Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Cosplay Hack: Wigs part 1- Styrofoam Head Resizing Made Easy

It's hard trying to shop for wigs, I know. You have a small budget because you spent it all on the clothes part of your cosplay and you still need to find a new wig. You want to get the cheap ones online, but what if it doesn't fit? What if you're running out of time and the only ones you can afford is from out of the country? What if it doesn't get here in time. What if the perfect wig is way too much for you to handle right now?

Well, what if you make it?

Wig making is surprisingly simple, but it does take some practice. Once you get it down, you'll be able to bust a wig out in a couple of days, but there are some things that you should know before starting. This is going to be a four parter because there is so much that can go into wigs that this simply can't be put into one. Plus, I talk a lot...

Its hard to work on your own head...

Yes, there were days when I had to sew things on my body because during my lack of dress form days, and they aren't as far in the past as I would like. There is nothing like sewing a maroon leg piece to a black suit inside on your thigh to get the Garnet look. Same with a wig. It's hard doing anything with a wig if you don't have something to place it on before you start working your magic. You need to be able to see the whole thing, all 360 degrees of it to be able to style it, build it, and take care of it. To do that, you need a severed styrofoam  head. Now I have a large head and I had to adjust to that. Here's something that helped me when it came to dealing with all of my wigs.

The average styrofoam head is WAAAAAY too small compared to my head, so anything I build on there will cut all blood around my forehead and the wig cap won't reach all the way down my head to cover all of my hair. Let's face it... it's wouldn't even make it around my head to do all of these things with these super small head measurements.... These things have happened to me in the past before and through trial and error when buying online I found a way to start making wigs, making the process easier, and to actually tailor them to my specific head shape. However before stepping into that realm, w have to start with the basics.

  1. To begin, stat with a basic styrofoam head. If you live in the city, I'm sure there is a hair store close to you where you can get all of your hair needs from wefts, to combs, to these cheap head that are about 2 bucks a pop. You'll also need Scissors, Mod Podge, a measuring tape, packaging tape, some water, a spoon to mix, and newspaper
  2. Start by measuring the diameter of your head as well as the height from the nape of your neck to the top of your head. Your goal is to match your styrofoam head's measurements to yours. If your head is as big as mine, you got a ways to go....
  3. Wrap tape around your styrofoam. This kills two birds: keep wrapping it around until your get the same size as your head (measured from the nape of your neck to your forehead) and the Mod Podge that leaks down gets caught in the tape and doesn't make a mess.
  4. Make a paper mache mixture (more Mod Podge than water) into a throw away bowl and start cutting your newspaper. It's going to be a long process, but when you use this process, you can still keep the basic shape of the mannequin head. 
  5. Once it's all dry (and it's a ton of layers, so it's gonna take a while) make sure to wrap it in a final layer of tape. 

  6. Then you're all set! 
*  When working on your wig head, nice tool to have is a plastic mannequin holder. It keeps it in place like an extra set of hands while you work either on your mannequin or your wig. It's also extremely inexpensive and you can find at any hair store or online! 
*A great thing to have while traveling is a portable plastic wig stand which is also inexpensive! 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Cosplay is Art. A Form of Art is Cosplay.

This is the very first Blog I have ever written... which is strange because I talk and write so much I don't understand why I haven't delved deeper into this type of thing. I wanted to start this blog, telling and teaching others through my escapades as both a cosplayer and an artist. Though many people when I started out in 2011 has either seen me as either an artist or a cosplayer, it was a little tough to break into both lifestyles; trying to excel in both while not neglecting one for the other. After trying to keep them separate for a while myself, believing deep down that they were two separate things I had an epiphany. Cosplay is Art. A form of Art is Cosplay.

When I look in the mirror I see an artist. I've used paint, pencils, and inks to write, draw, and create. I treated everything else like artwork so why not cosplay? If I began to see cosplay as just another art form, another medium I would like utilize to form my ideas into real life artwork why not treat it like art? As I paint my face, as I pencil my templates, and as I ink the small details on my finish piece, I solely began to curse myself out for not seeing it sooner.

Throughout the years, I've done what every other cosplayer has done: gain experience, find cosplay hacks, and figured out some things. I would like to start telling the world all of the cool stuff that I found out that I could do to make my cosplay into what I want; into something I'm proud of when I walk into a con like a boss.

So here it is, my introduction to this blog, letting you know why I'm starting. If you've made it to this blog, thank you for reading and you can always reach me here, Facebook, Instagram, email, and at a con! I always ready to answer questions and hopefully some of them can get answered here before someone asks them.