Monday, November 24, 2014

Cosplaying Adventures as Ty Lee

So for Friday at Anime Boston 2014, I cosplayed as Ty Lee from Avatar: The Last Airbender. I chose this character because 1) years ago someone told me that I could portray her and 2) since I happen to be flexible, it made the most sense. When I cosplay, there is some expectation that someone will request a picture. Even if there’s only one person that asks, it will happen when you cosplay. However, I had other reactions from a certain demographic of attendees. Let’s start from the beginning.

Friday morning, like any convention morning, you get up and get dress in cosplay. Ty Lee has fairly simple pieces to put on: pink pants and top, then the armor. The last thing I put on was the wig. I did pin curls & french braids then placed a wig cap over it. This was the first time that I was doing this. You will find out later how my scalp felt. I was able to put on the wig but it required a bit of coordination and making sure the ponytail was centered.

All right, so I was ready to go on my adventure as Ty Lee! Throughout the day I had photo requests from attendees. This provided me with an opportunity to show off my flexibility. Well…there were times where I lost balance while doing a standing side split! Good grief! I was fine doing it before, but it’s definitely something that I have to work on. Because of my lack of balance, I decided to do a front split. However, when the opportunity arises, I would take a photo with the person requesting it and do my standing side split by using them for balance support.

Now there were two experiences that stood out amongst the rest. While I was walking through the 2nd floor of the Sheraton hotel to get to the Artist Alley, I heard someone shouting “Ty Lee!” I turned around and saw bright faces. It was a sweet moment to see smiling youngsters. The other moment was when I was in the Artist Alley and someone shouted out “Fire Nation!” They requested a photo from me and I did my front split facing them. As I was about to get up, I realized to the left of me were people snapping away. I did not think that I would get this much attention.

So the day of Ty Lee had ended. Time to put away the cosplay. But first, I had to take off the wig. Good grief! It was a relief to take off that extra weight on my head! Gravity is not a friend of a long ponytail. Then there was unexpected pain from releasing the pin curls. Oh dear god…you would think having your hair free from the physical stress would be a relief! However, this was not the case! My poor scalp. I felt like it was better to have kept my hair in pin curls.

Other than the pain of releasing pin curls, cosplaying as Ty Lee was a smooth and fun experience. I enjoyed being able to perform my splits, but will have to work on my balance. It was nice to see youngsters smile when they witnessed their lovable character pass by. See you in 2015!

© 2014 Linda Thai

Photography by Linda Thai

For more pictures, check out the Something Deeper: Anime, Manga and Comics Page on Facebook

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