Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Virtual Crunchyroll Expo 2020 - Q&A with Kamui Cosplay


The following is an email Q&A between Crunchyroll Cosplay Cup judge Kamui Cosplay and Matthew of the California Conventions Blog.


You have been attending conventions and events worldwide. Have you noticed any cultural differences from region to region and even country to country that were reflected in the convention or event you attended?

Oh, yes, there are huge cultural differences, even within the cosplay community. Our German community for example is quite welcoming, but we also try to stay polite and distanced, especially if you meet someone out of costume. Then this person “doesn’t want to be disturbed”. I noticed, that in the US and Canada people are much closer, more relaxed and basically more touchy haha. Well, in Asia people are far more distanced and you just don’t touch another person. Cosplayers and fans are super polite and keep their distance. I once had a convention in Canada and then in Singapore back to back and adapting so fast to such a huge cultural difference was a bit challenging. I think my Asian guest liaison still has nightmares from all the hugs I tried to give him.

What are some early memories of attending conventions and how does it compare to today?

To be honest, for me personally not much changed. My very first convention was in 2003. It was surely super small and cosplay was only an underground hobby of a few very passionate anime/manga fans at the time, at least in Germany. However, I met with friends, watched costume competitions and enjoyed Japanese food back then - and still do that today. Everything surely became much bigger, more mainstream and also the skill level of our cosplay community has grown. Despite that, however, attending a convention is still about having fun, dressing up and hanging out with your friends at an awesome weekend. 

What was the hardest commission you’ve ever taken on and how did you accomplish it?

Oh, I don’t really do a lot of commissions, but I think, my very first one was actually also the hardest. I was supposed to create two full armor costumes from the Blizzard universe in only a few weeks for a United States event. The biggest challenge was to create costume pieces for different measurements than my own. I was not able to meet my models, only saw them over Skype and asked them to give me their basic measurements. This might have been enough for a fabric costume with already existing sewing patterns, but for armor, this simple didn’t really work out easily. So I just build everything on pure guesswork and I was super nervous that it wouldn’t fit, especially the skin-tight breastplates. Before the event, I was at least able to deliver the costumes in person and meet the models for a few last adjustments. I actually couldn’t believe that I seriously guessed all the shapes and sizes right at the end! Lucky!

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