Cosplay Feature – Sally Cyanide

I just happened to find an awesome Ghostbusters cosplay, and after a quick search found Sally Cyanide.  The attention to detail on the costume is dead impressive!  We reached out to the wonderful Sally, and she was more than happy to answer our questions:

Could you tell us a little about yourself

Well… I’m 28 years old, British and currently living in the beautiful country of New Zealand for six years. I’ve been cosplaying since 2014 and hoping that this year will be a big year for me (with three cosplays in progress)!

What or who inspired you to cosplay?

I have always admired cosplayers, looking at their photos on Reddit and DeviantArt. Their ability to embody a character, their eye for detail, their tenaciousness towards research and planning… everything about it inspired me! I only really started cosplaying though when I went to a con for the first time and saw everyone dressed up. I thought to myself “I want to be like them!”

Are there specific types of character that you particularly gravitate towards and why?

I like strong female heroes, like Batgirl and Wonder Woman. They are role models to so many women and they give me confidence. I also like characters from the films of my childhood, including Peter Venkman from the Ghostbusters. I must have watched that film a million times when I was a kid!

What for you have been the most challenging characters that you’ve cosplayed as, and which have been the most enjoyable?

I’ve found all my cosplays to date a challenge because each one involved the learning of a new skill; however, I think my most challenging character AND the most enjoyable is Peter Venkman from the Ghostbusters. My proton pack was my first ever prop build, plus it was my first time working with EVA foam. It took me approximately 20 – 30 hours to research and plan, plus another 50 hours to build. It was worth it in the end though, as I managed to build it for approximately $200 NZD (including the frame, which was sourced from an army surplus store) and it made me feel great to show it off at a con.

Could you take us through a little on how you made your outfits?

I like to start by immersing myself in research and planning: watching the tv show / movie to take in all the details, looking at reference pictures on the internet, looking at what other cosplayers have done etc. From there, I do some sketches and start visiting the local fabric and DIY shops to be able to decide if I can do it. From there, it’s a matter of breaking up the cosplay into small parts and tackle each separately.

Which Conventions have been the most enjoyable for you to attend and why?

Auckgeddon 2015 is my favourite to date because I got to meet so many people from Cosplay New Zealand that I’d only previously spoken to online. It was great because they had all seen my progress updates on the proton pack and were amazingly friendly to me. It was also the con where I met Casper Van Dien!

Have there been any memorable reactions to your costumes, and if so, what were they?

I had someone bow to me before… does that count? Haha!

A question about photographers. Obviously cosplayers are a dream come true for photographers, great outfits and poses, does it ever get a bit tiring having to pose endlessly for them, and how do you prefer to be approached by a photographer?

I think, as a cosplayer, it’s to be expected that people want to take your picture as a souvenir of their time at the con. I’m happy to pose for photographs so long as the photographer says hello and asks permission.


What impact has cosplaying had on your life?

It’s definitely helped me to meet all sorts of people and it’s given me goals to work towards too. I’ve also been more focused on eating healthy and exercising at the gym, as the want to be proud of the way that I look in my cosplays has driven me to make these changes in my life.

Do you have any advice for anybody thinking of cosplaying?

Don’t be afraid to ask! I’ve never met such a fantastic community of people as cosplayers and they’re all willing to share their lessons learnt, their techniques and even sometimes in helping to make a challenging cosplay! It’s not for everyone, it’s not cheap, but it’s really rewarding if you stick to it.

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