Saturday, May 19, 2007

The Gothiloli Phenomenon!

I haven't been posting enough in this blog. Plus, all text and no pics makes for a dull blog-reading experience. I've got a great scanner, but I hate scanning things. This goes back to my days working as a graphic designer at UGA when I'd sometimes have to scan dozens of slides for professors to use in publications and PowerPoint presentations. Scanning slides or batches of photographs is tedious, a chore.

Here's a mediocre older sketch I did a couple of years back...

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That's not a gothiloli (pronounced GOSiloli in Japan). That's a cosplayer. There's a difference, although some cosplayers might cosplay as gothilolis. Cosplayers generally dress up only to represent their favorite anime or manga characters at fan conventions. These costumes can be professional-quality jobs, too.

This, on the other hand, is a gothiloli...

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Come closer... she won't harm you. She appears to be in her natural habitat and she's not even particularly elaborate in her outfit, although there's a striped-stocking variety just about to pass by us in the foreground... she may be more spectacular. Some of these girls look like Victorian dolls sprung to life.

This is the way I encounter them the most, unexpectedly passing by in a crowd. I've been told by my friend A (who works with a gothiloli girl at Popeye media cafe) they only dress this way for live shows, but you can also find them during daylight hours.

Maybe it's something fun to do when you're not working one of your many parttime jobs.

I think it would be fun to date a gothiloli, at least in the shortterm and to learn more about it. Maybe because the girl at Popeye is staggeringly cute in her normal mode. I can only imagine how much like a demented wedding cake she appears when she's all gothiloli'd out.

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This girl is a bit more outrageous, although her shoes are fairly tame. I've seen footwear that would shock RoboCop. That's more than likely her own hair, bleached and straight-permed. Which, if true, means she's pretty hardcore with this stuff. I mean, that hair's not going to be easy to hide or do a lot with for a more workaday appearance.

But perhaps she lives with her parents, or works at a cafe. I have no idea! Those tanned lazies in front of McDonald's and MiniStop have no visible means of support and yet they always seem to have money for french fries and fleece track suits.

My older niece asked me, "Does anyone dress normal in Japan?"

The answer to that is, "Yes, of course." Most of the people you meet are completely, absolutely normal and mainstream in every way. But there are otaku, the Akiba-kei, the visual-kei... the obsessive fannish types, and they're more extreme here than anywhere in the world. They are the 120-percenters, and they do things Right.

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