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About VinylRaven Cosplay
My cosplay name is VinylRaven. I am 21 years old from Canada, currently in my last semester of University. I’ll be graduating with an Art History Major and a Classics Minor.
How did you first get into cosplay?
I first got into cosplay because I loved Tolkien and had a major Lord of the Rings obsession that drove me to make an Elf costume.
Do you cosplay just for fun or do you see it as a stepping stone to a future career?
I cosplay for fun because I love the craft and I love creating. Of course, I would be more than happy if it were to turn into a career at some point, but it isn’t the end goal.
Do you prefer to make your cosplays from scratch, buy or commission them or a hybrid?
I prefer to make my cosplays from scratch, creating is half of the fun!
How much time do you spend making each of your cosplays?
The time I spend on each cosplay varies with the complexity of the character. The quickest I’ve made a cosplay was in a week, the longest has been 3-4 months.
What is your favorite cosplay you done so far?
I love all of the cosplays that I have created for different reasons so it is difficult to pick a favourite! Queen Flareon (Pokemon) was fun because I got to design the dress and style from my imagination; Blood Moon Diana (League of Legends) was a dream cosplay because I love her character; Saitama (One Punch Man) was easy to wear and fun to walk around in; and with Ashe (League of Legends) I’ve had some amazing photography opportunities.
What has been your most memorable experience (good or bad) as a cosplayer?
My most memorable experience would have to be when my Blood Moon Diana received the award for Runner-Up in the Journeyman category at Central Canada Comic Con’s costume competition. I put an immense amount of work into that costume, so it was very rewarding to place.
How do you feel about group cosplays?
Group cosplays, solo cosplays, I love them all! The more the merrier!
What cosplays are you currently working on or plan to finish this year?
This year I finished Queen Flareon, and I have Widowmaker (Overwatch) planned for a convention in autumn. I am also casually working on Diana’s normal look with no real due date.
What issues do you see being the most divisive in the cosplay community and how do you feel about it?
A divisive point in the cosplay community that I witness a lot of argument around is people’s opinions on revealing cosplays. In my opinion, I think someone should be able to cosplay a character however they wish to. If that means showing more skin, then go for it!
What types of characters or genres inspire your cosplay the most?
Badass, tough, sexy, strong females are my go-to characters. Genre-wise I am inspired by fantasy and video games, though I’d love to cosplay a sci-fi character at some point.
What is your favorite part (researching, shopping for supplies, sewing, photo shoots, attending cons, etc.) of your cosplay process?
My favourite part of the cosplay process is going to conventions and getting to interact with everyone while I’m in cosplay. Though I also adore building cosplays and doing photo shoots.
What are your best resources for cosplay materials?
Coupons and discount bulk stores. PinkyParadise for contacts, Ali-Express for lace front wigs and fancy cheap boots.
What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a cosplayer?
The biggest obstacle I’ve had to overcome is the cost and time. Being a part-time worker and a university student makes is tough when it comes to being able to afford everything I need related to cosplay as well as things needed for life and school.
Have you learned any life lessons during your time as a cosplayer and what are they?
I’ve learned that -30 Celsius is my cold threshold for outdoor photo shoots. (Though who am I kidding? I would do it again in a heartbeat for more amazing photos.)
What is your golden cosplay rule that you would share with new cosplayers?
Never tell yourself that you can’t do something because you don’t know how to. Always tell yourself that you need to learn. To grow as a creator you have to start somewhere. No one was born amazing at cosplay, we all started at the same beginning and practiced and worked hard to become what we are. Absolutely anyone can do it!
How do you feel the cosplay community has changed over time?
I feel like there has been a growth in understanding and support among cosplayers. The cosplay is not consent movement is also an amazing thing to see blooming in the community. Everyone is so passionate and they want to see the best, and safest atmospheres for everyone.
If money and time were not a factor, what is your number one over-ambitious cosplay you want to do?
I would love to sew a luxurious dress for an original concept sorceress Elf character.
Do you set a budget for each cosplay?
I really should set a budget but I don’t. Though I do buy everything I need with as many coupons as possible!
What does cosplay mean to you?
Short and simple, I believe that cosplay is turning yourself into a character.
What advice would you give someone about meeting cosplayers and taking their pictures? How do you like to be approached?
Approach me in any way! The best advice I can give to someone looking to meet cosplayers is to simply ask. Ask for a photo, ask for a funny pose, and ask before touching. Cosplayers love to pose and we will gladly give you our best angles for photographs. When you try to casually take pictures of us without us noticing, we notice, and it is kind of awkward to be in that limbo. In addition to that, don’t be afraid to ask us about our costumes, and how we made things! We’ve all put so much work into our cosplays that we love to talk about them.
What is one thing you wish your fans knew about you?
I wish/hope all of my fans know that I greatly appreciate all of their support and kindness. I am lucky to have such an amazing and kind fan-base.
Is there anything that would make you stop cosplaying?
Nothing that I can foresee would ever stop me from cosplaying!
You can follow and view more of VinylRaven Cosplay here
- MK Photo
- Mirrorless Photography
- Halflight Photography
- Laina Brown Photography
Check out our other cosplay features here
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