Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Q&A Interview with Feoranna

Cosplaying has transformed from being a niche hobby to a much more mainstream pastime of thousands of nerds in just a few short years. As you would expect with a game like League of Legends, which at the beginning of the year Riot Games reported sees an astonishing 27 million players daily and over 67 million players monthly (and has likely grown even higher since), League of Legends cosplays are very popular. Looking at some of the best LoL cosplayers is how I ultimately found Feoranna. I recently sat down with Feoranna to talk about League of Legends, her tattoos, and of course her cosplaying.

Photo by Cloud City Photography

How did you first become interested in cosplaying?

Ever since I was a little kid I did arts, crafts, and everything in between. I love it! Well, my grandmother was a gifted artist and seamstress so from a young age I have done lots and lots of sewing. I took a break from that particular area of the arts for awhile and worked on other stuff like drawing. Once I finished college, I was turned onto cosplaying! I absolutely love Halloween and dressing up is so much fun. I already did a lot of it for an alt modeling group I worked with so getting into cosplay seemed fitting! I got a busted old machine that was like fifty years old and had my friend RikkuGrape help me remember how to use it. From there, it just escalated.

Which characters from League of Legends have you cosplayed?

I have a lot! My first LoL cosplay was for Halloween a few years ago. I made a Nurse Akali. After that, I did Ahri in her classic skin. I also have done three Jinx cosplays, three of Katarina, and Dark Valkyrie Diana.

Do you have any current plans for future LoL-based cosplays?

Right now, I am working on a Slay Belle Katarina cosplay which I am really excited about. I would love to make Ahri from the A New Dawn video that Riot released; her outfit in it is just so beautiful. I also have plans to make Mafia Miss Fortune as well as Lunar Goddess Diana. As of now, those are the ones I am 100% sure I will be making soon.

Photo by Cloud City Photography

Who would you say is your favorite champion from the game?

Orianna! I love her so much! She’s definitely my favorite champion. When I first started playing League, I realized that I liked mid and being a mage typically. Once I discovered Orianna, I decided that I would play her until I mastered her.

What about most hated champ to play against?

I really hate playing against a Lee Sin or Xin Zhao. Total mage killers right there. I used to hate playing against Fizz since he counters Ori so much but I have been counter picked so many times now that I have gotten quite used to him and can zone him pretty hard.

Photo by Cloud City Photography

Do you play ranked at all?

Eh not really. I do sometimes, but it’s not something I care that much about. I have had the unfortunate luck to get stuck on teams where people of go afk and after so many games of that happening I just don’t really do solo queue anymore. I do however enjoy playing ranked with a full five’s or three’s team of people that I know.

So I’m assuming you make all your costumes yourself. Which took the longest?

I most certainly do! I have made all of my costumes besides my Black Widow which was sent to me by Costume Super Center to review and use while at New York Comic Con this year. The costume which I made that took the longest was probably Dark Valkyrie Diana. I spent a lot of time and detail on that costume and it was one of the earlier costumes I made with armor so I was extra careful.

Photo by Kim Nguyen
Would you say that cosplaying is an expensive thing for someone to get into?

Oh yes I would! But it is definitely possible to cosplay on a budget as well and I do this as often as I can. Worbla can get pretty expensive, which is the main thing a lot of people like to use for making armor. There are ways around that such as craft foam or EVA foam. It does the same thing, looks just as good, and is easy to work with. The downfall is that it’s not as durable as Worbla is. It is definitely possible though to cosplay on a budget without spending too much.
Photo by

So tell me a little bit about your tattoos.

I have a lot! Like thirty something. I love them and I always have. I started getting tattoos when I was 18 years old since I had a job in a tattoo shop and they are pretty addicting. Most of my tattoos are related to comic books, video games, or literature. I just love all of those things and they mean a lot to me so I am happy that I have them on my body to remember forever.

Which was the absolute first one that you ever got?

Well, when I was in eighth grade I was kinda bad and gave myself a stick n’ poke tattoo also known as the prison tattoo. (No I wasn’t in prison, but it looks bad enough to be believable! Hahaha!) And that would be a heart on my finger. My first professionally done tattoo when I was of legal age though was the quote I have on my chest which reads, “What value would there be in life if we are not together?” It’s a quote from the movie Becoming Jane which is based on a book about the author Jane Austen, one of my favorites.

What are some of your other hobbies?

I love all other types of art such as drawing, painting, and calligraphy. I like to play other video games too such as World of Warcraft, and some PlayStation games. I really like reading both books and comics. Knitting is also something that I like doing in my spare time. One of my favorite things to do though is watch movies and go to the movies! It’s so much fun for me.

To check out more pictures of the talented Feoranna be sure to like her Facebook page.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Q&A Interview with Ibukii

Photographer: JavisEan

Ibukii is a video game and anime cosplayer living in Germany who has been cosplaying since 2010. She is a huge League of Legends fan and has already cosplayed as many characters from the game including Katarina, Riven, Ashe, Sona, Janna, and Fiora. I recently sat down with her to talk about her nerdy habits and what it’s like cosplaying in Germany

How did you first become interested in cosplaying and who was the first character you ever cosplayed?

I met someone wearing Kakashi from Naruto in 2008. I asked where he bought his costume and he told me that he had made it himself. I was super impressed by that and I also wanted to cosplay. The first character I ever cosplayed was Elwyn from Shining Tears.

Tell me about some of the other characters you have cosplayed.

Photographer: JavisEan
Most characters that I pick are similar to my personality or are heroes of my childhood. I get my inspiration from video games, anime, manga, and movies. Some of the other characters I have cosplayed are Luna from Sailor Moon, Panty from Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt, Saeko Busujima from Highschool of the Dead, Sophitia from Soul Calibur III, and Baby Doll from Sucker Punch just to name a few!

Ah so you are also an anime fan?

For a long time I didn't watch any anime because I lost the passion behind it. One day my boyfriend told me that I have to watch Code Geass so I did. I loved it and it got me back into anime.

What are some of your all-time favorite video games?

Shadow Hearts, Final Fantasy, Zelda, Ratchet and Clank, Spyro, Tenchu, Dynasty Warriors, Crash Bandicoot, Valkyrie Profile 2, Tekken, Soul Calibur, BioShock, and of course League Of Legends!

Who is your favorite League of Legends champion?

Hmm my favorite… ugh that's hard! I really like a lot of them but I guess my most beloved is probably Janna! I love to play her. <3

What about most hated champion?

That’s also hard! Hmm… I think I actually hate no one. Sometimes Thresh and Blitz are annoying, but I wouldn’t say I hate them.
Photographer: 500px

What’s your current rank on LoL?

I am unranked at the moment. I was Platinum V before, though. I mostly play together with friends and my boyfriend. Sadly I am not that good anymore.

Any plans for future League of Legends cosplays?

Yesterday I started with my Classic Caitlyn cosplay. I also would love to do the Classic Janna skin. <3

Which of your costumes took you the longest to make?

I guess it was Sophitia from Soul Caliber III. It had a lot of little details and I also did armor for the first time.

What conventions have you gone to in the past and what conventions are planning to attend in the future?

The last one I visited was Gamescom in Cologne just recently. The next one is Connichi in Kassel. Both of them are in Germany. I have never visited a convention in another country but I plan to visit Anime Expo in 2015!

Photographer: B1NH Photography

Do you have any advice for people interested in starting to cosplay?

Start small! Trust me, every costume takes times. Search for tutorials or ask other cosplayers for help and advice along the way. If someone asks me anything, I always try to explain how I did something or help them otherwise.

Your profile on deviantART says you're from Germany. What is the best part of living there in your opinion?

Well, I can tell you that it's not the weather! I am also actually not from Germany per se, I was just born here and I am living here. I am actually half Turkish.

Outside of video games and cosplaying, what are some of your other hobbies that you like to do for fun?

I really like to cook! And nope, I don’t mean blue meth hahaha. I also like swimming and dancing. I should draw more, but I am too lazy…

Photographer: 500px
For more images be sure to like Ibukii’s fan page on Facebook.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Q&A Interview with Fasffy

Fasffy is a member of the all-female gaming and cosplay group called Less Than 3 (LT3). She is a competitive gamer who played as part of Team Fatalis in 2013. She also has some killer League of Legends cosplays and has even been a Razer booth babe for several years. I recently sat down with Fasffy to talk about her experiences gaming and cosplaying.

Tell me a little bit about yourself.

I was born and raised on the Gold Coast, Australia. From a young age I have always been gaming. I’ve gone from the sporty tomboy in primary school to the sit-outside-the-library with the geeks in high school. I have my brother to thank for a lot of it as he has been my best friend for the majority of my life. I’m highly excitable and enjoy learning, so the internet has just naturally become a new home for me. I've been gaming for as long as I can remember!

What's the best part about living in Australia in your opinion?

Vegemite, Tim Tams, and salt and vinegar chips. Snack foods...?

What the heck is Vegemite...?

Ooohh haha. I've never had to explain this to anyone really because it’s just something that’s so well known if you've lived in Australia. Vegemite is spread/paste for bread, so kind of like peanut butter! It's got a very acquired taste from what I understand. You either like it or you don’t. It's pretty salty and maybe even bitter?

What games have you played competitively?

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and League of Legends on CyberGamers as well as the local ODC's here and there.

Do you think there is a difference between the competitive gaming scene in North America and in Australia?

There have definitely always been better opportunities available overseas than there are in Australia. I don’t think that an official "career" in eSports is even known about in Australia (e.g. salaries and gaming houses). But the new Oceanic presence for Riot Games in Australia will hopefully help kick off a bigger and more recognized community, not just in the gaming scene but into "real life" as well. I think the fact we still run on copper lines throughout most of Australia plays a huge part in all this as well. We’re really far behind in terms of technology available to the general public.

Girls seem to be underrepresented in competitive gaming compared to the number of hardcore girl gamers that are actually out there in general. Based on your experience why do you think this is? Are male pros too hostile towards women?

I don't know, I think every situation is different with that regard. But if a girl can’t handle the guys or the community then they just have to be exposed to the scene more or find some different ways to deal with it. I can't say that I have really met many guys who are able to really get to me. Most of the time it's because of other things happening in my life and I let it get to me. It's a mentality thing. Guys get a lot of hostility from the scene as well. Everyone on the internet these days will face things that can challenge your resilience.

Who is your favorite LoL champ to play non-competitively when you are just messing around?

MmMmm that's tough to answer with all the patches and game changes I don't think it’s really as easy as a "favorite.” It also depends on what role I'm playing or learning I guess, too. I do know I'm terrible at having favorites so maybe it's just me! When I was last playing a lot of League of Legends and I had more time I was enjoying Nami and Zyra supports as they were pretty OP back then in that meta.

What are some of the keys to being a good support player? Should you focus on healing? Auras?

That all depends on what champion you play and what champions you’re up against. It's a little bit hard to answer! I guess overall, you're there to help secure kills or line up kills so if you can focus on doing that then you're on your way to a fun game!

What are some games you have been playing recently? Anything offline?

I usually only play online multiplayer games these days and it's been like that for a while actually. But I'll play a bit of anything; it usually depends on what my friends are doing at the time. At the moment we seem to play either LoL or CS: GO though.

Outside of playing video games, what are some other things that you enjoy doing for fun?

I enjoy cosplaying. I also really like learning new skills. I love eating and because of this I also do enjoy working out and keeping fit when I can find the time here and there.

When did you first start cosplaying?

I guess the first cosplay I ended up doing was a "joke" Halloween costume (Lana Kane) for a party that was themed "TV.” I always enjoyed looking at cosplays so eventually I found some people who went to the local conventions and went with them. I wore that there which exposed me to the cosplaying scene and it was just amazing! I don’t think I would have pursued anything if I didn't have that first experience. Since then I've come to learn it's also a great expression of appreciation for the things in my life that I love which provide me with happiness and enjoyment. Really I see it as a great way to express gratitude for the things that lighten your life, being able to connect more to the things you enjoy is a great feeling.

Who are some of the characters you've cosplayed as since you started?

As I mentioned my first cosplay was Lana Kane from Archer and I've just finally done a photo shoot for her last weekend actually so I'm really excited to get some pictures out of that. Some of my more notable cosplays are Nurse Akali and Slay Belle Katarina though.

You’re also a member of LT3. Tell me about the group and how you got recruited.

I knew about LT3 and followed them for a while before they made an open casting call back in 2013, which is when I applied. Unfortunately at that point in time they weren't looking to expand overseas and I kind of knew that when sending in my video, but I thought it was worth a shot anyway! But as expected, they were looking for girls who lived in the U.S. With a little bit of time and patience, the founder of LT3, Kat 'Mystik' Gun got back in contact with me and I was able to join LT3! Less Than 3 is a group of girls who share a passion and a professional approach for gaming and cosplay. As Kat likes to say, "they extend beyond the couch.” So we are girls that want to stand out as well as help out within the scene and communities, or at least that's how I'd like to approach it.

What would you say has been your biggest achievement/most memorable moment in terms of gaming?

Ahh gee... tough. There’s so many bits and pieces, haha. I'd have to say the three years I have worked as a booth babe for Razer here in Australia. I remember when I saw the casting for it and how shocked and excited I was. But to be able to have worked with them ever since their first year's presence here in Australia would have to be a pretty nice achievement I'd like to think. In terms of actual moments where I've played games, there are just too many I couldn't choose!

Where can fans find more of you?