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 Tuesday and Thursday to catch some up and coming new cosplay talent or get a look at some well established and famous members of the cosplay universe.
Hi, I’m Jessica aka Tiny.bats! I am 22 from Canada.
How did you first get into cosplay?
I got into cosplay a few years ago when I wasn’t doing very well. It started as a form of escapism and being someone else for a minute. As time went on and my mental health improved, it turned into something better. I want to be me, and I like dressing up as characters because I’m very passionate about character design, photography, acting, and making people smile when they see their favourite character come to life.
Do you cosplay just for fun or do you see it as a stepping stone to a future career?
I see it as a stepping stone to further a career. But, I’m having fun, and that’s all that matters.
Do you prefer to make your cosplays from scratch, buy or commission them or a hybrid?
A mix of buying and crafting. I’m still very much a beginner at sewing, but I’ve crafted quite a few cosplays, sometimes using cardboard to make props.
How much time do you spend making each of your cosplays?
It depends. Some take me an hour, some take me 3 months. It depends on the supplies needed and if I bought it or if I am making it myself.
What is your favorite cosplay you have done so far?
My favourite so far is probably my Sailor Jupiter.
What has been your most memorable experience (good or bad) as a cosplayer?
My most memorable experience is the friends I have made in this community. I feel so lucky to be part of such a positive community!
How do you feel about group cosplays?
I’m not one to participate in them very often. But I appreciate the effort they take and think they are so cool!
What cosplays are you currently working on or plan to finish this year?
Right now my goal is to do Princess Belle, Merida, and a couple of characters from the Shantae series. I also do a lot of not very popular characters and characters from indie games. Those are a surprise though, so just wait and see!
What issues do you see as being the most divisive in the cosplay community and how do you feel about it?
I see a lot of racism and homophobia sometimes. I block those people. I see judgment on whether a cosplay is bought or made. I think all cosplay is good cosplay, and we all need to make this a positive environment for each other. I’m lucky to be part of a very positive community where those things are not issues, everyone is so kind!
What types of characters or genres inspire your cosplay the most?
I cosplay video game characters a lot and 90s anime.
What is your favorite part (researching, shopping for supplies, sewing, photoshoots, attending cons, etc.) of your cosplay process?
My favourite part is the crafting process. Knowing that I built something basically from scratch is so satisfying.
What are your best resources for cosplay materials?
If I buy a cosplay, I honestly usually go for eBay. People are sometimes surprised when I tell them that, but you can find some really great quality stuff on there. If I’m crafting, I usually just use spare cardboard! Michaels art store is also a favorite.
What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a cosplayer?
Getting over the fear of sharing my content to pages. Submitting your content to cosplay share pages is such a great way to get exposure and make friends, and I’m so glad I did it!
Have you learned any life lessons during your time as a cosplayer and what are they?
I’ve learned to put myself out there more. It’s been a great way to express myself.
What is your golden cosplay rule that you would share with new cosplayers?
Literally, just do what you want to do. Don’t worry about what anyone else thinks as long as you’re having fun.
How do you feel the cosplay community has changed over time?
I haven’t been a part of it long enough to say!
If money and time were not a factor, what is your number one over-ambitious cosplay you want to do?
Princess Belle, huge ballgown, 100%. Or Mius (dangan ronpa) leg attachments.
Do you set a budget for each cosplay?
I reuse a lot of the same materials. I have a set budget I try to go by, but a lot of the time I have enough stuff I don’t need to get anything more.
What does cosplay mean to you?
It means creativity and friendship.
How do you see the cosplay community 10 years from now?
What is your favorite con to attend?
I actually have only been to one con! But when cons are back up and running, I want to go to Otakuthon in Montreal with my best friend.
Is there another cosplayer who inspires you or is your role model?
Quite a few. Honestly, if I follow you it means you inspire me in one way or another, but a few of my favourites are Ava Arts, Moni Bagel, and Lucid Dreamer Cosplay.
Do you consider yourself an inspiration to other cosplayers?
I think cosplay inspiration is a cycle, so sure!
What advice would you give someone about meeting cosplayers and taking their pictures? How do you like to be approached?
Just come up and politely ask! Definitely don’t take someone’s photo without their permission, and if they say no respect that.
What is one thing you wish your fans knew about you?
I really like sushi.
Is there anything that would make you stop cosplaying?
Probably not, besides growing out of it one day. We’ll see. For the foreseeable future, I want to do this for a while.
You can follow and view more of Tiny.bats here
- All photos were taken by Tiny.bats.
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