Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Cutie Moon Faire: For Love of Magical Girls
I have a deep and abiding love of Magical Girls.
Magical Girls are a genre of Japanese fantasy, for people who don't know, and their stories center around girls - ages about nine to fifteen - who are given special abilities and use them to transform and, usually, to battle for justice. The simplest stories have two dimensional forces of evil which want to remove something from the world - love, or mercy, or energy. There is often a lot of maniacal laughter, long speeches about how horrible light or kindness are, transformation sequences which save budgets, and a mysterious love interest who can be either pursuer or rescuer. On the more complicated end, the stories interrogate ideas of power and freedom in the lives of some of girls who are simultaneously powerful and powerless. They explore issues of identity, romance, and individuation during the complicated promise of a Magical Girl becoming an adult woman, who has different stories. The closes US analog is Jem, where Jerika has to face issues of honesty, integrity, and identity as she tries to co-exist with her more famous form, Jem, but Jerika is an adult woman as seen by a pre-teen (most of the plot holes vanish if you're twelve) instead of a peer who has been inexplicably given both the power and the responsibility of an adult. Sailor Moon is the Magical Girl associated with the Cutie Moon event, and she is a fine example of the genre; a girl with many faults, who doesn't seem at all special, but who under it all is a Princess who will end up saving the world.
I was never a huge Sailor Moon fan, though I've seen enough of the anime to have a working knowledge of it. My gateway Magical Girl was Kaitou Saint Tail, a largely mundane Magical Girl who steals in order to bring about justice. I was shortly thereafter introduced to Wedding Peach, which is an extremely fluffy Sailor Moon analog complete with these amazing speeches on the part of the main character about the weather and how the villain she is about to fight has offended the universe. It's complete fluff, but so enjoyable. After that I did a quick run through a lot of manga, including Card Captor Sakura, which is aimed at younger girls, until I hit the twisted and adult end of the genre with a hard slap into one of my favorites, Princess Tutu. The one which really gave me insight into the recursive nature of the genre, and the profound aspects of character growth possible, was Puella Magi Madoka Magica, which offers up a main girl like no other, and a Möbius strip of story which is so delightful I finished it and wanted to watch it all over again. I love Magical Girl stories and the powerful girls whose stories are told in so many wonderful ways.
The Cutie Moon Faire offers a lot of different things inspired by Sailor Moon, and I had a ball putting together a look with a few pieces, including one lovely gift. The hair is a really fun release at the Faire from from Wasabi Pills with adorable upswept pigtails and a bang line that I really enjoyed. Usually her bangs are heavier, but this has the little peep hole I could show off a forehead jewel from Souzou Eien in, and it also works beautifully with diadem style crowns. I paired it with cosmetics from Adore & Abhor with stars across the cheeks and a soft, bright red lip to match the red accents to my look. The look itself is an amazing recolor of Fateplay's Sailor Fuku release at the Faire, and I am as in love with it now as I was the last time I wore it - perhaps even more with the pink, yellow, and red color styling. It comes with the wand I'm wearing, and that wand comes with the most amazing HUD which lets me spin around and blow hearts at everybody! I love it so~! I'm also wearing the included boots, which I think would look a touch better if my legs were longer, but which I quite like nonetheless; they have a simple, streamlined style which look like they poofed out of ribbons. The stockings above them come from Kyoto Couture and include the cute bows at the sides of the thighs; if I could get this ribbon style in a SLink adapted form, I would be one happy Faerie. The final touch which sealed the deal is this adorable purse - a gift from someone who made it into the Faire before I did - from Atomic. When I finally got into the faire I was able to try my hand at landing a few others, and ended up with five of the six - which isn't bad at all. I like the stuffed head dangling from the front, and I love how the shoulder band was made, as it let me adjust the purse for different shots so that it always looked natural. Very well done indeed!
( More pictures here. )
Skin: Izzie's, Irene
Hair: Wasabi Pills, Chibi (Cutie Moon)
Jewel: Souzou Eien, Precious Bindi
Ears: Illusions, Seelie Ears
Eyes: De La Soul, Rainbow
Eyelashes 1: SLink, Mesh Lashes
Eyelashes 2: Flugeln Brise, 05-A
Blush: Adore & Abhor, Princess Star Blush
Lipstick: Adore & Abhor, Fluff Lips
Wings: Deviance, Sidhe
Hands: SLink, Rigged Mesh Hands
Nails: Pin Me Down, Neon
Outfit: FATEplay, Rena (Cutie Moon)
Purse: Atomic, Scout Bag (Gacha - Cutie Moon)
Stockings: Kyoto Couture, Socks No.2
Location: Skyrah: ReiKai
Light Settings: TOR, FOGGY Pink Chapterhouse
Water Settings: Mirror Water
Photographed by Deoridhe Quandry
Post processing: Cropping, only