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.
I’m Cescarlet, I’m 22 years old and I’ve just finished my Translation and Interpretation studies. I am from Madrid, Spain, but I’ve lived several years in Malaga. I love to read, draw, sing, travel, volleyball, video games and of course cosplay! I’m currently trying to get more known in the cosplay world so I can know more cosplayers, get experiences, learn a lot from them and improve! I like trains and pizza.
How did you first get into cosplay?
When I went to my very first convention, that was so small, I saw a cosplayer who looked amazing! I didn’t even know her character, but I loved how she looked like with a giant weapon, a long red wig, all the makeup… Everybody was looking at her and they all wanted to take a picture! It seemed so fun, so I wanted to do it too! So I prepared my first cosplay with my mom for the following convention!
Do you cosplay just for fun or do you see it as a stepping stone to a future career?
I would love to have a career as a cosplayer because I really like it, but I know it’s pretty difficult and competitive, so I’m happy doing it just for fun. Anyway, I’m trying to get known and make it easier for me to continue cos-making and cosplaying, you know, it’s a very expensive hobby!
Do you prefer to make your cosplays from scratch, buy or commission them or a hybrid?
I’ve made most of my cosplays from things I have bought specially for it, but I have also made some of them with things I had at home because I had no money but still wanted to make cosplays! I have to say that when I see a perfect piece for my cosplay at a clothes store I often buy it instead of making it from fabric, it’s usually cheaper! And well, I’ve bought a cosplay just once: my Kageyama cosplay, from Haikyuu!
How much time do you spend making each of your cosplays?
It depends! But it takes months to make a complete cosplay, and there are always things to improve after the deadline. I’ve never calculated the exact hours I spend in cos-making, but for sure they are a lot!
What is your favorite cosplay you done so far?
Nuriko, from Fushigi Yugi. It’s not the most complicated one nor the best-made cosplay I’ve done, but I think it’s the cosplay that looks the best. Also, there are just a few people in my country who know this manga, so I kinda make it like a must protect cosplay(?) I’m a proud mamma hahaha And I really LOVE the character!
What has been your most memorable experience (good or bad) as a cosplayer?
Once, collaborating with my NGO as a volunteer Ariel cosplayer I was at a charity event and a mother with her little girl approached me. The girl was so shy and was hiding behind her mom. The woman told me her daughter loved The Little Mermaid, indeed, she had an Ariel painter on her face. I squatted and opened my arms to her, and the child came running and hugged me so happy. This is the best thing of cosplay for me: when children believe you are the character and they love it, they are so happy to meet their hero. I will never forget that moment. It has happened to me more times, in hospitals, conventions and other events, but this was the first one, and it was unexpected and wonderful – magical!
How do you feel about group cosplays?
I’ve joined a lot of them for this year! I think that’s a great way to meet other cosplayers who like the same as you like! Nevertheless, it’s important to be careful about starting your cosplay too early, because it has happened to me that once I had finished my cosplay the squad was canceled. Be careful about that if you join a squad, but don’t stop joining them! They are really fun!
What cosplays are you currently working on or plan to finish this year?
Currently, I’m finishing Chel, from Road to El Dorado, and I’m working in an Overwatch cosplay. It’s really complicated, so I decided not to reveal it yet. But well, as long as this is my first interview I can give you a clue: He is a little bit sinister… My first crossplay!
What issues do you see as being the most divisive in the cosplay community and how do you feel about it?
Toxicity. I’ve met really nice people in cosplay, but once they become competitive or get some fame people to become like a prima donna, like if the world had to give them something for doing cosplay. It’s not bad wanting to win a contest or to get famous! The bad thing here is wanting the rest to lose and be under you: It’s a hobby! We are all the same! We should help each other, don’t you think?
What types of characters or genres inspire your cosplay the most?
I cosplay a lot of kinds of cosplays! Manga, anime, video games, movies, Disney… I think the video games characters are the most inspiring one… I may look mainstream, but I love League of Legends designs! And the game too, of course! Also, I love to cosplay strong women, with a strong personality! You just have to see my most recent cosplays: Nuriko, Leia, Esmeralda, Tifa…
What is your favorite part (researching, shopping for supplies, sewing, photo shoots, attending cons, etc.) of your cosplay process?
I really love the whole process, but I guess my favourite step is crafting: you can clearly see how a piece of wood becomes a gun, a staff or whatever with several materials, tools… and you made it! I don’t know, I know you could say the same about sewing, but it’s so easy to punt at a part of your prop and say: “this is wood! this is a PVC pipe! this is clay!” I kinda like it.
What are your best resources for cosplay materials?
The local stores and Aliexpress. I always prefer to buy in local stores as long as I am supporting my country economy and I know very well where to get each material, also I can touch everything and have it at the moment! But it’s true that Aliexpress is pretty cheap and if you know how to buy it’s not necessary to see the product in person before buying it. These two are my main suppliers!
What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a cosplayer?
The economy. It’s really difficult to afford this hobby, and you have to make a lot of decisions: May I make this cosplay or go out with my friends? What should I ask for for Christmas: that thing I want or the tool I need? But well, I am usually happy with choosing cosplay over other things because I like it a lot, and I make math to be able to go out and have fun out of cosplay too!
Have you learned any life lessons during your time as a cosplayer and what are they?
Sure, I’ve learned to avoid toxicity, not to believe everything I hear, to keep trying and working to get better and do just those things (or cosplays) that make you happy: if you’re not having fun it’s pointless to continue!
What is your golden cosplay rule that you would share with new cosplayers?
Have fun, above anything else: If you love what you do contests, opinions and fame don’t matter at all! You’ll be happy anyway!
How do you feel the cosplay community has changed over time?
A lot. Firstly cosplayers were an attraction at conventions, people loved a lot of what we did. now expectations have raised a lot, people want better materials and abilities, it’s competitive now, and cosplayers are not an attraction anymore, but the main clients of conventions.
If money and time were not a factor, what is your number one over-ambitious cosplay you want to do?
It’s difficult to choose one, but I think it would be Shyvana, from League of Legends. I tried to make her once, and I failed a lot! It would be wonderful to use better materials for that dragon skin, the armor, LEDs… What a dream!
Do you set a budget for each cosplay?
Nope. I never know how much I have to spend to make the cosplay I want. My philosophy is simple: if spending one euro my cosplay won’t look like I won’t, then I’ve lost one euro.
What does cosplay mean to you?
It’s a hobby. A beautiful, fulfilling, fascinating and creative hobby, I really love it, I think it’s an important part of me, but I don’t forget it’s just something I do for fun and there are more important things in life!
What advice would you give someone about meeting cosplayers and taking their pictures? How do you like to be approached?
I think people should ask first. Here in Spain, it’s normal to say hello with two kisses on the cheeks, but it’s rude to touch someone’s waist, for example. There are many cultural and personal matters, the best thing to do is to ask first: before touching the cosplayer, before taking them a photo… it’s a matter of respect and education!
What is one thing you wish your fans knew about you?
Fans?! Where?! Well, every time I have nice messages of people admiring my work I try to make that distance shorter, I mean: I’m just a person who likes to do something. You can ask me how I did this or that, you can come and say hello at the conventions, I love making friends there! I mean, even if I reach a pro level, I’m not “more” than anybody, and nobody is more than me, don’t be scared and come! Let’s be friends!
Is there anything that would make you stop cosplaying?
When I don’t have fun making cosplays anymore I will stop. Until then there is nothing that can stop me!
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