First name and last initial: William S.
Where are you from originally or reside currently? From New Hampshire originally, currently in Orlando, FL
How long you have been cosplaying?: One year
Other Characters cosplayed: Malcolm Reynolds from Firefly, Killian Jones from Once Upon a Time, Zaboo from The Guild, Darken Rahl from Legend of the Seeker, Dean from Supernatural, Harry Potter and more
1. What inspired you to start cosplaying? My first Cosplay was kind of the hook for me. I wanted to attend Dragon Con, and of course I didn’t want to go plain clothed. I had always had an underlying urge to cosplay since I first saw it online, but the time and the funds weren’t there. Plus, there were no cons really where I lived. Well, I moved to Orlando and got set up to go to Dragon Con in Atlanta, but I still needed a cosplay. So I took my favorite show of all time, Firefly, and my favorite character and just made it. The first time I wore it in public was Dragon Con, and after one person recognized me (I was walking in my hotel lobby to the bus) and wanted to take my picture, I was hooked.
2. What do you do when you are not cosplaying? I’m a full-time student at the Motorcycle Mechanics Institute in Orlando. I also make boardgames for my company (I started Stanley Tabletop Games). I have one finished, and am getting ready to release a Kickstarter to fund the making of more copies to sell and up the production value of each copy. When I’m not doing that, I am out on my motorcycle or four wheeler, or just sitting at home on Netflix or playing the latest video game I’m enjoying.
3. What costumes have provided the biggest challenge and rewards so far and why? The costume that has proven to be the hardest is probably my Darken Rahl cosplay, just because it’s kind of an older show, and also finding a wig for it has been proving to be a pain. It’s a very specific wig, and unfortunately finding wigs for guys that aren’t anime is nearly impossible.
4. What is the best advice you would give someone new to cosplaying? If you’re new to cosplaying don’t get caught up in the “needs to be 100% show accurate” thing. When you start doing that, you get stressed out. Cosplay can be expensive depending on how far you want to go and the character you choose. So start simple, and do it for the love of it first. See how you like it then start to slowly work your way up to the more complicated ones. Also, make a savings account, you will be thankful for that later.
5. What is one thing the cosplaying community can do better when it comes to dealing with each other? If you have a cosplayer that is being rude to another cosplayer, is the first cosplayer even really a cosplayer? I think for the most part everyone is really nice to each other (ok, I may have been a little snappy to the person that thought my Malcolm Reynolds was a Jack Harkness, but I wasn’t mean). Here is the dealio: no real member of the community is gonna be mean to anyone else in the community – it just isn’t gonna happen. What we have, are people that come to cons and stuff and in reality, they think they are better than everyone and that carries to the con. What we need to do is try and help these people understand that at an event where cosplayers gather we are all the same – nerds dressing up as fictional characters – and if they have a problem with that, let them know you can call up Iron man without breaking a sweat, usually they don’t have a response.