It’s time for another interview, this time with Rikku-chan! She’s a talented cosplayer from Chicago, who is also a photographer!
What’s your cosplay alias and why did you choose it?
My cosplay alias is Rikku-chan (xRikku-chanx on DA). I always joke that this is why 12-14 year olds should not have internet access since I made my cosplay name in that age range. I chose it because Rikku (from FFX and FFX-2) was my favorite character and I apparently couldn’t come up with anything more original! Haha!
How many years have you been cosplaying and what got you started?
I’ve been cosplaying since 2003-04. After googling my favorite Final Fantasy characters, I found pictures of people dressing up as those characters. At first I thought it was really strange, but another year or two later, I found myself wanting to try it out! So, one Halloween a friend and I made my first costume!
What has been some of your favorite things to work with when constructing costumes and why?
I really like styling wigs because that first time trying on the styled wig, and feeling like you’ve transformed into the character is such an incredible feeling! I also really like doing the research to figure out all the little details of the costume and working to get them just right! Getting those details accurate is so gratifying and gives me the sense that I’ve somehow gotten closer to the character or series… If that kind of relationship is even possible, haha.
What are you excited to be working with in the future and why?
I am really, really excited to be starting up on new Rikku costumes again! The past couple years, I haven’t made many new dresspheres or FFX versions. It’s been my dream since I started cosplay to try to make as many Rikku costumes as I could! I’m also really excited to be doing some FFXIII costumes as well!
What are some of the traits you like to see in other costumes and who do you think does well in them?
I love costumes that get all the details right. It doesn’t have to be perfect construction by any means…. the cosplayer could put it together with glue for all I care! But if the costume looks great on the outside and really captures the essence of the character and there’s obviously a lot of research that went into the costume to make it accurate, I’ll respect it! Some of my favorite cosplayers who continually do this with their costumes are: Hiyoko-chan, Konoe, ShiyaWind, Crystalike, Rynn, Callesto, and Akuriko.
What is your view of the “cosplay scene”?
The cosplay scene has, in my opinion, declined as a community. Back when I first started, the community was really supportive and open. People actually commented regularly and gave helpful advice. Nowadays, it’s become far more of a popularity contest and very exclusive.
What are some of the things you want to see change in the scene?
Cosplay is a hobby first and foremost. I wish people remembered that more often! It’s about having fun and being a geek with other geeks.
What is some advice you could give people starting to get into cosplay?
Don’t let it run your life. It’s happened to us all. Cosplay is so easy to fall into and let it eat up all your time. Remember to have a balance between cosplay and “real life”. Do your school work before you do anything cosplay related and don’t let cosplay become stressful! It’s a hobby that’s supposed to be fun! Making some friends that are also into cosplay is a great way to have a cosplay “support group”. You can talk about sewing and crafting techniques and vent when you need to! Just be open, positive, and have a good time.
What are some of your favorite conventions you’ve attended and why?
Ohayocon, Acen, and Anime Expo. Acen is my hometown con, which is definitely a reason I love it so much! I really enjoy larger cons for the variety of cosplayers. Ohayocon is one of my favorites because the people there are definitely one of the most polite and well-mannered congoers I’ve come across. I don’t think I’ve ever had a bad Ohayocon experience! Anime Expo was a new con for me in 2011 and although it was ENORMOUS, I met a lot of fantastic friends there and for the first time in a while, I felt like cosplaying was fun again. There was no pressure or snotty cosplayers.
Give a random fact about one of your costumes that you’re proud of!
Every time Hiyoko-chan and I painted my skin blue for True Form Midna, we also covered the entire bathroom blue. Hahahha, I can still remember everyone’s faces the first time we did it! Even the towels were blue!