Dual wield Ranger - Belladonna

The dual wield ranger is the part of me that seeks adventure, the pink knight. Inspired by my great nerdy love for Arthurian legends and quest filled literature the knight is my classy side. However, adorned in ruffles and raunchy boutique this femininity has a bite. As curious as i am about the world, this writing voice springs from the quest of the heart, "Freedom". My words linger on the idea in my adventures, all while seeking out a world I often feel the need to protect others from. The knight is my old soul still on the adventure of a lifetime.

You'll find this guide swinging around my posts about my adventures in the city and more. 

Empress & her City: Snotgirl at Blerdcon

Empress & her City: Snotgirl at Blerdcon

July 28th, 2018

Snot girl at Blerdcon:



When I say I hate D.C. Metro, I mean that (insert killmonger voice). Anyway 30 years later diving from one late train to the next we finally made it the Hyatt Regency. I was very excited to attend my second convention, and even more so to cosplay and go with two of my dear friends, and love. As we stepped through the doors greeted by black shirt wearing folks that said "Blerdcon" in bold white letters. We knew we arrived at the right space. Well, that and the blatant amount of cosplays we passed walking there. The space in the venue seemed really grand, but also really small. In case you didn't know this was Blerdcons second year, named fondly "The reunion". 

The mechanics of Blerdcon are still getting worked on. That would change with more funding and resources. I wouldn't be surprised if more guest appearances also changed how the convention functioned. This year some key things that were missing in my opinion, was one a map of the layout of the events and area. Two, lighting. It was really dark in there, pretty bad for pictures. Although with the 24-hour gaming and movie options I'm not surprised they cut back on electricity using amenities. Third better wifi for vendors, the artist alley had a lot of connectivity issues for customers and patrons using the card swipe feature to purchase merchandise. Not everyone carries cash, we do live in a digital world. Something Afrocutie mentioned was the Blerdcon passes had labels for the day but none were labeled for event staff or volunteers. That would have helped a lot with navigating the convention. Point is, there is a lot of work that needs to be done for Blerdcon to flourish and develop into the con it has the potential to be. Let's not dwell too much on an event I didn't technically work for, and I'm not an expert on cons. It's merely my experience from attending. Let's focus more on what was seen and done there. 


The world of Lolita, and why I’m in the wrong city:

While we missed the first panel I wanted to attend thanks to the lateness of the metro we did make it in time for the one on a fashion lifestyle i've greatly admired for many years. First panel was "The World of Lolita Workshop" presented by AmaniHime, an active member of the Lolita community in New York City. Obviously major cities, would host active communities. So when the panelist mentioned NYC, I was both rolling my eyes and sighing. How long have I been trying to live and move to NYC? Since like 2012. Anyway this was the first panel, so it set the bar for how the remaining panels would potentially be like. Let me just say, I think Amani Hime is amazing, and very stylish. My problem was the PowerPoint, and how I wish someone Microsoft professional had spruced up her slides. In general the presentation covered what needed to be covered. Its just that for an hour long workshop, the panel presentation lasted less than 18 minutes. 

At this panel I was happy to learn from a member of the lolita community about its cultural changes over the years. As a fashion lifestyle that originated in asia its visual dynamic centered towards pale skin. Once it started to gain popularity in Europe and later America, white lolita members dominated the scene, & space. In general, i'm not surprised at this information. Alot of communities suffer from colonizer descendants dominating and creating a focus to themselves in those spaces. To hear that over the years as Lolita expanded and gained interest from people of color was exciting. It meant that there was a new brand of diversity in a space that seeked to highlight pale skin as ultra femme. Which reminds me, Lolita, in general, is seen as a fashion ultra feminine expression. So for the community to exclude women of color as beautiful or even examples of well-done lolita is inexcusable. Hearing that now, lolita includes women of color, and alternative religious motifs into the fabric excited me. That's great news, but overall the lolita community has room to grow. The panel ended rather quickly, but as a workshop, it offered a cool giveaway to those who attended.

Wisdom from Pretty Brown & Nerdy:

The second panel featured known youtube group "Pretty Brown & Nerdy". If you don't know them I highly suggest you check them out. They cover a variety of nerdy things and in general are a good group. Their panel was on building your brand, whether it be youtube, a podcast, or anything where you produce creative content. They provided a lot of good tips, that I'll share with you. 

  • Don't be afraid to step out of the box

  • Be unapologetic about how you feel & represent

  • Figure out your outline of segments

  • Be persistent, growth takes time

  • Give yourself time to reset

  • Create a manageable schedule

  • Have a media kit 

The panel was another short one but in contrast to the other panel the panelist filled up their hour timeslot answering a lot of questions. Including one from me, let me tell you the anxiety to run up and ask a question is really crazy. I asked about building your brand, and whats recommended to encourage that. Making sure that I get the most on panels about networking and building your brand. As an introvert in the business world, I need all the information I can on how to succeed in my own way. Networking is intimidating. It's not easy to start from the bottom, but then also slip up on the fundamentals of buisness. 

Sweetgreen & Networking:

We left after the panels to get food, but by then we had swung through artist alley and pretty much saw all that needed to be seen. We swung by Sweetgreen and a chicken place overrun by morals to eat lunch. Let me tell you, a salad bowl will give you the itis. Tired, fuller, and certainly finished with Blerdcon, I was genuinely ready to go home. However, my best friend and co-host on Ambiguous Anthology suggested I go back and netowork with the artists vending. I grappled with myself on what to do. I was hella exhausted from a long friday night, but my ambition was like put those boots to the pavement and get out there. What are business cards for?! So, we walked back and I did my pink energy Jadedisland things. I spoke with artists and put in the work, because I want to write about things I care about. Let me tell you, it paid out and there is a lot coming to this site soon. Thanks to the encouragement of Captain & Afrocutie (and well my Aquarius too) I didn't succumb to lazy ambition. Friends that encourage your ambition, dreams, and brand are rare. Cherish them and make the most out of putting good energy out there. 

Cosplayers & Artists: 

I met some really cool artist & people and I wanted to share their work and social links for you at home to enjoy! Please check them out and give em a like, follow, and share. Art reaching people is extremely important in many spaces and for many reasons. 


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