How to Cosplay – the pros give their say

Some tips from KANAME☆ and Usagi

 By Kelly Morse

Unlike models, cosplayers are MADE not BORN. So before you make your commitment to be a full fledged cosplayer and sign-up for AFA12, we’ve got some helpful tips from the pros to make sure you start out on the right foot (or claw depending on your character).Campus Magazine picked the brains of two popular Japanese born and bred cosplayers – KANAME☆ and Usagi – to find out what helped them get to where they are today and here’s what they had to say.

Usagi's Name Card

WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR NEW COSPLAYERS?

KANAME☆

  1. Most important is you must have love for the character and passion for the character.
  2. At the beginning of cosplay, it is highly recommended that you make your own name card and you actually go to a cosplay event where you can exchange cards with other cosplayers.
  3. Before going to a cosplay event, make sure you put on your costume at home, with the complete make-up and everything and make sure you find that the character is complete.
  4. Try to imagine where different camera angles may be taking photos of you and try to resemble the character.
  5. Most important, please do not forget where the character comes from, you have to be thankful to the creator who made the character in the first place.

WHAT ARE SOME TIPS FOR GETTING IN TO CHARACTER?

 KANAME☆

Of course, I try my best to fit myself to the character’s personality. If there is a character that I couldn’t fit myself into, I usually will practice until I do.

Usagi

No matter what character that I like, I actually see it as a challenge and I like to try cosplaying that character for a while. Of course sometimes when I find myself lacking to be in character,  I try my best to improvise.

HOW DO YOU PERSONALLY GO ABOUT FINDING A CHARACTER THAT FITS YOUR PERSONALITY?

KANAME☆

Usually we don’t find the character. Sometimes when just watching anime I see a character that I like. I could have 5 characters at any one time. I am also influenced by others who cosplay that character so I get some advice from them.

Usagi

Usually I’ve been doing cosplay characters from a fighting game. Characters from fighting games hardly have any emotion unlike anime characters who have lots of expressions. So it’s even more difficult. When I play the fighting games and I find a character that is very interesting or very cool, that’s how I choose my characters.

WHAT ABOUT CROSS-DRESSING COSPLAY?

KANAME☆ cross-dressing for cosplay

KANAME☆

I find it a challenge (but I have done it before).

THERE SEEMS TO BE MORE FEMALE COSPLAYERS THAN MALES. WHY DO YOU THINK THAT IS?

KANAME☆ & Usagi

Actually, it seems that the ratio between male to female cosplayers is 8 to 10. From the beginning, there are more females than males. But we wish that there were more guy cosplayers.

KANAME☆

It can get pretty lonely for me so I would like to see more male characters. Please be a cosplayer as a guy!

* Transcript was taken from a translation during the interview. Some answers are paraphrased.

 

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You could pick a random scohol uniform from an anime, or do a pokemon team grunt. Those don’t require any specific features for you, just a general outfit. Princess Zelda would work, especially from Twilight Princess. or curl your hair and do a temp dye to blonde for a princess peach.