20-Something · cosplay · life

What You Should Know About Cosplay

Cosplay is a beautiful, beautiful expression of art – of love and talent.  There is something empowering in building something with your hands (be it buying, making, commissioning).

This post has been in the works for almost three months – so much research and love has gone into this that I hope it is (in some way) helpful to you or someone you know!  

We cosplayers are sometimes put on the spot with a question like: “how do I start cosplaying?”  And it is INTIMIDATING. How the heck am I supposed to answer this question while in a Wonder Woman corset I can hardly breathe in while being pestered by two small children who seem to think my leg is a jungle gym?

  • You do not have to be a certain body type.
    • There are a lot of people who seem to think that they cannot cosplay Wonder Woman (for example) because they aren’t built like the Amazon Powerhouse. Bullying is something that often happens, but don’t let that discourage you!  I get told I look nothing like Wonder Woman (mostly that I’m too fat to cosplay her.  Guess what, I’m not either… cuz little kids think I’m the best they’ve ever seen… so shut up.
      • It’s all fantastic to have someone tell you that you look great, but when you look in a mirror, you often ask yourself why you’re so ugly.  This isn’t true.  You have so many aspects of yourself that are fantastically beautiful.
      • To be a little more helpful, if you have never cosplayed before:
        • FOCUS on nothing else but how much you love a character.

            • Picking a character that you love helps you be more confident while rocking that costume.  It is why I usually suggest characters like Wonder Woman or Rogue or Starbuck from Battlestar Gallactica.
            • If you’re portraying a character that is kick-ass, you will feel kick ass.For example, I look 16. This is a problem.  So, unless I want to put on a BAJILLION layers of makeup, I usually choose teenage characters or something my INSUFFERABLE smile wouldn’t look strange on (why I don’t cosplay villains – Bellatrix does not count… she’s nuts and smiles a lot).

You do not have to be a certain race.

You do not have to spend $$$$$$$$$$$$$$ on a costume.

“She stared, wide eyed as glass-walled elevators shot up fifty-two floors like pods in a launch tube. Everything – from the glaringly bright carpet swirling with psychedelic lines; to the hotel’s open ceiling ringed by storey after storey of balconies, the distant roof so high it made her head spin; to the people decked out in cosplay – was torn from a science fiction novel. It seemed Liv had spent the last eighteen years in search of her people, and in one sudden explosion of fate, they’d all been brought together in this place in time. Her eyes filled with tears as a sudden awareness filled her.
They were all nerds.”
Danika Stone, All the Feels

          1. COSPLAY IS ABOUT ENJOYMENT.

            IT IS ABOUT HAVING FUN.

            IT IS ABOUT LIVING YOUR BEST LIFE.

As AnyaPanda states in this video: The first step is to break down a character’s outfit.  For example: we all know the classic Sherlock Holmes, right? Deerstalker and classic men’s suit.  The Doctor? (I will use the 10th incarnation because I am not breaking down all of them.)  Blue suit (or a brown striped one), sonic screwdriver, tennis shoes. DONE.  Emma  Swan? Red leather jacket, some high waisted jeans, and boots.

Take the character at its simplest and move from there!

I will use my Katana from Suicide Squad as an example here:

Screen Shot 2018-07-10 at 10.12.45 AMThis seems like a really difficult costume. But, let’s take a look at it:

  1. Black bobbed wig
  2. White Crop Top
  3. Black bomber jacket with floral detailing.
  4. Two Red scarves
  5. Black high waisted jeans.
  6. Katana
  7. combat boots
  8. mask – the mask isn’t necessary as she does take it off at one point!
Anything else here is just screen accuracy that was actually pretty easy.  You can find patches on amazon, the jacket, a wooden katana….

There is also the fun aspects of CASUAL COSPLAY.  Which will be a whole other post.

Happy conventions!

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