It’s time for another interview, this time with Luna Ishtar! She’s a talented cosplayer from Brazil, who has a beautiful collection of costumes!
What’s your cosplay alias and why did you choose it?
My cosplay alias is Luna Ishtar. Luna is the latin name for the moon and Ishtar is an Egyptian deity, but I actually stole it from the character Malik Ishtar from Yu-gi-oh. I always loved villains, dark characters and mythology and Malik seems to have all these, so it’s no surprise that I really like him.
How many years have you been cosplaying and what got you started?
I did my first cosplay in 2004 out of curiosity, but I made cosplay a hobby in 2006. At first, I was just an anime, games and Japanese culture lover and was fascinated that people actually attended cons dressed as their favorite characters, so I felt the urge to join them and try it out. I had so much fun the first time I cosplayed that I felt encouraged to continue and that led me to keep on cosplay until today.
What has been some of your favorite things to work with when constructing costumes and why?
I like to work on little details and accessories like making crowns, necklaces, painting a pattern on the fabric and such. Recently I started liking to modify wigs to make them look more like the characters’ hair. I also like to cut and make armor, but I hate painting them. =P
What are you excited to be working with in the future and why?
I have a few projects I’m excited about. One of them is an old passion, Motoko from Ghost in the Shell. This one will give some hard time, especially with the wig, but it’s not as challenging as my bigger project that is the hardest costume I’ve ever done, with anti-gravitational hair, wings and all sorts of stuff. I can’t really tell who it is, but it’s someone from the Final Fantasy universe.
What are some of the traits you like to see in other costumes and who do you think does well in them?
I like to see well crafted costumes, but mostly I like to see costumes that were made proportionally to the wearer. It’s hard to make a good costume, but in a really good one you have to think about the proportion of every piece accordingly. It’s not just a big cape, the cape must reach the feet and must start at the right height, etc., that’s what gives believability to the costume and it’s something hard to see.
Some cosplayers that do this pretty well are Pikmin Link, Yaya Han, Akuriko, Astellecia, Elffi, and some national cosplayers that do this well are Mauricio Somenzary, Witchiko, and Yuki.
What is your view of the “cosplay scene”?
I can only talk about the cosplay scene in Brazil. Although cosplay is really popular in conventions and we never had so many cosplayers as before, the percent of really awesome cosplayers are still the same. There are a lot of new people now, and a lot of the old ones don’t cosplay anymore so it’s kind of even.
About cosplay skits, the trend nowadays is to make a skit with the most special effects possible, but unfortunately many people tend to neglect the costume because of the skit. I wish we had more better finished costumes and a wider variety of skits, like some more artsy, and some fighting style with people who actually fight, or some more traditional. I see no harm in doing a skit with overwhelming special effects but I would like a tad more variety; variety always helps.
What are some of the things you want to see change in the scene?
I want to see more variety in the cosplay skits, more risky bets if you know what I mean. I also would like to see people putting a tad more effort in their costumes. We have a lot of good cosplayers that, if they spend a little more time and love doing their costumes, would turn into a jaw-dropping costume. C’mon, let’s improve guys!
What is some advice you could give people starting to get into cosplay?
Have fun and don’t feel discouraged when you face a problem. Like any hobby you’ll have to face a lot of challenges and problems in order to become a better cosplayer. Cosplay is all about making something with love and having fun, but also allowing yourself to grow with it to be able to face even greater challenges. That’s the only way to improve; work hard.
What are some of your favorite conventions you’ve attended and why?
One of my favorite conventions was the Japanese Festival where they hold the WCS Brazilian finals. It’s not exactly an anime convention but I like there because it has a lot of different stuff related to Japanese culture that aren’t nerd stuff. Also I loved AnimeXtreme and some small cons I attended in the south of the country, people that go to these cons are really different from people we see in other places. They are more polite and happy and respectful with cosplayers, also the locations are beautiful. I wish I could attend more cons in the south.
Give a random fact about one of your costumes that you’re proud of!
My third costume was Midna from The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. Before doing her I’ve never ever worn a color lens, or a wig, or a costume that wasn’t just pants and shirt, and never did a full body make up. It was a huge leap for me and I proved myself that I could do much more than I thought I would. From there on I stopped doubting myself. =)
Thanks for the interview, Luna Ishtar! If you’d like to see more of her work, you can go to her website, her World Cosplay account, her Cosplay.com account, her cosplay Deviantart, and her Deviantart!