Ridding The World of Horrors, 1 Light At A Time

Happy Halloween! For all those who may be spooked by the ghost costumes and get-up tonight, holding out an oil lamp may make you feel safer. After all, this weekend marks Deepavali, a festival celebrated by Hindus, also known as the Festival of Lights.

Deepavali has many names, and I’m guessing it differs by the Indian dialects. It can also be known as Diwali or Divali. Even though in Singapore we only celebrate it as 1 day, it actually spans 5 days, sometime between mid-October to mid-November every year. It’s marked by families placing a trail of oil lamps to signify the triumph of good over evil, kinda like the Aladdin kind. It’s also a time when you get lots of sweets to mark the festive occasion. Did you know that on the first day of Deepavali, Indian businesses start their financial year? So it’s sorta like a New Year to them, in the commercial sense. And on the fifth day, sisters get to invite their brothers to their houses. Of course, we have to understand the context that in most cases, these sisters are married, and Indian women don’t get to go home and meet their family often. This occasion is like a family reunion, and the brothers also get to see how their sisters are doing in their new homes.

When I was a kid, the story of Deepavali told to me was something about the world being plunged into darkness, and the people lighting their oil lamps one by one to symbolise hope in the world. However, it seems the significance is not as simple as that. The spiritual meaning behind it is the awareness of the “inner light”, where the light of higher knowledge dispels ignorance of reality, and with it comes compassion and peace. It really marks enlightenment of the world. I won’t go into too much detail of Hindu thought and religious philosophy, but Hindus believe that the real world we live in is just a veil and the truth lies beyond. It can relate to Mage: The Awakening, in that true awakening results in seeing the real world behind the façade.

In Singapore, much of the action on Deepavali happens in Little India. I sometimes wonder how many countries in the world have a Little India. Is it much less than the number of countries with Chinatown? It’s cool to have a heritage site in a country, somewhat like a spot in a museum which preserves culture amidst all the modernisation going on around it. Have a festival going on? Head to so-and-so spot to seek your traditions again. Singapore used to have another holiday, Thaipusam, but it stopped being a public holiday. I wonder what was the decision-making behind that. Thaipusam seems to be a festival where men step on hot coals, and mortify their flesh by piercing their skin, tongue and cheeks with skewers. I suppose it was stopped because it was too scary, but apparently it tests the men’s endurance, especially since being pierced on the cheeks means they cannot speak. I would think speaking is the last thing I would think of when something sharp is poking through my skin, but I suppose one will miss the ability to cry out loud. Even though it sounds pretty abusive, I’m sure it’s fun for everyone when you don’t think so much of human rights. Then again, with globalisation on the forefront now, everything is pretty much judged by Western ethical standards. So this would be too painful for words while tattooing will be the in thing to do, even if they’re both equally painful.

It is quite interesting when certain festivals fall at roughly the same time. Happy Halloween and Deepavali!

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Music and Language

Good news to fans of foreign musicians, your idols may have an easier time learning to speak your language (as compared to celebrity footballers or dancers).

Research has found that the part of your brain that processes language is much enlarged in musicians, meaning that learning music uses pretty much the same brain area as learning a language. The link may be obvious to you, for the songs produced by people of a particular country will closely resemble the linguistic norms of that country. For instance, in English the first syllable of a word is stressed more often than the last syllable, whereas for French it’s usually vice versa. If you listen to their music, the French tend to make their final note longer than the English. Surely, of course, this is more evident in compositional instrumental pieces than in our modern pop songs, but maybe this is how we can separate music into genres by nationality, as I mentioned before. “Japanese” music will indeed have a different feel from, say, “Spanish”.

What is more relevant to us fans is that musicians find it easier to learn a second language. Maybe this is why Theresa Teng can so ably sing in so many languages when she didn’t receive much education as a child. I don’t know if this means language prodigies will also be better at music, but I guess music and language can be alike in so many ways. Both require one to know the pacing and intonation of syllables, and of course to memorise sounds and speak them in a melodious way.

I haven’t been very meticulous in my argument earlier. If you think about it, surely composers are different from singers, who in turn are different from performers. How do they differ in their involvement in music, and subsequently their language development? Fortunately, this is not a Saturday entry, and therefore I can very confidently say, I don’t know. However, my educated guess will tell me that most research was done on composers, who translated their own linguistic patterns into the tunes they created. As for singers and performers, in performing the songs they became more sensitive to pacing and pitch, which in turn helps them when they practise learning a new language. Therefore composition sets the laws and performance improves the skills to follow other laws.

Most people will be arguing with me about this now. Surely not everyone who picks up a guitar is better at learning Chinese than the other fellow! Well indeed, having a well-defined brain area only gives you the tool, but knowing how to wield it is a different thing. It is still more reliable to learn languages early, such as before the age of 12, and to be exposed to this language a lot. Having a musical background just means you get to absorb the lessons more effectively.

Exalted Salvation’s Anime Matsuri

Welcome, welcome to my special Anime Matsuri! It’s 8.08 pm now, which is precisely the time the night matsuri starts. Please come only in your yukata and clogs. You can buy food from our food stands lined along the road, where we have grilled crayfish, candy floss and beer! We also have games for you to try your luck in, such as fishing for prize items, or hoopla. There’s a stage right at the end for our performances, where traditional dancers will dance to music throughout the night.

Does this sound familiar? It should, because the matsuri appears in almost every realistic modern-day anime. It appears almost all the time in Natsume Yuujinchou (where spirits are often attracted), is a major theme in Ookamikakushi and is the place where young boys and girls confess their love~. Even Free! and Seto no Hanayome had an episode dedicated to it. There are many matsuris, or festivals, scattered throughout the year in Japan. They are usually held near shrines, I believe, and seems kinda like a night market as Singapore knows it, except with more fanfare. I believe certain anime festivities are themselves called matsuri, such as the Funan Anime Matsuri held in May this year at Funan Digitalife Mall. Anime matsuri are of course but parodies of the real thing, and most of the time they’re just a fancy name for “anime fair”. Singapore has a Natsu Matsuri held by the Japanese Association, though, at the end of August, and that is in no way anime-related. In fact, they even ban the presence of cosplayers in the Natsu Matsuri since it is a serious event meant to celebrate the end of summer and Japanese culture, and cosplay is totally inappropriate in that place. It’s like speaking Singlish at the National Day Parade, just because we’re known worldwide for Singlish.

I think the awesome part of matsuri is the outfit. Dressed in a bathrobe and casual slippers at night must be cooling and casual, and you’ll get to see all your friends in something you don’t normally see! It’s like a night party that families approve of. I’ve only ever worn a yukata in a hotel in Hokkaido, and it was completely insecure for me to be without any garment inside, but I guess the cloth is thick enough, and the belt tied tightly enough, that there should be no accidents. At least, I never saw any in anime, thankfully. Not even the most sexualised anime like Mirai Nikki had any accidents in a yukata (but the female lead did “accidentally” have her swimsuit untied in the pool). Perhaps Japan is stubbornly respectful of this part of its culture. Every country has its reservations.

Anyway, someday I would love to visit a matsuri! I probably would not stay very long because it will probably be boring and very bright with all that fluorescent lighting. But it does sound like an experience, if I can keep my yukata presentable long enough. Or maybe I will just walk in in a blouse and skirt.

Feminism

I write about feminism in a Monday entry because it is most often associated with products. Feminist writing, art, films. You don’t talk about feminist “behaviour” (or at least, those that do are usually stereotyping). Some people do talk about feminist attitudes and politics, but I’d say feminist politics mean actually something radically different from the feminist arts. And feminist literature is what I’m talking about today.

Some of us have been irked at one time or another by feminist arguments against books we love. They argue that books are sexist because they depict women as the ‘virgin and the whore’; ‘angel and the devil’; ‘the mother’; ‘the submissive wife and the dominant wife’; ‘the bitch’; ‘the seductress’; ‘the sex object’ (possibly as man’s prey); ‘the old maid’; ‘the bluestocking’; ‘the castrating woman’; ‘the pioneer woman’; and ‘the victim’. I don’t know about you, but this sounds to me like a pretty exhaustive list. If you think about men, are there really many archetypes to place them in either? Every one of these female archetypes has a male contemporary, but no, no one thinks much about them. Perhaps it’s because men are not seen as men, but as universal general people. So why should women get such unique treatment? Why should every one of their roles get more critically scrutinised? They can’t play the lover, or the victim, or neither the “dominant” nor “submissive” wife. There aren’t many roles left for them, are there?

On the other hand, some of the criticisms levelled against feminists are similarly tiresome. Feminists are seen as stubborn, emotional, lesbian and bossy. Some of them do have strong opinions, but then again so many Americans do, for all manner of issues, but somehow women are dismissed as being the less logical negotiators. Or when feminists attempt to write books centring around women, they get shot down for being prejudiced against men. Seriously, why can’t we just peacefully have tales that’re heavy on 1 type of hormone?

That said, I maintain that I subscribe to neither feminism nor anti-feminism. Books should be appreciated for the authors’ intent, and I’m sure most authors never thought anything of the gender ratio or portrayals (except maybe the feminist authors). Maybe I’m too much influenced by Hollywood, but I agree that I hate shows with too heavy an emphasis on women. I mean, I sorta liked Mulan, but not Brave, and flicks like UP and Wreck-It Ralph win over them anytime. And guess what, UP’s only lady was dead. But no they salvaged everything with Kevin being a female.

This of course fuels the argument that Pixar intentionally casts the gentlemen in their best shows, and that audiences wouldn’t have accepted it as much had the old man and the young Scout been female. But think about it, the dead woman in the movie was the wise, bold one. Even as a girl she was a tomboy and she was the one who understood the meaning of life long before the old man (Carl, was it? I don’t know why I can never remember their names). That makes her a Gandalf figure, which essentially nullifies any male sexism inherent in the movie. Or does it?

Maybe I’m being extremely peeved because I just came across a blog entry saying they will boycott Pixar’s upcoming movie because they took out all the females and replaced them with white males. Yeah Pixar’s really sexist! They’re like Hollywood which favours white males! Let us conveniently forget about Brave which won an Oscar despite its bad storyline but 70% female cast. I still cannot wrap my mind around why Wreck-It Ralph lost. Sure, Brave had more touching art, but it was such a generic storyline even a little girl wouldn’t have been taken in, surely. But yes, you can’t argue that Pixar is sexist. Tangled might have been a typical princess story, but don’t ignore Mulan! Don’t ignore The Princess & The Frog, with a black princess as its lead! Don’t ignore Pocahontas (okay bad example here) or Alice in Wonderland (surprisingly good example) or Lilo & Stitch!

Of course, I may have missed out a good number of male-dominated films along the way. My point is that I will watch a film regardless of the gender of the cast, especially if its creators did not deliberately intend for any sexism to take place. Sure, they may have their implicit prejudices, and yes, I’m quite sure I won’t enjoy Frozen, but I will not blame it on the institution that in itself did no wrong but cater to their target audience and the expectations of society.

I may not watch Frozen because it does not seem like a great movie to me. However, I will watch Inside Out, a movie about a girl whose 5 emotions of Anger, Disgust, Fear, Sadness and Joy struggle to take control of her (oh, only girls have emotions that are out of control, that’s why). I will watch Finding Dory because I liked Finding Nemo (yeah, see, Dory the absent-minded woman needed a man to guide her, despite her managing to live her life on her own all this time, with no emotional baggage like Marlin did). I will watch films as I like, and I shall not care what kind of community I am supporting. If by being feminist Pixar has got to produce flicks like Brave all the time, then I’d rather it remain sexist and give me my Wreck-It Ralph kicking, punching action.

The Fear Issue

I’m not really sure why people like fear so much.

Halloween is a big deal every year, almost as big as Christmas, and it’s all about celebrating the gory and feral side of us, apparently. I was wandering down Clarke Quay tonight and caught sight of fake limbs and people painting bloody wounds on their arms and face. The wounds look unnervingly real. The cobwebs can be pretty creepy. What I don’t get is, why do we relish in such a negative emotion? It’s like people miss the times when they were injured, or wish they were butchered up like meat, or like the idea of ghosts catching them in the dark. Is it just daring Westerners, or do we like to flirt with danger so much?

This is peripherally related to riding a rollercoaster. You get the same amount of arousal, the same trepidation, the sudden wish that you were somewhere else. You’re flung around in the air, at the risk of death (albeit a little one, but still present). You heave a sigh of relief when you’re back on the ground, and then you want to go at it again.

People in truly spooky situations would wonder why people are creating a sense of fear out of nowhere. The city people have to be too fortunate. They don’t know pain and suffering anymore, so they simulate the feeling to give themselves the kick. It’s like wealthy people taking drugs, or shoplifting. They don’t have to do this — heck, they will never have a chance or a need to do this — but they do it because of that. They don’t want to miss out on any experience.

Or to look at it from another angle, Halloween can be a form of catharsis. Laughing at your friends’ out-of-the-world witch get-ups can make you forget, for an instant, that you are really scared of witches. Surely there must be some theory out there that goes that dressing up or becoming the thing which you fear can curb your fear about it. I mean, how do you fear snakes if you’re a snake yourself? I’m quite sure R L Stine has played around with that trope in some Goosebumps books. There’s a great reversal of power when you dress up. People love to cosplay, and not always in the anime sense. Taking the role of someone mysterious and scary gives one a feeling of superiority. Sure, the fear may come back months later when you’re walking down a quiet dark street, but you’ll have those few months of immunity at least.

And of course, the most pertinent reason is that youngsters want excuses to do cool things with their friends. Look at all the pubs having fun with decorations, the waiters with facial makeup or donning masks, the crowd of friends in suitably thematic costumes. Halloween is a theme that’s easy to exploit and have fun with, and is very unique from many other festivities. Of course people want it to carry on.

And there really isn’t that much fear going around anymore, considering the amount of gore you see in video games and movies anyway. I think people are unnaturally psyched by it, rather. It’s only wimps like me who still feel a vague sense of annoyance at being spooked.

Boo.

Be A Winner Online

It can take so much effort to play TCGs, or trading card games, physically. You’ve got to visit a store regularly to buy cards, find people to trade for the ones you want, protect your cards with card sleeves, store the cards in piling boxes, and find people to challenge. All these are made much easier on the internet. You can buy cards at the comfort of your own home, trade cards at the comfort of your own home, challenge people at the comfort of your own home… and you don’t have to protect your digital cards. Most importantly, the internet is so much more expansive than the real world. If you have a limited playgroup in the real world, you can imagine that you won’t find too many people willing to sell a Thassa, God of the Sea, for instance, because people don’t even have one. You’ll also be playing against the same people all day, and you can imagine that after playing against Tom’s Blue/Black milling deck for the twentieth time you can almost predict what cards he has in his hand just by a twitch of his nose. No sense in playing Progenitor Mimic because that poor dude doesn’t even have a creature worth copying.

Of course, in many self-respecting online TCG platforms, the cards you own are controlled such that you have to pay, usually by Paypal, in order to get booster packs or rare cards. There are some fan-made platforms that allow you access to every card in the world, where you can play out your competitive-level dreams, but these are usually unrecognised by a vast majority of people and populated by n00bs anyway. That said, even in the official platforms such as Magic Online, cards are usually cheaper than their physical incarnations, so you can net yourself a better deal. Why do people still play physically then?

1. There are always some things you can’t get online.

In the case of Magic, it’s getting the set on time. Sets on Magic Online are released later than their physical counterparts. As for Pokémon, there aren’t that many large-scale tournaments on the platform that I know of. Most games will find some way to entice players to get off their computers and buy actual cards, and sometimes it’s this feeling that someone is thinking really hard to disadvantage you that encourages you to go physical once in a while. It’s like a latent prejudice against immigrants, for instance. Nothing overt, but the government just has to insert some perks that only the locals get, and it feels irritatingly unjust.

2. The good ol’ smell of cardboard.

The feel of real cards in your hands, the smell of brand-new cards… all quickly disappear once you slot them into card sleeves. Nevertheless, people play physically for the traditional atmosphere of the game, the shuffling of cards in a deck (never mind that computer shuffling is that much more reliable) and the real-life living people crowding around your table cheering you on. Magic Online competitions tend to be just the precursor to things like the Grand Prix or the Pro Tour, and those always take place in luxurious surroundings, with a prestigious emcee and the intense feeling of being a champion. You’re representing your country in a global tournament! On the computer, national pride doesn’t quite feel at stake, and you don’t get to stay in a hotel either.

3. All sorts of tech glitches

Computers are quite unforgiving when you make a mistake, but they make some terribly big mistakes of their own. The best part of playing physically is that there’s no chance you’ll press the wrong button and end up closing the game, and there’s definitely no way your computer can have some weird bug and crash the game. I’m quite sure that at some point in any online player’s life, they’ll bemoan “clicking on the wrong thing” and making an inerasable mis-play that lost them the game. Physically, there’s no such thing. Tapped the wrong land? Just untap it and apologise.

Perhaps the best thing, as always, is to dabble in both, but that probably ends up in spending loads of money and being quite frustrated that your online cards can’t materialise in physical form and vice versa. Is there ever a way we can get the best of both worlds?

Universal Love

It is purely a coincidence that I’m writing so much about love nowadays, especially as Halloween draws near. In any case, have you noticed that cultures all over the world share many universal traits? Things like laws, social relations, facial expressions. Foremost among them is really their love for, well, love. Every culture celebrates love, marriage and family. I guess you’ve got to, in order to reproduce and ensure the culture thrives. Plus, love is a biological emotion, much like pleasure and fury. It leads us to such irrational delight that it becomes a pretty big thing.

And love draws our interest much better than anything else. As Leonardo diCaprio said in Inception, positive feelings and thoughts are stronger than negative ones. People are naturally attracted to love and quite repulsed against hatred, which is why love songs and soppy dramas sell. Of course, if you watch enough Hollywood shows you may argue that sex sells even better than love, but most of the time attraction occurs before the sex. You don’t see people applauding at men visiting brothels for sex, after all. Loveless sex isn’t as exciting, and not every love story has sex, of course. That’s why people like Tom Hanks are still famous.

What gets just a tad irritating, though, is when love comes in too strongly at places that don’t need it. For instance, I find certain Singaporean dramas annoying in that halfway through the show, everything in the plot gets sidelined in favour of romance. Police dramas stop the heart-pumping action of solving crimes and chasing down crooks, and instead switch in a slow plain-clothes scene of a policeman refusing to admit his feelings towards a policewoman. If a show is to be professional towards its source context, I feel that it should know when to tone down the love aspect.

And of course, it can get formulaic after a while. Korean dramas have a recurring motif of a love quadrangle. Basically, there is the male lead and female lead who will end up together, and there must be a supporting male and a supporting female who fall in love with the leads. The supporting male will be a very nice guy who may even be a better choice than the male lead, but the female lead rejects him anyway. The supporting female will be a vicious, money-hungry woman who might’ve been a friend of the female lead at first, but now spends her days in agony trying to thwart the romance, in vain. This plot sounds incredibly sexist, and it probably is, but that’s the lucrative formula they bring out time and again for their modern-day realistic flicks. Oh, and usually the male lead is rich and the female lead poor. There you go.

Does this sound a bit like a Mills & Boon book, minus the sex? I told you, didn’t I, that love is universal? The kinds of love that people like are also universal. This is why fairytales are so alike, and even these Korean dramas are a little like fairytales as well.

Mixed Feelings of Live Performances

The greatest pinnacle that a singer can achieve is probably to hold a live concert, preferably at some prestigious place. Live concerts can be nerve-wracking. Imagine singing to a whole crowd of people when you used to just coop yourself up in a tiny studio singing to a microphone and an audience of gruff music producers. Then again, I suppose every singer’s dream nowadays is indeed to step up onto the big stage and show his skills to the world. It’s hard to imagine a shy, soft-spoken singer who only wanted to sing for entertainment but could not bear crowds, not in this age of self-importance.

That said, live performances are like public speaking, perhaps even more than that. You dress in highly uncomfortable clothes on a burning hot platform, have heavy, itchy makeup all over your face, and sometimes you’ve even got to perform acrobatic stunts if you’re famous enough. People can be quite critical of live singers, insisting that they have to sing like their original MP3 versions, but the acoustics are way different and more importantly, back when the person was recording his album, he probably had not sung every single song in succession in a span of 3 hours, not to mention screaming at the audience to cheer — if you’re talking about rock concerts.

Singers probably have to do lots of preparation before their show. They have to drink herbal tea and refrain from any spicy, deep-fried or icy cold food. They have to sleep early because they’ll have to stay up all night. I don’t know what they can do to avoid going deaf, though, which I guess is an inevitable circumstance after a concert. No doubt, the speakers will be turned away from the stage, but the amount of fan cheering can sometimes exceed a healthy number of decibels. I suppose the earphones they wear can substitute for earplugs too, protecting their ears from the shrill cries of fans.

I hear Rihanna is often criticised for having no singing ability on stage, and that most of the singing was done by her backup vocalists. This is one big problem that singers face, the suspicion that if they sing too well they’re probably lip-synching. It seems the crux is to sing well and on-tune, but also sound more genuine — sound out of breath at the right times, for instance. Then again, thinking back, people like Faye Wong never had any trouble being suspected of lip-synching, even though her voice on stage almost closely mirrors that of CDs. Sometimes one black sheep can really ruin the music industry.

People like concerts for the atmosphere. There is an atmosphere of excitement and ecstasy, and you get to see the celebrities out of the screen — them talking to you, sharing their off-air personalities, and of course the chance to get up close with them, and get their autographs or a handshake! Attending a concert really brings your music to life, and many people profess loving their idols even more after the concerts, so much so that they’re willing to queue up to get tickets.

It’s also a good idea to hop down to pubs or nightclubs where indie bands hang out. You may be able to catch the next rising star, or even buy them a drink.

Cosplayables

There’re people who talk about cosplaying, and then there’re people who actually do it. Many people who don’t understand anime think that all otakus cosplay. Some otakus do cosplay casually. But when I talk about professionals, I mean the ones who really have passion towards their craft, who sacrifice time and even appearance to make the most of this expensive hobby. These are the true cosplayers, and any amateurs who do not put in 100% effort are merely sullying the name.

What elements do you have to consider before embarking on a serious hobby in cosplaying?

1. Your figure

The figure is the most important aspect of a cosplayer. Nobody can take you seriously, I’m sorry to confess, if you’re even the least bit overweight. All cosplayers tend to lie on the underweight side when it comes to cosplaying, especially for the females. Not only do you have to watch your diet, you also have to exercise regularly just in case you’re cosplaying swimsuit girls or shirtless guys. Even if you don’t think you need too much muscle, you have to mind that no anime character ever has flab in any of the wrong places. If you want the perfect height-to-weight, waist-to-hip ratio, you have to make your figure as close to Barbie dolls as possible!

They say the perfect waist-to-hip ratio for men is 90%, and that for women is 75%.

2. Costume and makeup

Costume and makeup is misleadingly classed into one category, when in fact it makes up a large part of a cosplayer’s arsenal. It includes outfit, makeup, props and the wig, which are all great headaches in their own right. It is mostly cheaper to make your own costumes, but it requires a sewing machine and sufficient tailoring skills. Most cosplayers draw a healthy balance and import their accessories from China’s online shopping site (I believe Taobao is their website of choice there), whereas costumes are made by tailor shophouses in the neighbourhood. Of course, buying in bulk is always cheaper.

A wig requires great care, or else it will — like your hair — get split ends and a frizzy mess. Most people use a wig stand, which is made up of wires folded together to be shaped like a head, but a box to put your wig on will do fine too. Wig care requires a unique kind of conditioner when washing, to ensure that the strands do not tangle together. Remember to use only cold water, and dunk the wig entirely in the sink, together with the conditioner. Give it three firm shakes once you take it out, and hang it in the bathroom. Once it’s dry the next day, comb it with special combs with thick gaps.

As for makeup, I was amazed at the amount of makeup one must put on for every cosplay. You need a primer and foundation, before going on with 2 shades of eyeshadow colour, eyeliner, something to make your face look bright (kira kira) enough for photo shoots, and 3 layers of lipstick. Yes, you heard me right! First of all, you need a nude colour to make your lips skin-colour, and then you re-draw the contours of the new lips — which are usually tinier in anime characters — and then you add gloss to prevent them from drying. And then you need something for your nose to make it look more or less erect, depending on your race (as Asians we normally want to make our noses straighter and more visible).

3. Your pose

Looking good is only half the battle won. You still have to look convincing for photo shoots, and cosplayers are not allowed to be photo-shy here! The best cosplayers have striking poses that give them the aura of the character they’re playing. They could be battle poses, or kawaii poses for the suitable characters. This needs some degree of practice in front of the mirror, as well as some self-confidence and acting skills.

4. The community

Being a lone cosplayer has its limitations, the simplest being you can’t cosplay thematically with someone else. After all, a Madoka simply isn’t outstanding without a Homura by her side. In addition, cosplayers need makeup artists, and most importantly photographers to capture their legacy at their desired location (after all, anime conventions can only get you so far in terms of backdrop). Cosplayers are like models, who need assistants for makeup and carrying props, as well as professional photographers to take their best sides.

Not only that, but you also need a community of fellow cosplayers to give advice. I did say that buying cosplay items in bulk lower prices, and what better way to do so than to buy as a group? Having friends to share in your interest always make the activities that much more meaningful in general.

Cosplaying is very much fun, but also a lot of commitment to do well. If you really have a passion for anime, though, there’s no better way to express it than through cosplay!