Sunday, February 28, 2021

Q&A Interview with Vanity Insanity Cosplay

Where are you from?

I am from Sunny South Africa, first generation born. I grew up in the South of Johannesburg.

When did you start cosplaying?

Photo by @wvcreative.88
I started Cosplaying officially in 2015. I made my very first costume for a local anime shop called Animeworx. It was for a competition, we had to make the mascot Eri. I had a store card with the limited-edition blue version of her and I decided to make that version. I had no idea how to make a costume so I just hand-sewed everything! I would LOVE to actually remake the costume someday soon. The artist who drew the mascot was the talented Warren Louw.  

How did you first become interested in cosplay?

I remember seeing Yuna from Final Fantasy X when I was younger, and really wanting her little hair piece. At first it was just the hair piece but I grew to love the whole outfit and I became hooked on the idea of cosplay when I saw some people actually dress up like her. Once I had the opportunity, I got a local seamstress to make me a Super Sonico outfit and I went to my very first convention in October 2014! It was just the taste I needed to push me to actually trying the cosplay thing in early 2015.

What are some characters you have cosplayed?

Miss Fortune – League of Legends

 Ahri – League of Legends

D.Va – Overwatch

Mercy – Overwatch

Rangiku Matsumoto – Bleach

Nelliel Tu – Bleach

Deanerys Targaryen – Game of Thrones

Baiken – Guilty Gear

There are lots of characters.

Photo by @wvcreative.88
Do you have any future cosplay plans?

I hope to do a huge cosplay build soon. That is all I can say for now.

What is your favorite part of cosplaying?

The catfishing. Ahaha! No, I just Like the art of it as a whole, from the makeup to the poses to the crafting and figuring out how to make the physics somehow work in the real world. I can’t even begin to describe all off the things I love about it.

Favorite movie? Video game? TV show? Band?

Pfft. I don’t have a single favorite but I can name a few; 

Movies: Year One, Almost Famous, Mean Girls, Inglourious Basterds, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, The Voices, Tucker and Dale vs Evil.

Video Game? PUBG, Dead by Daylight, Tenchu, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, League of Legends, VR Chat. 

Bands (These are bands and solo artists) Mr.Kitty, Virga Music Project, My Chemical Romance, Placebo, Bad Omens, Bring me the Horizon, Joji, Conan Gray, Kavinsky, Lil Peep, Ă˜fdream, Lana Del Rey, Selena Gomez, The Weeknd, Ava Max, Falling in Reverse,  There are too many man.

What is the cosplay scene like in South Africa? What's the biggest Convention there each year?

Biggest convention is probably Comic Con Africa. The cosplay scene is pretty small but it's growing very quickly!

What cosplay would you say took the MOST time to create and how long was it?

Probably 2B? Figuring out how to put everything together and also having the worst fabric to paint on was by my poor judgment. Ahaha!

What is a cosplay pet peeve of yours?

Messy wigs & hot glued everything! agh X_X

Another one is people making sloppy cosplays then getting angry for not getting as much recognition as they hoped, THEN getting mad at other cosplayers who spent time and effort on their cosplays. They then proceed to be salty and ugly towards them. Like, maybe if they ran their sewing machines as much as they ran their mouths they wouldn't have so much to complain about? That's my 2c salt for the day, you are welcome. XD

Oh, another one is people dictating who can wear what and gatekeeping cosplays. Cosplay is for everyone and I'm near to damn sure the majority of cosplayers are not going to spend hours, time and money trying to offend another race. Cultural appreciation is so beautiful and people should stop saying everything is cultural appropriation because we should be able to celebrate our differences and come together and grow a better understanding of each other's cultures. Even with something as simple as sewing a kimono, for example. 

Photo by @wvcreative.88

You learn how they used to be made, what fabrics were worn. Then you find out different sleeves mean different things and you get so into the history behind the kimono and then the culture and you just understand and appreciate the knowledge you gain along the way.

Sso tell me, HOW IS THAT NOT A POSITIVE THING?! <3 There are way bigger issues in the world they could tackle. If I cosplay something it's because I love the design or character, I can guarantee you I am not racist for doing so.  

Outside of video games and cosplay, what are some of your other hobbies?

My other hobbies include traveling (when I can) binge watching stuff, making things or trying to learn something new.

Where can fans find more of you?





Saturday, February 13, 2021

SuicideGirl (Hopeful) Gamer of the Month: Brujaja

Why did you choose the name "Brujaja"?

The name is a pun! 

"Bruja" in Spanish means 'Witch' and 'Jajah is the Spanish spelling of "haha." My mother's side is Puerto Rican and I wanted to lean into that aspect of my personality. In English, a brouhaha is "a noisy and overexcited reaction or response to something." That describes my personality pretty well. So I decided to combine bruja and brouhaha to create a pun in two languages with one word. 

Also, Bruja was already taken. 

What got you interested in the SuicideGirls?

I have wanted to be a SuicideGirl since 2006, when I first heard of them.  These women were different. They were wearing art, they were expressive, and they were real. I was 18 but not at all alternative. I kind of let the notion of trying to be a SuicideGirl go. 

Years later, in my 30's, I met a group of women who made lewd and nude cosplay content. One of these ladies was Crybaby. After having the honor to work with her, and seeing how warm and wonderful she was, I decided to check out the community. I found SGs on social media like Penny, DenverMaxx, Riae, and Fishball. I wanted to be apart of this culture. 

How long have you been into cosplay?

Since 2014. I first cosplayed as Red Card Katarina from League of Legends. I was hooked. Now I do mostly boudoir cosplays because entire outfits are expensive. 

What are some of the characters that you have cosplayed?

My favorite character to be is Jessica Jones. But I recently added my first Hopeful cosplay set to SG. I did a boudoir Mary Jane Watson inspired by the Spiderman Loves Mary Jane series. 

Any plans for future cosplays?

I just got the pieces for Ivana Humpalot from Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged me. I love cosplaying strong, badass, and hilarious characters.

What are some of your favorite video games?

I really love Fallout 4, glitches and all. I am horrible at it but I occasionally play League of Legends. I also stream Magic The Gathering Arena on Twitch and I love it. 

I love open world games too. I have about 400 hours clocked in to H1Z1: Just Survive before it was defunded.

400 hours is pretty impressive. If you had to guess, how many hours would you say you've logged onto the game you have played the most and what game is it?

Easily, World of Warcraft. I have well over 600 hours logged. I just restarted my subscription so I am sure I will rack up more soon. 

Playing anything right now? 

Other then MTGA, I am re-playing Fallout 4. The world seems like it's ending so I am practicing. I am also re-playing Fall Out: New Vegas on PC. 

What type of MTG decks do you like to play? Aggro? Control? 

My favorite decks are control, mono black, zombie decks. Both in paper and on Arena I have my most wins with mono black, control, zombie decks. 

Have you tried any of the new cards yet from Kaldheim?

I have! I have played a few on Arena. And it appears the sadist at Wizards of the Coast brought back poison counters....

How did you first become a gamer?

I had a very difficult time making friends growing up, and I didn't have a great home life, so I would just get lost in videos games. I fell in love with a crappy math game called 'Zoombeanies' and 'Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego?' I also had a Gameboy and played Super Mario and Kirby's Dreamland. Gaming was my escape. 

Tell me a bit about your different tattoos.

My most treasured among my tattoos is the heart shaped doughnut on my shoulder. My grandma used to get us Dunking Donuts every time we saw her. She always got me a pink iced doughnut. I had a very hard time with her passing a few years back. The doughnut is my way to carry her with me. The tattoo is an original design by Kelly Gelling of Artful Ink in Bohemia, NY. 

A lot of people ask me about my large thigh tattoo. It is a beautiful, original piece by Brokelle Bombshell of Charmed Life Gallery in Baltimore, MD. I asked her to give me a piece of Gomez and Morticia Addams. The first design she sent me is exactly what I have today. I used to self harm on this thigh. I don't have many physical scars left but I wanted to replace how I saw that part of my body. Gomez and Morticia, to me, are the ultimate representation of love. They love each other, their family, and themselves exactly as they are. 

What is your favorite movie? TV show? Band?

My all time favorite movie is The Nightmare Before Christmas. My favorite show is The Walking Dead. My favorite band is The Black Keys. 

Where can fans find more of you?




Sunday, January 24, 2021

Q&A Interview with HeatherAfter Cosplay

Where are you from?

I'm a military kid. My family moved somewhere new every two to four years when I was growing up so I don't really have a hometown. Currently I live in Colorado.

When did you start cosplaying?

In 1996.

How did you first become interested in cosplay?

A friend asked me to go a local convention (AWA '96), and mentioned that some people liked to attend dressed-up as anime characters. I cosplayed as Devil Hunter Yohko and was immediately hooked! 

What are some characters you have cosplayed?

I have done over 200 cosplays, so I won't try to list them all here. Some of my more popular recent costumes include Elvira, 66 Catwoman, Jessica Rabbit, Lara Croft and Black Widow. 

Do you have any future cosplay plans?

Always! I don't usually share because then people start asking me about how certain costumes are coming along and the added pressure doesn't help my creativity haha. That said, it is an open secret that I've got 66 Batgirl in the works.

What is your favorite part of cosplaying?

Whenever I set about creating a new cosplay there are always problems to solve and new techniques to discover. That's what I enjoy the most is the creative problem solving.

Image by Kim Kosnar

Favorite movie? Video game? TV show? Band?

Movie: I don't know that I could ever choose an ultimate favorite....but 'Spaceballs' is pretty awesome.  I used to watch it all the time and am pretty confident I can still quote the entire movie.

Video Game: Again, hard to choose. I'm a big fan of the old school side-scrollers, though I play mobile phone games more than anything else right now.  'Wizards Unite' is my current addiction.

TV Show: It depends on what I'm in the mood to watch. I enjoy documentaries, dramas, and sitcoms like 'Friends' and 'Seinfeld'.

Band: I tend to gravitate towards the classics. I'm a big fan of 80s music.

As a veteran of the hobby, how do you think cosplaying has changed over the last 20+ years and how do you think it will evolve in the future?

I love how cosplay has become more mainstream! Back when I started, you'd be hard-pressed to find anyone outside of convention circles familiar with the term. Nowadays most people know what it means, and accept cosplay as a valid hobby.

 I also appreciate how professional so many cosplayers are now, too! All aspects of cosplay (i.e. costume construction, makeup, photography, etc.) have leveled-up incredibly in the past decade or two. It's wonderful to see, and keeps me motivated to continue learning new skills that I can apply to my own cosplay projects.

What cosplay took the most time/work on creating?

I honestly don't know.  Each project has its challenges, and they are all different. I wouldn't know how to even begin comparing them to one another.   

Okay, what's the most expensive cosplay you've ever done?

Again, I don't know. I almost always make my costumes, and after doing so for as long as I have, I've got a surplus of materials on hand. Whenever possible I try to keep my costs down and make use of things I already own to create new costumes. 

I don't remember how much I paid for everything I've purchased over the last 20+ years and to be honest, I'm probably better off not giving it too much thought haha. 

What is a cosplay pet peeve of yours?

Storage! Figuring-out clever ways to store things like wings, hats and various props is a constant challenge.

Do you have any tips for people just starting out?

Don't be afraid to experiment in order to figure out what sorts of cosplays work best for you.....and above all, enjoy yourself!

Outside of cosplay, what are some of your other hobbies?

I also enjoy drawing, gaming, hiking, cooking, etc. Cosplay is definitely my favorite creative outlet though.  

Where can fans find more of you?



Sunday, January 17, 2021

SuicideGirl Gamer of the Month: Lamarmelade

Why did you choose the name "Lamarmelade"?

This nickname was invented by my childhood friend in the distant past when I started my career. I first danced for eight years under this nickname, then I was a DJ. Now I am an official streamer in Russia. I will never change my nickname because I love it very much and I made myself a brand. By the way, I love Japanese mango marmalade.

Where are you from?

I was born in Russia, and I still live here. But most likely I will want to move somewhere when I have decided where. I love traveling and meeting new people.

How long have you been a SuicideGirl?

I have been an official SuicideGirl since 2016. I love our community. There are a lot of good, positive people here and we have many common interests. I also appreciate all of my subscribers. Thank you to them for their support for a long time.

What are some of your favorite video games?

I've been playing a Cyberpunk game lately, but honestly I'm not thrilled. Too much blah blah blah. And so it all depends on my mood. I love shooters, too. Sometimes I go back to League of Legends once in awhile as well.

Are you an anime fan? If so, watching anything currently?

I love anime. I do advertising content, I am an ambassador and have anime partners. They say I'm a real anime diva. Hahaha, I love them. My favorites are Naruto, Tower of God, 19 days-Once Upon a Time, The Perfect Couple and others. I don't have much free time to watch much, though. The last thing I read on the road was the manga "The Gamer."

What is your favorite part about anime?

Personally, I like the epic fights, the thoughtfulness of the plot like when they explain some incomprehensible moment at first glance, the openings, the soundtracks, smart and cunning characters, the drawing style, surprises in the plot, filler episodes, and oddly enough, deep meaning and psychology. Basically, everything!

Do you cosplay? If so, planning any cosplays currently?

Yeah I love cosplay! I've been cosplaying for a long time. I also have a lot of  cosplayer friends. This year we finally met up at a New Year's Eve party where all the bloggers and cosplayers were together. I've been doing cosplay since 2014. As for a new one, I think it will be Hinata. They have been asking for her for a long time. They say that I am very similar. Haha I think I can do this!

Tell me a little bit about the different tattoos that you have.

All the tattoos on my body are my calling card, like an atlas of the planet. Each one has a story. I have never regretted that I continue to get more and invent something new. I love space so I have a sleeve in the style of space. I have been interested in astronomy since childhood. Things like the sun, planets, satellites, asteroids, comets, rings around planets, and meteoroid swarms are all so interesting. I definitely have a lot of tattoos on my body. I think I will soon run out of free space. By the way, I just became a tattoo artist too.

What is your favorite part about modeling?

The main goal is to reveal yourself, your potential, and to show yourself to the world. You need to be not only a beautiful face and body, but also have your own unique style of clothing, understand trends, brands, have hobbies and a wide outlook. That is, to be a unique person. I have been doing advertising and modeling in Russia for a long time. I also have partners from New York.

What are some of your other hobbies?

I like to try everything in life. I did dancing for eight years, was a DJ, played tennis, played handball, played guitar and I was also taught to play drums. Now, I went to stream sites where people are interested in communicating with me. I also love the art of tattooing and have been studying it. And I have my own merch.

Where can fans find more of you?