Persona Five, One Piece, and Love Live Cosplay by Usako Bosnia/Austria
Welcome back everyone it’s already the month of August. We are here again for another Cosplay Interview this month. Last time I presented you Ms. Nina (Sanguinarius Cosplay) from Georgia this time it’s someone who loves to cosplay the Anime Series Persona Five, One Piece, Love Live and many more.
Our featured cosplayer today is actually bringing not just 2 names of countries but 3. Bosnia, Austria, and Germany where she’s currently living. About that story? I’ll let her explain further about it.
Browsing on the web has made me find this lovely cosplayer who gave so much dedication and passion for her work. I’m absolutely sure you’ll be awed of her not just because of her awesome cosplayer works but as well as her charming life story.
Thank you so much again to Ms. Usako for sharing us your story. Continue to inspire others and more success to come!
Let’s discover her admirable cosplay works and story!
Hi there! I am Usako, a Bosnian girl who was born in Austria and now lives in Germany! I’ve cosplayed since I was 12 years old and it has helped me through a lot. It’s one of the few hobbies I’ll never be bored with! So far I’ve been on many conventions in Austria and Germany, like Connichi, Vienna Comic-Con, AniNite, Leipziger Bookfair, Gamescom and so on.
I’ve also participated in some cosplay contests just for fun with friends. For me, acting is a huge part of cosplay, and I want to share that passion with my audience and with the outer world. I want to show that cosplaying is not just putting on a costume – it’s bringing a character to life.
Boa Hancock photos by Milaeninja
I discovered cosplay when I was about 11 years old. Even back then I was a huge anime fan and I liked browsing the internet – so of course, I discovered the famous Japanese cosplay Kipi in her Misa Amane cosplay. I was amazed by how beautiful she was and how much she resembled the character!
That was when I decided to make my first costume, which was Finn Fish from Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne. I didn’t have a wig and everything was glued together terribly, but I had so much fun and I was really proud of myself. I thank God to this day that there are no photos of that costume.
But from then on I was absolutely obsessed. I knew that I would never stop cosplaying. The feeling of pride, the creative process, the learning process and just being a different person for a few hours – who wouldn’t want that?
First Convention and Experiences
Amu Hinamori photo by Madoka, Rena Ryuuguu photo by Usako’s friend, & Taiga Aisaka photo by Joy Charlet
My first convention was AniNite in 2010, which is now the biggest convention in Austria. But back then it was in a little school building and didn’t offer a lot – which was fine because I was still shaking about all the different things that took place there! I’ve never seen so many cosplayers and Anime fans in one place.
All the merchandise, all the laughter, I felt like I was in heaven. I wore a Rena Ryuuguu cosplay back then which I borrowed from a friend and I didn’t even have a wig, but I couldn’t care less. I was just there to have fun, and really did!
Meeting a lot of amazing people who are still my friends to this very day. I will never forget the excitement and nervosity before my very first convention. I fell in love! Back then most of the conventions were in Vienna, so I traveled there for 5 hours, which was nothing compared to the times when I was still living in Austria and I went to a convention in Northern Germany, Connichi.
I went there with a group of friends and since we were all on a budget we took the cheapest route possible. Well, it was very cheap, but we traveled for like 20 hours. Sadly I haven’t been to any conventions outside of Germany or Austria because of financial reasons, but I hope that one day I will be skilled enough to be invited as an international cosplay guest! Let a woman dream!
Boa Hancock photos by Milaeninja
The first costume that I really sewed myself was Ranka Lee, of course, looking back at it, it’s absolutely cringeworthy, but it was the very first costume I completely sewed by myself and it only took me 2 hours.
I was so proud of myself and so were my parents! This was back in 2012. I’ve sewed a lot of cosplays, I really can’t say how many, I can’t really keep track of it, because sometimes I don’t even take pictures of a cosplay.
But if I had to guess I would say around 30-50. When I want to make a cosplay, the first thing I do is research. What does the character look like, what are they wearing, what eye color, what does the back look like, which materials could I use and so on.
I use the app “Cosplanner” to keep track of my progress, since you can make lists of what you still need to buy, what you still need to sew/craft, your budget, how much time you spent on the different parts and you can even save progress pictures there, which is really helpful if you want to participate in a cosplay contest.
Then I order things I can’t make myself, like wigs or contact lenses and while I wait for that to arrive, I start working on the costume. I mostly make patterns by myself (and keep them in case I need a similar pattern in the future!), sometimes I buy them on the internet.
Then I just start, most of the time I work 10+ hours straight without a break because I’m so focused. You shouldn’t do that though, because you should always stay hydrated and take breaks! I also post progress pictures on my Instagram and I post tutorials on my patreon.
Mari Ohara photo by Luneko
My favorite cosplay that I’ve done is probably Priscilla, which I made for my medieval-themed birthday party. I sadly haven’t done a shooting with her, so a photo of the finished costume on my mannequin has to suffice!
Another favorite is Mari Ohara in her Halloween version. Both of them are completely made by myself, except for Mari’s black skirt, which Yoki from Honeymoon Cosplay made. It took a lot of time, patience, sweat, tears and energy drinks.
I finished Mari 4 hours before the convention and almost had a nervous breakdown, so yeah, of course, I try to plan everything as much as possible but I’m still a weak human! These two are my favorites because I really challenged myself with it and took my time.
Eli Ayase photos by Luneko
I gotta say, I had some uncomfortable experiences with cosplaying, but I think the most embarrassing thing was when I was on the League of Legends stage at GamesCom as Jinx and I was feeling myself so hard, makeup was popping, I was slaying, and then my ammunition belt ripped and they just spread across the whole stage while I was just staring at the ground silently.
It was so embarrassing I wanted to just leave the stage and never come back, but I still stayed, kick the ammunition to the side and continued feeling myself.
Another really terrible experience was at a Japan festival in Germany, where I was wearing a Gnar and it was pretty revealing. There was some drunk guy who wanted a picture and I agreed, but then he touched my butt and I just lost it.
I started yelling at him who he thinks he is and that he doesn’t have any permission to touch me. He just laughed it off with his friends and basically said that I was asking for it with my outfit.
I’ve never felt so disgusting in my life. One of my good friends was with me and I think he really wanted to hit him in the face but I just told him that it’s not worth it. After that, I changed into normal clothes and felt really depressed for the rest of the day.
Eli Ayase photo by Milaeninja
I have many cosplayers I look up to. As I already mentioned, I love Jessica Nigri for her amazing craftsmanship, positivity, and amazing humor. I love Nana Kuronoma for her passion, her environmental awareness (it’s really important, okay?) and motivational posts.
I love Pixelghosts for her amazing strength, her incredible makeup skills and she’s promoting loving yourself no matter what skin color. There are many other cosplayers I love, like Kristina Arielle, Aquilegia, Keekihime, Katyuskamoonfox, Vamplettes and many more.
They are all fighting the good fight and are all so nice and kind-hearted!
Definition of “Cosplayer”
Futaba Persona Five by Luneko
For me, a cosplayer is someone who dresses up as a fictional character and really portrays their personality. Skin color, weight, nationality, religion, gender, none of that matters. It’s as simple as that. I used to be a very toxic person when I was younger and I hated on many people for no reason at all.
Just because I didn’t know what they were doing. But I learned my lesson. I learned that it’s important to spread love and positivity, it’s important to love oneself and others, and don’t ever judge someone before you make your own picture!
I think there is an uprising now in the cosplay community where people really support each other instead of bringing each other down. You see a lot of shoutouts on Instagram and just generally a lot of positivity.
Surround yourself with positive people, get rid of the poison inside your heart, and enjoy life and let other people enjoy their life! Amazing cosplayers like Jessica Nigri, Nana Kuronoma, and Pixelghosts.
Use their platform to spread awareness for important topics like body positivity, sustainability, racism, sexism, and they promote uniqueness, love, and just being yourself!
Those are the kinds of cosplayer we need in the community and I hope that I will make a positive impact on others too.
Lucoa photo by Luneko
My greatest achievement so far was winning the 3rd place at a cosplay performance contest. I had a very sad monologue as Chiyuki from Death Parade, and I thought that people wouldn’t like it since they’re more into funny sketches, which is understandable.
But I really wanted to challenge myself and the audience, I wanted them to listen, I wanted to raise awareness about suicide and mental health problems, and I think I was really able to touch a few people’s hearts!
Lovely people I didn’t even know came up to me after the contest and said that I made them cry with my performance and that it was really good. I want to perform more often, but the sad thing is that most conventions have costume/skill-based competitions, not performance/acting.
Lucoa photos by Luneko
I really hope that will change in the near future because I don’t want people to forget the true roots of cosplay. There are still many things I want to achieve as a cosplayer. I want to show people that no matter how hard life is, if you just fight, keep on fighting and slowly try to love yourself you will have a wonderful life.
To show people even though I’ve struggled with depression since I was a child, I made it this far and I can make it even further. I will never let my demons win, and I want to show others that they have the power to keep fighting too. I want to make a positive influence.
If it’s only one life I can save, that’s enough for me. It’s more than I could ever possibly ask for.
Piece of Advice
Houseki no Kuni photo by Milaeninja
If you’re just starting out, pick characters that you feel comfortable with! You don’t have to make the most badass armor or the most mind-blowing costume. Pick an easy one!
Take baby steps! It’s important that you feel comfortable in your costume because otherwise you will have a really bad time, trust me.
For wigs I look through eBay, Ardawigs, Wigisfashion, for lenses I mostly use Amazon. There are also tons of helpful tutorials online which helped me out a lot, for example, Kamui Cosplay and Lightning Cosplay.
They have YouTube Channels where they show you how to do different things (mostly armor-related), and Kamui even released a few helpful books on how to make armor/LED and much more.
Generally, I’d say – use the internet! Don’t be afraid to ask fellow cosplayers how they do stuff or where they get stuff from. Most of us are willing and happy to help! I would also recommend working on your make-up skills and on your posing.
The best way to go about practicing that is binge-watch YouTube tutorials, and just try it out! Get a mirror, paint your face, if it doesn’t look good, try again! Learn from mistakes and let yourself make mistakes.
They’re so important. For posing, get a mirror, practice your mimic, gestures and various poses – you will see yourself what will look best!
Photos by Luneko & Milaeninja
This year, I will be at Leipziger Bookfair, AniMuc, Gamescom, Connichi, Dokomi, AniNite, Vienna ComicCon, and AniMagiC. They are all in Austria and Germany, but I hope that I will one day be invited as a guest in another country. That is my goal for this year!
If you want to follow me, check out my Linktree! All of my social media are listed there.
Thank you so much for reading through all that and remember to love yourself, stay hydrated and keep on fighting!
Persona Five, One Piece, and Love Live Cosplay by Usako Bosnia/Austria