Shots Fired

On top of the many other sweet perks from my job, I get to meet and work with a lot of smart, talented, generous people from the Austin tech community. It is really inspiring how everyone helps each other out and supports one another. Last week, one of our factory-mates volunteered to do free headshots for anybody on the floor who wanted them, to use however we like! How awesome is that? Here’s how mine turned out:

It’s too bad about my face but at least my hair looks good (although, I will be getting a cut in a couple weeks). Big thanks to Danny Hotea!

Sorry about your arms, bro.

I actually wanted to a pre-Halloween reveal of my costume here on the blog but then I… just didn’t. So you get these after-the-fact photos, which is still cool. Alex and I decided that I would be Michonne from the comic/TV series The Walking Dead (which, if you’re not watching and/or reading, come get your life because it is crazy good) and he would be one of my zombie pack mules. If you’re not familiar with the series or wanting to get into it, I’m not really spoiling anything by telling you that Michonne is a dreadlocked, katana-wielding badass who has managed to survive alone and has a couple of “walkers” chained to her at all times as a deterrent from the rest of the undead. “But Bri, how does she keep them from attacking her?”, you may ask (no one asked). Because she’s CHOPPED OFF THEIR ARMS AND TORN OFF THEIR JAWS, that’s why.

My costume was fairly easy to put together – almost every piece of clothing was already in my wardrobe. The final three pieces of the puzzle were a cloak, a sword and the hair. The sword was easy, one of my roommates is a collector. The cloak took a little bit of hunting but I found one on eBay. It arrived and I realized it was wool and thought, “Great, I’m going to melt in this thing!” as at the time, we were still experiencing high temperatures in the mid to high 80s. But as luck would have it, a cold front came through Halloween weekend so I was nice and warm under my cloak as it dipped into the 50s that night.

For the hair, I thought about doing yarn braids in my hair for a more authentic look but I ultimately decided that it would end up taking too long, I’d probably get done with a quarter of my head before I said “(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻” and the whole thing would just be a waste of time and opted for a wig. I thought a dreadlock wig would be fairly easy to find but after hitting up several Halloween/party stores, I was disappointed by the selection. There were dreadlock wigs available at most that I went to but they ended up looking 1) cheap and terrible and not at all what they looked like on the packaging and/or 2) they were attached to some kind of “generic rasta guy” hat. Not exactly the look I was going for. My first choice should’ve been supporting a local business (especially since they’re literally down the street from me) because Lucy in Disguise with Diamonds hooked me up with a decent wig AND the guy who helped me also suggested this big chain for Alex to wear around his neck! I ended up taking one of the links apart and making it into a leash, so it was perfect. As Halloween got closer, I ended up going back to Lucy in Disguise for a cheap plastic sword, because I didn’t want the real one to get confiscated by cops if we ended up downtown later. The only thing left was the matter of figuring out how to get all this under a wig to avoid Predator-head (answer: wet hair, lots of twists, lots of bobby pins and a stocking cap).

Put it all together and what have you got? I don’t know, you tell me. Here I am with a floppy-ass plastic sword:

Photo credit: Me!

Photo credit: Noelle Shelp

Then I remembered the real sword!

Photo credit: Justin Turner Arthur

Also check out Alex’s makeup, which I applied following the official Walking Dead zombie makeup tutorial. I obviously couldn’t hack off his jaw, but he had the brilliant idea to at least simulate being unable to attack with a bandage. Of course, this made eating/drinking an adventure but I admire his commitment. He also had a perfect zombie shuffle.

Photo credit: Justin Turner Arthur

Photo credit: Justin Turner Arthur

After the party, we went downtown for a bit, where the few people that seemed to get our costumes were very enthusiastic. A couple people even asked for pictures. Is this what ComiCon feels like? Halloween: where everyone’s a cosplayer and the world is your con.

P.S. I got a like on Instagram from the official Walking Dead (the TV series) Instagram, which I didn’t know was A Thing until they liked my picture.