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My real name is Sara, I’m turning 19 in a week and I’m an Italian student and cosplayer (sorry for my english!). Hope we can become friends!
How did you first get into cosplay?
I discovered the “cosplay world” when I was very young. I think I was eleven when I started using social networks such as Blingee.com and similar, surfing the web I found those people dressing as anime and games characters and I was a little confused by that, so I made a quick research and I immediately fell in love with the cosplay culture.
Do you cosplay just for fun or do you see it as a stepping stone to a future career?
I do cosplay just for fun, but I also put a lot of effort in what I create. This is the only hobby I’m trying to develop, it would be really nice to make it into a future career but I’m actually just trying to create great memories with my friends, let’s see what the future will bring. 🙂
Do you prefer to make your cosplays from scratch, buy or commission them or a hybrid?
Uhm, I would say a hybrid. Unfortunately, I’m not able to sew, I don’t have a lot of spare time, so, for now, I just make my props, accessories, and armors (manual works, yep), so I commissioned most of my dresses. y the way during this year I will start learning how to sew thanks to a friend of mine, she’s very kind and a great cosplayer too, I kindly asked her to give me some advice so you will soon see my results!
How much time do you spend making each of your cosplays?
Well, it depends. I do work on my cosplay a bit at a time, I start searching for the materials even a year before and I start creating the easiest props in my free time. I usually spend my summers doing the most difficult and important parts, so I can have various months to dedicate to this wonderful hobby without any exams.
What is your favorite cosplay you done so far?
My favorite one is obviously Ahri, she’s my favorite character ever, I do love her way too much. I changed my cosplay three times, and I will add some other details with the time passing.
I really want to resemble her perfectly, that’s my actual dream!
What has been your most memorable experience (good or bad) as a cosplayer?
Luckily I have more good memories than bad ones, so it’s a little hard for me to choose. One recent memory I have that I will never forget is when someone who is a little reluctant to do cosplay told me: “You know I don’t like much this world, there’s a lot of competition and it seems like people do cosplays only to get attention. When I look at you everything is completely different, you made me understand what it feels like to put your heart in this passion, it seems so wonderful when it’s about you.”
How do you feel about group cosplays?
I find them very funny! I love making cosplay groups with my friends, it’s one of the best ways to represent the friendship you can create thanks to this hobby, also that’s a good way to fully represent a series such as League of Legends, Overwatch, and others with many characters.
What cosplays are you currently working on or plan to finish this year?
I’m currently working on my D.Va, I changed a lot of things and I still have to. I’m also working on Hanekawa Tsubasa from Monogatari, then I’ll start my beloved Challenger Ahri, Hestia from DanMachi, Bunny D.Va, and many others projects!
What issues do you see being the most divisive in the cosplay community and how do you feel about it?
I don’t like this competition between cosplayers; this hobby should include love, friendship, estimation and also help and advice for our works. I’ll always continue putting a big smile on my face before every con, and I’ll always continue working hard still being full opened to meet new people with the same interests as me. This is how cosplay should be: funny and full of love!
What types of characters or genres inspire your cosplay the most?
Characters from video games are the ones who inspire me the most. Recently I re-started doing anime characters as well, but I spend most of my free time playing, so it’s really easy to guess who wins. 😛
What is your favorite part (researching, shopping for supplies, sewing, photo shoots, attending cons, etc.) of your cosplay process?
I actually love everything but paying for materials. xD Eheh! My favorite parts are making props, then going to the cons and I also love doing photo shoots because I find it very satisfying to get great photos of your works. But … my favorite part ever is to meet cosplayers with the same character as me and to create memories together! I made a lot of friends this way, and now we talk almost every day!
What are your best resources for cosplay materials?
I usually buy specific materials online, but most of the things are findable on materials shops in almost every city.
What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a cosplayer?
At the moment I didn’t find very big obstacles, but I think that one of them can be the fact that we have to accept ourselves as we are. Fictional characters often offer really unreal standards for “normal humans”, I see a lot of people struggle for this. We have to understand that fiction and reality are two separated and different things and deal with that. Another big problem to understand is that there will always be someone better than us, so we don’t have to feel bad about another cosplayer with a perfect costume or a perfect interpretation, let’s always do our best, everyone is different and great!
Have you learned any life lessons during your time as a cosplayer and what are they?
I mentioned a few before, but I think that this hobby really helped me becoming less shy with other people, I became less insecure about what I can do and I also experimented how supporting other people can really give you a lot of satisfactions and make you a better person. I learned to never give up on my dreams, and I also learned that everyone can achieve something even if starting from zero!
What is your golden cosplay rule that you would share with new cosplayers?
Believe in yourself and always remember to have fun. There will always be -unfortunately- people that will be ready to bring you down, just DON’T LISTEN TO THEM, YOU CAN DO IT! Cosplay is fun, it should make you happy and proud of yourself, nothing else!
How do you feel the cosplay community has changed over time?
I started going to the conventions during the end of 2010, I was really young, but I don’t remember all the hate and envy that I feel nowadays. This makes me really sad, back then we used to have really mediocre costumes, shiny wigs, no lenses or makeup at all…but we felt so happy to cosplay our favorite characters anyway! I wish it was the same also now, sigh.
If money and time were not a factor, what is your number one over ambitious cosplay you want to do?
Oh well, I have so many projects that I can’t really decide what’s the most ambitious. One is certainly Syndra from League of Legends, it will take me a lot of materials to buy!
Do you set a budget for each cosplay?
Not a specific one, but I always try to save money if possible. I’m a student and I occasionally work so I don’t earn a lot of money, also I don’t ask anything to my parents.
What does cosplay mean to you?
To me cosplay represents a total liberation, it’s a perfect way to express myself as best as I can: creating, acting, transmitting something to the other people. It makes me feel proud and alive.
Please, don’t misunderstand; I don’t associate cosplay with “life”, the real one is something totally different, but I feel sincerely happy doing this.
Is there anything that would make you stop cosplaying?
I think that only work, study or family (like, creating my own and finding some stuff associated to that, but I’m still very young to think about this now) associated things could make me stop this hobby.
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