Tag Archives: escape pod comics

Artist, Caitlyn Shea Embraces the Uncertainty

CShea_BlogPicBy Jenna Weis

The unknown and sense of uncertainty can make one anxious and even fearful. It is definitely something that is often avoided, but artist Caitlyn Shea desires the uncertainty when creating her powerful paintings, even manipulating various mediums to distance herself from intention. Painting and re-painting, configuring and re-configuring the composition in the midst of the creative process, Shea produces figurative artwork with the spirit of Abstract Expressionism. As a female delving into a style dubbed long ago as “masculine”, Shea summons a new, strong sense of femininity to abstract art.

The actual process of building up and breaking down the image are critical elements in Shea’s work. Her paintings consist of meditative yet lively colors applied in an action painting aesthetic with an animal, insect, or a human being as her muse for the visual complexity they can offer. For this artist, inspiration is often found in a photo of a natural being in a unique pose or from a unique perspective, giving Shea a compelling layout to explore the anatomy. Through a gestural array of colors the subject seems to be formed through the abstraction that gives the being life and energy.2_RavenHiRes

“I like to take risks and will sometimes bring a painting to a place where I completely dislike it. Then a spark will come back again and I will rework the painting.  Figuring out the balance between form and abstraction keeps me engaged and excited – and keeps me up all night very often!”

Utilizing charcoal, acrylics, spray paint, and even house paint helps Shea generate the out-of-the-box results that she strives for. She says “These mediums give me unpredictable results and bring an element of discovery that makes painting more exciting…In many ways I allow the mediums to dictate the work, and I pull the form out of the materials.” This method allows the viewer to witness the process of change as it unfolds throughout the painting, creating a state of sublime.

10659022_879263097663_2796195771679992064_oOver the summer Shea experienced her greatest achievement as an artist when she completed a massive humming bird mural on a vacant building in Riverhead thanks to the East End Arts Council’s program “JumpstART”. After an enormous amount of work, proving her capability, and fundraising, Shea created her own opportunity to display her work to the public. She says “In the end it is my greatest achievement because it will continue to stand in Riverhead permanently and offer hope to a community that is eager to revitalize.”

Shea will be making her art a public affair in Huntington as well at SPARKBOOM’S JINGLE BOOM: HOLIDAY BASH event on Saturday, December 20th at Huntington Arts Council’s Main Street Gallery located at 213 Main Street from 6-10PM. She has decorated a window display of whimsical animals in chaotic holiday environment consisted of 2D and 3D elements. Along with great artwork to see there will be craft beer courtesy of Saint James Brewery, treats from Stella Blue Bistro, Hint water, prize giveaways courtesy of Sip Tea Lounge, Lotus Vintage, Kilwins Huntington, and Escape Pod Comics, and live music and poetry. RSVP here via Facebook.


rain roomJenna Weis grew up on Long Island and graduated from Commack High School in 2007. She received her Associates Degree in Visual Arts from Suffolk Community College then went on to receive her Bachelor’s Degree in Art History and Criticism from Stony Brook University. This is her second summer working for SPARKBOOMTM, first as Lead Blogger. She hopes the blog will really engage readers to want to see more of the artists work at our SPARKBOOMTM events and help further promote the artists themselves.

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MEME Logo 1By Patrick Peterson

M.E.M.E is a musical project by Mikah Feldman, age 20. His goal is to provide people with more than just a song. “”A meme is a transference of an idea between two people”, he says. “I want the music to have a piece that the listener can internalize. I want to give people a little more than a sonic experience…”. He discusses how the aforementioned EP, “Places to Die Alone” relates to humanity and the state of. He wants the listener to ask themselves just what exactly is the value of being alone and what happens when we are taken out of our environment.

And not too unlike SPARKBOOM™, MEME DJMikah has founded an organization known as the Electronic Music Collective. The goal – to bring together the different artists that use the electronic-stylized sound to help not only share that message but help reignite the passions Long Island was once known for.

“It’s crucial to have a music scene, especially considering Long Island’s music history. John Coltrane wrote his masterpiece in Dix Hills. He lived and died around the corner. He was born and died at Huntington hospital, which to me is like having Mozart living in your backyard”, Mikah says. He firmly believes that all the pieces to the puzzle are already setup. That every step that can be taken to reignite the sound of Long Island is there, it’s just up to the musicians to put it together.

meme-saxingThe Collective features such local artists such as Yuki,who is a trap artist, and Machinegirl, who styles herself on footwork music. Both of whom Mikah believes to be rising fast and supports them in their endeavors. But ultimately, the Electronic Music Collective is just that – a collective. There is no singular leader , boss, or what-not. It’s entirely run by the artists on mutual grounds. Though Mikah may have helped found it, he truly believe it belongs to the people.

But despite the efforts that he has shown thus far, he still feels like he has tons of untapped potential…

” I have a lot of drive and try to push himself everyday one step further. A lot of plates spinning but a lot further to go. I just think that I’m at a baby phase, I have a long way to go and I’m excited about it.”

Catch Mikah Feldman aka M.E.M.E. at CosPlay Sunday on July 27th, from 1-5 PM, at Escape Pod Comics in Huntington Village. He will be spinning with fellow EMC artist, ORBiTER. RSVP via Facebook here!


IMG_0882Patrick Peterson Growing up, Patrick was nicknamed The Mayor. He had and still had an outgoing personality with a sincere, charming, dedicated personality to those he meets. He’s a writing, photography, and video game enthusiast who likes helping out the little guy.


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Local Cosplayers on the Rise – Bree Faith, Mooseychan, and Inochii

A Chat With Local Cosplayers: Bree Faith, Mooseychan and Inochii

Sparkboom™ interviewed two local cosplayers that will be appearing at Cosplay Sunday on July 20th at Escape Pod Comics. Bree Faith is a professional voice actress from Centerport, NY who has cosplayed since 2009. Mooseychan hails from the eastern end of Long Island cosplaying since 2007. Sierra Nicole who cosplays under “Inochii” is relatively new to Cosplaying with two years of experience. Hear what they have to say about their experiences getting into cosplay.

Pinkie Pie (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic) - 2012 Anime Boston

Bree Faith

What got you into cosplay?

Bree Faith: “I am a professional voice actress with a passion for acting. Getting into character is something I really enjoy, and I always loved Halloween. I think all three of those things were why cosplay was so appealing to me. It has always been something fun to do with friends while expressing my love for a certain series and character.” 

Mooseychan: “I always really loved to dress up, and as I got into various interests as I got older (manga, videogames, etc.) I learned there was an entire culture dedicated to celebrating these things and dressing as the characters, and I never looked back” 

Inochii: “For a long time I have been a fan of comics and anime and I’ve always admired the character designs. But I think what really got me into cosplay was when I first started going to conventions when I was younger and seeing people portray these characters in person. There was so much dedication, I was so inspired! I wanted to get into cosplay but was always too timid and stuck to my Lolita Fashion instead. I continued to stay involved in the convention scene and met so many amazing cosplayers who helped me realize that I could make the venture into cosplay, and so with the help of my fiancé we tried our hand at costume making! And since then we’ve been in love with it!”

What does cosplay mean to you?

Bree Faith: “It’s a way to express yourself, your love for something, and get to into character. Cosplaying is fun to do with friends, fun to show off what you can create and make, and a way to show your interpretation of a character- just like with acting.”



Mooseychan: “Cosplay is a way for me to wear my interests on my sleeve in the most literal sense. It lets me bond with others over the things I love most, and it’s such a therapeutic creative outlet”

Inochii: “I feel cosplay is an opportunity to honor the characters you love while exploring your creativity. Creating patterns, sewing, and fabricating props were all new things to me. It really builds confidence when you see your wonderful finished products after weeks of hard work. And of course the reactions from the fans is always very validating.”

Who was your first cosplay?

Bree Faith: “When I was in 7th grade I made a cosplay of Envy from Fullmetal Alchemist. I don’t think I’ve ever found a picture of it, but it was really fun! Then in 10th grade I dressed up as a genderbent Link from Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Misa from Death Note and L from Death Note. My first cosplay at a convention though was Hanyuu from Higurashi no naka koro ni kai (When the Cicadas Cry). I wore her shrine maiden outfit and her school outfit to New York Anime Fest in 2009.”

Mooseychan: “Kid from Chrono Cross. I was 12 and it was a hot mess. I actually hope to one day remake her and actually do her justice.”

Inochii: “My first cosplay was Bridget from Guilty Gear for Katsucon in 2013. It was mostly just for fun, and we made it a week before the convention. But it really was a ton of fun! I like to think of Supergirl as my first real cosplay that we put a lot of time and effort into and she’s always my favorite costume to wear!”

How do you choose who to cosplay?

Bree Faith: “I usually choose a character that resonates with me in some way- either character, voice, or something I admire and want to recreate in their outfit or design.  I think one of my biggest dream cosplays is Princess Zelda from Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. I’d also like to do Saria, Kafei and maybe even Skullkid from Legend of Zelda one day. I’m a big fan of the series and find a lot of admirable aspects in different characters from the series, like Zelda who is suppose to represent wisdom and overtime has shown that Princesses (or Queens) can fight their own battles- especially in Hyrule Warriors. Saria is a kind character who steps up to protect her people and country by becoming the Sage of the Forest, Kafei is a tragic lover who faces his fears and shame, and Skullkid is a troubled prankster. They are all interesting characters!  I’d also love to cosplay from Sailor Moon as the title character or Sailor Venus because they showed me how girls can kick butt but still be feminine and how to confront self confidence issues. Especially Sailor Moon who is clumsy, a crybaby and a foodie but still able to fight evil and embrace herself. I choose characters who I admire in some way- usually they have some form of importance to me from their design to their character.”

Mooseychan: “The personality is the be-all end-all for me, but bonus points for KoGal (punky school girl uniform aesthetic) and huge challenging wigs. I love characters with massive amounts of charm and/or emotional instability.”



Inochii: “I primarily choose my characters based on if I relate to or appreciate their personality, especially if I find the character particularly inspiring. I also have an affinity for design and am always on the lookout for new, fun, and challenging character designs.”

Anything else you would like people to know about you or cosplay?

Bree Faith: “You can follow my cosplay and voice over on my facebook page here. I do a lot less cosplay now that I am focusing on my professional voice over career but you can find me at Cosplay Sunday event in Huntington and occasionally working on costumes for Halloween, for fun with friends or for PAX East. Mostly I do not cosplay at conventions though to keep up my professional appearance as a voice actress. In the future I hope to get to try out making armored cosplays, finish up some League of Legends cosplay that I have left unfinished due to school, and hopefully some costumes of characters I have been the voice for. I also have a lot of costumes I have retired for sale, you can find them on the for sale album on Facebook! In addition, I also sell prints of three of my favorite costumes Catherine, Lucy Heartphilia and Pinkie Pie.”

Mooseychan: “I also run a maid cafe! Our name is SAKE Darlings and we will be debuting at the Sparkboom™ event!  I love being a bit of an ambassador to beginners and openly welcome any and all questions!!!”

Inochii: “While I’m pretty new to the creating cosplays, I’m really motivated and love learning new techniques and processes. Additionally, I’m always ready to teach others whatever I can. The cosplay community has already been super helpful getting me started, and I I’d love to help foster that community.”

Have more questions about these amazing cosplayers? Then come ask them at Cosplay Sunday July 20th at Escape Pod Comics and get a chance to see their costumes in person!

 RSVP to Cosplay Sunday here!


alyssapicAlyssa Hesse is an intern at SPARKBOOM™ and studying Business Management at Adelphi University. When Alyssa isn’t working, she can be found on her unicycle or with her three cats.. When she graduates next year she hopes to make a career in industrial stage management.

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Talking With a Living Doll

DollFilleI got a chance to talk to Toshi Salvino who goes by the name of Dollfille. Interested by such a unique name I asked her how it originated. “Dollfille is partly a play on words – doll+ “fille” which means “girl” in French, so I’m a doll-girl, but also a reference to ball-jointed dolls, which are another passion of mine. I own 3 but I had to become one myself. I needed something that could encompass my drawings, my makeup, cosplay, etc. so Dollfille is my name for “everything”.”

Her inner child came out when asked what cosplay means to her. “It’s like Halloween every day!” However, Dollfille proves that cosplay is more than just dressing up like it’s Halloween again, it really is a unique artdollfille3form that requires a lot of skill. “Cosplay is an acting challenge. I like to cosplay as characters whose roles really strike a chord within me or I have a lot in common with. But for my personal fashion – it’s my own artwork!”

“I am letting others see me the way I see myself.”

With cosplay you can be anyone you want which is what makes it so magical, if you want to be a princess for a day, you can be. “My very first cosplay was Kairi from Kingdom Hearts ! We looked similar, I always had a thing about secretly being a princess…I even wore her uniform to school quite often!”

Whether you have done cosplay forever or just starting out, she offers great advice for everyone, “Cosplay isn’t about who’s better or who has the best costume – it’s about the pure love for a character and about FUN and about making new friends. While I am in full sudollfille2pport of slaving away, making a costume as perfect as it can be, there’s nothing wrong with buying one just to wear it and enjoy it! The characters we love and identify with really help us each explore ourselves deeper as people -so isn’t cosplay as someone letting the world know a little bit more about yourself?”

If you love halloween as much as Dollfille then grab your costume or make a new one and show it off with pride on Sunday July 20th at Cosplay Sunday at Escape Pod Comics where you can meet Dollfille in person!



alyssapicAlyssa Hesse is an intern at SPARKBOOM™ and studying Business Management at Adelphi University. When Alyssa isn’t working, she can be found on her unicycle or with her three cats.. When she graduates next year she hopes to make a career in industrial stage management.



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Becoming KO Cosplay

Euphoria Cosplay Studios-KO

Taken by Euphoria Cosplay Studios

KO Cosplay goes above and beyond in the world of cosplay. She has over 215,000 likes on Facebook, and has completed 30 costumes since 2011. She makes and even sells her own costumes and props. She has won many awards for her cosplay including being an Otaku House North American Finalist two years in a row from 2012-2013.  I got the inside scoop from KO Cosplay about her humble beginnings to the world renowned cosplayer she is today.


  What got you into cosplay?

“A few friends of mine and I were watching Gurren Lagann and they told me that I should cosplay Yoko. I didn’t know what cosplay was until they opened up Google and showed me this whole new world. I thought I could give it a try, so I bought a Yoko costume on eBay, made certain pieces that arrived looking like trash, and commissioned the rifle. I had a blast at my first convention and everyone was so welcoming. I decided to try it again at other small, local events until I was making my own costumes and traveling to conventions in other states. The rest is history!”

What does Cosplay mean to you?

“Cosplay, for me, is a way to creatively express myself while also creating new and exciting challenges. Not to mention it’s pretty much how I’ve met all my friends!”

Cozpho Photography-KO

Taken by Cozpho Photography

How do you choose your cosplay? 

“I choose to cosplay characters that I connect with on a personal level through their histories or personalities. Most of my characters will also have a sleek, badass appearance as well.”

Who was your first cosplay?

“Technically Link from the Legend of Zelda.”

How did you learn to make your own costumes?

“Google and Youtube with the occasional asking friends for advice. I’m dead serious.”

Aperture Ashley-KO

Taken by Aperture Ashley

You have over 200,000 likes on Facebook, how did you come to that fame in the cosplay community?

“Facebook implemented a “similar/suggested pages” program in the pages app. I somehow came up on some popular cosplayers’ “similar page” radar and the likes just came pouring in over the span of a few months. To this day, I still don’t know why it happened; I don’t think I’m anything special.”

Has your popularity in the cosplay community changed things for you as a cosplayer at all?

“I don’t consider myself popular. I’m just a geek who likes to make costumes and goofs around and drinks at conventions. The likes don’t change much except that they fool people into thinking I’m “famous”!”


With all the conventions she goes to and the work she puts into it we are lucky to be able to welcome her to Cosplay Sunday! If you have more questions that weren’t answered here Don’t fret as she will hosting her own Q&A session at Cosplay Sunday and if you’re not already one of the thousands of people who like her on Facebook, click here for all her updates!


alyssapicAlyssa Hesse is an intern at SPARKBOOM™ and studying Business Management at Adelphi University. When Alyssa isn’t working, she can be found on her unicycle or with her three cats.. When she graduates next year she hopes to make a career in industrial stage management.


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Learn the Ins and Outs of Cosplay with Marie Grey

marie grey auror cosplayIf you are skeptical about entering the world of Cosplay, you are not alone. Marie Grey originally felt the same way but now she is a renowned cosplayer in the community with over 6,000 likes on Facebook. Grey reflected on her first cosplaying experience, stating; “I was actually coerced into going to New York Comic Con in 2009 because it was right around a friend’s birthday weekend. She asked if we could cosplay together, and I reluctantly agreed…

I thought what everyone else thought: Dressing up as cartoon characters is for Halloween. But I actually had an amazing time making friends and geeking out about series that I loved. Five and a half years later, I’m still at it.”

She’s still at it and going strong. At Cosplay Sunday, shmarie grey poison ivye will be presenting a lecture Sunday: “Why I Cosplay: One Cosplayer’s Story”, where you can learn more about cosplay. She recalls; “At first, cosplay was just a way to make new friends with similar interests. After three years, I started making my own costumes and found myself getting sucked into the creative process. Working on costumes is now a stress-reliever…even though I give myself really short deadlines sometimes! I never really know what I’m doing so when something works out, it gives me a boost of confidence to keep working on things.”

Her first cosplay was Soi Fong from the anime, “Bleach”. She has difficulty choosing what not to cosplay because there are so many characters she finds through video games. “I’m attracted to anything with a good story and an interesting cast. If I like the character’s personality and design, and it’s something I think I can pull it off, it’s getting added to my to-do-list. I have about 100 there right now! I haven’t figured out a method for prioritizing them just yet. I kind of just pick whichever speak to me the most at the time.”

Ryuko marie greyShe doesn’t quite know how she got so popular on Facebook but she certainly doesn’t think she is famous and doesn’t pay attention to the numbers. She uses her status only to help new individuals in the community. “I’ve been invited to a few relatively local events as a guest, but I’m trying to put my focus on running beginner cosplay panels at conventions because that’s something I wish I had available when I first started making my own costumes. But I’m still a regular person. I work a full-time office job, I pay bills, and in my free time, I fabricate costumes and props.”

An encouraging Grey says:

“Even if it seems a little weird, I encourage everyone to try it out! Everyone’s a fan of something, and it’s a great feeling when someone comes up to you with a big grin on their face because they like that thing too!”

You can try it out this Sunday at Cosplay Sunday at Escape Pod Comics and learn directly from Marie Grey about what cosplay is all about. If you come to the event, in costume, you will even receive a free comic!

RSVP to CosPlay Sunday here!

Visit Marie on Facebook here!


alyssapicAlyssa Hesse is an intern at SPARKBOOM™ and studying Business Management at Adelphi University. When Alyssa isn’t working, she can be found on her unicycle or with her three cats.. When she graduates next year she hopes to make a career in industrial stage management.

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Hugo McCarthy – The Man Behind the Make-Up

Hugo Hugo “CosGoblin” McCarthy is more than just a local Cosplayer. He is a Special Effects Make-Up Artist who has studied under Vince Collura of Action VanceFX and Wren Budd currently holding an internship at GutRotFX, a premiere special effects company on Long Island.

The combination of Halloween and belonging to a group of nerds got him into Cosplay. “Instead of going for generic costumes for Halloween, my friends and I wanted to accurately imitate our favorite anime or comic book characters. The occasional home-made Halloween costume inevitably escalated once I started going to conventions and events, but the actual cosplaying (imitating and acting as the character you are dressed as) started with Halloween costumes.” His first Cosplay was either Chucky, the killer doll from Child’s Play, or Cait Sidth, from Final Fantasy VII.

To explain how he picks his Cosplays, he says; “Usually, I’ll get into something and just find a character I really like, with a design I really enjoy, and then I’ll try to recreate that look. That, or a friend will recommend something to me and I’ll start doing the research on it, and then I just end up getting into whatever the character is from that way. That’s actually how I got into Blue Exorcist, my friend recommended that I cosplay Mephisto Pheles.”

To Hugo, Cosplaying simply means “hanging out with friends, doings things we love, spending a lot of time and money to create something we can be proud to wear. All around, to me, cosplay just means fun. I’m very much the type to say “do what you love and forget everyone else”, and that’s how I tend to view cosplay. If your cosplay isn’t the best one out there, or if your body type “doesn’t match”…do it anyway. As long as you’re comfortable, and you’re having fun, that’s all you really need.”

Cosplaying is how he discovered Special Effects make-up. He recalls; “I had always done my own make-up for my joker cosplay, but it wasn’t until I had done a cosplay of “The Spine”, a character from the band “Steam Powered Giraffe”, that I really looked in the mirror and said “hey…this came out really nice…I think I might like to do this for a living!””

hugo pictureSo, what does it mean to do be a special effects make-up artist? Hugo explains; “Well mostly my job as a make-up artist is to make things look believable, whether it’s meant to be realistic or not. If I’m making someone look beat up, I have to make that bruise I’m painting look like a real bruise! If I’m recreating a character face, it’s not going to look real of course, but it has to look believable. For example, if I’m doing make-up for the comic book version of “The Joker”. While yes, he is a cartoon, I have to be able to translate that look into real-world facial anatomy.”

According to Hugo the differences between Horror make-up and other types of application is this – Horror make-up has many more angles and accentuation involved, not to mention the blood and gore. “Mostly, when it comes to say, Zombie make-up, verses Beauty make-up, it’s really a difference of making someone look less healthy (Zombie) or more healthy (Beauty), for lack of a better comparison.” While he is proud of his Horror make-up application, he actually considers hand-painted characters to be his specialty.

At Cosplay Sunday, his lecture: “Horror make-up and Special Effects with drug store supplies” will explain how to apply Zombie and Injury make-up, such as cuts and bruises. Whether you want to incorporate these skills into your next cosplay or you just want a new activity to gross out your friends, you should definitely check this out.

RSVP to CosPlay Sunday via Facebook.

See Hugo’s lecture and meet other Cosplayers this Sunday on July 27th.


photo Alyssa Hesse is an intern at SPARKBOOM™ and studying Business Management at Adelphi University. When Alyssa isn’t working, she can be found on her unicycle or with her three cats.. When she graduates next year she hopes to make a career in industrial stage management.


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