Cosplaying an armoured Asuka Langley takes some doing, but Sara pulled it off brilliantly! Sara is an experienced cosplayer and the impact her hobby has had on her has been incredibly positive. Read on to find out more about Sara….
Could you tell us a little about yourself?
My name is Sara, and I’m just your average socially awkward Asian kid from a small town in Northern Indiana. I love to cosplay, eat food, and binge watch The Office on Netflix!
What or who inspired you to Cosplay?
I think the first person to really inspire me to cosplay was Jessica Nigri, really. A buddy of mine would show me pictures of her, and her videos on youtube. I saw how much fun she had creating her cosplays/attending cons that I wanted to do that too! As much as she gets flack for her more lewd cosplays, she makes some crazy good ones too! That’s why I adore her!
Are there specific types of character that you particularly gravitate towards and why?
I used to gravitate towards characters who were close to my personality (sassy but secretly super caring)! But now, I like to cosplay characters that I personally feel towards or enjoy if I’m playing a game, watching an anime, etc.
What for you have been the most challenging characters that you’ve cosplayed as, and which have been the most enjoyable?
Honestly…I think the hardest was my original design Asuka Langley armored suit. Both the design concept and actually wearing and building was very tedious and excruciating – especially for a first actual armor build. Not to mention that I was wearing some really tall heels (ouch!). BUT my most enjoyable would probably be either American Skin Mccree or Booty Bastion! They were actually very very comfy to wear (mainly because I had pockets!) and it’s also fun to cosplay your video game mains!
Could you take us through a little on how you made your outfits?
It’s usually me contemplating life for a hot minute (kidding). To be completely honest, it all starts out with an idea and a sketch. It’s awesome because I work part time at a Joann Fabrics store- that way I can physically touch and feel the fabric for whatever I’ll be working on. Then I either get to sewing or armor building! I sometimes use a pattern, and sometimes I create my own pattern! I’m a very odd shape, so I have to manually make my own- so that’s always fun! But the end result is always so awesome, I LIVE FOR IT!
Which Conventions have been the most enjoyable for you to attend and why?
I would have to say that the most enjoyable for me is either Colossal Con or Indy PopCon. Both conventions I was able to go with some good friends, make some good memories, and eat good food! Since I’m trying to get my name out there, those conventions are super awesome for networking as well! Of course- can’t forget about meeting new friends and fans! They’re the best!
Have there been any memorable reactions to your costumes, and if so, what were they?
OH! I think I’ve got one. So when I used to make more intricate armors and such, I used to enter into cosplay contests at the conventions I would attend. I think the best reaction was when I wore my armored Asuka Langley cosplay and went into the spotlight, I could just hear the “Ooos and ahhhhs”. It was incredible. All that time and effort you put into it seemed worth it in just that minute of being on the stage! Truly an experience!
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 when you go to a con with a cosplay on, it’s good to keep in mind that there are people who will want to take pictures of you! Either they admire your work or really love the character~ As an artist myself, I know that sometimes it takes time to get the right shot, so always be patient with a photographer who are at work! Now if I’m really hungry, that’s another story (LOL) but I try my hardest to empathize. As for being approached, I appreciate when a photographer asks politely. I’ve had some photographers try to yank me away from my friends or people I’m trying to network with! I’ll be there in a second!
What impact has cosplaying had on your life?
For me personally, cosplaying helped me through a dark time in my life. Growing up I never felt heard or really had a voice of my own really, I felt so lost and misunderstood as well as having a terrible crippling self image. I’ve experienced bullying and abuse of many kinds and that kept me down for the longest time. Cosplaying has helped me with not only my depression, but also self image as well- and not only has it helped with my fear of interacting with people, but I have found and come to love myself slowly but surely! 100% do I believe that cosplaying has boosted my confidence not only when I am in costume but in real every day life and I think others who’ve been in my position would vouch as well!. That was something that I did not have for many years and it’s just so so so nice to have that power back again.
Do you have any advice for anybody thinking of cosplaying?
Just do it. That’s all I have to say really. Whether or not you want to do it professionally or just as a hobby, it’s something that you will not regret getting into. The community is just so loving and the memories, skills, and friends gained are just so worth it. I don’t know where I would be without cosplaying and I owe it all to the community. Just do it!