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About Alina Masquerade
Alina; cosplayer, model, and muse. Living in Arizona but travels to Disneyland often. Have currently done conventions in Arizona, Southern California, Las Vegas, and Salt Lake City. I am very shy and introverted but have an amazing support system with family and friends.
How did you first get into cosplay?
I have always loved playing dress up. So when I found out there was a community of people who dressed up for fun all year round, I knew I found my tribe!
Do you cosplay just for fun or do you see it as a stepping stone to a future career?
Strictly fun. Though I am a firm believer in just letting fate take the lead and whatever happens on this cosplay journey, I welcome the experience.
Do you prefer to make your cosplays from scratch, buy or commission them or a hybrid?
I have not mastered the art of sewing, so I haven’t jumped into the “from scratch” game yet. But I do buy pieces and then alter or have them altered to fit my figure. Add embellishments and my own personal touches. And when I have the money I would love to commission some projects that I know are beyond my skill set. But I do enjoy learning and practicing; have been happy with a few of the scratch pieces I have come up with like my Glynda Goodwitch cape.
How much time do you spend making each of your cosplays?
Depends on if the cosplay gods are on my side. Is it Prime? LOL. Most of my cosplays so far have been done on a crunch of a few days or weeks.
What is your favorite cosplay you done so far?
Jessica Rabbit is near and dear to my heart for sure. I am hoping to branch out with her by doing different variations like Nurse and Park Ranger. And who knows, maybe a mashup or two. She is just a really fun character to play with.
What has been your most memorable experience (good or bad) as a cosplayer?
I love meeting new people who share my fandoms! So whenever I make a new friend in the community, it’s pretty amazing!
How do you feel about group cosplays?
I LOVE them! And look forward to being part of a few collaborations in the future! I feel like the pressure is off when the attention is shared in a group. While at the same time it is also a good way to share and learn from each other. And grow your skills so your group will look amazing!
What cosplays are you currently working on or plan to finish this year?
I have a few Poison Ivy ideas I have been playing with as well as a few other Jessica Rabbit variations. Also maybe a superhero thrown in for good measure.
What issues do you see being the most divisive in the cosplay community and how do you feel about it?
I am still pretty new to the community and haven’t seen a lot of this issue. But when people start tearing each other down it hurts my heart. I feel like it’s a big enough stage we can all take turns sharing the spotlight and appreciate the work that we all put into it.
What types of characters or genres inspire your cosplay the most?
Disney is my heart! But I love seeing the creative liberties people take with characters. Be it through fan art or mashups. Just the freedom of creativity that cosplay provides is inspiring to me. To think outside the box, to not feel trapped into looking exactly like the movie or comic. Though accurate costumes are incredibly rewarding as well.
What is your favorite part (researching, shopping for supplies, sewing, photo shoots, attending cons, etc.) of your cosplay process?
I love the planning process. Coming up with an idea and seeing it come to life as you piece every detail into place. A rush when all your work is complete and you look in the mirror and say “Yup! That is exactly how I saw it in my head!”
What are your best resources for cosplay materials?
Thrift stores! When I can re-purpose something and make it work out for a fraction of the cost it makes me happy!
What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a cosplayer?
I am an introvert so putting myself out there in the world is really hard. I still have panic attacks and worry about being in front of crowds and cameras!
Have you learned any life lessons during your time as a cosplayer and what are they?
My body is not perfect and that is ok. I always worry I can’t be her or wear that because my flaws will show. I freaking love it when I see other cosplayers unabashedly bare it all for the love of a character! It gives me the courage to do the same.
What is your golden cosplay rule that you would share with new cosplayers?
Have fun! And wear comfy shoes. And stay out of the bushes, ask me later. lol.
How do you feel the cosplay community has changed over time?
Still new so I haven’t really seen much change yet.
If money and time were not a factor, what is your number one over-ambitious cosplay you want to do?
I would love to do an amazing Belle ball gown with all the poof, layers, and sparkle that captured my heart as a kid! But in true time period fashion. That’s what I want!
Do you set a budget for each cosplay?
Nope. I pay what I can for what is needed. If I can’t afford something, I find a different option without compromising the goal or I save up.
What does cosplay mean to you?
Time with friends and family.. in costume!
Is there anything that would make you stop cosplaying?
When it stops being fun.
You can follow and view more of Alina Masquerade here
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