First Name and Last Initial: Christoper W.
Where are you from originally, or where do you reside currently? I was born and raised in South East Washington, DC.
How long have you been cosplaying? Honestly I have not been keeping count and did not get really into cosplaying until the 2000’s.
What characters have you cosplayed? I have cosplayed Mario, Cape Mario, Fire Mario, Racoon Mario from Super Mario Bros. , Krys from Rainbow Brite, Ben from Ben 10, Megaman from Megaman video game, Sonic , Super Sonic from Sonic the Hedgehog, Captain N from Captain N the Game Master, Super Boy from Young Justice and Wolverine from Marvel Comics X-men.
What inspired you to start cosplaying? I was setting an example for my fellow members of DC Anime Club for a presentation of cosplay held at the Smithsonian Freer and Sackler Gallery. This was an event called The Smithsonian Anime Marathon run by Otakorp (folks who run Otakon) and Smithsonian Film Coordinator Tom Vic.
What do you do when you are not cosplaying? I work for the Enrichment Centers as an Anime Instructor where I teach kids about anime and manga (Japanese Animation and Comics). I am also president and founder of DC Anime Club. At night I work as a custodian and exterminator.
What is the best advice you would give someone new to cosplaying? It’s called cos “PLAY” so have fun. Put the “play” in cosplay. Don’t worry about who is doing what in the cosplay community and you do you. In the end no one really cares about you being cos famous. Try to give back to the cosplay community and help your fellow cosplayers.
Why do you feel that #28DaysofBlackCosplay is important? One word: “Representation”. You rarely see PoCs on the covers of cosplay magazines or in the top ten or twenty cosplayers of all time list we see. 28 days of Black Cosplay is a start to solving a lack of melanin in the cosplay community.
What is one thing the PoC cosplay community can do better when it comes to dealing with each other as well as non PoCs? The one thing the PoC cosplay community can do better when it comes to dealing with each other as well as non PoCs help each other out instead of putting each other down. We get enough of that from our white counterparts. Too many times I have seen PoC’s use the N word or call PoC-female cosplayers outside their names. This discourages PoCs wanting to enter the world of cosplay and it needs to stop. We need to share each others’ pictures and posts in order to create a BIGGER environment for PoC cosplayers.