June 22, 2015

Kummacon 2015 – Pikkuconi ja puolikas vesimelooni

Hellou ~

Now I've finally gotten around to writing this short summary about my Kummacon experience!
I pardon for the lateness (the con was on 14th June so yeah, more than one week ago) but I must admit that the culprit this time wasn't laziness or busy-ness or any of the other commonly used excuses – it was honestly just me playing way too much Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate with friends. xD I'm seriously addicted to this game to the point that checking internet doesn't even feel tempting and well, that's saying a lot because hey, that's normally one of my top daily priorities! When opening the computer doesn't interest me then there's something horribly wrong lol. I just sit and slay wyverns and pink farting monkeys all day instead, huehuehue. I'm past 110 hours of gameplay and I've had the game for like, less than 2 weeks...? Oops.

Okey so, ehrrm, yeah, Kummacon. Let's get back to that!
So yeah, in case someone reading this doesn't know then I'll just fill you in and say that Kummacon was a small first-time convention held at Oulu in northern Finland; it had free entrance. It's a mixed fandom event (anime & manga, Western movies and comics, cosplay, literature, airsoft, zombie walk etc) that was held on the 14th June which, when you look at the calendar, you will notice is actually a Sunday. Yep, now that's unusual!
Oh, and before someone –who doesn't understand Finnish– wonders what the other half of this post's title means it translates to something like "a small con and half a water melon". You'll understand why soon enough... and yes, I do like goofy titles.

This time only me and Hasakitsuki attended the event; Jäätynyt Enkeli would have come too had he not had a trip to Germany a few days after. I did know though that Sairu-chan was attending, so I didn't leave for the con with the "I'll see no familiar faces" mindset.
As per usual my awesome aunt provided us two a free sleeping place because she lives in Oulu, duh. We arrived at le aunt's place on Saturday evening and yep, everything went smoothly. There's not really anything to say about my pre-con experience, expect that I played on my new New Nintendo 3DS XL, which I had put to use mere days before the event. It was a good choice to actually start playing on it now; I finally feel a bit updated in the gaming scene, hahaha. (but srsly, who came up with that name? New Nintendo 3DS. ._. It's so clumsy in everyday speech to specify that it's the "New" all the time, hurpdurp – "yeah I want to buy the new New Nintendo 3DS. :-DDD The new new....... pew pew. chew chew)

Sunday morning came. I don't know why but I had regained consciousness several times during the night, as if my sleep kept being really hacky or something. There was not anything to disturb me that morning and I never actually got up from bed or opened my eyes nor anything, it's just that I recall being aware that "hey, I'm not dreaming right now and it's the middle of the night" kind of thing. Con hype or nervousness, perhaps?
Whatever kept me from having a normal sleep wasn't only after my sleep – it wanted to screw up other things too! Yeah, you can guess. -.- Directly after breakfast my stomach started making silly roaring sounds and it felt weird and, err, by the time I got to the point I had started putting on my costume and doing the makeup then, well, I spent way longer in the bathroom than I should have. No one wants the details so I'll just leave it at that lol. Worst part is that shitty issues (quite literally, at times) seem a recurring annoyance to me whenever I'm either preparing for an event or something else that's important and, especially, when I have a time limit to keep tabs on. I dunno if it's some kind of "stress stomach" case or what but boy is it annoying when it happens.

Oh well, I got my costume on and we were ready to head out!
Much to our luck the weather was actually appropriate for the month this time – it was fairly warm but not too much. I swear we've had shitty April/autumn weather all the time and the actually sunny and nice days have been so few that I could count them on the fingers of one hand...

Yamato no Kami Yasusada is ready to go!
(note: mirror photo, hence why my kimono is reversed)
When we got to the now familiar Valve building I first headed straight for the bathroom – I reaaaally needed to fix my wig because it was living its own life! Even though the clip-on ponytail is short it's still surprisingly heavy (much fibers, I assume) and during the whole walk through the city it kept pulling my wig backwards; I should sew on some clips to the wig the next time I wear it...
At the bathroom I took the wig off and what do I see? My wig cap isn't even on my head anymore lol. No wonder why my real hair was peeking out like parasites all over the place and didn't stay under the wig when I poked them back in. Oh well, it was an easy fix – I just put the wig hooks on and prepared for the obligatory wig headache that usually follows shortly. You see, normally I almost never use the wig hooks because I seemingly have a rather big head to begin with and, well, most wigs are small-ish on me anyway so there is rarely a need to use them.

Valve building entrance.
Valve as a con hosting place is pretty okay... but it's still rather small and it feels crammed and narrow – wherever you look there is a mass of people constantly on the move; there is not much in the name of a breathing hole, unless you go outside of course. But Valve has its charm and I've started taking a liking to the darn place, hahah. I guess the crappy "let's have a con at the library!" experience adds to that feeling somehow... :'D

This is the sight you were met by as soon as you entered the front doors.
In front of Valvesali. If you turned left after passing this first "door" you
got to the merchandise area.
The one and only merchandise seller.
There was also a "visitor's selling table", aka where con visitors could
leave stuff they didn't want/need anymore for sale, during con time.
Of course there was the Artist's Alley as well.
Notice the seller closest to the camera – she's selling self-made colorful kanzashi
hair decorations! Now that's something out of the ordinary!
Kummacon in itself I didn't have much expectations for in terms of entertainment value – small cons in the north rarely provide anything spectacular. When you've been 20 minutes in the con you had seen it all.
Most of the time I spent hanging around with both old and new friends, going on a stroll in the city (scout for a lunch place!) as well as playing on my Nintendo 3DS. omg the Mii army I got on the StreetPass games, it was awesome!

Time to sit down and play! :D
Of course that there were a fair amount of more-or-less-interesting panels of many different subjects but, err, I'm not the kind to attend several panels in a row because it just tires me out and then I lose concentration/interest (been there, done that) and yes, that's totally why I ended up only attending one panel, even though there would have been at least one more that was interesting; there was the armor-making panel by Sheriff's Anvil (which I definitely wanted to attend) and then there was a cosplay photography panel. The problem was that both of these were placed in the same room and right after one another.
I ended up choosing to go only to the armor panel because that one I thought that I'd be more likely to learn something new from – after all, I did attend a photography panel at Kemi's manga day last year.

The entrance seen from above.
The Artist's Alley area (and the cafeteria to the far left) seen from above.
There was also a gallery for comics in the same building. This is
the Kiroileva Siili comic (lit. swearing hedgehog) which is well-known
in Finland.
About the armor-making panel itself I can say that it was a good one. It seemed to be targeted towards people who are new to armored cosplays (I still don't know if I count myself in that group or in the not-quite-so-newbie one, haha) and while it mostly had a "how I made this specific cosplay of mine" focus the panelist took up the step-by-step process of making the costume come true, which, in turn, can be applied for many different types of armored characters; he gave good starting pointers and all of that.
I personally found that dragging my hakama-clothed ass to the panel was a good investment and yes, it kept me interested through the whole run! The guy holding it was also funny and spoke in this kind of way that was entertaining, at least in my opinion. I do think that panelist holders who are expressive, pull jokes and use a lot of different voices are much more fun to listen to, haha. Also, this guy was clearly passionate about his work and about inspiring others and that was a pleasure to see.

Panel photos!
If you want to read the text I recommend that you open the image in a new tab to get the full-size version, in case your computer shows a resized image when you click on them through the blog.

The panel was held in Valvesali. Before the panel started there was
the Kummacon logo on the big screen.
He took off his cosplay and put the pieces on the scene, so that everyone who
wanted could go and take a look at how they were made. Really nice!

Sairu-chan and Karri showed up a bit later and I spent most of the con being around their company. I did a quick photoshoot for Sairu-chan outside and... eheheh... it ended up being a rather glorious passing of time because of all the photobomb tries that were provided by Karri and another guy. Karri just kept running into and crashing half the photos, it was golden. x) He also imitated Donald Duck's voice and said different things in said voice, including "feels good man" as well as some other lines from that really silly "Akun kakkaongelma" (lit. Donald's shit problem) video on Youtube that has gotten well-known in Finland by now. xD

Photobomb success! (provided by Emil, if I remember his name correctly)
Karri ninja photobomb!
(and he kinda got photobombed by the leaves, which means
photobomb in a photobomb. yo dawg)
This was actually just Karri being funny and picking up Sairu-chan but
it ended up looking like a scene from a cheesy romance movie. xD
Oh, and let's not forget Karri's awesome super crouch walk up the steps!
LIKE A BOSS. (yes, he walked up all the steps like that)
At some point after the photoshoot derping we passed by a nearby area of Valve and there we saw something bizarre and totally out of place – half a water melon left at the whatever park-like thingy!
It was so unexpected that we all went completely "WATER MELOOOOOOOOOONNNNNN" over it and did hilarious fake gasps and surprised faces at each other.. and then we started half-running in another direction. xD Too bad that I don't have picture proof of the melon but it definitely got the gold medal in the "surprise motherfucker!" category.

Towards the end of the con our group of four headed towards a pub that Karri knew – one of his friends worked there. At the pub I felt quite uncomfortable (I'm not a drinker and the atmosphere is not really to my liking) and I considered leaving when Sairu-chan left, but Karri cheered me up and made me stay. He and Hasakitsuki played chess and I just watched and was more or less bored... until a mention of Skecon was uttered and Karri took great interest in wanting to attend the con with us! Yep yep, we might very likely have a new face attending Skecon this year – OMGYES!!
By the time we left the pub the con was close to over so we just took a quick look inside and then headed back to aunt's place. Karri followed with us back for a visit and we ended up playing Super Mario 3D World all three of us and, duuude, was it fun!

But yeah, Kummacon was an overall nice experience in my book – I would likely attend it again if a second edition comes. Even though for most part it felt the same as Animeseminaari because it was in the same building, except that Kummacon was a bit more varied, haha. I didn't notice any clumsy or lacking arranging of the event (seeing how it was a first-time con) but I heard that the cosplay competition had issues and some weird solutions going on. By "weird solutions" I mean that I've heard from others that because the competition had some time issues it was decided that the audience shouldn't clap their hands at all for the contestants when they were on stage.
Why, I wonder?
To save time, I heard.
That's just so weird and not okay that I can't but raise the nope flag. Just... why? ._. Surely there must have been better solutions out there than to cut out something that barely takes time and is a rather important way of encouraging and showing appreciation to whoever is on stage... boo.

Oh well, I don't have much more to add. I am always happy to see that new geeky events are sprouting, especially in the north. I hope that Kummacon won't be one of those "one time only" cases and that it will grow and be held in the future too.  
Psst! I didn't get a wig headache! :-DD

See ya!


Terasedward said...

Heippistä! Minä löydyin tuolta alkupuolen kuvista Vegetana joten onko okei jos otan talteen ja laitan fbhen? :) Tietenkin kuvaajan nimi mukana!

Shiro Samurai said...

Joo saat!
Mulla on myös isokokoinen versio tuosta kuvasta ilman vesileimaa, joten jos haluut sen niin heitäppä mulle sun sähköpostin niin laitan tulemaan. :)

Sairu Chan said...

Oihhh! <3 :'D
Olit tosi mukavaa seuraa, kiitoksia siitä ja kiitokset erikseen myös siitä photoshootista! C: Seuraavaan coniin! >8D

Terasedward said...

Laita tulemaan fbssä kuvaa? :) Tässä mun profiili https://www.facebook.com/terasedward Kaikista helpoin ja nopein tapa varmaan kaikille :D