Sunday, August 5, 2012

Sweet Sunday Special: Otakon Report! [ 8-5-2012 ]

Hi All!

So sorry about the lack of updates - kind of had a long week at work so I missed the update on Wednesday! But now it's officially been a week since Otakon has ended and I am back in my normal daily life. Today's Sweet Sunday Special is my Otakon Report!

For those of you that have yet to attend their first Otakon, you really should! It's one of the biggest events on the East Coast of the States and is held every year in July (though next year it will be in August). I have been to a few cons and it's actually one of my favorites. It's a big event and you can check out all kinds of panels, famous guests and buy a whole lot of goodies for all of your Otaku needs.

My friends and I arrived Thursday evening and practically ran to our hotel to check in and for some of them to get started prepping up in the Artist Alley. Only two of us were just regular con attendees and not selling. But we still had a great time. After throwing everything into the room, one of my friends and I went over to pick up our tags while the others got themselves together to pick up their special "Artist Alley" tags and to prep their tables for selling. There were a lot of cute choices for this year's tags. Madoka, Eureka 7 and Gundam to name a few. To continue along with Otakon's theme of Crabby the plush crab, there was even a tag of him. Very cute! I got Eureka 7 (it reminded me a lot of Macross) while the friend I was with got Crabby.

Since there wasn't much else to do, the con wasn't officially opened until the next day, we decided to head back to the hotel room and catch up on some R&R and TV so we would have enough energy for the next 3 days. After a while, the rest of the group joined and we all hung out in the room till everyone fell asleep.

The next day, everyone woke up bright and early, most to head back to Artist Alley to finish the preparations for when the doors opened at 10 a.m. and my friend and I to get into our cosplay. After a couple of years attending, we finally got to do a group cosplay! Three of us decided on Tales of Abyss to celebrate the game coming to the Nintendo 3DS and get some love again. The three of us cosplayed as Ashe, Ion and Natalia.

We were really excited by this point because that meant the con has officially started. I was so happy that the pre-registration pick up line had moved so quickly the day before. It was really hot in Baltimore! I was in Natalia's "Beloved Princess" costume and I was feeling really warm but I saw there were others in almost full body suits and I felt so bad for them...

Ashe and I had prepared the night before and circled all of the panels we wanted to check out during the course of the weekend. We decided it wasn't necessary to go to the guest signings as they tend to mostly fill up completely and we weren't really interested in the guests this year.

During the con, we got to see panels for Genshiken (I have officially become a fan because of that awesome panel!), Lupin III, Pokeholics Anonymous, and the Legend of Zelda. I had wanted to see the Lolita Fashion Show but we missed the time so we ended up not seeing it. I also heard that there was a Sailor Moon panel but I heard it was just ok.

I had a lot of fun at all of the panels except for the Legend of Zelda one. It was nice to hear some of the history of the series but sadly it was mostly the panelists' opinions on the games. Oh well, the others made up for it.

One of the best parts about this year's Otakon is that three of us got to attend the Tales of... photo shoots held by one of the members from on Friday and Saturday. We got to meet a lot of very nice people and it's because of this group, that I now have an account on there! I will post all of my cosplay photos on there and selected ones on my Flickr. So please check them out!

On Sunday, things were a little more relaxed and we were done with our Abyss cosplay for the weekend. I decided to dress in Lolita in a very Alice in Wonderland and bunny themed set. But since it was the last day, I usually like to go to the Dealer's room to make sure I didn't miss anything. I was so thrilled to find a booth with nothing but sweet and classic and even some kuro Lolita! I am very happy to say I now own my first official Lolita dress! The booth was called Rakuen and they have so many cute designs! The one I got has an adjustable ribbon and thankfully the woman measured me so I fit into it perfectly! Of course we ran back to the hotel to drop off everything we bought and I had to get into the dress. I love it so much~

For the most part we shopped around in Artist Alley. I would rather support the independent artists there just as much as I support the ones on Etsy. I will have to make a second post to include all of the things I bought!

I also got my photo taken by a very awesome photographer named Vask. Since my friends decided it would be easier to leave on Monday instead of right after the con (which was a very good idea), we spent the night (and had an AMAZING dinner at the Cheesecake Factory). I hung out with one of my friends at the nearby port so when we were walking back to the hotel, we ran into Vask as well the group he was with from Otaku Haven which are known for taking gorgeous photos of aspiring cosplay and Lolita models! I hope to work with them in the future since I would like to become a model for either of those!

Overall, the con was quite fun this year despite a few issues that went on both inside the con and outside. But I managed to accomplish a lot of my goals and renewed my passion for a lot of things I still want to accomplish. A con sure is wonderful for inspiration when you need it! Sorry this turned into such a long post but it was a really great con! Don't forget to check out my photos!

Until next time~

Cuddles & Kisses,

~ Kieli ~