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    • SoulCrash Ron goes to Anime Milwaukee 2013

      3 years ago

      SoulCrash

      Anime Milwaukee (2010) is the first con that I've been to as part of the press.  I was in-experience, and wasn't really familiar with camera settings, and the community.  The group I was with didn't really treated me fair enough as the other members, then I lefted them.  Now-a-days, I'm with ScrewAttack, being my own boss, and taking pics for the site.  There's been changes at the con since I was press member.

      For starters.  The locations.  From the UW-Milwaukee college campus, to the Milwaukee Delta Convention Center. The Milwaukee convention center is connect with the Hyatt via skywalk, and a short walk to a $10 a day parking lot.  Which came in handy for me to have quick access to my photo gear when I don't wanna waste my time going back to my room just for a tripod or something.  

       

      Untitled That $10/per night parking was that close to where most of the action for the con.  It maybe a cold walk to my car, but it sure saves me BS from getting some gear from my room.


      Just two blocks away, there's a mall with a food court.  The normal people were like WTF? when they saw cosplayers coming by still in costumes.  Good thing the mall cops didn't have a fit with the cosplayers, especially the ones with obvious fake weapons.  On the down side, not many places were open for late night munchies.  Like this place called George Webb.  All I wanted was a Burger and Fries, but the wait was ridiculous for getting food at 9pm on a Saturday night!!!

       

      20130216-IMG_9005 Making our venture inside the mail two blocks away from the con for lunch.  While still in cosplay / con gear.


      Anyways, this is Anime Milwaukee's third year of using the convention space.  Every year, they learn what worked, and what really failed.  This year, they fixed up the registration line, more space for the dealers room, put artist alley outside.  Video Gaming room improved as well, cause pasted years I couldn't enter the video gaming room cause I have a bag on me, and they don't allow people with bags come into the room cause of anti-theif reasons.  I think the reason why is that the people running the room is, my buddies from YoumaCon (video gaming) Staff.  Not only YoumaCon staff helped out with gaming,  more of my youmacon staff buddies worked on main programming as well.  So it's like a mini staff reunion for me.  

       

      20130216-IMG_8890 The registration line. ON A SATURDAY! Good thing this year's line is a giant improvement from last year's..


      At the cons, I usually just run around the con taking pics of cosplayers and random acts.  Some times, I'm a con staff doing staff deeds since some people knows me and knows what I can do.  This time, not only I took pics at the con,  I even taught three photography panels.  First off, I wanna thank the con chair, and the panel programming staff for letting me have the photography panels at their con.  Panel Programming was really helpful by making sure I have the cables I need to run my panel.  Yet, to be honest.  I screwed up at my end on planning out my panel.  I had the beginner photographer down on my end, but didn't go in depth in the planning process.  Then the advance panel, I didn't get much set up time, and I had some hardware issues with my laptop, cause my panel to train wreck.  Then for my third panel, the post processing panel,  I didn't expect much people to come on a Sunday.  Yet my buddies came in anyways, and take a look on how I do my photos after taken my shots.  If I have to do photography panels again,  I rather be doing the support role instead of the hosting role.  Anyways, I don't mind doing private lessons on how to take photos to people who already knows me.

       

      602058_806806092598_916413704_n Photo courtesy of Steven Greenwood from Wisconsin Ghostbusters. Taken during my Beginner's photography panel.


      Talking about screw ups.  Oh man, I made the mistake of doing post processing and uploading pics during the time where most of the cosplayers are on the con floor.  I can't believe I missed some good cosplayers that I saw from my friend's picture galleries.  So ahh, whoops, my bad on that one.

       

      Untitled My inner photo nerd took the best of me during the con.  Post processing a photo is REALLY fun!  None of this wouldn't be possible if it was for the Equilibrium USG RCON-210-PACMAX bag.  I got 27 pounds worth of gear that I was carrying, and I manage to get stuff done cause of the bag.


      As for the cosplay this year,  because of how Anime Milwaukee was at the same time as KatsuCon.  There wasn't many cosplays that made me say WTF!?  I still manage to get some pics, and a quick photoshoot.  There wasn't many exciting locations around the con to do photoshoots, and it doesn't help if the weather is less than 30 degrees outside.

       

      20130217-IMG_9136 One of the few spots that was interesting for me to do a quick photoshoot.


      Even though Anime Milwaukee got "over ruled" by a major cosplay con.  Anime Milwaukee got a suprising convention guest that I personally didn't expect to get.  That happen to be, Nobuo Uematsu, the music conductor of the Final Fantasy series.  His concert tour happen to be on the day before Anime Milwaukee.  The con staff somehow convince Nobuo to come to their con, yet sadly.  He only appeared for Friday only.  Major kudos to AMKE staff on that one.  

       

      155248_10200339519038050_1985685219_n Photo courtesy of Rudy Hobbs with Nobuo Uematsu.


      Also, another unexpected, unoffical convention guest showed up to Anime Milwaukee.  One of the 2010 ScrewAttack Gaming Convention guest, Spoony of The Spoony Experiment, came to the con.  When I first notice him,  I was like, isn't that one of Marzgurl buddies?  It looks exactly like him, but I didn't wanna go up to him.  Cause I couldn't recall his name at the time.  Good thing one of my buddies give me a positive ID on him.  My friend asked him why his at the con, even though from my sources that his not a fan of anime.  He said his speading time with his girlfriend who's attending the con.

       

      843868_2878369615691_533387008_o Photo courtesy of James S. from  Midwest Karaoke Madness. Photo proof that Spoony (far bottom left corner) was at Anime Milwaukee, it was taken during Midwest Karaoke Madness Karaoke Saturday night.


      Overall,  Current Anime Milwaukee staff with the help of YoumaCon staff and former Anime Central staffers.  The improvments of the flaws of what happen last year, and the surprise convention guests.  Still a good con for the midwest con-goer scene, but cosplay this year was kind of slacking cause of how the con is on the same weekend as KatsuCon.  Not many holy shit, WTF moments happen like a fire alarm drill.  It was calm, lean back, no drama type of con.  I'll come back next year if I got summon to go by some people.

       

      20130216-IMG_9158

       

      For more photos,  There's always the flickr page
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/sets/72157632779012156/with/8486579122/

      And as for the Anime Milwaukee 2013 cosplay contest
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/sets/72157632785636472/

    • SoulCrash Ron goes to UChiCon 2013

      3 years ago

      SoulCrash

      Sorry for being MIA for the past few weeks. I wasn't in the mood to type out anything from the last three cons that I've been thru before the last one at KollisionCon 2012. I went to Anime CrossRoads, got bored at the con, had to improv my con fun. Then there was Anime Apocalypse, I arrived there late cause of my second job, just only experience their rave. And there's Anime Zap, I completed exploring the con in under 10 mins. It was hard to type out something for those three cons, so it's better if I just show some mini highlights on this entry.

      20121208-IMG_6450.jpg
      Momo Kurumi cosplaying as Chel from "The Road to El Dorado" during Anime Crossroads.

      20121222-IMG_8247
      Assassin Creed Zelda cross over during Anime Apocalypse.


      20130105-IMG_8895
      Vixen Darkkat as Orihime Inoue from Bleach during Anime Zap.

      For additional coverage from the cons that I mention.  You can always go to my flickr.com account. 
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/

      Anyways, time to talk about UChiCon 2013. Held in the University of Chicago, one of the most oldest buildings I've been to in my convention going career. This location have been dub the place that resembles Harry Potter's Hogwarts school.

      uchibuilding2013
      This is not every day I get to take pics at a very old location with interesting building structures.  Some cosplays like Black Butler, SteamPunk, or Fullmetal Alchemist can use this location to their advantage.  But sadly, this con was overtaken by...  :|  Home stuck.
       

      Other than the nice location, the con registration is FREE! but it's only a one day con. You just have to pay for the parking, and have to travel for food if necessary. Since it's a one day con, I only have a few hours, and cosplayers to work in a setting that I don't work in that often. The weather conditions was too perfect, but with the lack of snow. I still have a great time taking shots at this awesome locations. I didn't have time to check out other parts of the con. So ahhhh yeah, that's pretty much it for my mini con review...  Here's some con highlights of the con.

      20130119-IMG_683620130119-IMG_687320130119-IMG_687420130119-IMG_700320130119-IMG_701220130119-IMG_702120130119-IMG_706320130119-IMG_708320130119-IMG_723120130119-IMG_717120130119-IMG_788020130119-IMG_7668uchicosplaycontestpana20130119-IMG_7691

      For the rest of the pics from UChiCon 2013..
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/sets/72157632564944647/

      That concludes my brief mini-report on UChiCon 2013.  NEXT STOP!!! Anime Milwaukee on February 15th thru 17th.  I get to see the notorious, Nobuo Uematsu, that guy who makes the Final Fantasy music stuff!!!!

    • SoulCrash Ron goes to Midwestria 2012

      4 years ago

      SoulCrash

      Before you guys rip me to shreds, just hear me out.  Yeah, I know My Little Ponies is meant to be for little girls,  but I like the internet parodies of the show, and the show itself (the current, 4th generation stuff, and nothing more).  Anyways, this isn't the entry where I talk about the show.  This is what went down at Midwestria 2012.

      Midwestria came out of no where in March of this year when one of my Facebook buddies told me about it.  I was like, "how do you make a My Little Ponies convention, with that little time to plan out?"  Usually, it takes at least 1.5 years to fully plan out a brand new con.  Yet, the crew that's running that con is the same crew who runs KollisionCon.  So they got this in the bag.

      Due to my work place at Toyota, I missed three events worth covering.  "Running of the Leaves 5K", a 5K race for Charity.  "Iron Pony Competition", Just like an Iron Man Olympics with events like "Hay Tossing", Roping, and Tug-o-War.  And lastly, The Cosplay Contest.

      Here's some footage of what happen on the "Iron Pony Competition"

      Con wise.  I'll be honest, the weirdest thing about this con is, being at a con where there's more women than dudes in a con space.  Yet at night, it returns back to con normal where there's more dudes that girls. Good thing there's a good amount of people that I know from the con scene in the Midwest to hang out with...

      One of my buddies that I was hanging out with during the con. DJ Bad Corey

      The Dealers room and Artist Alley were in one room. The gaming room had their separate room, and the Panel Rooms were somewhere.  Later in the night, the guys who runs "Midwest Karaoke Madness" had their room.  The Rave, OMFG.  Their rave set up was by the same guy who did KollisionCon's rave.  There was a bunch of laser lights going off and smoke and stuff.  Giving me some decent shots of the rave.

      For a small con, with little time to advertise, not bad.

       

      Midwestria's rave set up.  It was no joke for a one year con.

      Sadly, due to the amount of time that I got at the time. This is all I was able to report in to you guys.  Lastly I'll leave you guys with this clip that I capture from the con...  I'll let the video explain for itself...  @.@

      Oh yeah... It's not a SoulCrash Ron goes to a Con post without the picture gallery link... http://www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/sets/72157631549145447/

    • Cosplay Facebook Purge 082112

      4 years ago

      SoulCrash

      Where should I start with this... other than the obvious that was mention on "TL:DL"... blah.. I'll just say it again here...

      If you have a Cosplay facebook personal page.  If you have something like "(insert random name) Cosplay".   And it's NOT a fanpage.  It NO LONGER EXIST on facebook.

       I woke up this morning when my buddy said on my facebook account... from a post about the cosplay last name facebook account...

      https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151094042802893&set=a.171235867892.122605.593412892&type=1&relevant_count=1

      That's the pic that's based off my rant on this topic

      I found it funny that *account that have a cosplay last name on it* disappeared after this conversation. :( (even though that's due to the mass delete FB is implementing last night/today)

      and I was like... LOL WHAT!??  Then I checked out my friends list. And see that ALL my  "buddies" that have a cosplay last name facebook account were.... "DELETED"...   I inform one of my buddies over at nerdcaliber.com.  And then it gotten spread on the "Cosplay in America" fanpage, and other pages.. and I'm like........ shit just got real, yo...

      Anyways... I'm glad this happen... sadly... But it was going to happen... it was even stated on facebook TOS... 

      https://www.facebook.com/help/?faq=112146705538576

      Ain't that what pretty much describe what cosplay is?

      Now my facebook friend suggestion box is not longer filled with cosplay last name accounts!!!

      For the peeps who are part of the cosplay community... yeah... there was one too many of those cosplay last name account... no joke...  :|

      I also said this on the Cosplay Chicago group page...

      About that.. when I first made this.... "meme"... I was poking fun of those people who used the cosplay last name... yet.. I didn't word it right.... To be honest.. I didn't like the whole cosplay last name "trend" that was going on...

      I didn't like how cosplayers that have two facebook account... that sperate people that "they like" and have a cosplay account to "filter out" the "others"...

      hell I was one of those guys... I was on someone's facebook account... then that person made a cosplay account, and added that same person... then later in the weeks after adding me... they "defriend me", yet kept me on their cosplay account... I'll admit that I took offensive to that... and cause of that... the next time (or last time, cause it was during Wizard World Chicago) I came cross with that person.. I acted with more of a pissed off attitude to that person....

      Personally, I was against this when the cosplayers started to replace their last names with the "Cosplay" name.....  :| I don't know what else to say in regards of this... Other than... this quote that I said somewhere in facebook...

      I rather know a person that's more than a cosplayer, as in a REAL person that likes to cosplay... than just a plain cosplayer, being a cosplayer... (not sure if I'm wording this right)

      Since Facebook is on the attack on "not real last name account" I wonder what the guys over at screwattack will worried about this...

       

      In the mean time... I'll be reading the cosplay.com forums on this minor facebook incident..... Maybe I'll make a part 2 of this rant / incident... I think I wasn't clear enough why I'm against the cosplay last name thing in the first place..

      http://www.cosplay.com/showthread.php?t=300727

    • Remembering SGC 2010

      4 years ago

      SoulCrash

      I already posted up "Remembering  SGC 2009"  three days ago (by the time I posted this).  It's only fair that I upload the SGC 2010 pics.  Since I've release these pics before on a different website (in which I don't wanna name or say).  And now that I'm a freelancer, yet teaming up with ScrewAttack.  I can post up the pics, untagged, and quality (sorry again if the quality isn't up to par) errrr... Screen Resolution as it should be...

       So here's the flickr  link where you can find the pics....

      http://www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/sets/72157630424793014/

       Or you can just use this slideshow below...  still prefer you go to the flickr link instead...  :|

    • SoulCrash Ron do C2E2 2012 (Friday)

      4 years ago

      SoulCrash

      Long story short. Last year, before "the new" screwattack was form. Craig asked me if I can take a few pics for the cons that I got... and I was like...... okay cool... Yet the cons that I've went to was just small cons that's not really worth reporting on screwattack.. since C2E2 is happening as I'm typing this... I'll go post this for the site... so here's some samples of  what happen on C2E2 Friday...

      Sooo ahhh yeah... that's it for now... way more is on it's way... So expect more pics on Monday??? on the main site??? I gotta talk to Craig on the site stuff thingy...

    • Anime Central 2012 PREVIEW!

      4 years ago

      SoulCrash

      Here's a sneak peak of the pics from Anime Central 2012... I'll give the rest of the pics to the staff sometimes BY the end of the week or something.. since they're busy going  against with the guys from Dorkly....

    • SoulCrash Ron goes to Anime World Chicago 2012

      4 years ago

      SoulCrash

      Sorry for the one month delay on this report.  I was "slammed" on  photos weeks after Anime World Chicago.  Since I've finally gotten some free time, I can type up my experience of the con.

      I've came to the con late, cause I forgot to request the Saturday off from my work place.  Since it's a small con, I didn't miss much.  I just grabbed my press badge, and started taking pics right away.

      Stop by the dealers room first, saw that my buddy that makes custom hoods, lemonbrat.com, have a booth there.  Checked out what she got in stock, and saw this cow hoodie with UTTERS!.  I couldn't resist, so I got a pic of me....... "MILKING MYSELF!"  She was totally cool with it, she even let me run around the con wearing that.  As long I promote what I was wearing in a classy way..

      Me rocking this hoodie made by the gals from lemonbrat.com.  Yeah, I had to get a pic of myself of.... yeah... Since it's a public site... I gotta keep it PG13.... sort of...  :|

       

      The video game room, it's beyond average from the small convention have. Their arcade room games were free to play.  (from what I can remember)  I saw an old school Dragonball Z arcade fighting game, and there was a free to play DDR game (I think I'm wrong with this one, maybe it's In the Groove they have).  The console gaming room, there was a small corner that have imported games.  I got my hands on a Sailor Moon beat'em up.  Everything else... again.. same thing you see at every con...

      Good arcade collection for a small con. Also free to play too!

       

      Didn't really go to any panels, or other events cause of me craming as much cosplay shots as possible with the limited time that I've got that day.   I did went to their cosplay contest.  It was a short show, like an hours worth.   One "skit" that I did like happen to be "Belly Dancing Zelda".  When it comes to me enjoying to skits, it gotta be something I can relate to, and make sense.  I hate it when I watch a skit, and don't understand what's going on cause I've never seen the series.

       

      It was fun watching the two host facial reactions during this Belly Dancing Zelda dance skit.

       The Rave, in my opinion.  It was better than Otakon 2012 rave.  Since the DJs were more active, and they let FEMALES! dance on stages.  Also they let me get on stage so I can get some shots of the rave.

      The rave.  For a small con. They know how to party hard. Oh wait, It's Chicago. We know how to throw a nerd party within reason.

       Sunday was a bummer though.  Cause NOTHING happen on that day. Like everyone just lefted.  Yet I manage to hang with some of my cosplay buddies at the "Death March" McDonalds.

      That's pretty much it for Anime World Chicago.  If I have to say what needs to be improve is.  Not pick a location where I have to pay for parking.  A location I haven't been before, cause I've been to that same Hyatt for the past 10 years.  And a DATE that doesn't conflict with other people schedules.  Last year, it was in conflict with RamenCon.  This year, it was on the same time as the Mitsuwa Bon Odori fest. Which happens to be a popular japanese festival that the Chicago Cosplayers go to during the Summer.

       Anyways... Here's some highlights of Anime World Chicago 2012.

      20120804-IMG_4851.jpg20120804-IMG_4881.jpg20120804-IMG_4978.jpg20120804-IMG_5639.jpg20120804-IMG_5697.jpg20120804-IMG_6148.jpg20120804-IMG_6918.jpg20120804-IMG_7102.jpg20120804-IMG_6328.jpg20120804-IMG_5253.jpg20120804-IMG_7223.jpg20120804-IMG_7194.jpg20120804-IMG_5319.jpg20120804-IMG_5365.jpg20120804-IMG_4897.jpg20120804-IMG_4921.jpg20120804-IMG_4950.jpg20120804-IMG_7059.jpg

       

      And the rest of them in this album...

      www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/sets/72157630926383486/

       

    • SoulCrash Ron goes to KollisionCon 2012

      4 years ago

      SoulCrash

      When it comes to having a convention on a holiday like Youmacon with Halloween, Dragon*Con with Labor Day, and ScrewAttack's own gaming convention during the 4th of July, it's usually a good thing because you can party hard for the weekend with your fellow geeks and have a day off after the con. 

      But having a convention during the holiday where you meet up with family members and having it on same day where you go hog wild on "black friday deals"?  It's one weekend no con wants to be on.  But sadly,  KollisionCon has to make the call and have their con on Thanksgiving. Not everyone had a thanksgiving, nor have enough cash to blow through. Those people used what they had and went to KollisionCon to fill that void. 

      My family didn't want to do a thanksgiving this year, so I used that time to go explore downtown St. Charles, IL, where the convention is being held. I was just there to scout out any potential photoshoot locations in the area.  After that, I went to the convention's venue to scout out some stuff and hang out with people. There were some staffers that know me, I gave them a hand on carrying some of their stuff since they're giving me a press badge. I had to work at my real job on con Friday, but I didn't miss much from what I was told. I still showed up on Friday night to check out the rave stuff that the con chair of KollisionCon was telling me about.

      I was just scouting around Downtown St. Charles to see if there's any other decent photoshoot locations I could use.


      The rave that KollisionCon pulled off, had one of the BEST lighting set up of all the cons I've been to this year. Most of the gear was provided by J.D. of  Majik Lasers & DJs, who was invited back after doing a bang up job last year. Also, the con chair of KollisionCon saw some of the pics that I took last year from their rave and gave me the okay to do some pre-rave photoshoot with one of the girls that I know. I had a hard time thinking about who to pick for this situation. I ended up picking someone who was already rave ready at the time.  Sooooo ahhhhhhh yeah....that's my con highlight...

      Rave lighting set up by J.D. of Majik Lasers & DJs. Thanks to Tiff for letting me use her for this photo. If there's other cons looking for a badass rave set up,  just go to his fanpage and tell him that you're interested in his set up.


      As for the rest of the con? To be honest, the Thanksgiving holiday hurt the con in a way. The attendance felt like it shrank, the dealers and artist alley were combined into one room, and the gaming room was severely lacking this year.  Even the cosplay contest even took a toll on the con. As for the panels and events, I didn't really pay much attention to those, because I'm mostly focused on getting content for ScrewAttack.  But I did go to one panel, which happened to be my buddy's photography panel.  I just give them my veteran insight when they need a correction on something I know or experienced before.

      We tried to improv the con fun during the con,  so I did my best in doing improv on the spot photoshoots with cosplayers that know me and how I roll.


      Being a convention veteran for 10+ years, I've got experience on how to have con fun without doing dumb stuff. Since there was a good amount of people that I know who went to KollisionCon, I used them to help improvise my con fun. Fun like my buddy Kyle doing some awesome yet crazy "fire bending" stuff  while being SAFE during this stunt. 

      Seriously, DO NOT try this.  Onless you really done this before, and have health insurance.


      Then there was "naked pool party" at the (I shit you not) outdoor pool. Even though it's freezing cold in late November, the pool is heated, and there's a passage you can swim into the indoor part of the pool. Anyways, lulz happened during this "naked pool party," and  every time a cosplayer came by to the pool they did a random chant.

      20121124-IMG_5044 SLENDERMAN is going to have a field day with this!


      Other than the random con fun, I've got to give a shout out to T.J. for being my "light system assistant." I know I can just do it with just a simple camera with a flash on it, but come on, this is me we're talking about. I want to keep on pushing the envelope when it comes to giving out quality pics. It's a good thing the convention was small and not crowded. I was able to bring in my AlienBee B800 strobe unit with battery pack, pocketwizard triggers, and a 24x24 softbox.  This is a bit over kill for con hallway photography. But good enough for me to test out before doing this at other conventions. I also tried out other setups like testing out the vest that I had for a long time to see how much important cargo I can carry.  I was able to carry a simple lighting system, which consists of just a pocket wizard, Canon 580exII flash, and a Gary Fong defuser.

      If you're a newbie photographer and wanna learn new techniques?  You can hang with me, get to see my gear, and learn how to do this up close.


      Overall,  KollisionCon can still be a good con, but it takes a hit by being Thanksgiving weekend. It's a good place if cosplayers want a different area for photo shoots, and has HANDS DOWN the  best rave set up in the con scene in the midwest region. So that's it for my KollisionCon convention report.  Next stop, Anime Crossroads, the last con for me for 2012!...

      and as usually here's the link on where you can find the pics of KollisionCon 2012.
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/sets/72157632099340895/

      And the Cosplay Contest.
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/rladao/sets/72157632151792040/

  • About Me

    I'm just some guy who works for Toyota... Yet on the weekends... I'm the guy with a Canon 7D DSLR camera, and knows how to use it..

    I started out as an inside joke with my car club, cause I was their media expert. And I randomly grab a Nikon D60, messed with it. got farther in depth with the photography hobby.

    I'm currently teaming up with Screwattack.com, other sites, and a freelancer looking for the next assignment to help build up my portfolio.. I don't' care if it's paid or not.. I just need MOAR! experience in this field. Since I'm just a regular at the (Anime) convention scene, looking for an expansion...

    Current photography load out

    Camera: Canon 7D, Canon 60D

    Lens: Canon 50mm f/1.8, Canon 17-55 f/2.8, Tokina 11-16 f/2.8

    Lighting: Canon 580exII, Canon 420ex, (two) AlienBees B800

    Software: Adobe LightRoom 3.6, Adobe Photoshop CS6, Adobe Premiere Elements 10

    Other add ons: Gary Fong lightspheres , PocketWizard FlexTT5 + MiniTT1

    20111022-IMG_8308.jpg

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