Florencia Sofen is a prime example of why Cosplay should perhaps be considered an art form. Once you see the work of her photographer combined with her cosplay skills you’ll hopefully agree. The end results are simply breath taking. Plus, anyone who cosplays as a Star Wars character instantly gets my vote! Introducing Florencia Sofen.
Could you tell us a little about yourself?
Well, I’m very bad introducing myself. That’s the first thing I can tell you about me xD I’m Florencia, I’m from Argentina buy I’m living in Spain. I’m a cosplayer and photographer since 2010 and well, here I am! I started improving my skills when I used cosplay to test new limits of photoshop, I wanted to make good tributes to all the things I love and this is what I was doing all these years! (With better and worse results…:P)
What or who inspired you to Cosplay?
I always did it for my friends, I enjoy every step in the process of cosplaying: Since I’m making each pattern or buying clothes until going to convention and making the photoshoot. I have many friends that are comic artists too, and I want them to feel proud when they see their art come to life. I’m not the best, but I do it with love.
Are there specific types of character that you particularly gravitate towards and why?
I’m a comic cosplayer. Actually, now I’m starting to make videogame cosplays and all of them have comics too… I feel comfortable reading about them, It feels more close to me. Comic book characters are always related to “Heroes VS Villians” but each story is about human issues. They always remind us they are not perfect and they continue with their own fight. It’s a strange mirror of life with lot of colour and shiny clothes, I can’t ask for more.
What for you have been the most challenging characters that you’ve cosplayed as, and which have been the most enjoyable?
I think they were Enchantress and Mera. I did both costumes with few references of the character (6 month before we had more information about them) so I had to imagine lots of parts of the costume! Some of them match perfectly at least, but some of them… well, I had to do them from the beginning.
But about the “complete” character, Enchantress was hard. I didn’t know how she acts and what her powers were. I took some movements and poses from “The ring” and classic magic poses from comics of Vertigo. Of course she was not as the Enchantress of Shadowpact or before, she was more like the New 52 and was… a real challenge.
And about enjoying… I think Supergirl or Harley Quinn. Both of them give me lots of beautiful experiences with the people, especially with children. I’m not “Florencia Sofen” with them, I’m Harley or Kara, and it’s great watching them excited as you’re living your passion. With Supergirl I feel confident and strong, but I’m more funny and relaxed with Harley.
Have there been any memorable reactions to your costumes, and if so, what were they?
The most amazing one was on Suicide Squad Premiere. They made a live connection with the main premiere with all the actors there and when they connected with Madrid, I was at the front. There is a screenshot where Margot and Cara are AMAZED. The only thing I could do was cry xD
I had also very good memories with Kenneth Rocafort and Jose Luiz Garcia-Lopez.
Have there ever been any embarrassing cosplay mishaps for you?
I had MANY moments… but I can’t remember one exactly. Maybe something broken, or something badly sewed… but at least, I only remember good things of the convention. I’m that kind of awful optimist people xD
There was a time when female super heroes just seemed to be the female equivalent of an already established male character (Superman, Supergirl), but with the Wonder Woman reboot it seems that’s starting to shift, what are your thoughts on that, and do you think there’s still more to do in having more strong female comic book heroes?
There were ALWAYS strong female characters on comics, especially in the 80’s decade. Wonder Woman is very representative, but remember Mockingbird in West Coast Avengers, she was one essential pillar for the group. As well in New Mutants, the most powerful personalities and powers were between Magik, Magma and Danny. On 90’s, we had Birds of Prey comics, with better and worse stories, but it was a female group that worked very well.
Of course now, with all the feminist movement, women have more visible icons inside pop culture. The women we are seeing at comics are as brave and strong as anyone. They can stand with a normal life and overcome each challenge they have. They don’t need any man, but the best thing we are watching along this years is they can work together and do it perfectly.
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?
Hahahaha, well, I started on the back side of the camera so my opinion of each part is a little different xD When you’re in a photoshoot, trying to show off the best of your work, you have to work to show it as well, not all the work was making the costume. The photographer must help on the process, you don’t see how it looks on the camera and the photographer has to guide you. It’s a work of two, not only for one part. Both have to give their best if they want a nice result, and if you have to be posing 5 min in the same place, you will do it for love to cosplay xD
You’re a photographer too, are there times when you are cosplaying you wish you had your camera with you to grab photos of other cosplayers as well?
Yes, so many times! And I tried it, but it’s very uncomfortable. And I like see the cosplayers on conventions, but it’s very difficult toget good photos there. I prefer to enjoy the cosplaying and making the photos outside of that jungle! xD
Does being a photographer help in terms of knowing how to pose in front of the camera and where the key light is etc?
YES! And that’s the main problem when I work with my photographer, sometimes we argue about it, hahahaha. Not any important stuff, but maybe I have something in mind and he has another idea. When something is wrong about it, we fix it easily and fast. I can’t complain about it.
What impact has cosplaying had on your life?
It’s my second job right now xD Seriously, It changed my life. Cosplay takes up a lot of my time (Making it, photoshoots, retouch, social media…) but I do it with love. It gave me the opportunity of meeting people all around the world and one of the best moments in my life: Going back to my country (Argentina) as a guest and seeing my family after 13 years. All I want of it is enjoy each new experience it gives me, and every new convention gives me a lot of it! ♥
Do you have any advice for anybody thinking of cosplaying?
Be patient. If you have to repeat something, do it. We are all here to learn and enjoy the process together!
Rafael ‘Fali’ Ruiz-Dávila- https://www.facebook.com/ruizdavila