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ColossalCon 2010 Live Blog – How to Survive a Masquerade


I walked into this panel partway through so I missed the beginning. I had initially wanted to go to the Otaku Arts and Crafts event but it turned out to be people using colored pencils drawing on paper spread out as tablecloths (similar to in some restaurants).

It’s run by three people who were runner ups at ACen for their performance. Two of them (the ones cosplaying as characters from Evangelion) are actual craftsmanship judges at Colossalcon. It might be the same people from “And Sewing is Half the Battle” since they went to their site at one point. They said they have never been to an Ohio convention before so it’s not the same people.

Some main things they covered for skits

  • Block out the stage
  • Pre-record the audio
  • Use a program such as Audacity
  • You can use lots of sound clips for added effects
  • Over-exaggerate to make it so everyone can easily see what you’re doing

Main things for walk-ons

  • Do a pose in character and do a twirl
  • Don’t stand up there for 5 minutes
  • Show the front and the back
  • All the judging happens beforehand so it has nothing to do with the walk on section during the actual Masquerade
  • You must have made more than 50% of it
  • Make sure to bring references so they know what the character looks like
  • The more references the better
  • Judges like to see work in progress pictures including material choices
  • It’s cool to hear about people using odd materials to make parts of their cosplay
  • Don’t point our your flaws
  • Show us what YOU like
  • Iron it before you wear it, including the seams
  • Wash your costumes (there’s a point where Febreeze stops working)
  • They can give out awards for special and quirky things that have been made

They’re showing an Otakon skit from 3 years ago in which they won first place for Journeyman. (Otakon 2007 Masquerade Skit 36). It’s almost a parody of something not to do such as things that are overdone. At ACen there were 3 Lady Gaga Bad Romance skits in a row. In case something funny happens that’s not supposed to happen don’t freak out and stop – just fix it or work it into the skit. If the crowd laughs and thinks it’s part of the skit – make it part of the skit. Unless you make it obvious the audience will not know. The most important thing from their example is the overacting. Big giant props can be good if done well, but they can be hard to work with and you should be sure to practice a lot beforehand in the costumes.

I might stop by the Duct Tape Masquerade after this.