At MCM Comic Con Scotland, Ivy Doom Kitty and Lauren Matesic held a talk regarding ‘Cosplaying with confidence’ which had a powerful message for everyone to hear. We caught up with Ivy Doom Kitty next day for a follow-up interview below.
Filip: Yesterday you spoke about cosplaying with confidence, so what would you say is the main message for people that are looking into comic cons or maybe cosplaying for the first time?
Ivy Doom Kitty: Just have fun with it, cosplay is costume play, it’s meant to be fun and enjoyed, you’re not supposed to take it seriously. There is no way wrong way of doing it, you can cosplay regardless of if you are making your costume or buying it, it doesn’t matter what your skin colour is, how tall or short or thick or thin, if you have a disability, or LGBT, it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter if you are cosplaying as male or female and you are the opposite. At the end of the day if you can say you have had a good time and had fun with it, that’s the most important thing.
Filip: How did you start out?
Ivy Doom Kitty: I only started cosplaying six years ago, and that was at San Diego Comic Con 2012. It was my Star Trek red shirt from the original series, but it was kind of like an inception thing – I was cosplaying a character that was cosplaying a character. My friend who is a comic book artist Frank Cho did an exclusive print for San Diego Comic Con asked if I could cosplay as his character that was cosplaying as Uhura essentially. It was a lot of fun, I had a blast and I never made a costume before that. I bought a sawing machine and just went at it.
Filip: Wow, so you just jumped straight into the deep end?
Ivy Doom Kitty: Yeah I made the jump, I had no idea what I was doing but I had such a great time, and after that I was hooked. Just meeting other people that are fans of the original series and asking them what is their favourite episode, what did you like about this or that – just being able to interact with others and talk about episodes.
Filip: For people that have never been to a comic con before, wat would you say is the main thing that would surprise them?
Ivy Doom Kitty: To see how diverse and open this community is, you see all types of people represented in in these costumes that don’t necessarily represent what we see as what’s considered “ideal”, in terms of mainstream media. But you see people that show their confidence and are having fun, and that’s very very important to see different kinds of representation at conventions. Like right now, there’s a Freddy Krueger Princess Peach and you can only see that at Comic Con. Like all of the Deadpools, there are so many different versions, when they create their own version or mashup. I think that would definitely surprise people, they walk in expecting something and experience a very open environment.
Filip: Yesterday you touched upon how to deal with bullying – what advice would you give to people that are maybe worried about being bullied about their cosplay, or being made fun?
Ivy Doom Kitty: One thing I would always say is someone is always going to have an opinion whether it’s positive or negative, it’s always going to be up there because people will always give their opinion. I think it’s more the thing of how you would react and deal with it and just realised that at the end of the day those people have no control over your life or what you do in life.
You shouldn’t live your life based off of what someone’s opinion is. My biggest regret is not cosplaying sooner I have been going to Comic Con for about 13 or 14 years. Only started cosplaying in the last 6 years so I wish I started sooner. B
ecause the way I perceive myself would have been completely different years ago. So if you are on the fence or considering cosplay just do it, don’t worry about what anyone is going to say, and focus on having fun. Surround yourself with positive like minded people, and you create a safer environment for yourself that way.
And if you’re being harassed definitely let someone know because they take those things very seriously, and then you’re helping create and even safe for environment for everyone else as well.
Lastly with bullying if you’re experiencing it online, the easiest way is to just delete and ban. Don’t deal with that kind of negativity because at the end of the day you will just be wasting your time on a ton of negative energy.
Negative people will continue to be in that way, so just focus on good experiences and building and complimenting others. Someone might be having a terrible day and that one nice thing you say might make all the difference or inspire them, you never know.
Filip: Has finally getting into cosplay had an effect on your personal life in terms of confidence in how you see yourself?
Ivy Doom Kitty: Yeah, absolutely! I feel with cosplay I definitely have a different perception of myself, where as before it was negative and having low self-esteem sometimes. Cosplay has definitely given me a chance to feel empowered, dressed up as different characters and being able to embody them.
I like dressing up as villains because being evil is more fun, they are bad but fun. As long as you focus on certain attributes from the character, for me it’s definitely helped to be more positive, and be more confident in myself.
Cosplay taught me all those things that I didn’t have before, and made me feel comfortable in my own skin. That’s something I’ve never experienced before and I was always self conscious, so it’s helped me push my own boundaries of photoshoots and working on different characters.
So it’s really pushed myself creatively with any character i embody – I try to be that character. You have no idea what cosplay can do for you so absolutely try it out and have a blast – it might completely alter how you are in such a great way.
Filip: I think that’s so important especially when they’re such a big focus on self-confidence nowadays. Everyone is so concerned about what other people think and it’s very hard to deal with sometimes and people get down about it. I think it’s pretty cool that there’s an outlet for people to be creative and confident, and to be able to take that into their own personal life. Thank you so much for bringing this message across, and of course thank you for your time today.
You can check out Ivy Doom Kitty on the following links: