Conversations in Cosplay: PixelCat Cosplay on the Chills of Streaming Scary Games, Her Beautiful Feline Mascot and Living the ‘League of Legends’ Dream
If there is one truly beautiful thing about the cosplay community that is consistent throughout the world, it is that you don’t not have to be famous or well known for people to notice you. If you have a good costume, that you have put effort into making accurate and eye-catching, you’ll get just as much attention at conventions as anyone else there. PixelCat cosplay is one of that exact breed of creators, who have a modest following on social media but never fail to turn heads when she’s out in her best cosplay.
We caught up with PixelCat to find out what inspires her to step into the shoes of her favourite characters and how she brings them to life.
PC or Mac?
PC all the way!
What is your favourite cereal?
Oh man….My favorite cereal would probably have to be Fruit Loops. It’s good with or without milk. Sometimes I have some on the side when I’m playing games or drawing.
What is your favourite curse word?
I don’t think I have a favorite exactly, but I do say ‘Goddamn It’ a lot, not sure if that counts as a curse word haha. I don’t really curse much to be honest.
If you could pick a world from any video game, where would you live?
It’s so hard to choose haha. But I mean I think if it came down to it, I would always choose the Pokémon world. Who wouldn’t want their own real life Pokémon right?
What fictional character from movies, comics, TV or video games have you secretly crushed on?
I have a low key thing for Genji from Overwatch, haha. Booty on point. I was actually telling my friend the other day if I were to ever own a body pillow, I’d probably get one of Genji. (Or Mcree….Cough.)
What got you into cosplaying?
Anime Expo actually is what got me into cosplaying. I’m not sure how I found out about that convention, but I do remember when I looked it up, I got so excited seeing all the people dressed up I was absolutely inspired to dress up too at my first one.
What was the first character you ever cosplayed?
The first character I cosplayed was actually Olette from Kingdom Hearts 2 back in like 2011? I remember I had just rushed the costume the day before the convention haha. It was terrible, but I was so happy.
How did it feel going out in cosplay for the first time?
I remember I was nervously excited. Everyone was so inviting and supportive too of my costume that I just wanted to do more and more. I’ll never forget it haha.
How does it compare to how you feel showing off new cosplays now?
I still feel the same every time I make a new costume. I feel like with each costume there’s always a new and exciting experience that comes with it. Not to mention all the different people I get to meet because of said costume. It’s so awesome how people can bond over either wearing the same costume, or absolutely loving the game or character it’s from.
What do you think of that first cosplay now?
It was very basic and very very rushed. I feel like if I were to make it again, I would be able to make it better. But I mean, Olette’s design is very basic in itself, but I could’ve added more, like styling the wig or finishing my seams (or giving myself time to work on it more than just working on it the day before). All in all though, it still has a special place in my heart.
When did you realize you were first getting noticed as a cosplayer? How did it make you feel?
To be honest, it’s probably when you approached me to do this interview. Haha. And it’s making me feel happier beyond words. I can’t describe it haha. I feel like when people recognize me at conventions too through what I do I’m more excited than they are meeting them than they are meeting me lol. Thank you though. I’m truly honored!
What makes a character jump out at you as something you have to cosplay?
Usually it’s the design of the character, their personality, or if I just absolutely adore the character, I’ll end up wanting to cosplay them. I remember when I was playing The Witcher 3 for the first time, when Ciri first made an appearance I gasped and my eyes were all wide and I took like a billion pictures of her haha.
What inspired the name PixelCat?
I live and breathe games, hence Pixel, and my cat Mochi inspired the ‘Cat’ part in my name. She’s my little mascot and I love her to death haha. She’s super cute! Sometimes you can see her in my streams when I play games on Twitch.
What’s your most memorable con experience?
I have so so many memorable convention experiences. It’s hard to choose one. If I had to choose though, it would probably be when I was interviewed by CNN at Anime Expo, or When I was actually on a TV show in my Taokaka Costume from Blazblue.
What’s your favourite character to cosplay?
My favorite one as of right now has been Dragon Trainer Lulu from League of Legends. Even though the hat and staff are super heavy and it makes my neck and arms hurt, I’ve always had an amazing time in that costume, and I’ve met so many cool and talented people through it too. I’m super proud of it!
If you actually had to live as one of the characters you’d cosplayed, which one would it be?
I’d probably be Taokaka from Blazblue. Who wouldn’t wanna be a super cool cat lady who can eat whatever she wants and never seem to gain any weight AND that can kick everyone’s butt?!
What’s the most difficult cosplay you’ve ever done?
It’s still in the works, but the most difficult by far has probably been Ciri from The Witcher 3. There’s so many small details and things that I want to get right, so I’ve been working on it slowly for the past couple months. Hopefully it will be done soon though! I can’t wait to show everyone.
Have you ever given up on a cosplay idea because it was too difficult? Are you working on anything new now?
I started on DJ Sona from League of Legends a while back, but I kind of abandoned it because I didn’t think I was ready yet to tackle such an intricate costume. (Not to mention all the electrical work.) Maybe someday. That one’s a dream costume of mine. As of right now though, I’ve been working on Psylocke from X-Men, Arcade Riven from League, Tracer from Overwatch, and slowly working on Ciri between those. I got a lot in store!
What are your favourite materials to work with? What is the most unusual or unexpected thing you’ve used as part of a cosplay?
I like to work with foam a lot. It’s an easy and cheap material to use. It’s very versatile too! For the most unusual, it’s not really unusual, but Sintra was pretty interesting to work with. My good friend Vensy Props has been teaching and helping me a lot with projects and different materials, so that’s been very exciting. She’s so amazing.
Do you feel like your art studies have an impact on your cosplay?
In a way. I think it allows me to look more closely to detail and really think about what materials would be used in a costume.
What kind of art do you make?
I do a lot of digital art! Sometimes I do commissions for people if
they want them. I’ve done a lot of Chibi art for people too. Art is the one thing that’s always influenced everything I do.
Are there any characters you’re looking forward to cosplaying in the future?
Ciri. Oh man I am so excited to cosplay Ciri. Everything about her character I absolutely love. Even the game… The Witcher 3 is such a good game. Play it if you haven’t already! But yeah. Ciri I am so overly excited to finish her. Please look forward to it too!
Who are your favourite cosplayers working right now?
I feel like all cosplayers are my favorite. I really admire everyone who works so hard to finish a costume or a prop or anything really! I do however love Kamui Cosplay’s work, Kinpatsu (how she makes things so fast I will never know. She’s so awesome) Cosplay, and Vensy Props. Not only is she an extremely hard worker, but she’s also a really good and close friend. She puts so much time, effort, and thought into her work it’s truly admirable. If you ever get a chance to see her work whether it be online or in person please do, you won’t be disappointed. Also, shoutout to Oshley Cosplay’s Queen Varian Wrynn. That costume is A+++++!
What’s your favourite thing about the cosplaying community?
I love how everyone is so willing to help each other make something, or teach each other about different ways and materials that you could use. If you search online there are countless tutorials to do everything you could think of. I think the community is wonderful in that way. And I really do hope it stays that way.
How do you think the cosplaying community could be improved?
The community is generally supportive, but I feel like it could be more supportive especially to those who have found success within their hobby. I feel like since cosplay has become a bit more mainstream now, a lot more people have become competitive about it, which isn’t what it’s about. Everyone just has to stop putting each other down and cheer each other on if someone becomes more popular, or well known, or even has the courage to cosplay in general! I for one am so excited for everyone that gets to do what they love, especially if they can live off it, that’s absolutely amazing! And for those who have found success, just don’t forget where you started. Don’t treat people poorly because they might not have as good of a costume as yours.
Outside of cosplaying, what do you like to do with your time?
Usually I’m drawing, working, going to school, or playing video games, haha. Just typical nerdy stuff!
What are you favourite games to play on your Twitch streaming page? Are they different to your favourite games to play when you’re not streaming?
Usually I like to play Overwatch, League of Legends, or various other games. If I’m not streaming I would typically play the same games, however sometimes people like to watch me play scary games, which I would NEVER play on my free time, haha. Recently though, I’ve been playing through Ori and the Blind Forest for the first time. It’s a really beautiful and well-made game.
You were featured in a League of Legends cosplay video in November 2016. What’s your favourite League character to play as?
I love to play as Jinx. She’s such a fun character to play, and I really love her design and her kit. (Not to mention she’s super fun to cosplay too, haha.) I typically tend to play a lot of ADC so mostly all ADC champions are cool. However I really do love playing Ahri, Kindred, and Aurelion Sol too.
Do you think you’ll still be cosplaying in ten years’ time? Do you have any goals, in cosplaying terms or otherwise?
I think I would still be cosplaying in ten years’ time. I really love this hobby, and the feeling you get when you put on a completed costume that you have worked tirelessly on for months is a feeling I can’t describe. I don’t really have any specific goals per se … but all I want to do is have fun, meet more amazing people, and get even better at crafting and bringing characters I love to life. Maybe even get better pictures of my costumes too, haha. Can that be a goal? Haha.
Do you have any advice for aspiring cosplayers?
Just have fun, and do it because you love it. Don’t be afraid to fail or try new things, that’s how you learn and get better! Be supportive of others as well.