It’s time for another interview, this time with Jerry Polence! She’s a lovely cosplayer from Washington, who is super talented in her costuming skills!
What’s your cosplay alias and why did you choose it?
My alias is Jerry Polence, long story, I started cosplaying during college. I went to an exclusive Roman Catholic school for girls run by nuns (very strict) and they want every student to ask for permission if they will join any contests, that includes cosplay competitions. Since many of costume choices are not conservative, and cosplay was somewhat underground then, I chose costumes that will give people a hard time recognizing me, and if I win I usually get announced as Jerry Polence. It is far from my own name, not to mention they will think it’s a guy.
How many years have you been cosplaying and what got you started?
I started cosplaying in 2003, so ten years now. Mainly my friends told me about the hobby, I attended a convention to support them, and ended up cosplaying the next con. I just couldn’t believe there was a hobby as awesome as cosplaying, that I to see for myself that it’s true.
What has been some of your favorite things to work with when constructing costumes and why?
Right now, it’s basically tailoring that’s keeping me busy. Figuring out how to do those “oh so impossible Clamp and what not costumes” into real life, and I’m a masochist for details.
What are you excited to be working with in the future and why?
I have lots of friends overseas that I want to group cosplay with, when we end up cosplaying in the same country. It’s pure logistics that’s a pain in the butt.
What are some of the traits you like to see in other costumes and who do you think does well in them?
Well, it’s accuracy, neat & polished costumes, and construction difficulty. If I see details that are mind boggling to me and they pull it off, I applaud them.
What is your view of the “cosplay scene”?
I’ve been to many countries, and pretty much it’s the same light and fluffy environment anywhere, regardless of what language is spoken. Cosplayers seem to get along well.
What are some of the things you want to see change in the scene?
Well, here in the USA, I get the impression that some people are a bit of an “elitist” towards other cosplayers who don’t do their own costumes. Well, if they are not competing in a cosplay competition (where craftsmanship is one of the criteria) then they can do whatever, in my honest opinion. In Asia, it’s cheap to have your costumes made, so many people just have them made. I want more people there to make their costumes, so we can compete in international cosplay competitions.
What is some advice you could give people starting to get into cosplay?
Well, cosplay something you REALLY like, that way you will put lots of “labor of love” into it. If you have decided what costume you want, do LOTS of research; try to do something that will fit your skill level.
What are some of your favorite conventions you’ve attended and why?
Penny Arcade Convention and Sakura Con. I’m really amazed how friendly the environments are and well organized they are.
Give a random fact about one of your costumes that you’re proud of!
My Black C.C. ball gown had so much hand sewing, cause of the laces and sequins that went in it.