Kazuhira Miller Cosplay

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

Costume by me

Photography by Sreeraj Sreenivisan

Edits by me

Location: Fremantle Harbour and Maritime Museum

Nearly four months ago I was nearly killed in a hit-and-run, I have no memory of the incident, nor the week that followed. Since then I’ve had to deal with injuries I don’t remember acquiring, it doesn’t feel real. I have two skull fractures, I am deaf in my left ear (hopefully temporarily), I was in a neck brace because of my fractured vertebrae, but the most debilitating part was my broken right leg with severe lacerations along the tendons. I was robbed of my ability to walk for months. Thankfully I wasn’t in a wheelchair for too long, but whether or not I’ll ever be able to walk properly without needing the crutch is unknown at this point.

While I recovered from the worst of my injuries, I stayed with my family, I didn’t have much else to do but play whatever games I had downloaded on my laptop, and that just so happened to be the Phantom Pain. What I got was an intense exploration of pain, loss and grief, I was shown characters who seemed to understand what I was going through and gave voice to these new feelings I couldn’t articulate. The opening of the game alone was some kind of nightmarish re-enactment of my hospital confinement. But it was Kazuhira that became a kind of spirit guide for me, because of him I feel no shame in my current physical limitations, if I need this crutch forever, so be it, no matter what I’ve lost, a Diamond Dog gets up and keeps on fighting.

I still haven’t been able to return to work, my circadian rhythm is completely unpredictable, so while I continue to recover, and when I’m not sleeping, or playing Metal Gear, I find myself inspired to make costumes again. This costume was entirely sourced in op shops, the only sewing I did was attaching the Diamond Dogs patch to the beret, and tailoring the trousers. I’m not so much interested in making everything from scratch and being 100% accurate to the source material. It’s more fun for me to source pieces, the thrill of the hunt, finding garments that evoke the character, and I just so happened to get lucky. I wasn’t going to make this a girly rule 63, that would be tacky, I wasn’t going to make this crossplay and try to pass myself off as male, that would be inauthentic. I just adapted Kaz’s costume for myself, with all the practicality and dignity his costume entails.

Another stroke of luck was the shoot, it had rained mere hours before we shot, but it was mostly clear skies when we needed it. It was cold, perfect for all the layers I had to wear, and just the right amount of wind to get us a few dramatic flowing trenchcoat shots. There also happened to be a real naval ship in the harbour too, although we couldn’t get too close.

It felt good to return to modelling, and I hope I can bring you more Metal Gear shoots soon.

Black Devil Car

“Cindy ran after her sister, Allison, who despite wearing her wedding dress moved with great speed and wielded the wrought iron candle holder with every intention of using it.

‘I am so sick of you two arguing about this bloody car!’ Allison cried as she smashed the right headlight of the Monaro, causing Cindy to let out a blood curdling scream.

‘Oh come off it, Cin, it’s just – oh my god!’

Where Allison had smashed the light, blood now came pouring out. Turning to her little sister, she saw that Cindy’s right eye was gone, in its place leaked motor oil.”

This is a scene from Black Devil Car, a 1970’s style Ozsploitation movie I’d love to make one day. But for now I’ll settle for drawing it and writing it. It was inspired by a dream I had.

Covenant Minute 35

In which Greg Klein of the Airwolf Years and I discuss nostalgia, aesthetics and robot voices.

Read more: Covenant Minute 35

Find Greg here:

https://ciampaklein.com/

Citations
Activist Post. (2015, October 26). Why is wheat such a problem in the modern diet? https://www.activistpost.com/2015/10/why-is-wheat-such-a-problem-in-the-modern-diet.html

Einkorn, nature’s first and oldest wheat » Einkorn.com. (2020, April 15). Einkorn.com | Restoring Ancient Whole Grain Einkorn Wheat to Our Modern Diets. https://www.einkorn.com/einkorn-history/

Cosplay Couture Sherlock Holmes

A cosplay couture interpretation of Sherlock Holmes

Costume (skirt, jacket, hat and capelet) and styling by Courtney Coulson

Photography by Luke Milton

Shot at UWA


A tribute to one of my all time favourite characters, I made this costume over a year ago out of scraps from a WAAPA production, only got around to finishing it recently. It’s not perfect because I had learned so much in the mean time, but hopefully it’s not noticable in these photos.

It’s actually based on real hunting attire from the late Victorian/early Edwardian era, I think many of these pieces could still be work in a modern context and this was an exploration into that idea of reinventing a classic Victorian character with a very costumey look into something more fashionable.

The most challenging part was the pleating in the caplet, it was a last minute idea to make it more interesting. It ended up involving seven metres of pleating! Took me forever, but I’m happy with how it turned out.

As I was portraying the classic Holmes I really focused on the mannerisms described in the book. He’s highly intelligent, but he also lives for the cases and he has fun solving them, so I tried to convey that intense mind through mostly my eyes but the overall sense is less brooding than the BBC Sherlock.

-Courtney Coulson
Shot with no other equipment than the camera, this shoot quickly became about finding and managing light. I loved the railing but it was too dark to shoot with Courtney standing behind it so her sitting on it was the only way to access the light and it resulted in my favourite shot of the shoot. I also like the idea of her tiny form leaning rebelliously in the shadow of a giant Socrates. The light was harsh here, but it’s always fun to take something very contrasty and turn it to black and white. I think black and white works very well at giving a more classic look to the other shots, like they are from some old, forgotten serial or something. I also dig how it brings up the textures on the cloak.

-Luke Milton

Cosplay Couture 11th Doctor

From the archives, October 2013:

A cosplay couture interpretation of the 11th Doctor                

Costume (shorts) and styling by Courtney Coulson

Photography by Luke Milton with Sabatomic Photography     

Shot somewhere along Indian Ocean Drive


To me 11’s love for Westerns was something I related to the most and also something that was unique to that regeneration. I think 11 is easily the most schoolboyish, his open enthusiasm paired with his awkward body language definitely makes him “adorkable”. It was fun translating that into this shoot, throwing my posture all about the place! The costume plays up on that boyish theme with the high waisted shorts, the skull bowtie and oversized Stetson. My hair is pretty close to Matt Smith’s so no real challenge there. Like Benedict Cumberbatch, Matt Smith has a great character face, so I had a lot of inspiration when it came to the make-up. There’s very little on the eyes but a bright red lipstick to draw the focus to the lower half of my face as Matt is all chin but he has hardly any eyebrows or eyelashes.

-Courtney Coulson
Initially this wasn’t my ideal location and I had planned to steer clear of the red dirt and the road, cautious that it might feel too Australian. However, seeing Courtney in context led me to shift plans and incorporate all of it, and I’m really glad we did. I feel like the road lends the image more purpose and helps create a sense of vastness while still keeping our focus firmly on the character and the clothes.


– Luke Milton

Cosplay Couture Herbie the Lovebug

Photography by @itzu.me
Car belongs to @inatski

Costume and makeup by me


I think I drew the design for this costume about a year ago, then just this past weekend I finally got to bring it to life with a beautifully restored Beetle at my side. I can’t thank my collaborators enough for helping me with this project, it couldn’t have happened without you.

The design process was simple, I envisioned Herbie as a youthful and cheeky tomboy, I took elements from 1960’s fashion as well as race car driver uniforms and accessories. I looked at the likes of Twiggy and Audrey Hepburn for inspiration. I knew I needed a round hat to really evoke the shapes of the Volkswagen, and the dress is a simple A-line silhouette, it was best to keep things clean and minimal and let the stripes do all the talking.

Cosplay Couture Tenth Doctor

From the archives October 2013:

A Cosplay Couture interpretation of the Tenth Doctor

Costume (tailored pre-existing suit) and styling by Courtney Coulson   

Photography by Luke Milton

Shot around a graveyard in Nedlands

This was our first exploration into Cosplay Couture, therefore the costume is accurate as I had worn it for a while as a normal cosplay. The reinterpretation all came down to presentation and style. Wedge heels, make-up and hair, oh yes the hair. To me that’s 10’s signature, it had such a presence and we really wanted to play around with it.

The earrings are symbolic, the roses, well they’re a reference to a certain companion obviously and the chain of rings are reminiscent of Gallifreyian font. as well as the general look of 10’s TARDIS.

Also 3D glasses make great accessories!

-Courtney Coulson

Our first location shoot ever and filled with happy accidents. The very English-looking doorway featured prominently here was actually discovered while sheltering from the rain but it provides a wonderful backdrop for bringing out the Doctor’s colours. My favourite thing is by far the hair though, which quickly became a character of its own.

-Luke Milton