The Awesome Side of SF Fandom

My time at Dragon*Con really opened my eyes to how dedicated and loyal some fans can be.

Here we have Amy Pond and the 11th incarnation of the Doctor. I saw fans who loved Star Wars, Star Trek, Final Fantasy, Borderlands, Halo and many others. Some were simple costumes and some went all out on the pageantry.

An incredible example of dedication is this one man’s quest to reforge a lightsaber.

So have you ever done anything as elaborate in a quest to be the ultimate fan?

14 Comments on “The Awesome Side of SF Fandom”

  1. In 1977, I dressed up as a jawa for Halloween, complete with small red lightbulbs in a blacked out face for my eyes (my dad soldered some wires to the bulbs, which he ran over the top of my head, down under my arm, and attached to a 9V battery that we’d painted to look like a power pack of some sort and hooked to one of his old leather belts slung bandolier-style over my shoulder. He had to use duct tape on my hair to keep the wires in place, and it hurt when it came off but was still completely worth it).

    Several cars drove around the block multiple times to get a look. Unfortunately there aren’t any photos – the flash washed out the “eyes” and just illuminated my face.

    Best costume ever!

  2. I used to be a Klingon. My liver demanded I stop. Klingons love to party. I suspect the last Klingon party I went to in 1994 never really ended.

  3. The best-kept secret in the Galaxy is that bloodwine at 1% alcohol is not the strongest drink of any humanoid planet. Nobody dares tell them.

  4. I do dress up for cons, but I’ve never gone as all-out as I did in 2005, when I made almost an entire crew of Firefly costumes, and convinced my friends to model them in the Balticon Masquerade.

    This picture shows most of the costumes, but the crowning jewel was Kaylee’s layered cake dress from Shindig.

    There was a bit of a shipping mix-up, so the skirt fabric didn’t arrive until 48 hours before the con (and it was all white, at that point). I didn’t sleep for two days, but man, it was so worth it.

  5. It’s not a costume, prop or anything like that, but I created a fan website about Philip Jose Farmer in 1996, shortly after I started collecting his books. I then started driving from Atlanta to Peoria once or twice a year to visit him. The website became his official site in 2001, which also led to…selling some of his paintings for him online, selling photocopies of unpublished manuscripts (which were eventually collected in the Subterranean Press anthology Pearls from Peoria–along with other rare stories and essays), organizing a celebration in Peoria after he won the Grand Master Award, then another for the 50th Anniversary of his first science fiction story, “The Lovers” and then annual FarmerCons, publishing the magazine Farmerphile from 2005 to 2009 and then The Worlds of Philip Jose Farmer anthology starting in 2010. I’m also currently selling most of his book collection for his heirs and creating a digital archive of his files. Oh, I forgot to mention my Farmer collection which is full of rarities, most of them signed, and is overflowing five bookcases.

  6. This one time I wrote a short story for a contest based on a ridiculous oil painting of a pegasus unicorn kitten for this website I like…..

  7. annalee, that dress is amazing! wow!

    The two cons I’ve gone to that were big enough to dress up for, I was also volunteering, so super-elaborate costumes were out – the most inconvenient thing I did was dye my hair. (okay, the short shorts were pretty inconvenient.)

    But I am proud of myself for being really efficient and minimalist – both costumes were put together out of my own belongings, the only things I paid for were hair dye and make-up, and they were both recognisable without interfering in my duties. Delirium was a lot of fun, with a dozen steel butterflies in my hair, multicoloured make-up and the aforementioned orange short shorts, but my favourite was the Corinthian, also from Sandman.

    I bleached my hair nearly white and used black and white face paint to draw toothy mouths on my eyelids. Then I wore sunglasses, which I periodically lowered while closing my eyes…

    nom nom nom…

  8. I’m a quilt historian, and a few years back I made a silk quilt in the style of the late Renaissance. And since I like the Harry Potter books, I crammed the thing with alchemical imagery that also appeared in the books: rats, wolves, unicorns, dogs, forests, the Philosopher’s Stone, and so on.

    I then entered it, on a whim, in the art show at The Witching Hour, a Harry Potter conference in Salem back in 2005…and was stunned to learn that the quilt won Best in Show!

  9. Maggie–that’s brilliant!

    The cleverest thing I ever did as part of a costume was pop some mirrored sunglasses out of their frames and stick them over my eyes with spirit gum.

  10. Maggie @9: Awesome.

    I was wearing Quaker plain dress for a while during college–I remember wearing it to ConFusion and trying to find a way to costume it. I ended up decorating an old pair of headphones and going as a Quaker Steampunk. After a while though it really squished my ears.

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