By Nicole Luke
Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Chris White, but I’m also known as ShadowGlaive. I am a gamer, and a Cosplayer who lives in Southern California with a passion for all things geeky, nerdy, or just plain awesome.
When did you start Cosplaying?
I started Cosplaying in 2010 for Anime Expo. I ended up throwing together a pretty bad closet Cosplay somewhat resembling Kakashi from Naruto XD.
What got you into Cosplaying?
When I went to my first Anime Expo, I was blown away by the sheer number of people in costume, and the massive detail and effort everyone put into their outfits. I had no idea such a community of Cosplayers existed. But what I thought was amazing was how friendly and nice everyone was to each other. Even with my terrible closet Cosplay, people were so supportive. I had such a great time that I ended up coming back every year after that.
How do you determine what to Cosplay as in characters?
When I choose a character, I choose something I truly love from a series or a videogame that I really enjoy, something that I would love to make into reality.
Do you enjoy cosplaying?
I really do enjoy Cosplaying, because I meet such wonderful people. When someone comes up to you to take a picture, they usually also enjoy the series that your character is from. You instantly have mutual talking point between you and that person, which is great for making new friends that share that common interest. Additionally, being around so many creative and talented people who love to do what you do, is such an enjoyable experience.
Do you have any Dream Costumes you want to make or do?
One of my dream Cosplays would be Tyrael from Diablo. He has always been one of my favorite characters since Diablo II, which is why after seeing the statue of Tyrael at Blizzcon 2011 in all its glory and detail, I knew that I would one day have to construct this armor!
Out of all your costumes, which was the hardest to Fabricate?
Out to all of my costumes, Tier 2 Judgment has been the most difficult to construct. I chose, unknowingly, some of the most unorthodox materials to work with, making it far more difficult than it needed to be. Although it ended up working in the end, styrene, sheet metal, and high density compressed foam were very uncooperative materials.
What are some cosplays you are currently working on?
Currently I’m working on making a Captain Jack sparrow cosplay from Pirates of the Caribbean, which I’m hoping you get done by Wondercon 2013.
Which costume are you looking forward to wearing in the future the most?
My most favorite costume that I am looking forward to wearing in the future would have to be a tie between Kakashi and Tier 2 judgment. Both are my favorites for different reasons. Judgment is huge and bulky, yet epic to wear, but Kakashi is far more comfortable and mobile.
Do you think you will ever retire from Cosplaying?
Haha I don’t think I will ever retire from Cosplay. It is just too much fun to do that. Even when I end up old and bald I’ll still do other characters like master Roshi from Dragon Ball Z, or Professor Xavier from the X-Men.
Have you ever considered wearing costumes outside of conventions for daily wear?
Haha, I actually have never considered that before. It actually might be fun to do sometime.
Do you fabricate/make your own costumes or buy them?
I fabricate all of my costumes, and they are all handmade with blood, sweat and tears.
In the World of Cosplaying:
Do you or have you participate in any contests? (Convention, online, etc)
I don’t really participate in contests, with the one exception being the costume contest for Blizzcon 2011. I love Blizzard way too much to pass up that experience.
Have you won any awards if so what or which?
I ended up winning 2nd place at the Blizzcon 2011 for my Tier 2 Judgment with the Ashbringer.
What was the first event/convention you went to?
The first convention I ever attended was Anime Expo 2010. It will forever hold a special place in my heart, because you never forget your first convention.
What is your standing on Handmade vs Store bought cosplay?
I know a lot of people feel that handmade is the only way to go for cosplay, but I personally feel that it shouldn’t matter. Although I greatly applaud anyone who makes anything by hand, not everyone possesses the ability to sew or make such costumes, and store bought cosplays allow them to have a chance to enjoy all the fun and excitement of wearing a costume at a convention.
How do you feel about those who Cosplay getting into character? Do you get in Character as well?
I would highly recommend to anyone who Cosplays that they should always play the part of that character. Seeing a costume of your favorite character in person is amazing, but seeing that individual play the part of the character so accurately in terms of their mannerisms, actions, and poses truly makes it that much more amazing.
Is there anyone you always wanted to meet and have a photoshoot with?
If I could meet Kazuhiko Inoue (voice actor for Kakashi) and take a picture with her in my Kakashi Cosplay, I think my life would be complete haha.
Can you share a few tips for beginners from your experience?
Some good advice I can give to beginners is to start off with something simple and work your way up to more difficult projects. Additionally, it’s always good to plan ahead for how long a project will take. Calculate how much time you need and then double it, to leave room for any mishaps.
What are the positives and negatives of Cosplaying in your opinion?
The positives to Cosplaying are being able to associate with so many amazing individuals who share a common interest and passion, making friends at conventions, and to being able to express yourself in your own unique way.
Personally I feel that there are not too many negatives to Cosplay, but if I had a chance to change some less positive aspects I would love to see people outside of Cosplay to be more accepting of those who enjoy this hobby.
How do you deal with negative and positive feedback on your costumes?
There will always be individuals who will give you feedback both positive and negative, so it’s best to never take any criticism or critique too personally. I personally take any constructive criticism into consideration and look at it as a chance to improve my work.
Any words of wisdom for aspiring Cosplayers?
Don’t compare yourself to others, but instead compare your work to your best work, and continue to improve. Focus on doing what you love to do and that success will follow.
Outside of Cosplaying:
Do you have any hobbies other then Cosplaying?
Beside Cosplay I enjoy playing a variety of video games, especially those made by blizzard entertainment, and watching anime. All of this helps to keep me motivated.
Do you have any helpers (pets) that often ‘help’?
I do have a rabbit helper that does try to help me with my Cosplay from time to time, but I usually find that he does more damage than help haha. He loves to chew things, specifically my costumes.
Is there anything you do outside of Cosplaying that give you ideas of what to do for a costume?
I find that my greatest source of inspiration for costumes comes from what I love to do the most, like playing video games such as World of Warcraft and Diablo 3, and watching such stuff as Naruto, Bleach, and DBZ. Oh and listening to Zelda music; I can never get enough of that stuff.
Final Words to the Readers:
For more information on ShadowGlaive Cosplay, check out his fanpage.