anibee Cosplayer Focus: Xrystal!
Photo by: Brian Lim
The cosplay scene in Singapore has been going on for much longer than most people would realise, and like most things, it has changed a good deal while at the same time, remaining the same. We talk to Xrystal - a cosplay veteran, on her views of such things, as well as what keeps her in the hobby!
Photo by: Risuchia
How did you get into cosplay?
I've always been an anime/manga lover for as long as I can remember! I started as a doujin-artist, and came across Japanese/Taiwanese cosplay convention photographs online during one of my visits there. After some time, I decided to try it out myself. Though I was initially concerned only with my outward appearance, I eventually did learn the finer aspects of cosplaying.
Photo by: NikYan
What makes you decide on which character to cosplay?
There are many factors and reasons. It could be my own decision due to an insatiable love for the character/series, it could also be because of my friends' invitation to cosplay together as a team, or occasionally it's more of a personal challenge to do up a difficult character. However the bottom-line is; I must love or at least know the series/character on a personal level so that I can input my understanding of it and do a better portrayal.
Photo by: elwinGoh
Your portfolio of cosplays is immense! Do you sometimes feel 'pressured' to do a particular kind of cosplay?
Oh yes! As I personally think I lack a round, youthful, or otherwise 'moe' face, I always get nervous when tasked to do a young female character! It certainly is more stressful as those types of characters tend to be cute and innocent, while I'm too serious and somewhat jaded! *lol*
Cosplaying what you like vs cosplaying what's 'popular' - what's your the opinion on this?
Cosplaying what's "popular" is definitely a much faster way to gain attention, and I suppose, a way of earning recognition. Sometimes, a cosplayer really just happens to like series which are mostly popular, which I have nothing against it, as long as the cosplay is well-done. But still, I wish the cosplayer would take some effort to learn about and grow to like whatever he/she is cosplaying~ this would definitely help to put in more depth in the character portrayal ?
Photo by: PengSiong
Has the cosplay scene changed in any way from the time you first started until now?
Definitely! It used to be a very small circle back then and almost everyone knew one another! Wigs and costumes weren’t so easily available, so most of us would sew ourselves and help out one another by sharing information on techniques. It's very different now as the new cosplayers are starting at a very young age (what a different mentality!) and it seems that they prefer to hang out in small cliques and don't mix around as much. Events are also more commercial and international, involving overseas sponsors and guests.
Any advice for people who want to get more 'serious' with cosplay?
First of all, ask yourself why do you cosplay? What do you wish to get out of it? Then focus on how to achieve it. I think everyone should have a good personal reason to do something, as it will serve as the one anchoring factor that drives you. Don't be afraid to ask for advice from other cosplayers if you are stuck on something, and definitely don't get discouraged if you get ignored or if the costume doesn't turn out right! Stay focused on your own goals, and keep trying anything and everything! Last but not least, be happy with and like what you do. If you are getting upset and stressed out too often - then maybe it's time to take a break!
Practical advice and wise words of wisdom - truly impressive of a cosplay veteran! Check out more of Xrystal's awesome cosplays at her deviantArt page at http://xrysx.deviantart.com!