The lights are on
Having your hard work acknowledged by franchise creatives – or better yet, creators – is an honor for cosplayers. Winning a costume contest and being flown to a foreign country as a prize is even more so. Cosplayer Precious received the opportunity of a lifetime when she was given the VIP treatment from Kojima Productions at the 2010 Tokyo Game Show, were she participated in a sponsored contest. Check out her fantastic variant of a MGS staple below.
Sweet Raiden - based on the MGS4 "Sweet Snake" Figumate set
I'm a big Metal Gear Solid fan, and I've always really liked Raiden, even if he isn't the most popular character. Plus, his cyborg upgrades in MGS4 made him bada**! I was actually throwing around the idea of making an MGS4 Raiden suit, but I was pressed for time and had to put the idea off until 2011. Then I saw the Sweet Raiden figure! It was the perfect solution – the character I liked but with a cute twist that would be feasible within a short timeframe. To make it even better, I was able to do a small "Sweet Snake" group with friends. It's one of the most fun costumes I've worn to date.
I only had 3 days to work on it before I left for the convention, so I had to spend some near all-nighters to get it finished. The leotard is made from a wet-look spandex, which has a similar look to stretch PVC, but it's much more comfortable. After putting in the character's unique abdomen seaming, it was just a matter of making and attaching parts. I first patterned each piece out to scale using some hi-res images from MGS4 and used these as templates to create the plastic and sealed foam pieces that cover the leotard. Painted hardware and weatherstripping were then attached to finish out the details. My husband put the chin piece together for me, also out of craft foam. The sword was cut, covered in carbon fiber tape, and painted. Overall, it was an easy costume, and price-wise it only ran around $100!
I debuted this costume at Fanime 2010, but I've also worn it to Anime Expo and Comic Con. I also won a trip to Tokyo Game Show courtesy of Konami for a cosplay competition, which I'm extremely grateful for. It was amazing meeting the Kojima Productions staff who created the series I love so much! My photoshoot with Andy Lee was in driveway to a basement loading area of where Fanime was being held, and my shoots with Eric Ng and Ricky Pai were both inside of the Anime Expo convention center. I usually let the photographer choose specific locations since they have a better feel on what will produce a good photo, and I give them input on what kind of settings would be appropriate for the character.
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