It’s time for another interview, this time with Apola Star! She’s a veteran cosplayer from California, who enjoys leatherworking and meeting new people!
What’s your cosplay alias and why did you choose it?
Apola Star. I have been in love with Greek religion/mythos since I was a child and always loved the sun God Apollo. I changed the ending noise to be more feminine and came up with Apola. Since it was based off of the sun God, I picked an astral body for the last name “Star”. It actually started as my gaming name all the way back on the PS3!
How many years have you been cosplaying and what got you started?
I’ve been cosplaying for 13 years, only being super active the last 3 years. I always enjoyed dressing up as a child, and after going to ACEN in Chicago in 2006 I fell in love with the hobby.
What has been some of your favorite things to work with when constructing costumes and why?
Leather for sure! You can do so much with it, from stamping in designs to carving them in. It’s a very hardy material when you work in thicker forms, so it lasts forever. I also love foam because you can make almost anything with it!
What are you excited to be working with in the future and why?
I am learning basic metalworking at the moment, so I hope to start making chain and scale maille in the near future.
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 people putting their own flair on their cosplay. It’s awesome to do stitch by stitch accurate cosplays, but it’s also amazing to see others make a cosplay their own.
What is your view of the “cosplay scene”?
Honestly, I’m still an outsider to the overall scene. I started my serious cosplay hobby outside of the convention scene. For me personally, the cosplay scene is the wilderness and finding the perfect place to take amazing photos. For most others it’s the networking structure that has been built by many cosplayers linking together and just coexisting.
What are some of the things you want to see change in the scene?
I would love to see less fighting between cosplayers and less creepy people taking advantage of young and inexperienced cosplayers.
What is some advice you could give people starting to get into cosplay?
Do NOT be afraid to fail. If I had been afraid of trying new things and messing up, I would still be making costumes that looked like a 5 year old pieced them together. Try new things, fail, learn and do it again until you succeed!
What are some of your favorite conventions you’ve attended and why?
I absolutely LOVE Wizard World and ACEN in Chicago. They are medium sized conventions and there are a lot of things to do, between panels, artist alley, cosplayer booths and photo spots. I currently live in California and my favorite conventions here are Anime Expo, Nerd Expo, LA Comic Con, and Anime Pasadena. Anime Expo and LA Comic Con are both popular conventions that cover both the Japanese side of my fandoms and the western comic side. There are lots of awesome people that go to them as well. Nerd Expo (FORMERLY Nerdbot Con) and Anime Pasadena are both one day conventions that are great for getting loot and just enjoying the day in cosplay.
Give a random fact about one of your costumes that you’re proud of!
I hand stamped the design in my Ashe tail coat one triangle at a time. It took about 4 hours, but it was worth it because it looks amazing!