Moon-ka, judge of WEGAME 5.0 cosplay show: I’ve been successfully earning on crafting for a year25 March 2019
In the first part of the interview, an awesome crafting specialist and a judge of the WEGAME 5.0 cosplay show – Oksana [Moon-ka] Sherstyuk – talks about her first cosplay experience. Is it possible to earn on crafting and sewing of cosplay costumes in Ukraine? Read the continuation in order to discover what to start with to make crafting the primary source of revenue.
Respondent: Oksana [Moon-ka] Sherstyuk (hereinafter referred to as Moon-ka).
WEGAME: How did you explore the art of crafting on your own? Where can one learn how to craft for cosplays?
Moon-ka: Given the fact that I knew how to sew, I began with YouTube. It is indeed an efficient approach, as there are so many videos that only a lazy one will fail to find an appropriate tutorial on any costume or working with certain materials.
The only difficulty here is a good command of English because the best tutorials are available in English. However, all of them are visually clear: what to do, what materials are used, and where to find them.
I frequently receive questions regarding materials, for instance, where to get EVA. I always share detailed information. Everything is sold in Ukraine. Perhaps, somebody keeps these data a secret. But I encourage the development of cosplays and crafting. In other words, healthy competition and partnership with experts are great: they allow to grow.
Foreign tutorials often show materials sold only locally, but we have pretty good analogues. Although they can be of worse quality, appropriate skills will help to create the same things out of them. By the way, one can both damage the finest materials and produce perfect stuff using poor consumables. It depends on the desire and approach.
WEGAME: What materials do you like the most? Why?
Moon-ka: Every person chooses what to use for crafting on their own. There are solid materials like PVC or wood, softer materials like EVA, thermoplastic allowing to sculpture or cast.
I know how to work with all of these materials. I do not have a preference: everything depends on what should be created eventually. Looking at what should be done and how it will be used, I can suggest the best possible material to make the concept more beautiful and sound.
WEGAME: What intriguing new materials are offered now? Why they are interesting?
Moon-ka: Foam clay is an intriguing and interesting solution that I have not try yet. It is an EVA-like material for sculpturing. It is similar to light playdough for kids, but more flexible and solid.
Foam clay enables to sculpture certain things rather than to cut and make them smooth. The material is widely popular in Europe. Being incredibly slight, it allows to craft whatever you need and make heavy structures convenient. Therefore, even the most delicate girl will be able to wear a huge and massive armor.
Other materials have just become more accessible. You can travel abroad and buy or order something. A variety of materials is expanding. For example, now we have worbla: transparent, red, translucent, smooth, or non-smooth. Surely, it’s not cheap, but available.
WEGAME: Is it possible to earn by designing cosplay costumes and crafting? Are there enough customers desiring to order costumes?
Moon-ka: It is possible; my example is a confirmation. To achieve this, I learned everything possible to improve my skills. A year ago, Fenindom invited me to its crafting workshop. I’ve been successfully operating and earning there for a year, focusing on things I enjoy.
Foam happened after my victory at WEGAME 3.0 when I produced Pharah. I had to live with this enormous costume in one room, creating it within an area of four square meters with a vacuum cleaner, a dremel tool, and hot glue. Nothing is impossible.
After the festival, Mariia Karpenko and Serhii Fedko offered me some orders. Six months later, satisfied by the results of cooperation, they invited me to open a workshop together and become a specialist in customized cosplay designing. I was surprised: “Wow! Is it possible?”
I agreed immediately. It’s been a year since we have been advancing our creative agency, searching for talented guys interested in orders, crafting, and exploration of this area. A couple of weeks ago, we initiated crafting courses for beginners. I tell them what to use for crafting and where to obtain materials. Well, you can earn on this aspect if you want, if you allot time for this, if you explore something new and improve your skills.
WEGAME: What can you say about Ukraine’s interest in cosplay? Did the amount of clients increase in recent years?
Moon-ka: The interest in crafting is definitely growing. People desire to know more and study it. The level of cosplays is enhanced as well. This is good news because costumes are becoming better and better. Workshops are established throughout Ukraine, but we receive more foreign orders.
Our customers are primarily from Europe and the USA. It is caused by the fact that an excellent high-quality cosplay is quite expensive, especially if it is made to order. People need payment for their work. We also have Ukrainian clients, but it is just one-fourth of the total quantity.
WEGAME: What will you assess in cosplayers’ images first of all? What are your key criteria?
Moon-ka: I expect the WOW effect. I adore cosplay shows and understand how much efforts guys spend, as I do the same. I will judge them in a highly responsible manner. Everything matters to me. But the main thing is the integrity of image: an individual should be this image, and the image should be this individual. What matters are how comprehensive it is, how good a costume fits, and how comfortable people feel. Cosplays mean transformation.
Speaking about contests, one should prepare for them. You cannot just come and win. It is obvious on the stage whether a person has rehearsed and whether he or she is confident. You have to show this confidence, to know that you’ve done your best, and realize who you are on this stage.
Certainly, I will assess the quality of crafting as well, but the entire picture is really significant. I’m fond of cosplay; it has become a part of my life, encouraged to grow, and determined my profession.
Video invitation from Oksana
Register and participate in the cosplay show! Besides, you can just enjoy spectacular images of cosplayers on the main stage at WEGAME 5.0 on April 20-21.
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