The Life of a Geek: Cons and Costume-making

Dear Jerry,

The blogging hiatus finally is over! I’m sure that being a dead lizard can be quite boring at times, so I thought it would be fun you share with you my experience of preparing to go to my first comic convention. Before I start, it would probably be best to explain to you what a comic convention is first.
A “comic con” is a massive convention where nerds/geeks have the opportunity to dress up (aka cosplay) as any of their favorite characters (fictional or nonfictional) and spend all of their money on comic books and other nerdy things of that sort. It’s basically Nerd Heaven.

Towards the end of August, I had the amazing opportunity to go to the 2014 Baltimore Comic Con. As soon as I got my parents’ permission to go, I immediately began working on a costume to wear during the 3 days that the convention was taking place. The person that I chose to cosplay as was The Winter Soldier [aka Bucky Barnes] from the movie, “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”. The reason why I chose him was because he was/is one of my favorite Marvel characters and I think his costume looks super awesome.
Now I am not going to give a long, step-by-step tutorial regarding how I made the costume, especially because I am still very much an amateur. However, I will try my best to summarize the process.
The first thing that I had to do was make a plan by doing a ton of research. I literally spent hours watching tutorials and going on various websites to figure out the most inexpensive and efficient ways to make a costume similar to The Winter Soldier’s before I bought anything. Researching and planning are some of the most essential parts to making a good costume, especially when you know little to nothing about the processes. The last thing I wanted to do is buy a bunch of materials only to find out later that they wouldn’t work.
Eventually, I was able to work out a reasonably easy plan using my research and some help from a friend of mine. Now when the time came to actually creating the costume, I think the most challenging part was the arm. The Winter Soldier has a robotic metal arm, so I had to create my own version of it using craft foam. I won’t go into details but basically what I did was I made a two-piece model out of my arm out of duct tape/masking tape, then I hot glued pieces of the foam onto those bases, and I finished by spray painting the two arm pieces.
In the end, I managed to complete the whole costume within a month or so. It was a lot more frustrating work than I expected, but I was very proud of the results. Then being able to go and hang out at a convention while wearing my own creation was such an awesome experience. I got to take a bunch of pictures with other cosplayers and I got to see and do so many things. It was totally worth all of that effort.

Anyway, this was a very exciting experience project for me and I would definitely recommend trying it if you are interested.
Talk to you soon, Jerry!

-Hannah M


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