Greetings gay geeks and gaymers! Our cosplay crush this week is Kevin aka Flame Water Cosplay from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He’s a Scorpio, bisexual, and prone to spontaneous singing and dancing.
He’s been cosplaying for five years. You may have seen this gaymer cosplaying as Spider-Man, the Blue Ranger from Power Rangers, Cyclops, Aladdin, the Green Lantern, Vegeta from Dragonball Z, and the Blue Dairanger.
He’s been to Anime Milwaukee, ACEN, C2E2, Wizard World, RangerStop and Power Morphicon. He’s into comics, video games, and of course action figures.
Which character have you always wanted to cosplay as but haven’t yet?
I have a long list growing. Right now, my top ones are Adam Jensen from the recent Deus Ex games, Terra from Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep, and Dorian from Dragon Age: Inquisition. I haven’t done any video game cosplay yet. I also have some more Disney planned.
How old were you when you started doing cosplay?
24 officially. That was when I went to my first con. But I’ve started with cheap but passable spider-man costumes long before that.
What got you into cosplay in the first place?
I’ve always enjoyed dressing up, being characters. It’s why I got involved with theatre too. It was just a natural progression as part of the things I love.
What is it about cosplay that you like the most? (Creating Costume/Wearing The Costume/Competing?)
When you’re in a good costume, you feel great! Strong and cool. Even if you’re vision or breathing capabilities are less than desired, you still want to sell it. Getting in costume and being with other cosplayers is like making a dream come true. Your inner geek is screaming from excitement. That and kids seem to geek out just as much as you. And seeing them get so excited about their favorite characters, knowing you are helping to bring them to life is an incredible feeling.
How do you define cosplay?
Costume art. It’s pure freedom and joy. It further inspires me to better myself. To strive for the best, that is within my means. I’ve forged friendships. I’ve bonded over many aspects of cosplay from props to fitness.
What are your views of being body positive when doing cosplay?
I think it’s important for people to be able to do what they want to do in cosplay! Just be self-aware and own it! No matter shape or size, race or gender you are, you have the right to be any character you would like to identify with. And I respect that. For myself, however, I have such standards that I tend to go for characters I feel I can accurately pull off. Like I would never try to be Captain America, because I don’t feel big or buff enough. As accepting as I am of others, I should probably be more body positive of myself. But then again, cosplay inspires me to keep working, so I’ll take it.
What’s your most memorable experience while cosplaying?
Ah so many! But I guess the first time I was part of a full ranger team. It was unplanned, and purely coincidental at Rangerstop 2015. I was so happy! That con, in general, was a turning point for me in many ways.
What’s a tip you give to others who want to get into cosplay?
Research, practice your craft and save your pennies. Don’t be afraid to ask questions!
What’s an interesting fact about yourself outside of cosplay?
I am fluent in Ubbi Dubbi. Anybody remember the show, ZOOM?
What upcoming events will we see you cosplay at again?
I’m holding off for a moment because I’m getting poor. I will do some local ones of course, but my next big one will be D23 in California in July! Very excited! And I would love to go to NYCC, Flamecon, and SDCC in the future!
Do you have a cosplay “team?”
I have people I cosplay with. You make a lot of friends, you plan cosplays together. But my “teams” change depending on the con, interest, and availability. You may also run into people at cons that fit into your cosplay theme and you hang out the rest of the day as a set. You tend to get more interest and more pictures in groups!
What was your most expensive/hardest cosplay you did and why?
Probably one I did recently. It’s something that’s never been done before. It was a Blue Mighty Morphin/Dino Charge Hybrid suit. There were just tiny details all over that were different and tricky because it was a crossover. My makers: RavSeams, Ars Ramda, Jake Moore, and BD15 Decals were especially helpful in getting my needs met. Those who got it loved it! Some didn’t, and that’s ok too! I’m extremely proud of it, though!
Do you feel like the cosplay world has changed over the last years?
More free and accepting? It’s definitely a growing phenomenon! And I like to think it’s evolving! People can get away with a lot! There are definitely cosplay snobs, and then those who don’t appear to put any effort into it, but in the middle there is an amazing community of wonderful people! For the most part, we’re all in this together.
What is your dream cosplay?
I’ve made a lot of my dreams come true. I guess Adam Jensen or something crazy hard from Mass Effect, like Garrus or something!
Do you make your costumes or have them made?
Commission with some minor self-made accessories.
Who is your favorite cosplayer?
Billy Celiz is my inspiration! Everything he wears is perfect on him! Great body and he pulls off everything! I’m so jealous, but I can’t stop loving him! He’s a great friend too!
Favorite memory from a con?
A little boy ran after me while I was in my Cyclops costume, and asked for a picture. Only when I expected his parent or guardian to snap a shot, they were nowhere to be found. He was so excited to see me, and he left them in the dust. It was flattering. We eventually found his parents together and took that picture.
What was your first cosplay? And do you feel like you have improved?
Bad Man Vegeta! It was cool! But I’m so much more involved now. So hardcore.
What would you say to a first time cosplayer?
Explore, get out there, have fun!