FAQ's about Relic & The Fandom
Why the suit? - Well, why not? My artist is a Furry, meaning he is a member of a sub-culture of creators that all have a love of Anthropomorphic Characters. Taking Relic from paper to the computer, and on to a wearable work of art was something that in his eyes simply needed to be done to finish the work and be able to have fun with it. Many others in the Fandom also go through this process with their work, their characters as well.
How much has Relic cost to make? - Woof! As an estimate, I would have to say about $400-$500 or so for the actual materials. You need to use good material, if you get the cheap stuff... well... that is exactly what you get. Time is a huge investment and is what makes it so expensive. I will say, it is not the cheapest of hobbies to get into, but if you are crafty enough and have the time to do the work yourself you can save hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
Are there others around here that do this? - Yes! Relic is a member of a group called the “Black River Furries” or if you prefer “BlackRiFurs” who are based out of Watertown, NY and try to meet monthly to get into character and have fun, share ideas and techniques for construction and alterations, and discuss plans for attending conventions in other areas of the world. It is a small local group but our numbers are growing. The Furry Fandom is a global sub-culture and is represented by every demographic and walk of life.
Do all Fursuiters make their own costumes? -There are many that do, but not always. There are many established artists that find they do not have the time and in some cases do not have the ability to sculpt their own suit and will commission a suit maker to make the suit for them, the costs for these suits can range from $1300.00 to as high as nearly $6,000.00 !!! Although it is an art, not everyone has the many different talents required for the fabrication of these suits, the more complex the character is the more expensive the suit will be both in materials and time some requiring the work of several artists working together to produce the completed suit.
Do you need a Fursuit to be a Furry? - Absolutely NOT! Fursuiters are just a small part of the Fandom (roughly about 20 - 25%) that decide to take their art into the realm of cosplay. In general these artists seek to bring their characters to life much like those of Disney. Many Furries that do not have Fursuits choose instead to wear tails, and ears that attach to their regular street clothes, others choose not to wear any of the add on's at all, it is all about your own personal preference and how you want to show your "furriness."
Can you have more than one Fursuit? - Yes! More fluff = more fun! There are many Furries that maintain multiple characters and have Fursuits representing each one, there are several members of the BlackRifurs that have multiple suits. My artist has been working on another character for some time now that may well become a second suit for him at some point, but it is still a long way off.
Who are the people that are Furries? - There is no one set demographic or type of person that is more apt to be a Furry than any other person. Quite basically anyone with a love for Anthropomorphic art can be considered a Furry. Relic B. Furry personally is friends with a Lawyer in the UK, an established composer of Game Music in Ireland, and even Two commercial airline pilots, a Voice Actor & School Teacher in Texas, a graphics design artist in Germany (Tani DaReal) and a Cartoonist in Maryland that is a contributing artist to the TV series My Little Pony (Trish Forstner), that are all Furries and most of them are also all Fursuiters! Many of Disney's animators/artists are more than likely members of the Furry sub-culture. The Furry Fandom is a Global Sub-Culture and is represented by every demographic and walk of life.
Do you have to be a certain age? - No, but if you are a minor to be able to go to the Conventions you must get your parents to go along. There are age limits at the Conventions for specific activities. Some require a Parent or Legal guardian to be with you at all times, others could be a drop-off / pick-up event... these all vary widely from Convention to Convention and you need to know before hand all the rules they have in place, it IS for your own safety regardless of your age. Anthrocon has attendees from the age of 5 years old right up through 80 and older!
What about the TV shows that portray Furries as bad? - TV and any media in general seeks to show the worst of everything, it is what sells and makes them the most money, its news. The way they portray any unknown is based solely on the gains they might attain from it and is never a fair nor balanced representation of the whole. The few times the media has placed the Furry community in the lime light it was focused solely on a fraction (1/10 of a percent) that would do bad, they never once have pointed out the good majority (99.9%) . Pittsburgh Anthrocon in 2016 raised over $31,000 for their charity which was the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium that year, and they choose a different charity to work for each year.
Where are Furry conventions held? - Nearly every major city in the world has at least one Furry convention every year. To name only a few:
* Furry Weekend Atlanta (FWA): Atlanta, Ga.
* Furnal Equinox : Toronto, Canada (every year on the Spring Equinox)
* Midwest Fur Fest (MFF) : Chicago, Il
* EuroFurrence : Berlin, Germany
* Anthrocon (AC) : Pittsburgh, Pa. (the big one! 4 days at the end of every June, this one con brings people together from all over the world and is by far the largest gathering of Furries every year. 2016 attendance was well in excess of 8700 people and a staggering 2100 Fursuiters attended the Photo shoot and Parade.)
What takes place at Furry Conventions? - First and foremost a Furry convention is essentially an Artists convention, but there is that one single connection that all of those that attend have, the love of Anthropomorphic Art. Most artists produce artwork that they donate to the convention for an auction that raises money for the charity they are working for that year. Artists also set up booths in the Convention center (Dealers Den) to sell their work to anyone interested in buying from them. There are workshops that are aimed at very specific areas of art, for instance Fursuit Construction, animation techniques, or even tutorials on working with art related programs on the computer such as Photoshop or The Gimp. There are dance competitions, games and activities for all ages. There is also one major difference you will notice that is unique to the Furry conventions compared to other Fan based conventions... nearly all those that attend Furry conventions are creators of art (in one form or another including music and literature) themselves.
Does Relic take on commissions? - At thins point in time, no. Although this is something I am considering, it is not something I am committing to yet, But I would gladly help anyone needing guidance in making their own.
How long did it take to make Relic? - My character design & development (Started way back in 2001) has been ongoing for well over 14 years, my suit itself has only taken a mere 8 months (so far) to bring into the public, although he is a wearable now, I will never say he is completely finished, always something to change or make better.