Kimono and I have known each other for about two years at this point, and had always talked about cosplaying together but never could find the time. Finally, we decided it would be funny to cosplay "twin" androids because people are always confusing us. Acquiring the costume pieces was relatively easy. Everything was on Amazon, or things we already had in our wardrobe. The hardest part for me, was finding the right wig. I didn't want a completely platinum wig, so I found a really nice lace front with subtle dark roots to make it less of a contrast. We debuted the costumes at Katsucon 2017 and we got so many positive comments and praise. We only wore the costumes for about an hour, but we went to the pier by the harbor to shoot pictures, and almost fell off of rocks into the water to get good pictures. Luckily, we didn't fall and ended up getting pretty awesome photos.
Cosplay has given me so much in terms of business ventures, but the best thing it has given me is friendship. Almost all of my close friends (including Kimono) have been people I've met through cons or cosplay, and it's such an good feeling to have people that share your passion for nerd and geek culture, as well as creativity. I am constantly inspired by the creatives in my life, and many of them were brought to me through cosplay.
Dragonball Z was one of my first anime loves growing up. I was a Toonami kid and Dragonball Z was one of the only shows I connected with my dad over. Maki has become a really good nerd friend of mine and we've discovered in a lot of ways we're basically the same person. So when she asked me to pair up with her and do the Androids, it was a no-brainer.
I bought the shirt online and put the rest of the cosplay together with things I already had. One of the benefits of cosplaying someone wearing regular clothes is availability and comfort!
Katsucon was full of Dragonball Z cosplay this year so I met a lot of really awesome people who liked my cosplay. I even saw a few more Android 17 which is a really rare find! I was going up the escalator and passing me on the down escalator were about 40 or so Dragonball Z cosplayers and they all cheered for me as I rode by. I've never felt cooler.
The most interesting moments I have are usually trying to explain to a bystander what cosplay is while also standing in cosplay. I think I have a friendly face because a lot of people come to me for explanations if I happen to be standing in line for food or walking around outside near a convention. It's all kinds of people and they are usually excited and really interested but once someone asked me if we all had problems with our mothers growing up. I've also noticed being so open in loving cosplay and being unafraid to look different has inspired other non-nerdy people around me to do more of the things they want to do that they may not have thought they could or were nervous to try.
For me cosplay is a lot of things: it's a form of self-expression and creativity, it's a way for me to pay the highest homage to characters that have shaped me into who I am and who I grow into, and its a way for me to connect with people that I never would have met otherwise. I've loved cosplay from the minute it discovered me!