All posts by lunaerasylvarii

Best Reads of 2016

Before I start I will confess that I had a bit of a reading dry spell for most of this year. It’s ok, it wasn’t serious and I’m certain that I’m over it now and will be taking measures to ensure it doesn’t happen again. 

What I have read this year has mainly been within the last 3 months, I’ve got back into a natural rhythm for devouring books. A few of these have been lucky finds on Kindle (kept me going while travelling) and others have been sitting on my shelf most of the year waiting to be read. 

Here are the books that cured my reading slump:

Sol.Terra – The Leap by C.A. Harland

This was a nice light novel to pick up and get back into reading again. It’s kinda like a detective story set in space – our main characters, Pia the waitress and Cal the government bounty hunter, meet on Earth (Sol.Terra) and journey through the universe together catching otherwordly criminals and trying to piece together clues that may lead to something larger. It’s fast paced, sometimes leaping ahead so far it almost feels rushed in parts, but that can be forgiven since there is enough to spark the imagination in the form of strange planets and new alien species.

It has a sequel – Sol.Terra, The Originals – but it works just as well as a standalone. Both are available on Amazon for Kindle and in paperback. 

Nod by Adrian Barnes

An ‘end of the world’ tale with a different angle. What if suddenly you couldn’t sleep anymore? This answers that question with a somewhat plausable scenario. Following a protagonist who is one of the few still able to sleep we are shown the slow break down of the every day that quickly descends into hysteria. It’s well thought out, somewhat follows facts, and adds in a surprising adversary who keeps our protagonist on his toes. I’ve read a lot of apocalyptic themed books and after a while they can become a tad ‘samey’, however this one was a welcome change with interesting ideas and a very clever ending.

End of the World Running Club by Adrian J. Walker

Another world-ending scenario. We’re introduced to Ed, he’s pretty lazy and a bit of an arse, oh and it’s up to him to change his ways and do the right thing for him and his family to get through the end of days. It’s a tough journey and there are many obstacles – it’s now a dog-eat-dog world out there – this isn’t so much a story of survival as it is personal growth. Be prepared to shed some tears though as this one finds ways to pull at the heartstrings.

The Survivors Club by J. Carson Black

This is a change from my usual selection of genre. A mystery/thriller following a sheriff with an exceptional memory as she investigates the murder of a former cop. There are several suspects and some extremely curious crimes along the way that have you swapping suspicion like pass-the-parcel and just when you think you know who-dunnit the plot twists again. It’s intriguing enough although it is slow in places and there are elements that seemed redundant to the plot, but maybe that’s just another clever device to keep us off the scent of the killer.

Day Four by Sarah Lotz

What better way to spend New Years Eve than on a luxury cruise in the Caribbean. This book is less dream holiday and more nightmare vacation however. Each chapter – named similar to tarot cards “The Angel of Mercy””The Witch’s Assistant” etc.- sees the events unfold from a different character’s perspective as their ship undergoes a bermuda-esque experience. The suspense is incredible, I read this in a night as I couldn’t put it down, it draws you in until you are as stuck on the ship as its passengers. This is not a sequel to Lotz’s first novel – The Three, but it does take place in the same story universe with our unlucky few recalling its events and characters. While it leaves more questions asked than answered (as did The Three) theres a chance that some may still be given as both books are going to be given the tv series treatment. 

So there they are. Those are the best books I have read this year. If I hadn’t gone through my non-reading phase there would probably be more – some of these may not have even made it onto this post. I do know that this time next year I’ll have a much harder time deciding my favourite reads as I have a huge stack of books to get through – I may not have been reading but that didn’t stop me from accumulating more books. I’m still a bibliophile.

Happy reading and Happy New Year!

– Dee

That time I went to Comic Con and didn’t have to leave the country

This was my first time attending MCM Comic Con in Glasgow even though it isn’t exactly new here anymore, this just happened to be the first time I managed to book the day off work – and it was so worth it.

My usual partner in crime accompanied me (thank goodness for wee cousins – I slipped on the footbridge and would have gone down if not for her – she saved my life guys!!!) and we managed to see pretty much everything we wanted thanks to previous con experience. We’re pros at this now.

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On first impressions the event is much smaller than its London counterpart, which is understandable as it is still a new addition to the MCM lineup, but it is very well organised and the layout works very nicely with plenty of room to move between stalls even when it got really busy (once general admission crowds had gained entry). There were still plenty of areas in the exhibition centre left unused by the event so hopefully in the years to come we may see some expansion – perhaps a larger eSports or Vidfest UK area or a Pop Asia addition?

As always our first goal was the comic village. Pro tip: going here first allows you to peruse stalls without pushing through swarms of people, gives you a chance to have a conversation with the artists themselves without them feeling they are ignoring potential customers/fans, and also means that you may be the first sale for a new release which can be pretty special. I came prepared with a list of artists I knew I had to visit and managed to see all of them plus met some new artists who caught my attention with some really amazing work. There is something for everyone in the comic village so even if you don’t read comics or indies the huge variety of art styles and trinkets on offer might find a fan in you.

IMG_0001.JPG[I have a soft spot for zombie teddies – they need love too!]

I am particularly fond of buying mystery packs when I see them – not everyone has them on offer, but the artists that do usually pack a nice selection of goodies into a little bag for around £5-10 and they are always more than worth it. This year I bought 2. The first was from Katie White Art and had some super cute A5 prints, a sticker and a badge.

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The second was from AnythingComic (my go-to for mystery pack goodness) and as always it was cram-packed with 2 A3 prints, 2 A5 prints, a handful of mini prints and stickers and a lil bag of haribo. There’s a good reason I try to find this stall every con.

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While walking around the convention we noticed a lot of people carrying boxes – MyGeekboxes and Zboxes primarily. It took us a while to find the stall but when we did it seemed like everyone had cleaned them out already until the guys told us they were in the process of re-stocking. Some kind directions and a little patience later and we too were walking around carrying boxes. As I already recieve the MyGeekbox I opted for the Zbox, curated by Zavvi. These were really good value at £5 a box and although not filled with the same amount of goodies the monthly box would have they were a nice surprise.

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Now time for the panels. Sometimes at Comic Con there are lots of panels we want to go to that overlap and end up with us splitting up and meeting later, others there are no panels that tickle our fancy and we just wait for the masquerade. This was almost one of the latter occasions but one sounded interesting enough to give a try. We arrived a little early and caught the last half of the Reo Kurosu panel which was a nice insight into anime production and the difficulties of editing for different regions. The Building Better Dreams and Nightmares panel was an informative talk with 3 authors about where scifi and fantasy genres can go next. They had some great advice for budding writers on the pitfalls of self-publishing, also they agreed that technology is so far advanced now it’s quite easy to predict what might be possible in the next 20/30 years making it much easier for writers to create very realistic worlds. This panel probably wasn’t to everyones taste (someone behind me seemed bewildered why we were just listening to three people talking about writing books), but I did enjoy it and I now have a couple of books added to my to-read list.

It’s almost tradition now that we stay to watch the Cosplay Masquerade at the end of the day, we were already in our seats from the last panel and had a pretty good view. Glasgow has some very talented cosplayers and lots of them took to the stage – there were also far more performances and skits than we are used to at the London con, it was a real treat.

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The nice thing about going to a con in your own city is that you can go home straight after, play with all the cool stuff you got and collapse into your own bed for a well earned rest (after you’ve tidied up all the stuff you got).

Here is my haul from this year, mostly comics and art again.

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If you want to check out some of these artists or comic books here’s where to find them:

Kelly Angel – AnythingComic

Katie White Art

Naniiebim

Lyndon White

Card Shark Comics

Tpub comics

Accent UK Comics

 

Dee Reviews – TeeFury

I don’t know about you, but I love a good sale. So when I receive an email with a code for 30% off – including on sale items – I’m definitely not going to miss out. Usually these excited online bargain hunts end in disappointment for one of several reasons: an item I like is already sold out; items are only available in small sizes; international orders aren’t included. I had no such woe this time. 

TeeFury is bursting with awesome geek clothing. It’s slightly overwhelming just how many t-shirt designs are available. Thankfully I have reached my t-shirt limit for this month (see my instagram feed for a Primark haul) so I focussed my search on the more elusive apparel on the site – namely skirts and leggings.

I’ve had my eye on the Pokémon range of skirts since they were first revealed on the site. My favourite design is the ‘Lavender Town’ skirt adorned with ghost types such as Haunter and Ghastly, sadly I’m not alone and this has been sold out for quite a while. The grass type counterpart is still in stock however. And with sizes ranging to 4XL (around size 18/20 UK) there was no disappointment to be had. While I was at it I had a browse of the sale items and added a pair of the ‘Geek Chic’ leggings to my cart (this design is no longer available). After checking the sizing chart I ordered the 4XL mainly just to be on the safe side – I’d rather something were too big than too small. Then all that was left was to pay and wait for it to arrive. 

I ordered on June 29th and my package arrived (after customs holding) on July 14th – just over two weeks later, which is pretty fast. I love the patterns already.

The fabric used for both items is the same – silky soft and pretty stretchy (similar to swimwear fabric), and the designs show up quite vibrantly. I love the little happy Oddishes on the skirt, super cute. The skirt fits perfect if a little big but I don’t mind that at all, it’s so much more comfortable that way. The leggings are a little bit snug – the waist fits well, a little loose like the skirt – but below the knee it seems to get pretty tight which I think is down to what I call ‘tall people sizing’. I’m just around 5’2 and my calves are proportionally curvy like the rest of me. On a slimmer, longer leg these leggings would probably fit really well. On me they bunch at my ankles a fair bit. I’m sure though after wearing them a few times the fabric will stretch to fit, it’s great they used such a forgiving material.


Sale or no sale the quality of TeeFury clothing is pretty darn good and I’d definitely buy from the site again. The best way to keep up with their sales and exclusive designs is to sign up to their mailing list – it does mean receiving several emails per day from them but it pays off when you can use promo codes in conjunction with sales they already have running.

If you want to check them out head over to: TeeFury.com

Dee Reviews – MyGeekBox

I was so excited opening this month’s box. I had no internet for a while and hadn’t checked what the theme was so it was a nice surprise. I think this is probably one of the better boxes of this year – I’m pretty happy with every item inside unlike previous months which have had items from fandoms that I’ve never really been interested in.

First off, this lil guy was at the top and the first thing I pulled out –

I love Slimer! He was always my favourite in the movies and in the Ghostbusters animated series. Who wouldn’t like that cheeky grin? I also love plushies so he gets to join the ranks on my shelves, I’ll possibly sit him between Gengar and the facehugger.
Next up is my new fave toy to annoy people with. 

 Ok, so it’s still in the box – for now. It won’t be long until I’ve taken it out and tested it, just to make sure it makes all the right noises. And possibly to see if it will change the tv channel. Or turn on the microwave.

And then there was a blind box! A Kidrobot x DC mini series blind box.

 And I got this dude –  

 Look at his wee smiley face! He’s just so happy to be included with all the big names he doesn’t care how many people won’t recognise him or know where he made his first appearance *cough*Mystery Men comics*cough*. Don’t you worry Blue Beetle, there’s a spot on my shelf for you.

And on the subject of comic books MyGeekBox have packed the first issue of Empress, a new series from Marvel’s Icon line. 

 I’m going to really enjoy reading this. The series is planned to have 3 arcs spanning six issues each which should make it a short but sweet addition to any reading list. If I do start to collect this series I will make sure to review and share my thoughts.

Not so excited about the next item . . . 

Yes I did say I was happy with every item. I am. And yes I am quite surprised that a dvd was included in the box. And I do love horror and gore. But I’m also extremely squeamish so I’ll have to work up to watching this. Possibly after a few drinks and with my bestie sat beside me so we can share in the torture ^_^

Last but not least – the tshirt. 

 Thumbs up all round. My only issue with this is the size. Back when MyGeekBox was still fairly new it was quite simple to contact them and ask for a size change – in fact this is what I did after having the wrong size ordered for me, I’m pretty sure I mentioned it in my previous review on this service. It’s not so easy nowadays. After a complication with an order at christmas we had to unsub then re-sub to fix the issue, but mum made the same size mistake. When we contacted them we were told the only way to change it would be to unsub then re-sub with the new size selected. We had just gone through all that, plus were already receiving a box with 2 shirts in the smaller size so we just never bothered. I have a few options open to me though – I could try to slim down so the shirts fit better; I could get my craft kit out and turn the shirts into custom cushion covers or wall art; or I can sell them on and make some pocket money. I do like all my shirts so I’m sure I’ll figure something out from the first two options.

Overall MyGeekBox is still value for money – 3 items alone bring it to your monthly sub price. Yes ok so it can be hit-or-miss with some of the themes and items they choose but based on the last two months alone, especially this one, they are gradually improving at quality control and pleasing their customers. I for one am looking forward to what next month brings.

If you want to check out this subscription service for yourself simply go to mygeekbox.co.uk

Box Opening – Doll Chateau Andre

After 5 months of patient waiting the newest member of my bjd tribe has arrived. It’s not unusual for such wait times in this hobby –  some companies can take up to a full year for the production/shipping of their dolls – but it is most definitely worth it.

I ordered a Doll Chateau Andre during their special event through their dealer Angelesque, based in the UK. The main reason I didn’t order direct is because I have been stung by ridiculous custom charges before and I really don’t want to start associating incoming dolls with a feeling of dread. Communication with Angelesque is also a pleasure, Carol is very speedy with replies and updates regularly on facebook with photos of shipments that have arrived at her office. This is how I knew my demon was coming home. 

I don’t think I’ve had such a well packaged doll since I ordered Rikku from Fairyland. The box was in a parcel envelope so there was absolutely no way for it to be tampered with. Inside was my little bundle.

  
I love the little pouch that Doll Chateau have been including with their event dolls. I don’t know if they do this for all their smaller dolls but it really gives it a special touch. Andre came in this lovely burgundy suede-ish pouch that has silky lining on the inside. Its really well padded too so no bumps can hurt the resin inside.

  
Next is the bubblewrap mummy. When I saw the little feet poking out the bottom I had to laugh, it looks like the doll had a bit of trouble and got stuck in there.

  
And here she is! Also inside the box was an envelope with Doll Chateau’s stamp, their equivalent of a certificate of authenticity, and a business card from Angelesque.  

I already love this little doll. The resin feels so nice and there are no visible seams – exactly the quality I expect from this company. There’s also very little odour. I’ve had dolls that have had such a strong scent of fresh resin I’ve had to let them air out, but not this doll. They must have been using some psychic sense at DC headquarters because they gave her yellow eyes just like my OC. 

Ok so onto posing:

   
 
No complaints here. This lil critter poses like a dream. They have definitely gotten a lot better at stringing the tinies – I remember having problems trying to make my Doll Chateau Ada stand straight out of the box. The tail is attached by magnet and is definitely a huge help for standing, it offsets the balance of the wings really well. With a bit of practice I could probably get a standing pose without the tail, the body has a natural balance which is nice to work with.

So I can now present to you the demon form of my mischevious OC Ophelia. She may be blank but she has plenty of personality.

  

Best reads of 2015

I have read an awful lot of books this year. This is not unusual, in fact this year I’ve actually read less than I usually would have. I think I may have been having an ‘off ‘ year.

Nevertheless there were a few books that outshone the others – the ones that kept me up all night and into the wee hours unable to stop turning pages, desperate to know what happens next.

These are my best reads this year:

 

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

This is by far the best book I have read in an extremely long time. It’s set in a dystopian future where the only way to escape a harsh reality is to enter virtual reality. Your main character is a nobody, just some guy who happens to be really good with computers, and he takes on a mega-corporation in a battle to save virtual reality from their greedy hands. This story is easy to read, fast paced and packed with so many tasty tidbits of 80’s nostalgia it draws you further into its world until you realise it’s 4 am and you can’t put it down until you know how it ends. It doesn’t disappoint. This may be the opportune time to get your hands on a copy of this book as Cline has sealed a deal to have it adapted into a movie – I really can’t wait to see how it turns out. His second novel Armada has also had a pretty successful release and I’ll be looking forward to reading it as soon as I get down to the bookstore.

 

The Explorer + The Echo by James Smythe

I’ll start with The Explorer. Our main man is a reporter who has been chosen to join a team of scientists and astronauts on a journey into an uncharted region of space and to document everything to send back home. It all goes wrong from the beginning. This story has twists and turns and pretty gross descriptions of events. There is one section in particular which was very hard for me to read, I’m pretty squeamish and this added to the horror and feeling of dread that permeates every chapter. It left me wanting more.

Hop on over to the sequel, The Echo. Some time has passed and now another team of scientists and astronauts are ready to head out into space and investigate exactly what happened to the previous mission. There is a lot more sciencey stuff happening in this book, possibly because it’s main focus is on scientists and not a journalist. For some this may lead to a few problems – mainly being that some of the science isn’t quite factual. Don’t let this deter you from reading. There’s enough dread and suspense to make up for these little faults, and trust me, they are tiny. I read both these books in one very long night. It was worth it. And the good news is there should be two more additions to this series to wrap up the intricate storylines as these are part of Smythe’s Anomaly Quartet.

 

Station Eleven by Emily St.John Mandel

It’s so hard to try and describe this one, I’ve tried to three times now. Just read it . . .

. . .only kidding – but seriously you must read it. The paths of the main characters weave together in what I can only describe as perfect storytelling. The main thread is of a mysterious virus that kills quickly, those who are immune must go to the only safe haven which may or may not just be a rumour. The aftermath is seen from the viewpoints of several survivors all making their way to this place of safety. I really can’t say anything else, I can’t do justice to how wonderful this book is. The ending is like a revelation, bulbs start lighting up, everything falls together. It’s brilliant.

 

The Girl With All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

Melanie is 10 years old. She is being studied by the military because she is infected. This is a nice little twist on your run-of-the-mill infection story. Melanie is the key to finding a cure for the infection, but it may not be what you would expect. It’s really lovely to see things from a child’s veiwpoint for once, there’s a lot more hope and less of the doom plus it’s still slightly chilling enough to whet your horror tastebuds.

 

And Then Emily Was Gone by John Lees and Iain Laurie

Here’s a wee change for the lineup, a graphic novel. Did anyone chance upon a prologue of this little beauty on Free Comic Book day? This is a creepy little comic about a private investigator who is asked to find out more about the disappearance of a young girl in the Orkney Islands. There’s a folk legend of Bonnie Shaw, a bogeyman who takes children in the night after their parents make a wish. Iain Laurie’s art style is perfect for the story and adds to the unsettling theme. Nothing is what it seems. If you live in the UK it might be a tad difficult getting your hands on a hard copy, I had to use the American Amazon site to get to the ComixTribe section – there’s very little choice left on the UK version. If you’re happy reading an ebook version check out the ComixTribe twitter – they recently had a link for their newsletter and for signing up they gave away 5 ebook versions of some of their popular graphic novel series – one of which was And Then Emily Was Gone.

 

Happy reading and Happy New Year! May 2016 bring you books you can’t put down ^_^

– Dee

That time I went to comic con and barely bought anything.

It has been two weeks since London MCM Comic Con so before the con blues set in fully I’d like to share about my time there and why it’s something I look forward to.

This past con will have been my 4th and I really wish I had been going longer because the atmosphere is amazing, I guess I’m pretty thankful for having an actual job now that allows me to do things I love. The dream is, and always will be, to go to San Diego Comic-Con or NY Comic-Con but until then London is the big event.

Going to comic con is a full weekend affair for us (my cousin and I). We’ve done the Saturday only stint and while we had great fun it really sapped us since we travelled on the over-night bus service. It just makes sense to attend for the full weekend so we can plan what panels we want to see, roam the halls and just take it all in at a leisurely pace. With the improvements in queuing and layout at May’s event we were really looking forward to our October trip. I of course left cosplay plans to last minute and decided to keep it simple with my good old Hufflepuff uniform – although if I hadn’t been so lazy I would have returned in my Choji cosplay from May (it was a matter of wig styling). Here’s what that would have looked like:

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(also happens to be my profile pic on practically everything)

I have to say this con was probably the best so far. Entrance/queuing and re-entry was a breeze and the layout was great – I barely got walked into or stepped on the entire time thanks to the wider aisles. There were some really good panels too – we sat in on The Walking Dead’s panel (and then caught Ross Marquand and Greg Nicotero hanging out with the zombies at the Fox stand) and also the Game of Thrones panel, both of which were really funny and pretty interesting while giving no clues as to what might be happening in the shows. Not even the tiniest hint. Oh and not to forget a chance to view the pilot episode of Mr.Robot concluding in free hoodies thanks to Amazon Prime.

October’s Comic Con was so well organised this year that the Euro-Cosplay finals actually ran pretty smoothly. I’m kinda glad they managed to work out all the kinks because the cosplayers put in a lot of time and hard work into their outfits and skits and it takes so much guts to get up on a stage in front of all those people. I must say this is a huge draw for me: I love seeing cosplayers and recognising my favourite characters from shows and video games, it not only brings them to life but its great to see so many others with the same enthusiasm and passion for these characters. It’s also a pretty freeing experience. I don’t know about anyone else who cosplays but the last few times that I’ve made an effort to I actually had this overwhelming feeling of “fitting in” – it just felt so normal. I have never once felt normal in my entire life, I’m always sort-of the odd one out and don’t get me wrong I kinda like it that way, but it’s a really nice feeling to walk through a place and be able to be 100% geek and not worry about randomly spouting quotes from anime or a movie thinking you’re the only one that gets the joke (and laughs alone at it) – because it’s a good bet that half the people there ‘get it’ too. I pretty much enter Comic Con thinking “these are my people”.

I also tend to leave the con with rather a lot more luggage than I came with. Budgets start off with good intentions then totally get thrown to the wind on the Sunday when you pass the Gundam Mad stall for the third time and think “I could fit a small one in my case”. Which I totally did. Thank goodness for expanding suitcases. To be fair though I kept mostly to my list this time and a lot of what I got was cool artsy things and comic books from some of my favourite stalls in the comic village. Great tip – if you visit the stalls on the Friday you’re more likely to get your hands on any goody-bags some of the artists sell since they only tend to make a small number and they will have the good sweets out (sweets also run out fast). Also try to return to the comic village a few times over the weekend, a few of the stall holders are joint-ventures and they really like when you return to make sure you meet everyone involved, it shows that you really appreciate what they do.

The most important thing about going to any con is pretty much – enjoy yourself. I always promise to take lots of pictures before I go and people get dissapointed that when I come back I haven’t taken that many and my only real reason is just that I was far too busy having fun.

And now I sit and count the days til I can go again.

I also go through the things that came home with me and reminisce.

Here are some of those things.

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(see, it’s mostly art . . . it kinda fit in my case . . . it’s not like I bought a giant alpaca . . . . soon though . . . soon)

Dee Reviews – MyGeekBox

Yay! It’s that time of the month again – no, not that time – the halfway point of the month marks the arrival of yet another My Geek Box!

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This is a fun-filled subscription box that manages to pack a mini comic-con within its cardboard confines.

July’s theme is Nemesis.

I was not disappointed.

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This is my new favourite mug. I’m not sure if I want to use it in case it transforms while I’m drinking my coffee, but it’s way cooler than my Hello Kitty mug.

And then there’s Davros. I thought it really strange that the MyGeekBox seemed heavy when I picked it up but after lifting him out I understood why – he’s pretty solid! So much weight for a little figurine. The details are great too – all the tiny little dials and buttons are finely painted, he looks tremendously wicked.

I’m really happy with the little knick-knacky bits that are in this months box too. Usually theres things like badges or magnets and something handy like a bottle opener or a wallet (I’ve been using my Marvel wallet from April’s box a lot). This month has a coaster, a card holder, and a notepad. The coaster I won’t use (it’s too good to ruin with drink stains) but I can see the note pad coming in really handy, I’m pretty sure my boss is fed up of finding my scribbled notes in random places and having to stuff them into my drawer – but I may have to keep a close eye on it since she’s a pretty big fan of Breaking Bad.

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I have deliberately left the best thing til last – the t-shirt.

The past few month’s t-shirts have been awesome, although most I wont wear as they are slightly on the tight side for me. When gifting the original subscription at Christmas mum chose the largest women’s size available – unfortunately this is the equivalent of about a size 14-16, which I am not. I was starting to get a little disheartened that I was missing out on the best part of the subscription. Fortunately My Geek Box have a fantastic customer service team and after a query on sizing they changed it over for me. For those interested I get the men’s XL which is the equivalent of a women’s size 18, possibly roomier (I like my tees baggy), if you like your tees slightly fitted a men’s Large will also do the trick.

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This t-shirt really made it for me. I love Resident Evil. I love all things zombie/mutant. I can’t wait to get this on! I’m going to wear this to work. I’m going to wear it to my Grandparent’s house. I’m glad no one judges me on my choice of attire. To my face, at least.

So there it is, a neat little package of geeky goodness shipped to your front door. If you take the time to price everything they pack in individually you can really see how they make it worthwhile, and since they are based in the UK there’s no customs charges to worry about.

Learn more about how this subscription service works at: http://www.mygeekbox.co.uk

 

How my hobbies chose me.

To most people I have pretty strange hobbies. I get called weird a lot. When I’m asked how I got interested in these things I can honestly say I blame college.

I wasn’t exactly normal to begin with at school – I was that kinda-goth kid who listened to Japanese music and dressed strange and loved creepy things – but college really opened my mind to new levels of weird; being weird was the normal thing to do. I loved college ❤

One of the classes I enjoyed most/procrastinated most in was a digital media type class that we pretty much spent creating and designing fake Myspace pages and watching funny YouTube videos. The last big assignment of the class was to make a powerpoint presentation showcasing how different types of online media can be used to successfully promote a band/individual/product. It was during my research for this class that I stumbled onto the blog that blew my tiny little mind – http://www.mistula.com/uno/

These were dolls! The most amazing dolls I had ever seen, with moving joints and realistic eyes and faces – and they were in a band and they had actual music! I shared this revelation with my friend in class (who is one of my bff’s now), she wasn’t as excited as I but she did think they were pretty cool.

I needed to know more, so of course when I wasn’t doing research for my classes I spent all my time looking up ball-jointed dolls and the numerous companies that created these wonderful resin creatures. I joined a forum with the biggest online community of ball-jointed doll enthusiasts and soaked up as much knowledge as I could. I needed one of these lovely things in my life. And in case you were wondering – yes, I did include this discovery as part of my presentation; Mistula used every type of online media I needed to showcase. Easiest project ever!

Now fast-forward to college:take 2 (when – due to lack of employment during what was meant to only be a gap year – I decided learning how to art would be more fun than going to the job centre), I had scrimped and saved and thanks to incredible timing the sculpt I had been ogling for months was suddenly on sale – HELL YEAH! I didn’t have to think twice. Probably the best decision I have ever made. Again, I can truly say I loved college. I don’t make friends so easy as I have social anxiety and it takes me a looong time to get used to people enough to be able to share my weirdness fully, but thankfully I met a girl who was so unashamedly weird and awesome and lovely that it didn’t take me long to come out of my shell and when I told her of my incoming BJD she encouraged me to bring him to class once he arrived. And I did. And everyone accepted him – so much so he came to class regularly and was photographed taking part in class a lot.

It was during this college course that we had an Introduction to Photography class. I loved it. I had the perfect model who would sit in any pose and not complain. Did I mention how much I loved college?

Somehow, magically (by the power of parental wanting to buy an awesome christmas present) I ended up with another two incoming BJD’s. By my second year all three were regular attendees of my classes. They influenced a lot of my artwork (and still do).

It’s now almost six years since I started collecting – I have a rather nice little tribe going. They are still my favourite subjects for photography even if I don’t snap them regularly. I’m constantly trying to improve with a camera so I can show just how amazing they are. This means learning a lot of the basics for all subject types, my best seem to be plants and landscapes. And toys. And ducks . . .

So that’s pretty much what got the ball rolling: one intriguing google search result is responsible for my lovely weird doll tribe, my commitment to improving in photography, and a lot of duck portraits.

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To learn more about BJD’s and my tribe head over to their page in the top right or check out their galleries on Deviant Art at http://deedeelunastelle.deviantart.com

New Beginnings!

Shiny new blog is shiny!

I was previously using instagram and facebook to create blog style posts to keep family and friends up-to-date with my latest goings on but I feel it’s time I ventured onto the real thing.

So, Heylo!

I’m Dee. I’m also Lunaera Sylvarii, it’s good to have a pseudonym or two, or three.

I volunteer for a local charity in my home city, but when I’m not doing good deeds I spend my time doodling, writing and honing my photography skills.

Hopefully this blog will be a lovely amalgamation of my creative outpourings and uber-geeky adventures!

Keep your peepers peeled (。•̀ᴗ-)✧

– Dee