This week I was able to interview gamer, cosplayer, and nerd-culture enthusiast - Cayden! I've been following her on Twitter and I decided to reach out to her. Check out the interview and her amazing cosplay photos along with it - They're amazing!
GH: Can you tell me a little about yourself? When I was a kid, I was a big tomboy and had pretty much all guy friends. I spent most of my time rollerblading, playing SNES, and watching Saturday morning cartoons. As I grew up, so did my love for all things nerdy – anime, comic books, video games, sci-fi/fantasy, you name it! I'm somewhat of a "nerd of all trades" and just love the nerd culture and community.
GH: What passions do you have besides gaming? Outside of gaming, I enjoy comic books in general, but I am definitely a Marvel girl over DC and a huge XMen fan. Some friends of mine recently introduced me to Image Comics and that has been a whole other world of beautiful artwork and writing. I also love older animes that I grew up on like Sailor Moon, Gundam Wing, Escaflowne, and several others.
GH: What made you want to start cosplaying? I always thought it would be fun to dress up as a video game or anime character for Halloween, but when I was younger I didn't really have the tools or know how to go about doing it. Then I discovered this world of conventions and cosplays. After seeing the endless possibilities, I just had to try it out for myself!
GH: What are some of your favorite games to play? The first game I ever played was Doom95, so that will always be a favorite. Lately though, I mainly play Borderlands 2, Destiny, and Diablo. FPS and RPGs are my favorite game types, followed closely by fighting games.
GH: What is your favorite cosplay you have done? That's a tough choice for me. I think I have a bit of a tie between Jubilee, River Tam, and Sailor Mulan. I love cosplaying Jubilee because I can act like my bubbly self at conventions and it was actually in character. River Tam is fun because who doesn't love running around with a sword and axe? And I spent a lot of time and effort into my Sailor Mulan cosplay which was part of a group of other beautiful ladies as Disney Senshi. I have always been a fan of mash ups and other artists' interpretations of characters!
GH: As a female who games, have you encountered any discrimination for playing video games? I haven't faced any significant discrimination; although, I don't game a lot online with strangers so I avoid that entire crowd. I have had the occasional "you claim to be a gamer, but you suck" comment. I am a gamer, but I never claimed to be on a competitive level. I just am a person who loves to play video games!
GH: Any new cosplay projects you are working on right now? I don't have any cosplay projects that I am actively working on, but I have been getting a lot of inspiration from Destiny and Diablo!
GH: How do you view the gaming industry? Especially for upcoming girls who are just starting out or want to get involved in the gaming community. I think the gaming industry will always be a male-dominated arena, but it is growing and there seem to be more strives to include more strong women characters (playable and NPCs) in video game lore. It's nothing new as we have had strong women in older games such as Samus and Zelda, but there seems to a bigger push to include women in the gaming industry outside of the "booth babe" or "damsel in distress" roles.
GH: What are some of your best memories cosplaying? My favorite memories are always when people recognize the character since I don't always cosplay the more well-known characters or concept versions of them. One that stands out is my cosplay as Chell from Portal based off of concept art 21 rather than the final in-game version. I was a bit worried that no one would recognize what I was doing or criticize my lack of jump boots (the concept art had some form of leg bracers). On the contrary, several people instantly recognized Chell and said that they enjoyed seeing a different version of her brought to life!
GH: Lastly, any advice you'd like to share for upcoming YouTubers/game lovers/streamers/etc.? There seems to be a growing number of trolls in the internet world, so don't let them get to you! Remember to do what you love for yourself first and you will have nothing to regret or apologize for later.
Be sure to follow her on Twitter and Facebook to get updates on any future cosplay projects. Loved reading her answers to her interview. It makes me happy to see someone combining two of their hobbies together.
I look forward to seeing more of Cayden's work!