I finished my mask this evening. For some reason dramatic Ghost music is playing in the background. I accomplished the abstract owl design. I loaded it up with all these wonderful chains and necklaces my grandmother Eva left me with (that I don’t generally wear day to day but love and prize). The rest of the costume is basically the goth prom ballgown of dark, black shredded materials the MATRIX would adore, and corsets. I’m happy. TO BEE CONTINUED
I love owls. I have three creatures I will (to make a few people roll their eyes at me) say are my animal totem. Rabbits (Watership Down), Foxes (Japanese folklore), and owls (Bubo -Clash of the Titans- Secret of Nimh – and they’re just awesome). I wanted to take one of them to represent my mask in the tradition of Carnival of Venice. What I’ve always appreciated about the history of this is when you join the masquerade (ha! yes, I’m a Berlin geek) you basically can step back from your everyday face/persona and just be something of your own creation. I’ve always loved that idea and for some reason never really embraced it like I could at my conventions. Conventions that ask you to dress the fuck up after all. 😉
So, long and short of it, I’ve been having a grand time making the mask. Grand, hur hur hur, sorry. Too much British TV tonight. Anyhoo, my biggest worry is that I get self conscious and go scatterbrained when it comes to creating something that isn’t 2D art. And much to my pleasure this was not going that way for a change. I took my two basic Meijer masks and bullied them into the start of something better. Much to my delight. Below is the first version of the mask before the flowers/feathers. I didn’t like it enough though. I’m an obnoxious perfectionist so… I broke it back down after photographing it. TOO BEE CONTINUED
The first convention of the year is coming up and I decided I wanted to devote time to making a costume for it. Honestly, I have an outfit my friend helped me make back in the day we dubbed the Bee Queen. Mostly because it’s black and gold and massive and when first worn I had a bee-centric crown with it. And some crazy big hair. I toned it down afterwards and was happy to blend into the background and let my table and art be the thing to look at.
This year I just wanted to have more fun with it. I think it started last October when I was brooding over the fact that I was still banged up enough from my fall that autumn delights were not as great as the previous year. So when the holiday passed and all Halloween items went on sale, I scooped up a ridiculous amount final clearance items. This included masks and floral headpieces. (Seen here with my wig to give it a little extra wookie touch.)
Much of it sat in my attic work room to chatter between themselves without me giving them notice. But I had an idea for them. Granted, it would take many months to finally drag them out and get to it. I am happy to say though – once I started tinkering it all kind of fell into place. TO BEE CONTINUED
The Steampunk Symposium convention’s theme this year is Superheroes and Villains. The 2017 con was my first year to provide the event’s logo, graphics, and their new mascot the automaton Bly. This year Myke and I revamped the con’s website design and mascot Bly got to get her cosplay on. A variety of different versions of Bly (as Wonder Woman, Batgirl, Raven, Poison Ivy, Harly Quinn, Catwoman, and more) will grace the con’s tee shirts and event posters.
I haven’t done a lot of cartoonish or comic book style art since I retired my Foxglove and Colorado comics more than a decade ago. So it was a bit of a pain in the ass to re-learn the style to create Bly last year. Since doing so she’s been a lot easier to draw, even more so with the comic book costumes to put on her. It’s been rather entertaining. Some preview villains…
So this is the final color version of my more pinup-style of Bly the Automaton for the convention. I made a few changes from the drawing. Mainly Bly seems to really dig flowers, so her costumes have to reflect that. I believe we’re going to use this version of Bly for the con posters reminding the good con folks that no matter how eyebrow raising a costume may be, mind your manners sonny-jim! There’s also the adult hallway (sounds so naughty, doesn’t it?) where the room parties are held and is strictly 21+. 🙂
So now that Myke and I are in the Cincinnati area we’ve been asked to help out a bit more with the Steampunk Symposium, a steampunk themed convention that happens every April. I’ve been working on the con art and as a result of that Bly was created. Oh I adore the heck out of her. Con organizer Al Fox requested there be an automaton somewhere in the promotional flyer and I got way into her. We decided to name her after a true steampunk of her day Nellie Bly. These are her first drafts. I need to scan and color her.