Word of the Nerd is pleased to present to you one of our most popular features, Cosplayer Spotlight. We feature new and talented cosplayers from the cosplay community. Be sure to check back every day to catch some up and coming new cosplay talent or get a look at some well established and famous members of the cosplay universe.
About Heise Cosplay
A Chicago cosplayer who has been apart of the community since 2007, when she attended her first every convention, Anime Central 2007. She was inspired by the community, and for a time only attended local conventions. Taking a break in 2010, she attended Chicago Comic Con 2014 and returned to the community in 2015 at Chicago Comic Con 2015. She’s since then expanded her horizons, making dream conventions that she’s made for herself, as well as dream costumes, come true.
How did you first get into cosplay?
I actually got into cosplay in high school, when a couple of my friends were interested in a local con back in 2006/2007. My costume wasn’t the best, but the reality of the beast, I had a lot of fun and it just sort of continued!
Do you cosplay just for fun or do you see it as a stepping stone to a future career?
Just for fun really. I get asked all the time, mostly by my family members as to why I don’t do it for the money or enter into contests at all.
Do you prefer to make your cosplays from scratch, buy or commission them or a hybrid?
It’s a mix of both. In the past few years, though, most of my cosplays have been commissioned/bought
How much time do you spend making each of your cosplays?
When I do have the time to make a cosplay, it takes me about a month if I’m sewing it. Armor takes a little bit longer, and my last armor project took me a little over a few months. Most of the stuff that I do sew, is stuff that’s thrifted or from Amazon that is easy to modify.
What is your favorite cosplay you done so far?
I actually have quite a few, but honestly? Ciri from the Witcher 3.
What has been your most memorable experience (good or bad) as a cosplayer?
Going to Katsucon 2017, which was my dream convention.
How do you feel about group cosplays?
I find that they fall apart easily, and as much as I try to not do them too often, I keep on running back to them. It’s a matter of keeping good communication, otherwise, they won’t be fn. But otherwise, I’m usually wandering solo.
What cosplays are you currently working on or plan to finish this year?
I actually just finished Jester from Critical Role! And I’ll be wearing her at C2E2 this year.
What issues do you see being the most divisive in the cosplay community and how do you feel about it?
Sexual Harassment in the cosplay community. I have zero tolerance for it, and I’m glad that more and more conventions are backing the zero-tolerance policy towards it. There are too many people that this sort of thing happens to and it makes me sick to my stomach reading horror stories and the like about not only my friends but strangers who were at the same convention I’ve been at, one I’ve wanted to go to, etc.
What types of characters or genres inspire your cosplay the most?
Video games, comic books, and very little anime as of late.
What is your favorite part (researching, shopping for supplies, sewing, photo shoots, attending cons, etc.) of your cosplay process?
Researching and Shopping! It helps me to come up with so many ideas while researching, and finding the right pieces for the cosplay to make it pop, is the best.
What are your best resources for cosplay materials?
Amazon, eBay, and Etsy. And I think my favorite store is a tie between the three.
What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a cosplayer?
I used to do a lot of female to male cosplays in the past because I wasn’t comfortable with my sexuality and I guess I always wanted to be a boy and cosplay was my escape. As I got older, my facial features changed, I matured, and I couldn’t see myself as a boy anymore, and just started to wear more feminine cosplays and honestly, made me fall in love with who I truly am.
Have you learned any life lessons during your time as a cosplayer and what are they?
That people change, their interests change and life goes on.
What is your golden cosplay rule that you would share with new cosplayers?
That everyone can cosplay, and it doesn’t matter how you go about becoming your favorite character because if you believe you are that character, then you truly are.
How do you feel the cosplay community has changed over time?
People becoming more accepting of people who don’t make their own costumes/commission them/buy them because when the community first started, they weren’t very accepting of it.
If money and time were not a factor, what is your number one over-ambitious cosplay you want to do?
Rescue from the Iron Man comics
Do you set a budget for each cosplay?
Yes, and it ranges quite a bit depending on the costumes complexity.
What does cosplay mean to you?
Everything. It’s my escape and a reason to see my friends that I’ve made over the years, especially the ones that live out of state.
How do you see the cosplay community 10 years from now?
That cosplay will be bigger than ever and more accessible than ever, and the con scene growing and flourishing along with it.
What is your favorite con to attend?
Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo (C2E2)
Is there another cosplayer who inspires you or is your role model?
Do you consider yourself an inspiration to other cosplayers?
I’ve been told I am, so yes!
What advice would you give someone about meeting cosplayers and taking their pictures? How do you like to be approached?
Just ask! Cosplayers love it when you take their pictures and more often than not, welcome stopping to talk to new cosplayers and answering their questions! If you motion for to me for a photo, or politely ask me/approach me, I always up to talk a photo/chat.
What is one thing you wish your fans knew about you?
That my fans probably don’t know how much of a car enthusiast I am.
Is there anything that would make you stop cosplaying?
I actually stopped cosplaying before in 2010 due to personal/money issues, and if it came to that again, I would probably do it again.
You can follow and view more of Heise Cosplay here
Check out our other cosplay features here
If you are a cosplayer and would like to be featured, please fill out our submission form