Apr 23, 2014

Mikasa Cosplay {Meet Jo(anna)}

Something a little different! My friends Jo(anna) aka Princess Radish, Jenni and I flew on top of a parking lot to shoot some action packed cosplay. She runs a tumblr (), goes to a bagillion convention and she's hella smart! I barely know anything about cosplay or anime or anything so I asked her a couple of questions:

What is cosplay?
Cosplay is pretty much short for "costume play", but now it's generally seen as dressing up as characters from TV shows, comics, books, or any other sort of media. If you're interested in a character and feel some sort of connection to them, dressing up like them is a fun way to find a new tier of that interest.

Why did you dress up as Mikasa today? What fascinates you about her character?
A lot of people said that I look a lot like her, so that's what made me go about making her cosplay. She wasn't my favorite character, and I didn't have too much of an interest towards her, but I did respect her as the main heroine of the show. But, finding myself in her shoes and learning more about the way she dedicates herself to what she does, and discovering her passion and servitude, I found myself loving her character, and relating to her in ways that I didn't see at first. She's an outstanding figure of power, along with grace, will, and skill. Mikasa's strength goes beyond her physical abilities, ranking #1 in her year; her strength comes from her willpower and her power to carry on, and fight for those that she cares for.

When did you first start dressing up in cosplay? Why do you enjoy cosplaying? 

I started two years ago, but it was very casual, and I wasn't too much into it as I should've been. It was after one year that I started evolving my skills and actually put them into better practice. Cosplay is what I find enjoyable in joining a fandom (fans of a particular popular media), and meeting people. Helping one another through cosplay is a lot of fun.

What has been your favorite cosplay thus far? What is your favorite part about dressing up as another character?
I don't really have a favorite cosplay; I just enjoy the times I have in those particular cosplays. I usually like characters that have interesting characteristics, and facial features that I love depicting on my own face. Attempting to look as realistic as possible to the character is something that I aspire to do; I usually do this through make-up, since my sewing skills aren't too great, but I do help others with how to do makeup, though I have a lot to learn before I'm completely satisfied.

What do you most look forward to when you cosplay?
I look forward to seeing the completed product, and showing my progress with my friends and those who keep track of what I do. Seeing people from the same fandom and cosplaying the same things also gets me really excited, and lets me get to know people!

Any guilty pleasures? Besides cosplay, what are some hobbies you enjoy doing?
Sometimes I like drawing, though I'm not too good at that yet. I do create stories for some characters that I make, and though they don't get anywhere further than that, it's still something I find enjoyable. Other than that, I do minor photography and editing, and play games whenever I have free time from those hobbies.

If you were stranded on an island, what are two things and two people you would bring? Besides food and water.
I would bring a boat and a GPS, along with a certified navigator and a ship driver. (haha!)

Where do you hope to go next? (Ex: in life, a convention, a city, a country)
Well, I'm a super beginner for now, but my next convention is actually one this weekend (Sakura Matsuri), where I will be making my first yukata (I really have to get started on that... aha), and after that, I'll be going to a convention in New Jersey (AnimeNEXT), where I'll be debuting a lot of the cosplays I've been working on! They're not all too elaborate, but they're a lot of fun to wear, and I'll have to get fit in order to pull off the characters. Some day, I'd love to go to California, the UK, and Australia to go to conventions and visit some friends!

Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
I'm sure I won't be too much into cosplay at that point, but if I am, I hope that I'll be credible enough to be considered a great cosplayer, and have the sewing skills of a goddess. I have a lot of people I look up to, who are a lot older than me, so maybe I may aim for that?

Anything else you want the people on the internet to know? Any advice?
Never think cosplaying is weird or stupid, and do not judge people from their appearance; most cosplayers are very friendly, and do things that everyone else does; a hobby is a hobby, and no one should feel ashamed in doing what they love to do! So, if you do have a hobby that you love, don't be afraid to show it. Enjoy life to the fullest, and with proper planning and a bunch of effort, you'll find happiness in what you do. Also if you ever see me out in the open, don't be afraid to say hi aha.

Stalk Jo(anna) on Facebook:   http://facebook.com/radish.hime
                           Instagram:   http://instagram.com/princessradish
                           Tumblr:       http://princessradish.tumblr.com

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