First name and last initial: Maggie B.
Where are you from originally, or where do you currently reside? From CT, now reside in NY.
How long have you been cosplaying? Since 2011.
Which characters have you cosplayed? The Witch and Zoey from L4D, Splicer from Bioshock, Ashley from Until Dawn, Ellie and a Clicker from The Last of Us, Ellie from The Last of Us Part II, and an Umaru-chan X D.Va crossover!
What inspired you to start cosplaying? I got into cosplaying just by seeing it casually on a few of my computer searches. I figured that hey, if I was so into video games, why not look at making costumes from them? It started with a few college Halloween parties freshman year, which I took to my first convention later that year.
What do you do when you’re not cosplaying? I work for a biopharma company, which is kinda my dream job and couldn’t ask for anything else. As for video games, there is one game *cough*OVERWACH*cough* that has taken up all of my time. I have over 375 hours logged, just for reference! Besides work and video games, I also teach a colorguard team here in New York, primarily as a dance instructor. And sleep…well that’s an afterthought.
Which costumes have provided the biggest challenge and rewards so far, and why? Figuring out how to do the Clicker mask was really the most challenging prop build, and the most challenging to wear because I couldn’t see! Walking through PAX South and East blind proved to be a bit of a challenge. As for sewing, I actually have only sewn my Umar-chan X D.Va bunny hood. I’d love to get more into sewing, but it honestly terrifies me. For the biggest reward, it’s got to be Ellie from The Last of us Part II. It was the first cosplay I actually did a photo shoot in, and I got to use a lot of my SFX makeup in the look. Fake wounds, fake tattoo, and a few scars to boot.
What is the best advice you would give someone new to cosplaying? Be prepared to fail. There are a lot of projects that I gave up on because I failed at trying to make them. Nothing works on the first try. Also, if you get into prop making, get used to stabbing yourself. Both my Clicker and Splicer mask defiantly have some real blood mixed in with the fake blood. Cosplay is not a cheap hobby. Remember that in your first builds, you don’t need the worbla or the heat gun or the 3D printer. EVA foam works just fine.
What is one thing the cosplaying community can do better when it comes to dealing with each other? Don’t put someone down because they’re not your image of the character. People can do a cosplay however they want. But also, for cosplayers, be transparent on how your costume is made. Don’t go around telling someone you hand-stitched an outfit when you bought it off the internet. I guess the TL;DR version: Be kind, and be honest.