Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Going into Cosplay - Pt. I

by Dalai Dama

You have some time on your hands and you want to try something new. It has to be something that will make you feel happy after you hit the con floor and show your stuff, and something that will let you become that character that you truly adore!!  That’s right! We are talking cosplaying. There are many things about the world of cosplay that you should know, let's call it the basics. NOW LET’S GET IT ON!!!

First of all, you need to pick a character. Some people go with the basics of picking their favorites while others choose one that resembles them, but the reality is that you need to find a character that you are completely comfortable with, one that convinces the public that YOU ARE THAT CHARACTER! If you are shy, try choosing a character that's more relaxed, like a modest super hero, a character with a laid back sense of fashion, maybe a hero’s alter ego or secret identity, a simple anime character, or you can cosplay as a character that does not have an extreme costume like Emma from Once Upon a Time, Clark Kent, Bruce Wayne, or one of the many versions of The Doctor. You can choose a great variety of characters from your favorite shows, comics, movies and anime. There is always one that will be JUST RIGHT!

Second step: Find references everywhere! You can always get reference pictures from comics, manga, books, magazines and obviously, the Internet. You should try to find different pictures of your character, look for all the different styles that the character can have and pick the one you are most comfortable in making (you may be a beginner in sewing or you may be a theatrical costume designer). Always be aware of your skills; you may want to take the "I'm going to buy it" road. However, there is nothing wrong with going out and getting a costume fully made for you or just getting it on eBay, but the important part is that you are happy and you feel comfortable in it. If you decide to make it yourself, don’t forget that it doesn’t matter how it looks as you’re happy with the outcome and there's always room for improvement. Find your strengths; maybe you aren't great with fabrics but you are great with prop making. There is always one thing that you will be your strong suit, but as long as you try and you are satisfied with your work, you are gold! On another note, NEVER BE AFRAID OF TAKING ON A CHALLENGE, but don’t forget that it will take time. You will fail at some steps, you will be frustrated, desperate, and you will cry about your project. In this case, start as early as possible. This way, you can redo things, find new solutions for your problems, or just find the motivation to keep working on such a hard project. In addition failures will cost more time and effort than just working straight ahead. You should start small when working with new materials let's say Worbla Thermoplastic or satin. In order to become one with the material (I’m not joking), you have to first learn the material you are going to use and start small because there will always be trial and error. That way, you don't spend too much money!

To be continued in Part II.

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