and money wasted...T.T I don't fancy anything to do with that sector, sungguh mer-marfan-kan orang. All these hassles just made you wanna pull your air and punch something real hard. So...am I going to S'pore?  

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Not So Happy Thoughts

I've got two back log posts but I just have to do this now because I have absolutely no mood for anything else. I had one of the worst weekend in my life. I've been let down times after times only to find myself being let down more. What has been in my mind all along which I've tried to hide behind the veil of a fake smile so nobody knows. At this moment, I realize there is only this much I can give. I've done so much but people see very little. So often I run about making sure everybody is doing alright but nobody really care if I am. Very often I convince myself by telling myself it's alright because I'm the team leader. Times after times, I felt under appreciated and left out by the people I cared for - cheerleading, dance group and finally, my biggest cosplay project. I don't want to go into details but I just wanted to blurt out things which bother me still:

1. Why am I concern with things which are out of my control? The rude waiter at the busy restaurant, people who don't bother to queue for toilet, turn off the water tap or flush. Why do I question their ethics and all? I really hope everyone can be a little less selfish to make this tough place to be a little better. Where is the 'please', 'thank you' and 'sorry'?

2. No matter how much effort I put into my cosplay, it hardly get 0.1% recognition of any Miku Hatsune cosplayers out there. It seemed that only the main characters from famous anime gets the hoo-hah! A simple wig test or make-up test picture get 100 likes when my hard work cosplay only gets 3 likes included my photographer. I don't know want to laugh or cry. Others kept telling me it's not about the amount of likes. I don't know. I just felt left out from the cosplay realm when I don't cosplay the latest anime, the most popular character and all. I don't want to be driven by pressure so I'll continue to cosplay all the side kicks that I love but at the same time...it's just so discouraging. 

3. Why the fuck Wong Swei Shen from IMU financial department is ignoring my research claim despite four emails, a visit to his office and two phone calls? He told me to drop by his office but when out thereafter. Told him to refer me to someone else if he couldn't help me but no, asked for my full name as if it was the first time he heard my issue every time I approach him. I'm getting sick of this. I wanna RAGE in IMU but me alone against the fat bald guy, who's gonna side me? I know better the politics there and how people with status just swept things under the carpet and expect you to shut up and take it in. There is so much shit that I hate about the campus but they advice (more like a warning or threat) me not to bring down my own campus as it will spoil my own market value. The truth is out there, huh.

4. I'm sick of being the team leader and being left out in the end. Why do I always work with people who let me down. I try my best provide for all needs unless shit really happen but people could let me down with a simple, 'eh, something came up', 'I'm not feeling well', 'my grandma dun let' or 'my chicken is going to lay her first egg' and the next thing you know, their yum cha pictures were all over FB. I've had enough of people telling me crap and treated me like an diot. I don't like people to take advantage on me. Come on, don't treat the others the way you don't want to be treated. How the hell is that not understandable? 

5. Just thought of this at such sad moment. During my graduation I asked a lecturer if she can take a picture with me and she said, 'wait for the whole group first'. The next thing you know, she was taking picture with another student and another, and another. She is the genius who gave me an A-, B+ and A- for my 100% coursework but in the end I get a B-. How the fuck does that happen? And they said cannot revise the marks given, no such thing as remark when it comes to coursework because there is nothing written about it in their 'student guideline'. Great, just great. 

There are a few more things which I raged earlier but my mind is blank now. Blank due to disappointment and the fact that I had to face all the ugly parts alone. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Convocation



After four years, I finally graduated as a degree holder. It wasn't easy to pull though life in IMU. Sem 1 was okay with me trying to adapt. Sem 2 was full with misery and Sem 3 made me want to leave the campur. Unfair marking system and all the politics in the world. It's not a place where you can speak your mind if your daddy or mommy is not somebody. Some of the top post people dare claim he doesn't sweep matters under the carpet. The last I checked, every matter raised during the student meet up was swept under the carpet. Yes, many people may fancy his charm but never for me as I see his flaw and how cruel his manner of hiding the flaw. It is also a hierarchical place where Medicine> Pharmacy> Nursing. When new courses were offered, it became Medicine> Dentistry> Pharmacy> Psy/D&D/BioMed/dll> Nursing> Chinese Medicine. So seriously, resilient is a top criteria for you to survive if you are taking nursing. Furthermore, we are of such small group. That's way too easy to bully, something our faculty leaders kept denying. It's all about status.

I just want to make her proud. Give her a good life henceforth.

My mentor whom I grew to appreciate.

Derek, Yu Li, Daphne and Ps Faith.




Good luck N108, be strong.




So here I am graduated from 4 years or torment, encouraged only by a small group of close friends I have and cosplay. I would have gone insane if I didn't have a hobby, that hobby where so many of them think is freaky. So just like my Form 6 school, I will not miss this place except for the library, dance studio, E-lab (printers which have mood swings) and a few people who made life in IMU a bit more breathable. This place made me a tougher person the wrong way but I learned the way of politics. Sometimes, it is best to play dumb. I guess you guys can gather from this post that I am not very happy with this institution despite the prestige. Too much restriction for student freedom. I've gone from liberal to diplomatic to radical. The best consolation I have for myself and my family is that I'm leaving this place in a bit. I will continue my education elsewhere and finger crossed for something better.  

Back to the convocation, thanks to those who showed up on the convocation especially my family and a few close friends. Your presence meant the world to me. For now, I shall put my student status aside to resume the role of a working adult but I shall resume my education in a few years. To my fellow batch mates, work hard to achieve your dreams. The sky is not the limit ;) to my fellow juniors from nursing and other batches, your time will come soon. So all the best to you guys too~

Side story: despite graduating, my research claim from the financial department is still not settled thanks to this Swei Shen guy. He ignored my calls, my emails and avoided me in the office. How can one put such an irresponsible person behind the financial desk? Pissed. 

Matta Fair

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

I'll take this as a second cosplay job after the St. Patrick's day. In comparison to St.Patrick, the welfare of the cosplayers was better taken care of by the Reliance. We have longer rest and good food. Unfortunately, like many organizers, they fail to see the core of cosplay - being in character. We were required to attract people to their booths, hoping to increase sells. Honestly, I doubt cosplayers can affect their decisions. Rather than promoting the event, cosplay serves more as an additional side attraction for those who came in, to take picture with us and all. Some of the people in charge kept saying we are not doing anything. One moment we have to stand separately and not talk to each other. So we smile and say welcome to people who passed by. Then they said we just stood there, not doing anything. So we try grouping together so people will take picture. Then I realize people just took pictures, crowded the front entrance without entering the hall. So redundant huh...Anyway, the third day was slightly better as they planned a bit stuff for us to do. The few person who looked after us were kind too - Evan Lai, Sean, Seung Chin and Athena Crystal.

Overall, it was good because I get to hang out with my fellow cosplayers - Sakura Wong, Kuro Yami, Qi Hui, Othman, Sparda, Yukito, Kagamine Rin, Randy and Aiko Shorin. Learned to play Thunderstone and pawned Sparda and Anthony! Bwahahahah!


Love ze turkey ice-cream! 

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Minako Aino


When I watch Sailormoon back in 1999, I couldn't wait to turn 13. When I got my first white cat in 2001, I awaited eagerly for him to talk. Lolz...that's me and my childhood dream of becoming Sailor Venus a.k.a Minako Aino, the clumsy yet warmhearted high school girl with bright yellow hair. As much as I loved her jovial character, I've never thought of cosplaying her back then. Now that I have so little time left, I just thought of paying my childhood heroine a tribute. These are taken in Genting Highlands. Thank you Anthony Lee for being the photog and baby-sitter again ><







Initially I was there to check out the accommodation for our shoot in December. The day didn't start out great but it all ended well. Besides the shoot, I went to the Ripley's Believe It or Not exhibition too. Whee~

Monday, August 1, 2011

Chaos Legion



Chaos Legion, another game which filled my teenage life. I've always like Siela and her protective
nature. Nevertheless, she died after appearing 5 secs in the intro. I can't really tell her personality. Victor is Siela's companion who killed her by accident when he was possessed. Despite his antagonist character, I can't help feeling pity for his lonely journey and his desire to 'revive' Siela. Two more characters are involved in the game - Arcia and Sieg. Unfortunately, they were unable to join us for the shoot.











Love the settings lots. Thanks Justin for taking up the role as Victor. He made the costume himself :) Thanks to Anthony and Joseph for being the photographers. Hugs! Well, second time working with Joseph. More to come, I hope! 

Finally, I can put Siela's costume to rest. The shoulder piece was a pain to make the shoulder piece but glad it all turned out okay!