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Costumemaker's Art Revisited?

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  • wyldaires
    OK. I realize I maybe opening up a pandora s box but here goes. Is it time for someone to publish a new Costumemaker s Art style book? I found this book
    Message 1 of 19 , Mar 31 5:42 PM
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      OK. I realize I maybe opening up a pandora's box but here goes. Is
      it time for someone to publish a new "Costumemaker's Art" style book?

      I found this book very rare, but extremely motivational and inspiring.

      I feel that the costuming art is still very much alive, but as you
      have all mentioned diluted so to speak.

      Science Fiction, SCA, Anime (where have all the young ones gone),
      Ren-faire, LARP, Halloween houses, Victoria Society, Reenactors:
      Civil War, WWI, WWII, French/Indian and on, local theatre houses, Pow
      Wow's, costume shops (that rare special front glass piece), Fabric
      Arts magazine, etc.

      There are still lots of great costumes being produced outside of the
      professional designer in Hollywood, Paris or Milan.

      Lots of people still having fun.

      Is it possible to create a project that would collect examples of our
      art at its best in a beautifully rendered coffee book that would sell?

      Is anyone willing to attempt it?

      Would it be worth the effort in blood, sweat, tears, and politics
      to leave a continuing legecy for those that follow?

      Ok, tell me why this is a bad idea?

      Bruce th
    • Betsy Delaney
      Well... When I ran CCXV, whenever anyone suggested a project or a task that needed doing, I gave the job (most of the time) to the person who volunteered the
      Message 2 of 19 , Mar 31 7:46 PM
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        Well...

        When I ran CCXV, whenever anyone suggested a project or a task that
        needed doing, I gave the job (most of the time) to the person who
        volunteered the suggestion.

        <evil grin>

        I'm certain I could find enough photos of my stuff this time to be able
        to get *something* into this version!!! And I'm a LOT less shy than I
        was...

        -b
        (ducking quick)

        wyldaires wrote:
        >
        > OK. I realize I maybe opening up a pandora's box but here goes. Is
        > it time for someone to publish a new "Costumemaker's Art" style book?

        [snip]

        > Ok, tell me why this is a bad idea?
        >
        > Bruce th

        --
        Betsy R. Delaney
        Web Mistress at large
        WebInvent.com, Inc.

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      • bbriant@juno.com
        Bruce th-- I m sorry, I don t recognize your signature there at the end of the message, or your e-mail address. It is a wonderful idea and being done to a
        Message 3 of 19 , Mar 31 9:45 PM
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          Bruce th--

          I'm sorry, I don't recognize your signature there at the end of the
          message, or your e-mail address.

          It is a wonderful idea and being done to a certain degree by the ICG
          Annual (Bruce and Nora Mai, and Carl Mami).

          Re doing it as a coffee-table type book--visit your local Borders or
          Barnes and Noble, and check out some of those coffee-table type books.
          Not the remaindered ones, but the ones on the regular shelves. Those
          puppies can run anywhere from $45 on up. (And a lot of them NEVER go on
          sale, boo hoo...Eiko, Eiko, wherefore art thou Eiko?)

          It would be very interesting to know what the original budget for TCA
          was--anyone, anyone?

          Alternatives--do a web site. An attractive possibility, but someone has
          to maintain it and update it on a regular (if infrequent) basis. I
          believe ICG archivist Carl Mami has been transferring still photos of
          Costumecon costumes to CD; this is somewhat similar, but it is not the
          book format you're interested in.

          Hardcover books with glossy paper for quality photos are expensive and
          likely to remain so. Until such time as a costuming fan wins a lottery
          and decides to blow $100K on this project, my guess is that a coffee
          table book about costuming will remain a project for a professional
          publisher.

          But...it happened once, which makes it easier to sell such a project
          again.

          Start buying those lottery tickets,
          Bruce B.

          "It's kind of neat to do the impossible."
          --Walt Disney


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        • mscip@inreach.com
          ... [...] ... Yes, it is possible. We already have a successful example. ... I m sure several people are willing to attempt it, but it is a rather daunting
          Message 4 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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            > From: "wyldaires" <Wyldaires@...>
            >
            > OK. I realize I maybe opening up a pandora's box but here goes. Is
            > it time for someone to publish a new "Costumemaker's Art" style book?
            >
            [...]
            >
            > Is it possible to create a project that would collect examples of our
            > art at its best in a beautifully rendered coffee book that would sell?
            >
            Yes, it is possible. We already have a successful example.

            > Is anyone willing to attempt it?
            >
            I'm sure several people are willing to attempt it, but it is a rather daunting
            project.

            > Would it be worth the effort in blood, sweat, tears, and politics
            > to leave a continuing legecy for those that follow?
            >
            Yes, it would be worthwhile.

            > Ok, tell me why this is a bad idea?
            >
            Expensive. To do a high-quality book like the previous Costumemaker's Art is an
            expensive proposition. First, you need an excellent photographer who can travel
            to numerous conventions with the right kind of equipment or get people to come
            to their studio for a photo shoot.

            After the photographer, you need a publisher that can do quality four-color
            printing of a practical lithographic quality. Not an easy thing to do. While
            numerous printers can do four-color printing, not all of them can do
            lithographic quality printing. This lowers the number of printers to about a
            quarter of the number.

            Money. Someone has to sink a lot of money into the operation up front. No
            photographer works for free when they have to buy film and pay for studio space.
            No printer prints books without a deposit of some sort.

            Quality costumes. You need quality costumes to take photographs of. Do we have
            the same clearcut quality costumers around that we had when the first book was
            done? I'm not as certain of that as others might be. Then again, I don't attend
            13-14 cons a year like a few lucky people have done in the past. ;-)

            To do the book right, you also have to hire quality editors to make sure that
            the right people are with the right costume(s) and that the photographs work
            properly.

            While doing a photographic book may look easy to most people, it is a more
            complicated process than a text-oriented book.

            So says a woman who has been in all stages of publications for 22 years, now.

            Summary: It's a good idea, but it is an expensive one. Have you got $30-40K for
            the startup costs? That's a minimum. You're probably looking at more like $100K
            to get anyone seriously interested.

            Until later--

            Carole
          • Ricky & Karen Dick
            The Costume-Maker s Art was published by a professional publisher. I don t think another one is going to happen again unless one of us wins the lottery, or a
            Message 5 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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              The Costume-Maker's Art was published by a professional publisher.

              I don't think another one is going to happen again unless one of us wins
              the lottery, or a professional publisher decides to take on such a project
              again. Color printing, even when done overseas, is expensive! Just ask
              Arlin Robins, who did the 1990 calendar. I think it was something like
              $10,000 to have those done, and she STILL undoubtedly has a lifetime supply
              of them.

              Maybe somebody should tweak the folks at Lark Books and say it's time for
              an update...?

              I have no idea if they would be "into" such a book or not. I have no idea
              how well the first one sold for them.

              --Karen
            • Ricky & Karen Dick
              ... The first book was done using existing photos taken by various fan photographers at conventions. I believe this could be done again, as most of those
              Message 6 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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                At 12:08 AM 4/1/02 -0800, you wrote:
                >First, you need an excellent photographer who can travel
                >to numerous conventions with the right kind of equipment or get people to come
                >to their studio for a photo shoot.

                The first book was done using existing photos taken by various fan
                photographers at conventions. I believe this could be done again, as most
                of those photographers are still around.

                >Quality costumes. You need quality costumes to take photographs of. Do we have
                >the same clearcut quality costumers around that we had when the first book was
                >done? I'm not as certain of that as others might be. Then again, I don't
                >attend
                >13-14 cons a year like a few lucky people have done in the past. ;-)

                OK, so Ricky and I were in the first book, and I can truly say that our
                best costuming work was made AFTER the book was published. Ice Spirits.
                Blood Rites, Malachite Throne.

                Jacqui Ward is still doing amazing surface embellished work. Sally Fink is
                doing stuff for the SCA that is every bit as stunning as her science
                fiction stuff.

                And there are other folks out there who are new since the last book was
                published (or had their skills take a quantum leap since the last book was
                published), or didn't submit last time because they didn't think their work
                was worthy. I'd like to see them in there, too.

                I don't attend as many cons as I did in my college days or Silicon Valley
                Corporate income days (I'm lucky if I make it to one fancon a year!). It's
                easier to do if you live on either coast, as many conventions are
                driveable. When I was attending 10+ conventions a year, most of 'em were in
                California, or neighboring Arizona. Also, there is definitely an East-Coast
                "convention circuit," where you can attend a lot of cons just by driving up
                and down the I-95 corridor from Virginia to Massachusetts.

                WorldCon is usually prohibitively expensive, because it usually involves
                flying (at a time of year when fares are at their peak!), and hotel rooms
                close to a large convention center in a major city are typically over
                $100/night. And then there's whatever $$$ (or $$$$) you have invested in
                your costumes.

                >Summary: It's a good idea, but it is an expensive one. Have you got
                >$30-40K for
                >the startup costs? That's a minimum. You're probably looking at more like
                >$100K
                >to get anyone seriously interested.

                Well, that's two people now that have said $100K, and it seems like a
                logical number to me, too.

                Black and white could be self-published, and done a lot cheaper, but it
                just doesn't capture the true spirit of the costumes. :-(

                --Karen
              • randwhit@aol.com
                In a message dated 4/1/02 7:16:48 AM US Mountain Standard Time, ... We now have an option that didn t really exist when the original Costume Maker s Art was
                Message 7 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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                  In a message dated 4/1/02 7:16:48 AM US Mountain Standard Time,
                  castleb@... writes:

                  > Well, that's two people now that have said $100K, and it seems like a
                  > logical number to me, too.

                  We now have an option that didn't really exist when the original "Costume
                  Maker's Art" was published.

                  It could be an e-book, published on CD-Rom.

                  This would reduce the number of potential buyers, but it would also reduce
                  the publication costs to volunteer labor plus repro costs.

                  The inital run could be very small to test the waters, followed by a
                  professional run of many more copies.

                  Worthwhile?

                  Randall
                • mscip@inreach.com
                  ... Hmmmmm. ... True on both counts. ... A possibility. The reason that I like a book, though, is that you can take it anywhere and show it to people. Until
                  Message 8 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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                    > From: randwhit@...
                    >
                    > In a message dated 4/1/02 7:16:48 AM US Mountain Standard Time,
                    > castleb@... writes:
                    >
                    > > Well, that's two people now that have said $100K, and it seems like a
                    > > logical number to me, too.
                    >
                    > We now have an option that didn't really exist when the original "Costume
                    > Maker's Art" was published.
                    >
                    > It could be an e-book, published on CD-Rom.
                    >
                    Hmmmmm.

                    > This would reduce the number of potential buyers, but it would also reduce
                    > the publication costs to volunteer labor plus repro costs.
                    >
                    True on both counts.

                    > The inital run could be very small to test the waters, followed by a
                    > professional run of many more copies.
                    >
                    > Worthwhile?
                    >
                    A possibility. The reason that I like a book, though, is that you can take it
                    anywhere and show it to people.

                    Until later--

                    Carole
                  • randwhit@aol.com
                    In a message dated 4/1/02 12:08:02 PM US Mountain Standard Time, ... it ... We may need to invent a Virtual Coffee Table to create a market for digital art
                    Message 9 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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                      In a message dated 4/1/02 12:08:02 PM US Mountain Standard Time,
                      mscip@... writes:

                      > A possibility. The reason that I like a book, though, is that you can take
                      it
                      > anywhere and show it to people.
                      >

                      We may need to invent a Virtual Coffee Table to create a market for digital
                      art books.

                      Randall
                    • Andrew T Trembley
                      From: ... digital ... Sony has a digital picture frame already. You transfer your pictures to a memory stick, plug it in, and the pictures
                      Message 10 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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                        From: <randwhit@...>
                        > We may need to invent a Virtual Coffee Table to create a market for
                        digital
                        > art books.

                        Sony has a "digital picture frame" already.

                        You transfer your pictures to a memory stick, plug it in, and the pictures
                        change at whatever interval you set.

                        andy
                      • mscip@inreach.com
                        ... Hmmmm. I thought we needed to do the virtual book to create a demand for the actual hard-bound book. ;-) Until later-- Carole
                        Message 11 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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                          > From: randwhit@...
                          >
                          > In a message dated 4/1/02 12:08:02 PM US Mountain Standard Time,
                          > mscip@... writes:
                          >
                          > > A possibility. The reason that I like a book, though, is that you can take
                          > it
                          > > anywhere and show it to people.
                          >
                          > We may need to invent a Virtual Coffee Table to create a market for digital
                          > art books.
                          >
                          Hmmmm. I thought we needed to do the virtual book to create a demand for the
                          actual hard-bound book. ;-)

                          Until later--

                          Carole
                        • Elaine Mami
                          . The reason that I like a book, though, is that you can take it ... True. And it s awfully hard to get your CD autographed by all of your friends. E
                          Message 12 of 19 , Apr 1, 2002
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                            . The reason that I like a book, though, is that you can take it
                            >anywhere and show it to people.
                            >
                            >

                            True. And it's awfully hard to get your CD autographed by all of your
                            friends.
                            <GBG>

                            E

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                          • Pierre & Sandy Pettinger
                            ... I don t think we d have a problem with quality of costumes. The problem is definitely money. Pierre ... Those Who Fail To Learn History Are Doomed To
                            Message 13 of 19 , Apr 2, 2002
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                              At 02:08 AM 4/1/02, you wrote:


                              >Money. Someone has to sink a lot of money into the operation up front. No
                              >photographer works for free when they have to buy film and pay for studio
                              >space.
                              >No printer prints books without a deposit of some sort.
                              >
                              >Quality costumes. You need quality costumes to take photographs of. Do we have
                              >the same clearcut quality costumers around that we had when the first book was
                              >done? I'm not as certain of that as others might be. Then again, I don't
                              >attend
                              >13-14 cons a year like a few lucky people have done in the past. ;-)


                              I don't think we'd have a problem with quality of costumes. The problem is
                              definitely money.

                              Pierre


                              >To do the book right, you also have to hire quality editors to make sure that
                              >the right people are with the right costume(s) and that the photographs work
                              >properly.
                              >
                              >While doing a photographic book may look easy to most people, it is a more
                              >complicated process than a text-oriented book.
                              >
                              >So says a woman who has been in all stages of publications for 22 years, now.
                              >
                              >Summary: It's a good idea, but it is an expensive one. Have you got
                              >$30-40K for
                              >the startup costs? That's a minimum. You're probably looking at more like
                              >$100K
                              >to get anyone seriously interested.
                              >
                              >Until later--
                              >
                              >Carole
                              >
                              >
                              >To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                              >ICG-D-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/

                              "Those Who Fail To Learn History
                              Are Doomed To Repeat It;
                              Those Who Fail To Learn History Correctly--
                              Why They Are Simply Doomed."

                              Achemdro'hm
                              "The Illusion of Historical Fact"
                              -- C.Y. 4971

                              Andromeda
                            • Jean Palmer
                              A friend of mine just commented that shy costumer is an oxymoron! I am a costumer. He declines to give his name. He is not a costumer. Tho, he does wear
                              Message 14 of 19 , Apr 3, 2002
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                                A friend of mine just commented that "shy costumer" is an oxymoron! I am a
                                costumer. He declines to give his name. He is not a costumer. Tho, he does
                                wear what I make for him with pride and panache.
                                Jean

                                Betsy Delaney wrote:

                                > <evil grin>
                                >
                                > I'm certain I could find enough photos of my stuff this time to be able
                                > to get *something* into this version!!! And I'm a LOT less shy than I
                                > was...
                                >
                                > -b
                                > (ducking quick)
                                >
                                >
                              • Ricky & Karen Dick
                                Jean, you d be amazed at how many of us are shy, even the ones who have participated in the big competitions for years and years. Being a costumer does not
                                Message 15 of 19 , Apr 3, 2002
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                                  Jean, you'd be amazed at how many of us are shy, even the ones who have
                                  participated in the big competitions for years and years.

                                  Being a costumer does not mean you are an extrovert by nature. Many of us
                                  are quiet folk / introverts who spend weeks and months doing tedious
                                  handwork to make our creations. Putting on a costume sometimes can make you
                                  some other fantasy character who is braver / more outgoing than you are.
                                  One of the shyest people I know in haunting does things in a gorilla suit
                                  that she would NEVER attempt in real life.

                                  Also along those lines, newbies, please give "elder statesmen" the benefit
                                  of the doubt when you try to speak to them at conventions. Some of the Big
                                  Names are not really snotty, but terminally shy. And some of them are
                                  having major cases of nerves backstage at a masquerade before their turn to
                                  compete onstage, so they may not be completely cordial to you if you try to
                                  speak to them then--try catching them in the halls at another time. I had
                                  to learn both of these things by trial-and-error when I was trying to speak
                                  to the costumers I idolized in the 70's and early 80's.

                                  --Karen

                                  At 02:46 AM 4/3/02 -0700, you wrote:
                                  >A friend of mine just commented that "shy costumer" is an oxymoron!
                                • Elaine Mami
                                  . Some of the Big ... Funny, but one of the people I annoyed when I was a newbie in the early 80s was this Karen person...... E
                                  Message 16 of 19 , Apr 3, 2002
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                                    . Some of the Big
                                    >Names are not really snotty, but terminally shy. And some of them are
                                    >having major cases of nerves backstage at a masquerade before their turn to
                                    >compete onstage, so they may not be completely cordial to you if you try to
                                    >speak to them then--try catching them in the halls at another time. I had
                                    >to learn both of these things by trial-and-error when I was trying to speak
                                    >to the costumers I idolized in the 70's and early 80's.


                                    Funny, but one of the people I annoyed when I was a newbie in the early 80s
                                    was this Karen person......

                                    E

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                                  • Ricky & Karen Dick
                                    Yeah, just like I annoyed Kathy Bushman (Sanders), Sally Fink, Sherri (Adrian) Butterfield, and Victoria Ridenour. :-) A&V in particular were very scary to
                                    Message 17 of 19 , Apr 3, 2002
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                                      Yeah, just like I annoyed Kathy Bushman (Sanders), Sally Fink, Sherri
                                      (Adrian) Butterfield, and Victoria Ridenour. :-)

                                      A&V in particular were very scary to approach, as their on-stage "personas"
                                      were kind of haughty, and they turned out to be the nicest people in the
                                      world who would gladly teach you ANYTHING you wanted to know about costuming.

                                      Adrian recently died of breast cancer, and it is a great loss to costuming.

                                      --Karen

                                      At 12:55 PM 4/3/02 -0500, you wrote:
                                      >Funny, but one of the people I annoyed when I was a newbie in the early 80s
                                      >was this Karen person......
                                      >
                                      >E
                                    • Pierre & Sandy Pettinger
                                      ... Not at all. I, Pierre, am actually very shy. (you can all stop laughing now!) I have to work very hard to be as outgoing as I am perceived to be. Pierre
                                      Message 18 of 19 , Apr 4, 2002
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                                        At 03:46 AM 4/3/02, you wrote:
                                        >A friend of mine just commented that "shy costumer" is an oxymoron! I am a
                                        >costumer. He declines to give his name. He is not a costumer. Tho, he does
                                        >wear what I make for him with pride and panache.


                                        Not at all. I, Pierre, am actually very shy. (you can all stop laughing
                                        now!) I have to work very hard to be as outgoing as I am perceived to be.

                                        Pierre

                                        >Jean
                                        >
                                        >Betsy Delaney wrote:
                                        >
                                        > > <evil grin>
                                        > >
                                        > > I'm certain I could find enough photos of my stuff this time to be able
                                        > > to get *something* into this version!!! And I'm a LOT less shy than I
                                        > > was...
                                        > >
                                        > > -b
                                        > > (ducking quick)
                                        > >
                                        > >

                                        "Those Who Fail To Learn History
                                        Are Doomed To Repeat It;
                                        Those Who Fail To Learn History Correctly--
                                        Why They Are Simply Doomed."

                                        Achemdro'hm
                                        "The Illusion of Historical Fact"
                                        -- C.Y. 4971

                                        Andromeda
                                      • Betsy Delaney
                                        Funny thing about this is, I m generally not shy around people I know and trust. Put me in a room with strangers, and I ll cling to a wall. Since I got into
                                        Message 19 of 19 , Apr 5, 2002
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                                          Funny thing about this is, I'm generally not shy around people I know
                                          and trust. Put me in a room with strangers, and I'll cling to a wall.

                                          Since I got into fandom in 1984 (you do the math - it makes my head
                                          hurt!) I've found I'm a lot less shy than I was, but mostly with the
                                          people who go to cons.

                                          There's a lot to be said for being with people who don't judge things
                                          simply by the way they look.

                                          Betsy

                                          > Not at all. I, Pierre, am actually very shy. (you can all stop laughing
                                          > now!) I have to work very hard to be as outgoing as I am perceived to be.
                                          >
                                          > Pierre

                                          --
                                          Betsy R. Delaney
                                          Web Mistress at large
                                          WebInvent.com, Inc.

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