New Website is Up!

The new website has a new domain:

It is not done yet!

New Website Coming Soon

New website coming soon~!

AKB48's Tomochin Coming to JPop Summit?!

The booth at Fanime left a hint about their upcoming guest list. The lower right corner has Itano Tomomi! They have yet to announce it on their website or Facebook.

What I Live By...

This is my manta. Let it be yours, too!

Gunpla - HGUC Powered GM Torrington Base Type

This is another mobile suit kit from the Gundam 0083 series. The Powered GM is a test-type variation of the RGM-79C GM Kai with an enhanced power generator located in the backpack and shock absorbers in the knees. Two of the Powered GM shown in the anime were located at Earth Federation's Torrington Base being destroyed by the Delaz Fleet.

This HG kit is extremely straight-forward. It is basically a GM with knee and shoulder pads. I did not like the stock orange color it came with. Instead, I opted to use recolor the orange components with blue, red, and German grey. After coloring, I didn't like the white, as it looked way too plain. I decided to weather it with Tamiya weathering pastels and scuffing the edges with a 6000-grit file and gunmetal-colored powder. My favorite work was with the head itself, where I simulated barrel burns. Overall, my repaint is actually closer to the colored of the GM Kai Ground series.

My Powered GM is also from the Torrington Base in Australia, however it was not destroyed by the Delaz Fleet. Instead, it was successful moved to another base for storage and deployed while fighting Zeon remnants before the Titans crisis during the Zeta Gundam series. It is armed with a Hyper Bazooka and a standard-issue GM shield. The colors are in homage to the RX-78-2 Gundam, one of the most effective mobile suits ever fielded by the Earth Federation.

Gunpla - HGUC AGX-04 Gerbera Tetra COMPLETE!

The irritating build of the Gerbera Tetra is finally complete. The final color is different than the original anime appearance, where the AGX-04 is a Char-colored pink. Instead, I opted for the metallic red provided by Tamiya. Like a lot of the HGUC kits from Bandai, this model lacked any decals. Therefore, all of the decals were improvised from Gundam Decal sheets and a spare sheet from a spare HGUC Jesta, which had a ton of included decals for some reason.

As I started on the work-in-progress post, both of my shoulders cracked and fell off the hinges. They had to be superglued together about 7-8 times to get into its current state. The left ankle also became corroded and snapped off as well. Other problems came in the form of paint issues. I experimented with Tamiya Clear Pearl, which did not make it more shinny. Rather it made the surface more rough and dulled the color of the metallic red. To fix it, I had to give it three coats of gloss top coat to restore the shine.

The nightmare is over for now. Good enough for me. Big Red is looking pretty good with its signature booster. It looks like a dragonfly, which scares the crap out of my girlfriend. I am not allowed to show her this model because of that.

Egon - Harold Ramis Passes Away

Harold Ramis, best known for playing Egon Spengler in the Ghostbusters films, passed away from complications due to Vasculitis. Being a huge fan of Ghostbusters, I felt it was fitting to dedicate this post to Mr. Ramis. Outside of Ghostbusters, Ramis was a prolific comedic writer and director, masterminded several of my favorite movies: Caddyshack, Groundhog Day, and Animal House.

He had one of those comedic minds that was perpetually churning out hilarious movies left and right. Though, they were not all commercial hits, I think no one will doubt how influential and instrumental he has been in American comedic films. Of course, I first knew Ramis watching the Ghostbusters films as a kid. My favorite character was always Egon, as he was the level-headed and brilliant scientist of the group.

Particularly sad was that Ramis and Ghostbusters co-writer Dan Aykroyd have been working on drafts of a potential third part of the Ghostbusters franchise. With the passing of Ramis, it seems the project will never come to fruition.

Battling Vasculitis for the past several years, it appeared he had the disease under control, but it resurfaced in the recent two years. Earlier today, Dan Aykroyd expressed his feelings on his Twitter:

Deeply saddened to hear of the passing of my brilliant, gifted, funny friend, co-writer/performer and teacher Harold Ramis. May he now get the answers he was always seeking.

You and us both Dan.

Gunpla - HGUC AGX-04 Gerbera Tetra W.I.P

The Gerbera Tetra only showed up once in Gundam fiction. That being said, it was not a particularly popular robot in the Gundam universe, but it was part of the major cast in the Gundam: 0083 OVA. Outside of this set, Bandai has only released a model of this kit one other time: when the original 0083 model kits came out.

My interpretation is still a work in progress. There are still cables I have not painted, yet. Honestly, this has been a terribly frustrating kit to put together. The joints on the shoulders are absolutely horrific. I have no idea why they wanted to mold those joints with plastic rather than rubber-based joints. After sanding and painting, both joints holding the shoulders and boosters broke. Also, the left ankle is also made with plastic and also broke in half.

I have never had model kit break at all of the joints. This is definitely the first. At this moment, I am afraid to even touch it. Last time I re-glued the left shoulder back on, a little cement got on the paint and melted it.

Anyways, here is my progress so far. Tamiya Metallic Red does absolute wonders on plastic!

BBC Sherlock Holmes Amigurumi

What do you think about these amigurumi of Sherlock Holmes and Watson? These were made by my sister last year. You can see more of her crafts at her DeviantArt [HERE]

Cosplay Interview: Shae_

Cosplay Interview: Shae_
As J!-ENT continues our global spotlight for cosplayers around the world, our attention goes to France where we interview a creative and driven cosplayer named Shae_. J!-ENT recently interviewed Shae_ regarding her passion for cosplay and also learn more about her creative side. 
By Kenchanayoh

When did you start cosplaying?
Shae_: The first time I heard of cosplay it was in 2006 or 2007, via some “Final Fantasy” blogs. I found that very nice but didn’t see myself making cosplay ! It’s only in 2009, when I left my parent’s home and moved to a bigger city (I’m from a very little city, and my parents are far from being geeks) that I made my first cosplay. During high school I was in a boarding school and we shared a lot of books and manga, plus I had some friends there who were already cosplayers, I also became a very good friend with one of the FF blogger who was also a cosplayer ! Few months after I moved, there was a convention and they asked me if I wanted to come and make a little cosplay...I accepted ! I was very curious to see it!

How many does each costume take to complete? How many have you completed?
Shae_: I’ve already made almost 40 costumes now! As for the hours spent on them, it depends on the costume. Some were made in few hours only, and some asked me more than 150 hours like Rydia or June May. Yes, I stop counting after 150!

What was the most challenging aspect of cosplaying?
Shae_: Not getting mad at the drama! (Laughing) More seriously, my personal challenge is to bring character to life and make my cosplay look as realistic as possible. For example, if I cosplay as a fighter, I’ll try my best to have a costume that resist to fighting moves, and if I cosplay as a princess, I’ll try to be as graceful as possible.

How have your abilities improved throughout the years?
Shae_: They improved a lot! I’m a very curious person who loves trying nice things, that’s a reason why I love cosplay so much, I always have to find crazy solutions to craft things! Also, make up. I wasn’t into make up at all before starting cosplay, and even if my mother’s a beautician who gave me great tips, I learned a lot by myself and I’m very happy of it!

When you create a costume, what is more important: accuracy or adding your personal touches?
Shae_: I love to add personal touches. I try to make an accurate costume as much as possible but I’ll add a little something to make it more personal. Mostly on cosplays that I really love and wear several times like Rydia or my new Jaina costume that I’ll finish soon. It’s only little details that most of people won’t notice like little jewels, embroideries or accessories but it makes me like my costumes even better.

What do you do with your costumes, wigs, and props after you are done with them?
Shae_: I moved a lot in the last few years and my flat was very humid, so sadly many of my costumes died. Some of my old costumes are in boxes, in my workshop, I don’t want to throw them away because when I see them, along with my new costumes I realize how much I improved in a few years. Also, yeah, I have a workshop now, so I can stock everything without problem. I also sell wigs I don’t use anymore sometimes.

What is the most satisfying aspect of cosplaying?
Shae_: As for me there are few. First, the satisfaction when I complete a costume, or a prop and realize I learned things from that. Then the social part and most of all the smile of people when they meet me in convention or sometimes on photoshoots. I really like speaking with people, explaining what’s cosplay, taking photos and interacting with other cosplayers or people to create little scenes. I’m also very happy cosplay gave me nice opportunities, like being invited at Tales of the Lane, a League of Legends tournament, participating in some fan films and other great things like that!

Is your family and friends supportive towards your hobby?
Shae_: Most of my friends are roleplayers, gamers, artists... Let’s say geeks in general, so I don’t have any problem with them and the fact that I’m a cosplayer! As for my family that’s another thing. Many of them just don’t know about that because we don’t see each other very often, few like my grandma appreciate the fact that I craft pretty dresses sometimes, but the most interesting must be my mother. When I started cosplay, she hated manga, fantasy, videos games and stuff. As I lived by my own it wasn’t really a problem, I’ve been patient and explained her everything, how I craft my costumes, the people I meet in convention, the message I receive, the photos I pose for. It took a lot of time but now she can’t wait to attend her first convention and would be happy to wear a costume!

What is your favorite cosplay you have done? Which one had the most positive reaction?
Shae_: It may change soon but my very favorites are Rydia from “Final Fantasy IV” and Jaina from “Warcraft”. As for positive reaction, I don’t really know... I know many people like Rydia and Jaina, my Elyon cosplay from “W.I.T.C.H”, Ahri Dynasty from “League of Legends” and June May from “Cloth Road” seems to be pretty popular too !

How hard do you try to stay in character?
Shae_: I really do my best on stage and on photoshoots to find beautiful place that’ll match the character’s universe and spend time to learn my character’s poses and facial expressions by practicing in front of a mirror. At a convention, it’s a bit different, in general I just pose for photos and try to walk like my character would do. But in general, the simple fact that you don’t have the same shoes as usual changes the way you walk! Also, when I meet another cosplayer and know that they appreciate this kind of roleplay interactions, we sometimes do little scenes just for fun. I really support this idea of improvised scenes and happenings in convention, it’s so much fun for everyone !

What would you like to improve on? (either your sewing skills, prop making, etc)
Shae_: Everything! I love learning things and I’m a perfectionist who’s never satisfied with her results.

What are your hobbies outside of cosplaying and do they contribute to your cosplaying ideas?
Shae_: I love drawing, painting, I took eight years of dance lessons (Classic, Modern Jazz and Baroque) and three years of theater when I was younger. Also, some movie making, photography and write a little when I have time. I just can’t stop creating stuff and cosplay is just a part of this creativity madness, I think! I also love cooking and video games!

How many conventions do you attend? How far do you usually travel?
Shae_: I go to many Parisian events! I’d like to travel more but I miss time and money for that. Next year, I’d love to attend a convention in Belgium and Switzerland, also to the Gamescom in Germany!

What is your motivation to continue? Recognition, pure passion, or becoming pro?
Shae_: Passion mostly. As I said before, I love creating things and with cosplay you have so many things to do with so many various techniques, it’s like the perfect hobby for me. And as for recognition, well, I don’t want to be a famous person, like I don’t care about the number of followers I have on social media, but the fact that people appreciate my cosplays and the tips I give really motivate me to continue and do my best! I wouldn’t stop without that, it’s just that I’m happy to share this passion with people.

Which character do you want to cosplay as the most?
Shae_: I’m working on new costumes for Jaina, Rydia and June May, I can’t wait to finish and wear them! I also have few projects that I am working on that I can’t wait to reveal, but I prefer to keep them secret until I’m satisfied with the costumes! I’ll post work in progress pictures of my next cosplay very soon, as well as more photos and info. on my Facebook page:

Notes: Article originally featured in J!ENT 20th Anniversary Annual. All photos featured are property of Shae_. Thank you for your time!
For the whole issue of J!-ENT, please download [HERE]

GM Juggler Part 2

The other photos can be seen here [GM Juggler Thunderbolt]

Gunpla - GM Juggler Thunderbolt Version!

After over a week, it is finally finished. My personal take on the GM Juggler! This particular variant of the GM never really made it into mainstream Gundam fiction. Rather it was featured in a SD Gundam video game. Nonetheless, writers actually bothered to write up a backstory for this mobile suit.

The idea of the GM Juggler ARA was simple: mount two RB-79 Balls to a standard GM to create a suit able to perform all-range attacks. Because the suit was extremely top-heavy and unstable, it was never manufactured and put into the battlefield.

My version of the GM Juggler was also pretty simple: it is a GM from the Thunderbolt series with two RB-79 Balls. The model kit also became highly unstable. It is just too top heavy. Therefore, I figured it would be a good idea to dock it, because the Juggler is going to likely fall over. There are several modifications to note. The balls are attached to the arms from the backpack. One of the shields is now mounted on the double-beam cannon.

I enjoyed painting it a lot. All of the armaments have a metal base coat and multiple colors sprayed in a gradient pattern. The figure and balls themselves were coated with Mr. Hobby Clear Coat Matte. The most fun came from shading and weathering. The brackets feature rust orange from the Tamiya Weathering Master kit C. Most of the model was wiped with gunmetal-colored powder and dusted with silver powder.

This build was quite special to me. I have learned so much about modeling in the past two weeks. Hopefully, there will be further modifications in the future with better photographs! Most of the Jugglers are Master Grade scale. It is quite daring to try the 1/144 High Grade scale. There isn't a lot of bulk in the legs, and the lack of an interior skeleton makes it quite impossible to stand properly.

Here are the two models before their eventual amalgamation: [GM Thunderbolt] [RB-79 Ball]

Tell me what you think!

More photos [HERE]