Brema Ebbing is another cosplayer hailing from Jacksonville USA. A fellow cosplayer and friend of one of our previous Cosplay interviewees Candy Keane, Brema contacted us wanting to show off her creations as well as her opinions on the cosplaying scene. With some amazingly detailed and creative costumes as well as DragonCon competition wins under her belt, it was a pleasure to hear what she had to say.
Q) What was your first experience of seeing cosplay in the gaming community?
The first time I ever did cosplay was 4 years ago. We were going to a superhero and villains party in Jacksonville so I made a Batgirl costume. It was fun dressing up as one of my personal favourite characters and go out and drink 🙂
Q) What was it about cosplay that got you interested in it?
As a costume designer, I love making costumes. As a nerd, I love video games, comic and movie characters. To get to combine these two passions is great!
Q) What made you decide that it was something that you wanted to get involved in and did you intend for it to go as far as it has for you?
I originally was just going to stand on the side and help my boss, Candy Keane of Three Muses Clothing, by handing out cards but she wanted me to join in on the fun. Plus she needed a plus size lady to show that women of all size can cosplay. I quickly fell in love with it and am now obsessed. I love that I have met so many people and get to do things that so many people don’t get to do.
Q) What was your first cosplay outfit and why did you choose that particular character?
My first cosplay I ever did was Batgirl. She is my favorite character! As a person with a disability she is such an inspiration.
Q) How do you pick out which characters you want to create?
I usually pick characters that I love like Frankie Stein and either do their original costume or create my own unique take on it like my C3PO and Dr Doom.
Q) Does outfit, body style, overall perception of the character and attitude affect your decisions when deciding which character to take on?
None of that usually matters to me because I’m a chubby girl who likes to normally do boy costumes. The only time character really influenced my decision was when some buddies of mine and I decided to do Gremlins. Originally, I was going to be Spike but decided to go as the Flasher instead since that went more with my personality.
Q) What have been the reactions you have had from some of your creations?
Usually my costumes go over pretty well but I have to say my favourite was when my friends and I dressed up as Monster High characters and little girls would come up and want to hug us. There was this one girl who said she had me in her closet!
Q) What’s been the hardest cosplay character and costume to produce?
The hardest cosplay I’ve done is C3PO. I had to learn a lot of new techniques like working with styrene and building armor. Then wearing the thing was a huge pain in the ass! It constantly poked me and on top of it all I had to be body painted.
Q) How long does it take you to design and create the majority of your character pieces on average? Has there been any Exceedingly long creations?
It all depends on what I’m making but I would say on overage it takes about 3 months. My longest creation or creations to put it more precise was my Black Panther family. I have been making costumes for my buddy for 2 years now for his entire family. It’s an ongoing process but they are a ton of fun and helped me win Best in Show at DragonCon’s “From Page to Stage” costume contest.
Q) There must be a financial investment when it comes to some of these outfits, have any been fairly extravagant?
My most expensive cosplay to date was my Doctor Doom. It has a lot of components to it like the worbla armor, leather corset, 7” stack boots, plus a mask from Grifter’s custom costume, and a nice green velvet cape and hood. Usually when I make a costume I sell it later to make back some of the cost back.
Q) Have you ever had any extreme reactions from onlookers and fans for you creations both good and bad?
The best reactions I’ve received was from me doing the Gremlins and Doctor Doom. People loved both of them! Usually online is where I don’t get the same amount of love because I’m plus size but I love what I do and that’s all that matters.
Q) Whats been your favourite experience during your cosplaying time?
My favorite experience to date was entering the From Page to Stage costume contest at Dragon Con. We had 14 people in our group all dressed as characters from Black Panther’s wedding and the song we chose for the contest “She’s your Queen to Be” from Coming to America. It was so much fun! Especially winning Best in Show!
Q) What’s the cosplaying community like as a whole? Are they all generally supportive of each other or are there different sub groups inside the community?
As a whole I would have to say most cosplayers are supportive of each other. I’m always inspired what other cosplayers and artists have done which pushes me to be do better. The person who pushes me the most besides myself is Candy Keane. She’s always pushing me to believe in myself. I love when we do costumes together because we inspire each other and push each other to be better designers.
Q) Cosplay seems to have taken off more in the past few years, do you have any thoughts as to why this might be?
Being a nerd is very in right now and cosplay is a good way to get your work seen. Whether it’s to be a model, or in my case a costume designer. But for me it’s not just about showing my work off. It’s about finding people who are just as nerdy as you and get your references. At Dragon Con this year one of my favorite costumes was Zap Rosdower which only someone into Mystery Science Theater 3000 would understand the
Q) How do you see cosplay in general evolving in the future? Are there areas that it can expand into and are there more lavish characters to be explored?
I think cosplay will eventually go down in popularity, but it will always have a mass following. I am very interested to see where it goes from here.
Q) What have you got planned for the future in regards to new creations and appearance?
I’m toning my cons down a bit this year since Candy is pregnant but I’m planning on doing Roger Rabbit with my ginger bearded boyfriend as Jessica Rabbit at Megacon. I’m not sure on every convention yet and what costumes but I can tell you one of them will involve stilts!
Q) Do you have any words of advice for anyone wanting to get into cosplay or wanting to step up a gear in regards to their outfits and the characters they want to portray?
The best words of advice I can give anyone is push yourself and try to learn as much as possible! There are tons of You Tube videos and blogs out there with tips and tricks. Also, never think you can’t cosplay because of your size. You can make any costume work for any body type. It just takes a little creativity and usually a good corset 😉