Showing posts with label Final Fantasy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Final Fantasy. Show all posts

Friday, August 4, 2017

STGCC 2017: Diva's Interview with Hunky Professional Cosplayer, Leon Chiro

When professional cosplayer Leon Chiro was announced as a guest of STGCC 2017, a collective wave of squeals and happy sighs rippled through the local geek and cosplay communities.

Who can blame them? After all, the Italian cosplayer does realistic performances of gaming and pop-culture characters, is absolutely shredded (Yum!), interacts constantly with his fans, and has a cheeky sense of humour to boot!

Leon Chiro's detailed and convincing cosplays have caught the eyes of many AAA gaming companies, and they have hired him as official cosplayers for their promotional activities and events. These companies include Ubisoft ("Assassin's Creed" / "Watch Dogs"), Square Enix ("Gladiolus - Final Fantasy XV" - a huge fan favourite!), Capcom (honorary mention for his Dante) and many more.

For the "Assassin's Creed" movie, Leon go to put on the mantel of Aguilar de Nerha and worked with 20th Century Fox on the film's promotional campaign, stunt work and official European launch events.



What attracted Red Dot Diva to Leon's cosplays were his confident, very true-to-life takes on characters, like Gaston from Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" and his playful spins to existing personas, for instance, Baywatch Gladio. He even does a spot-on Leon version of Saltbae!

Leon Chiro is so popular in the gaming and cosplaying community that he gets invited to attend several conventions around the world - about 3 to 4 shows a month! In many of these events, he is asked to judge cosplay competitions as well, and at STGCC, Leon will be one of the judges for the Championship of Cosplay 2017!

Before he steps foot on our sunny island, Red Dot Diva got hold (mmm mmm) of Leon to ask him some nosy questions:

Monday, June 10, 2013

Mythopoeia: Yoshitaka Amano's Art Exhibition at The Mizuma Gallery


It's a pity that on occasion, practicality takes over the enjoyment of art.

Last Friday was one such occasion for Red Dot Diva, as she sacrificed the opportunity to meet an inspiring and famous artist, in order to fulfill her tedious work commitments.

However, her good friend Andre aka Million-Dollar Smile aka Red Dot Dude was right there at the Mizuma Gallery, bright-eyed and super-duper early, to meet Japanese creator Yoshitaka Amano.

Here is his story!

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Exclamations of “OMG!!!” were pretty much the standard reactions I received after posting a photo of master artist Yoshitaka Amano and me on my Facebook timeline.

But who could blame my friends … I mean it is YOSHITAKA AMANO! This man is a legend!!!

Yoshitaka Amano was in Singapore last Friday (7 June) for the opening of his exhibition “Mythopoeia” at the Mizuma Gallery in Gillman Barracks. The exhibition will run till 14 July 2013.

Mr Amano is renowned for his works on “Gatchaman”, “Vampire Hunter D” and most of all, “Final Fantasy”. He is a five-time winner of the Seiun Award ("Award for the best science fiction published in Japan) and has also won the 1999 Bram Stoker Award (Award for "Superior Achievement" in Dark Fantasy and Horror Writing”) for “Sandman: The Dream Hunters” - a collaboration with another legend, Neil Gaiman.

The art exhibition was supposed to start at 6 pm, however being a big fan of Mr Amano, I decided to be at the gallery much, much earlier. As I was waiting at the entrance, one of his management team saw the “Vampire Hunter D” and “Final Fantasy” art books I was holding and signalled for me to enter. I was then led to a room where Mr Amano was sitting.

Mr Amano's sketch of D
I sat nervously next to Mr Amano as he flipped through my art books and signed them. I handed to him a Shikishi (a Japanese white board) and he asked me (through his translator) what my favourite character was. I told D from “Vampire Hunter D”. He did a quick sketch on the board and apologized that he could not do a more detailed one as his hand had been injured. But seriously, I didn’t care! … Anything Mr Amano draw is golden, even if it is just a few lines!

Apparently, it was reported that the man was here in Singapore on doctor’s orders that he should rest and get out of his studio because he had hurt his arm rushing to complete “Mythopoeia”.


Just before doors opened, Mr Amano did a quick photo shoot for some press and publications. Then, at about 6 pm, the crowd started to pour into the gallery as many young inspiring artists and art fans walked around the gallery to admire the 25 beautiful and elaborate aluminium-based pieces that were on display.



Mr Amano emerged from his room to mingle for awhile and also, graciously took some photos with the crowd before retreating back to his sanctuary. After which, his management team collected the art books his fans had brought, and got him to sign those for them. It seemed that everyone went home that day absolutely happy and in awe of the man’s artistry.


I was definitely one of those happy people.

Last Friday evening was such a surreal experience that I doubt I will ever forget this most awesome day ever!

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Thanks to Andre for this writeup and photos (as he continues to recover from the mind-blowing experience of meeting Mr Amano).

By the way, this is also Andre's first written contribution to the RDD blog! Red Dot Diva hopes there are more to come! ;)
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