anibee Features: Goldy Marg!
There are crafters, there are cosplayers, and there are those who even juggle both tasks. But then sometimes, we have someone who just has that extra bit of flair to put them in an even higher level of awesomeness!
Representative for Japan in the World Cosplay Summit 2006, regularly featured in Cosplay sites all over the world and known throughout the community as a crafting 'wizard', it's Goldy Marg!
We managed to pop by his office in Akihabara to say hi:
anibee: Hi Goldy-san! Please give us a brief introduction of yourself, and how you got into cosplay!
Goldy: Hello, I am Goldy Marg, a cosplayer from Japan! I first got into cosplay about 10 years ago, from when I was living in the US. I attended some Halloween parties and got really fascinated by the costumes they wore, and my interest just built up from there!
anibee: What would you say your cosplay 'speciality' is?
Goldy: I like doing armour cosplays, mecha cosplays, and generally anything that's humanoid, challenging - and that covers up my face, haha!
anibee: We're aware that besides cosplaying, you're also heavily involved in other related-activities? Could you elaborate on what they are?
Goldy: Yes! I run a regular workshop at my office here in Akihabara where anyone who wants to learn tips on crafting can come for free. For a small fee, they will also be provided with some necessary materials needed to create a small project as well.
anibee: There are many people who feel that when in cosplay, you should always stay in character and do your best to not ruin the 'image' of the character. Yet, there are others who prefer taking a less strict approach to cosplay. What's your opinion on this?
Goldy: I would like to think that everyone has their own tastes and opinions, even with regards to a hobby like cosplay. During times like contests, it would be best to make sure you stay in-character and follow through with what you're supposed to do.
But it also doesn't hurt to wind down and relax too, especially during "lighter" events. In the end, as long as you have fun - that's what's important!
anibee: With your many years of experience in this field and having taken part in so many large-scale competitions - how do you handle the extreme pressure of all that?
Goldy: Feeling the pressure from stress is very natural - everyone gets it. But I personally feel that as long as you don't forget what your primary purpose for choosing to take part in any kind of competition was (and it should be to have fun!), you will be able to find a way to handle it.
I have confidence that for as long as you (and your partner for that matter) have a common goal, any disagreements and differences that may arise can always be ironed out after everything's over through a good chit chat. Sit down, talk it out, and you will be ready to rise again for the next challenge in no time! Also, a heart-to-heart talk over some sake and food never hurts either!
anibee: Lots of companies have been taking a huge interest in cosplay lately and with their support through sponsorships, this has resulted in a plethora of large scaled events and more exposure for cosplay. However, there are some who find that this has resulted in cosplay being too commercialised. What's your opinion on this?
Goldy: This is always a tricky situation! However, the cosplayer community in Japan is actually quite different in many ways from most other countries. In Japan, the community I feel is mostly divided into two groups:
There are the cosplayers who love to travel abroad to attend overseas events to gain exposure. They love to get in touch with other fellow cosplayers from around the world, and it's these large events that provide them with the easiest way to achieve this goal. While it does get commercialised to an extent, they understand this and see it through for the greater good I feel.
Then there are the cosplayers who are more 'localised', so to speak. These cosplayers are generally focused on simply finishing their costumes to the best of their abilities, attending events around Japan and having their pictures taken.
Both these groups are both very content at enjoying cosplay in their own way. So the opinion on whether or not cosplay has been getting commercialised is divided. They tend to feel that one should simply do whatever's required to achieve one's objectives, and I would be inclined to agree as well!
anibee: What advice do you have for new cosplayers who want to enter the world-wide competitive scene?
Goldy: Definitely keep an open mind and go out and meet as many other people as you can. Through attending events, going for workshops etc, you will have higher chances of meeting other like-minded people and be able to learn new things. Things that might even help you improve your cosplay, your methods of construction etc.
And at the very least, it never hurts to make new friends who can support you too!
anibee: What does cosplay mean to you?
Goldy: Besides being a way to fully express my love for crafting and anime, cosplay to me in the end is about communication.
I love meeting and chatting with other cosplayers, fans and interested individuals from all over Japan and around the world, whether it be through major events, or even just people who walk into my office for a workshop.
With a combination of my website, online community and participation in events, I hope to be able to create a general resource that will be helpful to any existing cosplayer, or even help a new person understand cosplay culture better, and maybe even get them into the hobby.
I look forward to meeting new people everyday, and I hope that I will be able to meet some of you one day too!
Wise and humble words from a true veteran in the scene! We would like to thank Goldy for taking the time to speak to us.
Check out Goldy's other awesome works, as well as information on how you can join his workshops on his Official Website, Gadget Tool!
- Written, transcribed and translated by Q