2018 Cosplay Guest Questionaire

Our fans on Facebook asked some questions to our Cosplay guests.
Below you can find the answers to those questions.

Some of them still have to reply so we will update in future, but for now, enjoy!

1. If you have no experience with prop making, what is the best material to start with?
PatCosplay:
Cardboard, Scotch tape and and easy-to-paint colour.
Elina Cosplay: The best material to start with is the Google search bar, I feel.
Whenever I have to do something I've never done before or use a technique I'm not familiar with, I research the crap out of it, and try to find out as much as possible beforehand.
It's also a good idea to experiment a little with the different materials before spending all your money on one specific thing. Different materials work for different people, so it's hard for me to point at a specific material and declare it as the best possible material for everyone, ever.
Taeyeon: EVA foam. We call it urethane foam in Korea. It is easy to cut, to sand, and also to paint. You don’t need any special tools to use this one. And most of all, it is easy to level up your prop-making skills!
Merry All-Nighter: I would recommend EVA foam. It's affordable. So even if you make mistakes, you can start over. It's also a very light material. All you should do is pay attention to the tools, because they play a large part in how the finishing will look. There are a lot of tutorials and books to help you get started, so google foamsmiths like Evil Ted Smith, Punished Props or Kamui Cosplay for tips and tricks. If you are more adept at hand sculpting, you might enjoy Worbla.

2. What is the best way to give worbla/eva foam a wood-like texture/look?
PatCosplay: Using paint brush or carve it, then sear it carefully by flame.
Taeyeon: It depends on what kind of wood texture you want to make. If you want to show the delicate wood surface, it is easy to attach a wood pattern fabric or wallpaper. If it’s for like.. making table or chair. If you want to make rough wood texture, you can just draw some wooden line on EVA with soldering machine. The machine will meld the EVA foam and make the rough texture. After that, heat the surface and color it with a dry brush .
Merry All-Nighter: It depends on the look you're going for, but with EVA foam it's easy to use tools like soldering iron to make marks to imitate the grain. If you want a more cartoony look, cutting the lines with an exacto knife and hitting the foam with a heat gun to separate them is a fast and easy way to work. Basic Worbla has a rather rough texture to begin with, so you might want to consider if you want to use that and emphasize the grain by sculpting it on the foam underneath. The paintjob does a huge job on the look though, so I would concentrate on that as well.

 

3. What advice would you give to keep the motivation to continue working on a costume?
PatCosplay: It would make you proud when you realize it was made by you.
Elina Cosplay: Always end your crafting sessions on a positive note. This works for training dogs, and it works equally well with cosplayers, I assure you. One of the biggest motivation killers is the feeling of failure and not knowing what you're doing, so when you work on your costume and feel like something's just not going well and you really want to rage-quit, give yourself a break from that particular thing, and switch over to something that you know you can do. The sense of knowing what you're doing is really important, and it usually gives you the confidence boost to continue working on your costume.
Also: get enough sleep and eat properly while you craft. It's hard to feel motivated if you're running on three hours of sleep and an energy drink.
Taeyeon: That is difficult XD. Everyone gets exhausted when making a cosplay for a long time. I say.. choose the cosplay character which you really love. Sometimes people just choose the character just because of the design or fame. But if the costume is difficult and take a lot of effort to make, the only thing make you keep working is the love OwO. If you really love the character, you’ll finish the costume in the end . Or.. call some friends to get help XD.
Merry All-Nighter: Obviously this depends on the person. My biggest motivation is that usually I can start working on something else after I'm finished with a costume. Also imagining it being ready and how it'll be to wear is a big motivator for me. I like to keep lists and crossing things over when they're ready, and that gives some short term satisfaction. Sometimes when you lose the motivation completely, maybe try going back to what made you decide to do the costume in the first place. Rewatch the anime or the playthrough, and sort through the materials and parts you're most happy with so far.
Sometimes though, it's just good to just do something completely different and then get back to the project a bit later.

4. What is your most memorable/creative/impressive cosplay competition act you have judged?
PatCosplay: Thailand Game Show
Elina Cosplay: It's a tie between WCS Team China's incredible Blood: The Last Vampire performance at WCS last summer (us alumni got to judge the semi-finals in order to give out special alumni prize, so I count that as a competition I have judged),
and Theriz Cosplay's winning performance as as Ori from The Hobbit films at the Nordic Cosplay Championships in 2016.
Team China's performance was a perfect example of an incredibly well-planned choreography that was rehearsed to perfection and performed with the kind of intensity rarely get to see on stage. Every single move they made had a purpose, and the entire show was a thrill from start to finish.
Theriz's performance as Ori was a textbook example of beautiful script writing combined with incredibly powerful acting. The skit itself was fairly simple, but the emotional impact of the story, combined with fantastic voice acting and beautiful music, was enough to have me crying like a child while sitting behind the judges' desk. I still get chills whenever I think about the performance, and I can never praise it enough.
Taeyeon: I’ve been to conventions several times and there were participants who join the competition every year, but couldn’t really win the first place. The team were really nice people and tried really hard but couldn’t win. And one year, they asked really seriously about what I thought the problem of their costume was and discussed a lot.
Next year, their costumes were stunning. I could see how much they worked and studied. It may sound lame to many people, but when I experienced it, it was super touching moment. And of course they won the first place at that year .
Merry All-Nighter: I've seen many incredible and well made performances but one that I will always remember was the World Cosplay Summit 2017 Blood: The last Vampire act by team China. I'm beyond happy that we had the chance to see it a second time after the judging to only enjoy it. The energy the team put in to their act was 100%.

5. When working on a cosplay project, what music do you have playing in the background?
PatCosplay: Any music composed by Hans Zimmer.
Elina Cosplay: Sometimes I have specific playlists I make for different characters, but if I haven't made one of those, I usually listen to either 90's pop or modern classical piano music (Ólafur Arnalds is my personal favourite). My taste in music is a bit all over the
place, okay.
Taeyeon: Search “work song anime” at Youtube :3 hahaha. Or, I play fun anime or Big Bang Theory and just listen to them not watching the screen :3 Sometimes, I play Detective Conan which has more than 800 episodes so you don’t have to worry about running out of background music.
Merry All-Nighter: I actually like to listen to audiobooks and documentaries when I work. I prefer historical documents, and one of my favourites is the Hardcore History podcast series by Dan Carlin. Punished Props Q&A live sessions make a nice background chat as well. If I listen to music they are often game and movie soundtracks.

6. When sitting through a long haul of judging costumes , what is the worst and best thing you have experienced? And what would see done better to make the experience more comfortable?
PatCosplay: Good thing when they accept the advice and make an improvement. One the bad thing is that they deny it and say that the judges were biased. It's up to them to accept it or not.
Elina Cosplay: I've seen a fair share of contestants having meltdowns and throwing fits over the results, but all of those negative experiences are always overshadowed by contestants who come into the judging room genuinely excited about the competition and their own work. As judges, we always want everyone to do their best, and even though you might think we're just itching to find every single mistake in your costumes, we usually just want you to do well and be proud of your own work. My personal favourite judging session was the full day of costume judging we did at the Nordic Cosplay Championships in 2016.
The costumes were phenomenal, and I've honestly never had a tougher time scoring costumes. That's what I love seeing as a judge, fantastic craftsmanship and passion for the craft. The harder it is for a judge to decide a winner, the better. I've sat through several hours of judging, without breaks, and just biscuits for snacks, but at the end of the day, I get to see a bunch of amazing costumes and performances that always inspire me and - in the best case scenario - teach me something new, so it's all worth it.
Taeyeon: The worst part is when there’s not enough time to check the costume or discuss… ;_;… I don’t want to miss important parts the participants want to show and if there’s no time for checking it, that is just really sad… But the worst of worst part is when I have to choose one team between really close two teams. Like when two teams did so good and we have to choose only one, that is always the most difficult part. The best part is that I can learn a lot from participants too. People are using new materials and new skills and I can see them close and also learn from them. That is really a precious experience.
Merry All-Nighter: My favourite moments in judging are when cosplayers tell what they are most proud of, and when you can see they are happy with their costume and choice of character. The most considerate thing you can do for the judges and staff, is being on time. Contests always run with a schedule, and being late inconveniences the judging if they have to shuffle to accommodate you. Sometimes life happens and that is understandable, but as a general rule, be on time!

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