Making My First Cosplay: Red Warlock

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This weekend I will be heading to Tulsa for my second ever comic convention at Wizard World. I’ll be there just one day on Saturday and wanted to dress up. My first ever con was a small affair but I regret having gone civilian. This time around I’ll be prepared.

First off I needed to have an idea of what I wanted to do. I’m by no means an expert at costuming so simple would likely be better. At the same time I wanted to do something that would take a little from each of the classic cosplay crafting schools like armoring, sewing, and modification.


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After some soul searching I decided I wanted my first cosplay to be a Red Mage from Final Fantasy. They can be nearly as simple or complex as you want them to be and they have a little bit of everything in the costuming. In addition it had some personal significance for me. I am also going to add a twist of Destiny. My wife and I have been hooked on the game since we picked up our pre-order at the midnight release.

So instead of just the classical Red Mage with a cape and feathered hat I’ll be doing a robe like the Destiny Warlocks and bits of armor like the Red Mage to create the Red Warlock.

I went back to Pinterest and looked for images, tutorials, and gathered them all on a board. From there I sketched out my plans and talked about it with my wife.

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Firstly: Robes

Wearing any costume in Oklahoma is playing a big sweaty game of Russian Freedom Roulette. In the past for Halloween I have dressed as Doctor Strange, caped Greenlantern, and a bodysuit skeleton. All three made me want to jump in an icy pond for some relief after a few hours and here I am planning on a full day in the thing.

 

So to make the robes work I decide to make them into separate piece. One section would be more of a cape and the other would be more of a kilt. That should leave me plenty of breathing room while still letting me look all magic-y. Think Vader’s robe-cape thing.

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Secondly: Other Clothes

Under my robe/cape assembly I wanted to have something that would cover me but still be breathable. To do this I am going to wear athletic spandex. I’ll buy a few sizes up (clothing made for people who like seeing their feet rarely stays in place on bodies that are curv-icious-ly designed).

 

After that a pair of walking court shoes and a pair of jeans should protect my decency.

 

Thirdly: Make Ups

Because I am completely secure in my masculinity and have no need to protect it (as I will already be wearing a dress and tights to prove this), I’m going to have my wife blue me. One of the races in Destiny is the Awoken (which is what we play as). She and I will do a little light face painting.

Nothing crazy, but we will put a light coat of purplish blue on our faces, necks, and ears to give us that space elf vampire look. Then I’m going to spray a gray/white temporary hair coloring into my hair to finish the look.

 

Forthly: The Big Guns

Red Mages typically flaunt around the battlefield with a sword and destructive spells. I’m not 100% that I want to track lightning bolts around the convention center all day and a sword + my maturity + crowds of people to smack = my wife dragging me out by the ear. So probably a bad choice for me. Instead I’ll favor the tried and true space weaponry of Nerf with a gun mod.

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I looked at a lot of different models, read several reviews, and tried out several different weapons at the store. I gave up not sure or overwhelmed with choices. Then I played Destiny. I figured out that with all the weapons I have access to in the game I always end up using the handcannon. So that actually helped me in two regards: 1) the Nerf pistol mods are much less threatening to the newbie and 2) they are way cheaper.

 

So I looked at three different models. All of them seemed cool but I have decided to use the Mangus. It doesn’t have the revolver action of some of the other pistols but even they don’t have the chamber at the back of the gun like in the game. The Mangus is the right amount of futuristic cool and doesn’t take much to paint up the way I want. Also with only three rounds I can’t get into too much trouble.

 

Lastly: All Things Armor

In addition to my robes, I wanted to do a little bit of foam work to make some armor. I’ll be adding a pauldron to my shoulder, shin guards on my boots, and vambraces for my arms. To capture the Final Fantasy feel I want to make a cloth tricorn hat with a big feather.

 

I wanted to do a helmet instead of a hat however I don’t think I have the time or skill to try it out yet. I did find some excellent tutorials online from Impact Props out of Norman, Oklahoma to show me how to think about constructing a helm. With that and some time I think I could make the piece.

 

My wife is doing a Hunter from Destiny and we found a complete walk through for her on Laura’s Cosplay Blog. Her’s will have several of the same components as mine. Foam armor, a cape, etc.

 

Well that’s the plan. Check back for updates and see how things went.

 

What was or will be your first cosplay?

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