Tuesday, August 30, 2011

On Anonymity Online

Hiding one's identity online is a little more serious here than in America. Generally, we post our meetup photos, daily outfits, friends, etc. onto communities and blogs without censoring our faces. Here however, everybody always photoshops an image over everybody's face to conceal their identity. In fact, at meetups everybody still goes by their online handle rather than their real names! I am the only Lolita who goes by her real name because my online handle (Sparklewolfie) was too long for anybody to remember ^^;

One of the images used was a brown paper bag with two black eyes. It was a funny image to see a hobo-esque face with frilly clothing and fluffy hair exploding out from underneath it! Then one day, a couple of the Lolitas actually went and made physical bags and put them on their heads before taking photos at the next meetup!

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Remember this image?

So how does a group of bag-headed Lolitas look?

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Pretty rad, I think!

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Not only does this project help protect our identity, it is fun and silly, and still shows off the gorgeous dresses everybody is wearing!

Just an interesting little tidbit about Taiwanese Lolitas :)

How do you feel about protecting your identity online? How much of your personal information are you willing to share?
I think it would be interesting if Lolitas from other countries started making these paper bags ;) We could start a revolution of Paper Bag Head Lolitas! They're quite fun and vision is actually quite good while wearing a Paper Bag so awesome poses and group shots can be arranged :P
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Monday, August 29, 2011

Meetup Report at Alice Cafe

On Sunday, Aug. 28, Taipei Lolitas had a meetup at a cute cafe called Alice Cafe! I made a new skirt to wear because I felt like I'd worn all my Lolita outfits to previous meetups already... Perhaps it is time for a Closet Cleanout sale/trade post soon!

Anyway, I chose to use a more unusual color combination - Yellow and Orange. Yellow has slowly been making its way into Lolita over the years, but orange is still sadly lacking. There isn't even a tag for the color Orange on Daily Lolita! The fabric I had found at a fabric shop I visit fairly often. It was also available in more common colors such as blue and red, but I decided to try the yellow and bring out the orange accents instead!

The resulting outfit I am pretty satisfied with, despite it being a bit of a rush job made just the night before!

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Alice Cafe was quite cute and had lovely lighting due to large glass walls. Due to the typhoon, we couldn't sit outside but our seating area was right next to the floor-to-ceiling windows and got some lovely photos anyway.

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Coffee with Latte Art!

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Print Shot

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Shoe Shot

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Hand Shot

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Censor Shot!

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One-Legged Lolita Shot!

What is up with the bag head? I will explain in a later post! For now, I hope you enjoy the photos!
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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Pose! Accessory Time~

Common Lolita accessories such as purses and parasols are very useful and pretty. However, sometimes when it comes to photo time, it is difficult to figure out whether to stow them out of sight, make them a focal point, or just hold them casually if there is no clean place to set them down!

In this post I am going to cover bonnets, parasols, and purses for if you want to keep them in your photos.


Bonnets
Bonnets are quite eye-catching due to their large size and the fact that pretty much nobody other that historical re-enactors and Lolitas wear them! The easiest way to make them a focal point of your photo is to bring one or two hands to touch the brim.

Lolita idol Misako Aoki shows us how it's done:
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Here is another example of a full-body shot and one hand touching:
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As you can see, it is quite easy and effective! Just make sure you are not covering any part of your face :)

Parasols
Parasols are another accessory that stands out in the Western world because not many people carry them. Here in Asia, EVERYBODY has an umbrellasol, so it's really not so odd!

The simplest way to have your parasol in the photo is to close it and hold it to your side so it is visible, but not taking up a ton of room and/or blocking other people.
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If you are in a photo with very few people or doing a photoshoot with an open parasol, the best angle to show off the details is at a slight angle. Generally, the prints and ruffle detailing is on the outside of the parasol (though recently I have seen umbrellasols with designs on the insides - maybe Lolita Brands will catch that trend too!) so that is the main portion to show off. One or both hands on the handle both look elegant. Make sure not to slouch at all, or it will look like your parasol is weighing you down!
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Purses
Pretty much everybody has a purse. Always. When I first started documenting my Lolita outfits I would just stash my purse out of sight, but after getting cuter purses I wanted them to be in the photo with me! Here are some ways of holding your purse without looking awkward:

Crook of the arm:
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This works very well for short-handled purses. It brings the purse up to waist height and gives you something to do with one arm so it is not hanging limply, being dragged down by a purse full of bricks ;)

Coy Pose/Backpack Pose
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Holding your purse with both hands in front is a super cute look! It seems a little shy, but sweet.
If your purse is a backpack style such as AP's bunny bag, hang one strap on your shoulder and stand at an angle so the bag peeks out from behind your arm. Practicing the angle can help you get the perfect balance between showing your outfit and your backpack-style purse.

Wow, this post is quite image-heavy!

I hope this helped some of you out a little :)
Let's end with another image of accessories in photos!
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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Pose! Number 6!

It lives! The Poses series is coming back! The remaining number poses tend to be more "PuriKura" appropriate and less useful for daily Lolita type of photos, but I figured I would just finish the set anyway :)

Coming up I will also be posting poses with accessories (bonnets, purses, etc.), another standing pose, and sitting poses!



"Telephone"
Pretty much the only pose for the "6" hand sign is to make a mock call ^_^;;

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This is my best attempt at making it elegant! While it may be cute for PuriKura or photoshoots, this probably won't show up very often at all :P

Don't worry, future posts will contain more interesting information!! m(_ _)m

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Sunday, August 14, 2011

Photo Post! Sorry for Such a Delay!

Dear Readers,

Hi! I am still alive! It has been over a week since my last post, which translates to approximately FOREVER in Internet Time.

The reason for my absence was due to a maddening experience called "registering for school." Unlike the system I am used to in MN, USA, it did not consist of:
1) Congrats, you are accepted!
2) Register and pay for classes, usually online.
3) New student orientation (registration may or may not be combined with this step)
4) Wait for new school year to start

Instead, the process was more like this:
1) Congrats, you are accepted!
2) Pay tuition. The bill is the same regardless of whether you will take 9 or 25 credits
3) Bring several forms and a photo to school, stand in line for hours, get 10 seconds of attention and then ordered out of the way
4) Cannot actually choose your classes for 3 weeks
5) Choose classes day before Orientation
6) Orientation
7) School starts

Currently, I am on step 4 of this process :( It has taken up quite a bit of my time, and I apologize for it.

I am now working to finish the final touches on Ribbon and Lace Wonderland, so expect a sneak preview here!

Under the cut are some photos from QiXi when I went to the Metro Mall and happened upon a yukata event that was happening! Lots of yukata everywhere!

Image Source,Photobucket Uploader Firefox Extension
I got a photo with some strangers wearing yukata :)

Image Source,Photobucket Uploader Firefox Extension
A cute dog wearing a doggie yukata!! It loved all the attention XD
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Friday, August 5, 2011

QiXi, A Story of Love

Tomorrow (8/6) is QiXi (pronounced "chii-shii"), the seventh day of the seventh month on the lunar calendar. It is a Chinese holiday similar to Valentine's Day in the west and is therefore sometimes called "Chinese Valentine's Day."


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Originally, on this day girls would show off their domestic skills and pray for a good husband, but now it is quite similar to the commercialized Valentine's Day with sales on couples' goods such as matching T-shirts and high-end chocolates. There are many variations on the legend of Qixi, but I would like to share the version I heard as a child!

NiuLang (Cow Herder) was a hard-working boy. One day he happened upon seven fairies who had come down from Heaven to bathe and play in a lake. He secretly stole one set of clothes because without the clothes, the fairy would be unable to return to Heaven. When the fairies were done playing, they left one by one until the seventh sister was left searching for her clothes. At this time, NiuLang came out of hiding and asked her to marry him.

At first, the fairy ZhiNu (Weaving Girl) was frightened. But NiuLang was very kind and gentle and eventually she agreed. They were happily married and lived together for a long time and had two children. One day while cleaning, ZhiNu happened upon a trunk and looked inside and found her fairy clothes. She had to return to Heaven and resume her fairy duties now that she had found them, so she put them on and flew back up to Heaven.

NiuLang was heartbroken but was unable to follow his wife. At this time, his ox spoke to him and told NiuLang to kill him and put on his skin. It would give him the power to follow ZhiNu up to Heaven. NiuLang was very sad that he had to kill his ox, but the ox insisted so NiuLang did as he asked, took each of his children in a basket on either side of a pole he carried across his shoulders, and put on the skin.

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He flew up after ZhiNu and was almost going to catch up! But the Heavenly Mother saw this and was upset because NiuLang and ZhiNu's love was interfering with their duties. She cut a huge river/chasm across the sky so they would be unable to be reunited. Both of them were so sad that in the end Heavenly Mother took pity on them and decreed that on the seventh day of the seventh month all the magpies of the world would join together to form a bridge across the chasm and NiuLang and ZhiNu would be together for a day.

So from that day on, NiuLang stays on his side of the galaxy with his children and ZhiNu stays on her side, then on QiXi they get to reunite as a family for a day.


Image Source: Google - the original post seems to be broken :o
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There are many more variations if you would care to Google for them :) This is just the one I grew up hearing. In celebration of NOT commercializing this holiday, here are some "domestic arts" to try!

*Fruit carving - making food look as good as it tastes!
*Embroidery (I have also heard that throwing a needle into a body of water on this day to see if it floats is an indication of whether you will be good at embroidery or not!)
*Weaving
*Cooking (presentation is key!)
*Flower Arrangements
*Handmade arts such as painting, drawing, cards, calligraphy, etc.
*Deco! Completely not traditional in any way, but I think it should count as a domestic art because it makes normal things much cuter!

Do you have any ideas for QiXi or how you would celebrate? Even if you don't have a sweetheart to celebrate with (join the club!) it can be a good time to pray for good husband in the future!
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