“Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery” – Charles Caleb Colton We love Cosplay, unabashedly so, and one of the cool things about hanging out at Cons is hearing why someone enjoys a character or genre. Cosplay is the biggest form of that flattery, and we aim to bring you the stories behind all those people in funky, fun dress up.
This week we welcome from Sin City, the award winning Harajuku Bunny
MoGT: Who is Harajuku Bunny, what do you like to Cosplay?
HB: My name is Kelsey by I go by Harajuku Bunny for cosplay. I’m currently a college student in Las Vegas, NV. This will be my sixth year cosplaying. I’ve currently done over 20 costumes.
MoGT: What does cosplay represent for you?
HB: Cosplay represents the ultimate love for a character and its creator. It’s the most intense form of fanart. Cosplay allows me to become characters that I admire or feel related to in some way, or just really admire the design!
MoGT: What are your favorite events to attend? Tell us any good stories…
HB: Some favorite events that I have attended thus far are Anime Expo 2014 and Amazing Las Vegas Comic Con 2014. Otakon Vegas 2014 was also pretty memorable too! I attended AX for the first time last year and it was my first con outside of Vegas. I had a ton of fun, but it was also overwhelming. One of my favorite memories is being stuck in the same spot for 2 hours getting photos taken with an awesome group of fellow Sailor Moon cosplayers! At Amazing Las Vegas Comic Con I got to debut my new version of my Starfire cosplay where I got to meet her creator, George Pèrez! It meant so much to me that he liked my cosplay and I got to take pics with him! I also took first place in the costume contest! For Otakon Vegas I was selected to be part of the Space Dandy world premiere as one of the official cosplayers! That was my first booth gig and it was a lot of fun getting to meet people and be part of such a large event!
MoGT: How did you get your start and who’s your biggest supporter?
HB: I’ve been sort of dressing up my whole life but didn’t really discover what cosplay was and wanting to do it until the mid-2000s. I finally began in 2009 and went to my first convention, Anime Vegas, after begging my parents to let me go for 2 years. It’s really hard to narrow down one person who is my biggest supporter, but I’d say top 3 my parents and best friend. They are always there to help and encourage me.
MoGT: What are your biggest pet peeves while Cosplaying?
HB: One of my pet peeves is people who won’t ask me for a photo. They’ll just sneakily try to take one but it’s always really obvious. I will not say no to a photo unless I’m running late for something or in an emergency circumstance. Just ask for a pic I’m more than happy to pose for or with you! I don’t cosplay to not have my photo taken haha. Another pet peeve is people who don’t iron their outfits! Please it will make your costume look so much better if you press it!
MoGT: What’s the cosplay culture like where you’re from, do you have friends that cosplay as well?
HB: Here in Vegas not only is the cosplay community small, but the geek community is small as well. You pretty much can guarantee on seeing everyone at the same events. Almost all of my friends cosplay or at least go to cons.
MoGT: How did your costumes come about, did you make them or do you have good shopping tips? If you design and create your own Cosplay tells us about the process.
HB: All of my costumes vary in their creation process. Some I made entirely from the ground up. Some I did a combo of buying and making things and some I purchased entirely. I think the best method usually is to do a combo of both for money and sanity wise. When I am making things for cosplay I tend to really go for accuracy to as much of an extent as I can. I really try to get the materials and colors spot on. My favorite things to work on are accessory pieces.
MoGT: Do you have any favorite photographers you’ve worked with? Throw in your favorite places to shoot!
HB: I haven’t done a lot of private shoots due to some past negative experiences and the limited amount of cosplay photographers in my area. Nearly all of my photos are “hall shots” but I hope to work with some talented people in the future to help further make the characters come to life through awesome photos! There are some photographers that I’ve gotten great hall shots from though, which are David Ngo, Bill Brown, Joits Photography, MeasTakePhoto, Craig’s Cosplay Corral, Manny Llanura, and Lionel Lum! There’s really not a lot of places you can shoot here in Vegas, but if I could I’d like to take some pics at some of the hotels on the Strip. I envy cosplayers in Asia and Europe for having so many cool places to shoot!
MoGT: Any good dating stories about breaking the news of your Cosplay/nerdom?
HB: Not really. Everyone I have dated so far has had mutual geeky interests of some sorts. We don’t have to share fandoms, but I don’t think I could date someone who wasn’t a geek in some way. I have had a lot of issues with guys wanting to date me simply for being a cosplayer though. It’s quite frustrating because sometimes that’s the only reason they’re interested. There’s more to me than costumes. I would like to date someone who understands my love for cosplay but doesn’t necessarily care about it if that makes sense. I don’t want it to be looked at as a trophy of sorts. Dating a cosplayer is not necessarily what many think it is like. Wanting to date someone just because they cosplay is not a good enough basis for a relationship. Cosplayers are just like anyone else, we’re people too!
MoGT: What would be your all time epic cosplay?
HB: Oh goodness there’s a few haha. On the top of my dream cosplay list right now is Bayonetta, which would be quite the undertaking due to the types of fabric, wig, props and all the little details! I plan to cosplay her sometime within the next 10 years! A few more intense cosplays I’d love to make are Panty Anarchy robot version from Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt, and Siegfried and Nightmare from Soul Calibur!
MoGT: What movies/comics/shows inspire your Cosplay?
HB: Well most of what I cosplay tends to come from anime, but I also enjoy cosplaying from video games, comics and other sources as well. Pretty much if I’m a fan of it I’ll want to cosplay from it. I do try to stay in genre when cosplaying at conventions.
MoGT: If you could have your dream roll in a Movie/TV show what would it be and who would be in the picture?
HB: Any of my favorite characters, but if I had to narrow it down I would really love to portray Starfire from Teen Titans since she’s one of my favorite characters and I think I could pull her off. She hasn’t made it onto a screen in non-animated form yet and I would to to bring her to life on screen!
MoGT: Cosplay is not consent is a huge movement Cosplayers are getting behind, what are your thoughts/experiences?
HB: I am 100% on board. I’ve addressed this topic numerous times myself. I have experienced inappropriate comments and groping, but I don’t sit by idly and let people get away with it. Respect should be common sense regardless of what someone is wearing. It astounds me that many people tend to view things that are not okay in the real world are somehow okay at conventions. The internet is another story since there’s rude people everywhere regardless, but cons should be a safe space for all its attendees. If someone ever makes a gross comment or touches you inappropriately, please speak up no matter how awkward or embarrassing it will be. Do not let them get away with bad behavior.
MoGT: Do you have any upcoming events/projects you can tell us about?
HB: My plans are a bit up in the air right now both convention and cosplay wise due to financial circumstances, but if things could go how I originally planned them, my next con is Wizard World Vegas where I will be debuting a new costume, Psylocke (bishoujo version based on the Kotobukiya figure). After that is Fanime, Amazing Las Vegas Comic Con, and Anime Expo! Cosplay plans for those have not been set yet.
MoGT: Are there any cosplayers that have inspired you or that you look up to?
HB: Lots! My favorite cosplayer and top inspiration is Linde Le aka Vampy Bit Me. Her craftsmanship and passion are incredible! Some more cosplayers I really admire are: R&R Group Cosplay, Yaya Han, Yuegene, Reika, Kaname, Kamui Cosplay, Yuurisans Cosplay, Ichigo Kitty Cosplay, Angel Hearts, God Save the Queen Fashions, Firefly Path, Twinzik Cosplay, Glimmerwood, Spiral Cats, Space Pizza Cosplay, Junkers Cosplay, Precious Cosplay, Lollipop Bunny, Mostflogged, Jessie Pridemore, and Cupcake Cosplay,
HB: I am very active on social media mostly Twitter and Instagram, but I do post on Facebook too!
Facebook.com Harajuku Bunny cosplay
I did have a print store, but it’s not active at this time. I hope to re-open sometime with new photos!
A big thank you to Harajuku Bunny for spending her time talking cosplay!
As always Cosplay on friends