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Cosplay Island

6th April , 2015

01:57 am - MinamiCon 21 Gallery

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

[vidimg] [viddata]

The chilltastic MinamiCon hits its 21st year and doesn’t disappoint. It’s been a while since I’ve properly enjoyed a con and not felt I absolutely had to have a camera surgically attached to my face the entire time!

For those who’ve joined UK conventions through the manic MCM ComicCons or the nightlife of a KitaCon might not be well prepared for the laid-back, old-school nature of Minami, it’s a classic convention in the model of days past.  Simpler times with a much more local feel.  Cosplay is often not to the grandiose scale you see at the large events – although that isn’t always true! – but for many of us this is where we started, and it’s the con we wind down at.  Even the Masquerade will have a dozen prizes for categories made up on the spot, specifically to neuter the drama that can spawn from a competitive event.

While large ComicCons will boot you out after a manic day, and while party cons will blare out music until 2 in the morning, what does Minami do?  Sets up a giant room of homemade kotatsus and cushions, fills it with board games and says have at it.  Also karaoke.  Wouldn’t miss it for the world.

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(Deposit Lemon)

8th April , 2014

10:57 am - KitaCon Invasion Gallery

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

[vidimg] [viddata]

KitaCon returns!  Back at the Birmingham Hilton Metropole, across a pond from the NEC I was at the previous week no less!

Kita has made for itself the name of the UK party con, and it lives up to it in full force.  There’s been a  shift from cosplayers milling about during the day making full use of the pretty venue and the lovely outdoors for photoshoots to mostly empty corridors and people crammed into panels or sleeping off the previous night to make way for the next big party!

A combination of that, being busy, and being a bit on the lazy side means it’s a bit light on the floor costume shots, there were plenty of other photographers and videographers around so hopefully no one is going without.

On the other hand if you got on the stage over the weekend then prepare for a barrage of shots.  Pretty lighting and and the lovely Lulu Rose as my glamorous assistant means we’ve got you covered.  Keep an eye out for her shots, this is her first convention properly using a DSLR and I’m proud to include them in the gallery.

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(Deposit Lemon)

18th March , 2014

12:30 am - Cosplay Cascade – MinamiCon 7-19

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

[vidimg] [viddata]

12 years in the making, who’d have thought it?

So I started off with a video camera, just as I started going to cons I’d upgraded to a miniDV camcorder from an old Video8 thingy, so at least we’re spared analogue noise here.

MinamiCon was my first ever convention, Minami 7 to be precise.  I had no idea what I was in for, I was merely told it was a good time and I was too late for the year people I knew were going (6) so I signed up for the following year when they’d all graduated and promptly realised I had no clue whatsoever what actually went on at a con!

It would be a few years later when I made the switch to photography, my video camera had died and photos gave a much more instant gratification, also I hadn’t tried to shoot anything useful and had just swung the camera around at anything that looked interesting – I could edit but was useless at having a purpose to filming.  When I couldn’t get photos I’d switch to video on a tiny IXUS 70, and when I upgraded to a DSLR I would often thrust the IXUS on whoever had the misfortune to sit next to me to film skits with.  It wasn’t until I strapped said DSLR to a steadycam that I ventured back into video proper.

So there’s kind of a few dark years where there’s not much video at all – I was too busy taking photos!  Nonetheless I put together everything I could find, every scrap of useful Minami footage that I personally have over the years.  This means anything prior to 7 hasn’t made it in for obvious reasons!

It’s a wonderful convention if you’re the type to enjoy it, it’s small, it’s quiet, it’s chilled, you’re never far from a place to sit down and socialise.  We play stupid games, go to interesting panels, and just chill out rather than most events where it’s run around like a headless chicken time.  Being my first convention it’s also the one I share the most memories of, it’s where I’ve met the majority of my friends, it’s always the con that sees my new equipment first because it’s the most relaxed, and the easiest to practice at.  It sees a good turnover of new faces every year but still feels the same – in a good way. It’s like coming home once a year.

To that end, to celebrate its 20th anniversary I put this together. It’s not polished, it’s not an exciting beat-filled track, but it suits Minami perfectly.


(Deposit Lemon)

14th March , 2014

12:31 pm - MinamiCon 20 Gallery

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

[vidimg] [viddata]

MinamiCon hits its 20th birthday as a milestone event in UK anime convention history,  and the event continues to improve while still being that same MinamiCon it’s always been.

This year went all out, the hotel itself has had a tech upgrade behind the scenes, the Friday party saw a complete Matsuri theme with game stalls and sweets aplenty, and Sunday night saw the début trial of a new karaoke system built from the ground up.  Yet there’s still all the classic events Minami-goers have grown fond of too, it’s a far cry from the party-all-night larger conventions, a much more relaxed and laid-back affair where there’s never a bar far away.   For most of it’s attendees?  That’s just the way we want it.


(Deposit Lemon)

31st May , 2013

04:19 pm - London MCM ComicCon 23 Gallery

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

Convention: London MCM ComicCon 23
Venue: London ExCeL Centre
Date: 24th-26th May 2013
Photos Taken: 5,819 (960 after cut)
Total Data: 67.1Gb

Gallery Links:

Now fully into its new brand, MCM ComicCon landed on a gloriously-weathered weekend (ignoring the dismal Friday) and once again hit record attendance, I’m hearing about 76,000 strong?

A proper run for the new steadicam rig, although amidst desk duty, masquerade duty and dodging the other half dozen steadicam operators in force, I didn’t get nearly as much time as I’d have liked out and about.  The gallery is sadly looking a little thin once more.  Clearly I need more minions.


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23rd March , 2013

12:35 am - Birmingham MCM ComicCon March 2013 Gallery

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

Convention: Birmingham MCM ComicCon March 2013
Venue: Birmingham NEC
Date: 16th-17th March 2013
Photos Taken: 1,297 (377 after cut)
Total Data: 16.4gb

Gallery Links:

Another ComicCon of the year, the MCM cosplay crew took a trip up to the Birmingham NEC, quite the small gallery this time but a nice relaxed weekend, so it’s all good!


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10th March , 2013

10:57 am - MinamiCon 19 Gallery

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

Convention: MinamiCon 19
Venue: Novotel Hotel, Southampton
Date: 1st-3rd March 2013
Photos Taken: 2,814 (910 after cut)
Total Data: 33.5gb

Gallery Links:

Always my official start to the convention year, MinamiCon rolls around once more in time-honoured tradition.  No other event is as much of an institution as turning up to that Novotel lobby to already see crowds of familiar faces like we never left it the previous year!

A much more relaxed event than most in recent memory, as if there was a collective LETS TAKE A BREAK FROM RIDICULOUS COSTUMES FOR ONCE and I think it was a good move, certainly meant I wasn’t running around like a headless chicken for once!  Still plenty of lovely costumes to take pictures of at leisure, and I think overall comfort levels were higher for it.   This year the convention started earlier and finished later, crammed a lot more events in, and ran a chillout kotatsu lounge after the closing ceremony, filled with makeshift kotatsus, duvets, pillows, and many, many games.  Probably one of my favourite Minamis to date.

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(5 Lemons of Doom -- Deposit Lemon)

19th February , 2013

07:38 pm - MCM ComicCon Midlands 2013 Gallery

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

Convention: Midlands MCM ComicCon 2013
Venue: Telford Exhibition Centre
Date: 16th February 2013
Photos Taken: 2,725 (546 after cut)
Total Data: 24.4gb

Gallery Links:

My first venture towards the Telford venue for the newly rebranded MCM ComicCon, and a thoroughly good time it was.  Only a single day deal, but large enough and popular enough to be worth a visit, plenty of nice costumes on show, yet small enough to be cosy and relaxed as an event.  Perfect  way to start the 2013 con season.

It gives that extra bit of hope for the year to come, it’s easy to feel a lot of love for the things being cosplayed, it’s not done for attention or fame or anything other than dressing up as something ridiculous that you have a passion for!

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(Deposit Lemon)

18th November , 2012

12:26 am - London MCM Expo 22 Gallery

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

Convention: London MCM Expo ComicCon 22
Venue: London ExCeL Centre
Date: 26th-28th October 2012
Photos Taken: 7,041 (1,535 after cut)
Total Data: 385gb

Gallery Links:

Taken some time but here’s some photos from the Expo weekend gone by, EuroCosplay had us caught up for the majority but there’s still the odd shot and the Sunday masquerade to go around!

A team effort this time around, with myself, Littlegeeky, Luki, Locke, InvisiGirl, Meltopian, Oz, Shenny, Drift, Yuka, Pounce and Foxy all pitching in the time and effort to cover ECC in full.

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(Deposit Lemon)

16th September , 2012

10:33 pm - Cosplay Cascade – AmeCon 2012

Originally posted at ManyLemons, you can reply here or there.

Title: Cosplay Cascade 3 - AmeCon 2012
Audio Source: All Time Low - Under A Paper Moon
Duration: 3:09
Venue: Keele University, Stoke-on-Trent
Date: 10th-12th August 2012
Total Data: 62.7GB

Download Links:
Cosplay Cascade 3 - YouTube
Avatard: The Last Derpbender - YouTube
Cosplay Cascade 3 - ManyLemons (MP4, 192mb)
Cosplay Cascade 3 - ManyLemons (DivX/MP3 AVI, 30mb)
Avatard: The Last Derpbender - ManyLemons (MP4, 30mb)

Who would’ve thought moving home and starting a new job would eat so much time? Finally the time has been found to sit down and spend some quality time with a shuttle wheel. Here’s the third Cosplay Cascade video featuring cosplayers out and about the Keele University campus at AmeCon 2012! Due to the building works and general faff it’s not got the amazing scenery and variety I had planned but hey, at the end of the day it’s about people in brightly coloured costumes throwing things at each other. I think.

More lessons learned, and the steadicam had gained a loose screw which went mostly undetected but now has been found and severely punished, hopefully I won’t have the same troubles next time!

As an offshoot there’s a quickish video made entirely out of Avatar cosplay footage, that’s just how big the groups were over the weekend!  That can be found on YouTube here.

(Deposit Lemon)

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