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.
About Tatted Khaleesi
I’m Brooke aka Tatted Khaleesi! I’m a scientist/motorcyclist by day, and the Mother of Dragons/various superheroines by night.
How did you first get into cosplay?
Cosplay was always something I admired but was too nervous to start-I grew up with a love for DC comics, and was always creative when it came to redesigning characters and creating my own within that universe but I wasn’t sure where to start with cosplay specifically. Fast forward years later, I had MANY people recommend Game of Thrones to me, I finally binged watched it when it was over. I fell in love with Daenerys and knew this was my jumping off point into cosplay.
Do you cosplay just for fun or do you see it as a stepping stone to a future career?
I’m not sure right now-I love creating so much, but I also enjoy my day job. I think I’ll just be seeing where my page takes me, and go from there. I’m not counting anything out!
Do you prefer to make your cosplays from scratch, buy or commission them or a hybrid?
It depends on the cosplay! I’ve gone all three routes multiple times. I personally love building armor, but I’m not the best seamstress, so I play to my strengths and build anything I can, and purchase pieces that I wouldn’t be happy with if I made myself.
How much time do you spend making each of your cosplays?
It depends on the cosplay but my armor builds take me anywhere from 2-3 months usually!
What is your favorite cosplay you have done so far?
My favorite cosplays so far are my Season 6 Daenerys, my original Stephanie Brown Robin design, and my recent Batgirl!
What has been your most memorable experience (good or bad) as a cosplayer?
The friendships! I’ve connected with one of my very best friends through cosplay, and I am so grateful! I genuinely feel that cosplay has given me a creative outlet I didn’t have before, and it’s an ongoing journey of memories.
How do you feel about group cosplays?
I’ve never done one, but I think they’re amazing when groups of people can plan their work out like that and come together to make something really special!
What cosplays are you currently working on or plan to finish this year?
My last 2 builds this year will be Rose Wilson the Ravager and Artemis, specifically her design from Red Hood and the Outlaws. I have a lot of smaller projects planned as well!
What issues do you see as being the most divisive in the cosplay community and how do you feel about it?
This is a tough one-I think a combination of lack of inclusivity for cosplayers of color/LGBTQ cosplayers and bullying/competition, feeling like people own characters and comparing themselves or other cosplayers to each other. We’re all here to have fun and celebrate the characters we love, and we should be uplifting each other to make this a safe and positive space for ALL.
What types of characters or genres inspire your cosplay the most?
Comics and a bit of Fantasy too!
What is your favorite part (researching, shopping for supplies, sewing, photoshoots, attending cons, etc.) of your cosplay process?
I love almost all of the process but seeing my design come to life. Usually, that starts to happen during armor assembly, seeing cut pieces of foam take shape into armor is always so fun. Then seeing it all together in a photoshoot is AMAZING, and seeing all the work I put in is reflected in the final product.
What are your best resources for cosplay materials?
Cosplaysupplies online is great for worbla, I tend to get foam on Amazon but I think I’ll be trying some small businesses for foam moving forward.
What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a cosplayer?
My own self doubt-it’s easy to compare yourself to others who have been doing this for years when you’re starting out. Your journey isn’t their journey!
Have you learned any life lessons during your time as a cosplayer and what are they?
To always have fun and embrace the [positive] traits and confidence of the characters you love. We’re essentially adults playing dress-up. It’s called cosPLAY. Letting yourself have fun, be a kid again, and feel empowered by the characters you’re cosplaying can help so much in how you see yourself. I know it’s helped me!
What is your golden cosplay rule that you would share with new cosplayers?
You are probably going to fail. You’re probably going to have to throw some pieces away. I’ve tossed so much stuff that hasn’t turned out. We learn from our failures more than our successes! And don’t forget WHY you do this for fun, to feel like a badass. Do it for YOU!
How do you feel the cosplay community has changed over time?
I’ve only been in the cosplay community for about a year, so I don’t have a lot of insight into this.
If money and time were not a factor, what is your number one over-ambitious cosplay you want to do?
I’d love to do a full Daenerys armor build and “True Wonder Girl” from issue 11 of the New 52 Teen Titans.
Do you set a budget for each cosplay?
I try to! Otherwise, things can get out of hand quickly. The more builds you go through the better you get at estimating how expensive each build will be.
What does cosplay mean to you?
It’s a chance for me to embrace different sides of myself, but also to pull out the confidence I have in cosplay into my daily life. It’s a joyful experience for me!
How do you see the cosplay community 10 years from now?
I hope it’s more positive and I hope we learn to support each other, and especially supporting those who don’t look like us or experience the world as we do. I hope there is more inclusivity and support.
What is your favorite con to attend?
I have actually only been to one Con! I really want to get to some of the bigger ones once the pandemic is over.
Is there another cosplayer who inspires you or is your role model?
@WhoIsJillea is incredible and I aspire to be at her level of talent and skill someday!
Do you consider yourself an inspiration to other cosplayers?
I don’t think that’s a question I can necessarily answer-I think it’s up to others. I hope I can inspire people to jump into their creative endeavors whether that’s cosplay or not!
What advice would you give someone about meeting cosplayers and taking their pictures? How do you like to be approached?
Just ask politely for photos! Don’t just jump in and start taking selfies or putting your arms around people. Be respectful!
What is one thing you wish your fans knew about you?
I’m not sure I have fans per se, haha! But I’d say everyone has their struggles, regardless of how their life looks on social media. Being kind is the best thing you can do.
Is there anything that would make you stop cosplaying?
If it didn’t bring me joy anymore, then it wouldn’t be the right path for me at that time. But I don’t see that happening anytime soon!
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