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 Victoria Avalor
Victoria Avalor is an American Author, Blogger, Volunteer Charity Worker, Professional Princess Performer, Cosplayer and Model of Puerto Rican descent who currently resides in the suburbs of Philadelphia.
How did you first get into cosplay?
My boyfriend showed me a picture of an extraordinary cosplayer and I was inspired. I had never seen that level of costuming in person.
Do you cosplay just for fun or do you see it as a stepping stone to a future career?
I never saw cosplay as a “career” however, I have been paid to cosplay and I also have a Patreon. I consider it a way to make money on the side but not a full-time career. It was fun when I began in 2006 but now I focus on how I can do charity work in my community by volunteering as a character for children’s charities.
Do you prefer to make your cosplays from scratch, buy or commission them or a hybrid?
I’ve done all of the above but I much rather hire someone who knows what they are doing rather than me trying to figure it out. LOL
How much time do you spend making each of your cosplays?
It depends; it could be swift and on other occasions, it can take months.
What is your favorite cosplay you done so far?
Probably Wonder Woman. I’ve done several different versions of her costume. I’ve been a fan of the character since I was a child. I grew up watching reruns of the Lynda Carter show. I have been doing volunteer charity work in my area as Wonder Woman for 4 years.
What has been your most memorable experience (good or bad) as a cosplayer?
Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins retweeted a photo of me volunteering as Wonder Woman at an event for Alex’s Lemonade Stand. The organization raises money to help defeat childhood cancer. The particular event I was at, raised one million dollars. I was stunned to learned Patty Jenkins not only liked but retweeted my photo. It was for a great cause and I absolutely adore Ms. Jenkins.
How do you feel about group cosplays?
I love them! It’s so much fun to collaborate with your friends and do a big group cosplay. It takes the love of your fandom even further because now it’s not just you; it’s a whole group of people.
What cosplays are you currently working on or plan to finish this year?
I’m not really sure yet. I have not given it much thought since I do not cosplay as much as I use to. Adulting comes first. I guess if I had to pick one, I would say I would like to work on the Jessica Cruz version of Green Lantern.
What issues do you see being the most divisive in the cosplay community and how do you feel about it?
It could be anything really but I have distanced myself from dramatic cosplayers so I don’t have to deal with their negativity.
What types of characters or genres inspire your cosplay the most?
I am attracted to characters from Disney and DC Comics. I grew up more of a DC fan than Marvel. I do love Marvel but DC was my passion as a kid. I love beautiful characters with a strong moral center.
What is your favorite part (researching, shopping for supplies, sewing, photo shoots, attending cons, etc.) of your cosplay process?
Photo shoots are my favorite part because it means everything is finally DONE! Plus, it’s the most fun.
What are your best resources for cosplay materials?
The craft store especially one that sells fabric.
What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a cosplayer?
Learning to deal with sexual harassment, online stalking, and racism.
Have you learned any life lessons during your time as a cosplayer and what are they?
I have learned that the cosplay community is no different from the real world. Don’t let the costumes fool you; these are regular people. You will get along with some of them and will not get along with others. Some cosplayers are nice, others are A-holes. There are cosplayers who wonderful humanitarians and others that are white supremacists. People hook up, break up, cheat on their husbands and wives. It’s no different from the real world.
What is your golden cosplay rule that you would share with new cosplayers?
Have fun and don’t take it too seriously. When you take it too seriously, you get stressed out and frustrated very quickly. I have seen many beginners quit because they stressed themselves out. They were also upset that they did not gain instant internet fame. Don’t do it for the fame or the popularity; do it for yourself.
How do you feel the cosplay community has changed over time?
It used to be just a hobby but now some people view it as a career and their sole purpose is to make money.
If money and time were not a factor, what is your number one over-ambitious cosplay you want to do?
I’d love to be the original Pink Power Ranger and Iron Man!
Do you set a budget for each cosplay?
Yes, but the budget changes. I don’t have a specific budget that I stick too. It depends on my finances
What does cosplay mean to you?
It means different things, one of which is a way to express yourself and be artistic. It is also an avenue to give back to the community through volunteer work.
Is there anything that would make you stop cosplaying?
Being too busy and life in general. Also money because it is not a cheap hobby.
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