Cosplay Cafe 04: Carpe Diem Cosplay

What’s going on club members? Happy Monday first off, I’m dealing with sun shine and some snow.  Outside of that, I can’t complain. Anyway, Carpe Diem Cosplay is dropping by the cafe today. I met her at MAGfest this past year and I’m glad to have had the opportunity to talk with her outside of the con. That said, check out our conversation down below.

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1. What were you like growing up? What were some of the things you were into as a child/teenager?

As a kid, I always wanted to be in the spotlight. I am/was a total people person and as a child I never wanted to let the social butterfly in me stop fluttering for any reason. I started acting and singing when I was 3 years old, and I have absolutely loved the stage and performing ever since. My mom was a seamstress so I was always watching her sew and craft, and she used to make all my Halloween costumes. I remember seeing the joy and sense of accomplishment flash across her face when someone complimented our costumes and she was able to say “thank you! I made them!”

2. Have those things influenced who you are today?

Definitely. I’m sure you can see pretty clearly how theater performance and costume-making as a child would fit in with cosplaying today as an adult! It made for a perfect mix!

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3. Samus was the first cosplay I saw you in at MAGfest. What went into building this cosplay?

So. Freaking. Much. This was definitely the most difficult cosplay I’ve ever worked on, hands down. I had a looooot of help. I started it on my own and quickly realized I was in over my head and had no idea what I was doing, so I commissioned a friend of mine to help me complete it in time for MAGfest. Thank goodness I did that because we were literally working on it up until the very last day before the con!

4. What was your favorite cosplay you made last year?

I had a total blast making a Vegas showgirl version of Mera (Aquaman’s wife) from the DC Comics. I was part of a group with 4 other lovely ladies who also did DC showgirls and I swear we didn’t move for 4 hours. Every time we would finish shooting with one photographer, we took no more than 10 steps before we would be asked to shoot with another photographer. It was such a good time, even if those heels did practically mutilate my feet!

Photography by Alex Nos Photography
Photography by Alex Nos Photography

5. For those who don’t know, you also do some singing and acting. Do you find yourself using those skills in cosplay? Whether it’s staying in character for a child or singing a song that character performs?

I have absolutely utilized these skills. I have worked with a few groups that send princesses and superheroes to children’s birthday parties and charity events and hospital visits, and when it comes to performing for children, staying in character is of the utmost importance. I try to do a ton of research on my characters before I bring them out to cosplay, because you never know when a kid will come up and think you’re the real deal, and you gotta really drive it home and prove you are who you say you are!

6. Off topic question, favorite food?

Oh man, toughie. My friends call me the snack queen because I seriously love all food and always have some with me. But I’d probably say sushi? Or carne asada! I’m half Latina so that definitely is a favorite of mine.

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7. What is something you would like to see the cosplay community improve on in 2017?

Something I’ve noticed recently (and absolutely love) is that a lot of cosplayers around me are being incredibly supportive of other cosplayers around them. In such a big cosplay community, its easy to get tunnel vision and forget that there are other people around you also creating and revolutionizing and envisioning new things, and it doesn’t always have to be about you. I think it’s so important to support those around you because, in a cutthroat world like cosplay, it’s very easy to doubt yourself and lose that passion for your craft, so having someone that encourages you to continue learning and improving wherever you can is a real blessing!

8. Patreon! For those who don’t know Carpe Diem has a Patreon. What are some things people can expect on that platform?

I’ll be honest, my Patreon has been neglected lately…. I do have a few rewards up there for people who support me on a month-to-month basis, like exclusive signed prints, but I feel as though I still have a long way to go in preparing rewards that people will actually want to get. I’ve been shooting my butt off with several different photographers lately, so soon enough I should have a great selection of new prints for people to choose from. And as far as new, outside-the-box rewards, I’d love to have feedback from supporters as to what they’d want! Maybe Q&As, or Skype calls, or a custom voicemail message recorded by me? I have no idea what people would like to see, so help me out and I’ll be happy to work on that!

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9. Second off topic question, what’s a thing you’re looking forward to this year?

Bruh, I am so excited for this Power Rangers movie. It looks TOO dope.

10. What cosplay plans do you have for this year?

Right now I’m kind of taking a break, because my prep for MAGfest reeeeally took a lot out of me, but once I have a little time to recover, I’ll be back in the saddle and on full blast! I want to finish my MMPR Pink Ranger (which I have had on the back burner for a couple years now) so I can have that ready for the movie release, and I have had Chell from Portal on my list forever, so I think that will be happening first. Otherwise, I just kind of let the ideas flow throughout the year and see where they take me!

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11. Outside of Raleigh Supercon, what other conventions are you attending this year?

Aside from Supercon (which is gonna be a total blast), I’ll be heading to Animazement and Super Smash Con for certain! I’m hoping that I can add DragonCon to that list, and possibly SDCC, but it will depend on how the year progresses!

12. Final question, anything you want to say to your fans?

Just a huge, HUGE thank you to everyone out there who has supported me in any way! I still have so much to learn about cosplay, but with each character I tackle, I learn a little bit more about the skills and capabilities I possess. I’m honestly blown away by how far I’ve come in the last year, and it’s all thanks to those of you who have taken a chance on me and given me opportunities I didn’t know I would have. So thank you, thank you, thank you! You make all this possible and I am so grateful to be able to do this at all, whether I’m trying to make a living doing it or just having fun with it as a hobby. You all rock and I hope to meet you all at future cons!!

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Coming to the Cafe next is…..

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Hanawa Cosplay is coming through. Until then I’m still XBen3000 and I’m out!

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