By Nicole Luke
When did you start Cosplaying?
I think it was in 5th grade. We had this “ Character from a book day” and I remember asking my teacher if a comic book would be allowed that day (I still didn’t know the difference between comic books and manga). So I guess technically that would have been my first cosplay since I was Sakura Haruno.
What got you into cosplaying? What is your favorite cosplay you’ve made (or worn)?
What got me into cosplaying was my mother. She was always sewing clothes and making me Halloween costumes that I picked it up. Also it is thanks to her that I discovered anime in the first place; she let me watch Pokemon and Sailor Moon, which progressed to my love for Toonami.
How do you determine what characters to Cosplay?
It all depends on the anime I think. Sometimes I fall in love with the character’s outfit and overall design which first makes me want to cosplay as them. Typically what happens then is that I also fall in love with the personalities. Other times I want to cosplay as a certain character simply because I can relate to them somehow.
Do you enjoy cosplaying?
Oh yes, most certainly. I don’t think I would look forward to starting a new cosplay and counting down the days to the next convention if I didn’t enjoy it.
Do you have any Dream Costumes you want to make or do?
Hmmm, my dream costume that I would love to make would be Lightning Faron at the moment. That would be a really big challenge for me and to get in character for her would be difficult since I’m really too bubbly for her.
Out of all your costumes, which was the hardest to Fabricate? What are some cosplays you are currently working on?
I think the hardest would be a tie between Kairi’s KHII version and Asuna from SAO. Currently though I am working on Aisaka Taiga and remaking Asuna.
Which costume are you looking forward to wearing in the future the most?
Nia Tepplin. She is such an adorable character and it will be special since I will have my boyfriend cosplaying with me as Simon.
Do you think you will ever retire from Cosplaying?
Anytime soon? No. Although in the future I may just because I will be older and I would be trying to settle down and all that lovely stuff.
Have you ever considered wearing costumes outside of conventions for daily wear?
Funny thing is I already have. I live right on the beach so I did a quick Misty cosplay back when I had red hair and wore it around in the summer.
Do you fabricate/make your own costumes or buy them?
I make them, with the occasional purchase of accessories that are cheaper to buy.
In the World of Cosplaying
How do your personal views (religious, political, lifestyle) affect your cosplays?
Really the only thing that affects my cosplaying is how much skin I want to show. Sure I’ve done Black Rock Shooter and Misty but that’s about all the skin I would be willing to show. Other than that if I want to cosplay something I will.
How do you react to the attention your cosplays generate?
I love the attention my cosplays get. I really enjoy the people who come up and start talking to me about their love for the game/anime/ manga that I’m cosplaying from. I really enjoy seeing and hearing the passion that we all have.
Have you ever felt uncomfortable in cosplay?
Luckily I haven’t had any uncomfortable situations in cosplay yet.
What are some of your favorite moments cosplaying?
My favorite moments cosplaying are walking into my first convention and winning my first award.
Do you or have you participate in any contests? (Convention, online, etc)
I occasionally do the cosplay contest at conventions.
Have you won any awards if so what or which?
Yes. I’ve won a single Judge’s Award.
What was the first event/convention you went to?
Anime South in 2009, the one right before Christmas.
What is your standing on Handmade vs Store bought cosplay?
I love handmade cosplays because you can make sure the details and the fabric is right but if you don’t have the time or abilities to make them, buy them. It’s all about having fun.
How do you feel about those who Cosplay getting into character? Do you get in Character as well?
The people who can get into character are amazing! I try my best but it doesn’t always go the way I want it.
Is there anyone you always wanted to meet and have a photoshoot with?
I’ve always wanted to meet all the people from FightingDreamersPro and have just a simple photoshoot with all my cosplay friends. That would be enough to make me happy.
Can you share a few tips for beginners from your experience?
Safety pins will always be your best friend while cosplaying. Don’t give up, as difficult as it may seem at first glance there is always a way to make it real.
What are the positives and negatives of Cosplaying in your opinion?
The positives of cosplaying are the amazing people and experiences you get from cosplaying and going to conventions. The only negative I can think of is how expensive it can get, from the process of getting the costume together, to getting to the con and all the money spent afterwards.
How do you deal with negative and positive feedback on your costumes?
I take it all into consideration and just build up with it.
Any words of wisdom for aspiring Cosplayers?
There will always be a person with mean things to say. Listen but don’t let it control you and your love for cosplaying.
Outside of Cosplaying
Do you have any hobbies other then Cosplaying?
I play video games and I like to dance. I really don’t know if those are considered hobbies but it is what I do!
Do you have any helpers (pets) that often ‘help’?
Oh yes. My three kitties love to come and play with my feet and knock all my thread over and run it through the house.
Is there anything you do outside of Cosplaying that give you ideas of what to do for a costume?
I watch a lot of movies and I try to impersonate the characters to try and get better at getting into character.