Con Man Cosplay

Con Man Cosplay

In March 2015, Alan Tudyk and Nathan Fillion, whom I'll call the "Firefly guys" because they were stars of the too-short-lived sci-fi series Firefly, were crowdfunding for a TV series called Con Man, about sci-fi conventions. The project sounded interesting and fun, so I decided to be a backer for it. The campaign was record-breakingly successful--so much so that the Firefly guys decided to offer some incentives for doing things related to Con Man other than giving them more money; for example, taking a picture of someone holding up a "Con Man" sign at a convention.

So, there was a "cosplay" category, which was of some interest to me. Clearly better for me than "baked goods" or "fan fiction," probably easier than "artwork" as well. I wasn't aware of any local conventions happening in the near future, so the picture-taking thing was right out.

The problem was, since the "Con Man" series didn't even exist yet, we had very little info to go on. They had published a few posters, a little description, and that was about it. So I wasn't really inspired--until an idea popped into my head about the poster at right.

Looking at the poster, I was wondering how one could make it rain under an umbrella. Then I remembered some long silver mylar fringe that my bellydance troupe had used for costumes some years back--it looked great, but was not very practical for repeated dance use because it broke too easily. But this would be basically a one-time thing with no movement involved, so it should work fine. And I knew I had some leftover fringe, so it wouldn't cost anything. Perfect!

So, all I really needed then was a good-size black umbrella. I figured that should be easy enough to find at a thrift store, like Goodwill or similar, so I went looking in a couple or 3 such stores, but no luck. As usual, I didn't want to spend too much money on this (and even less so for this project, since it was more useless than most), so I didn't even bother trying retail.

Instead, I decided to try using an old umbrella from home that was a good size, although it was a bit beat up. The big issue was that it was not black; instead it had white and blue panels with writing on them. So I painted it black using spray paint from Home Depot, which actually worked out surprisingly well. Cost: $1 for the spray paint.

Then it was just a matter of finding the old fringe and attaching it to the inside of the umbrella (I used duct tape). The occasional broken strands turned out to be a blessing in disguise, because they made it easier to see thru the "rain."

So here's the final pic I used. I pulled my hair back to make it look short, put on a black T-shirt and an overshirt I already had (so I was sorta dressed like the poster), and tried to turn the umbrella so as to hide the broken bits, the less-painted parts, and the duct tape. I liked this shot best even though it shows a bit of a defect in the umbrella (which I suppose I could have photo-edited out, but didn't).

I considered making UFOs out of paper plates with straws for the "laser" beams shooting out of them, to match more of the original poster, but decided against it because I couldn't figure out how I was going to get them into the picture with me. (Well, OK, I'm sure I could've figured something out; I just didn't think it was worth the time.)

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