Cosplayer Interview

Cosplay Family of the Week: Schuster Family

The Schuster Family:

Steve (dad) Instagram: @starkwizardcosplay

Carolyn (mom) Instagram: @bubblywizard

Kaiden

Leo Nocedo : How did you discover cosplaying?

The Schuster Family: We discovered cosplaying after attending the 2018 Harry Potter Celebration at Universal Orlando.

We’ve always been obsessive about dressing up for Halloween; so, when we saw “cosplay” we thought “hey, wait, we can do this all year-round?!” And we were ALL IN.

Leo Nocedo : What was your first cosplay?

The Schuster Family:The Malfoy Family from Harry Potter

Leo Nocedo : What are your next 3 cosplay plans?

Steve: Star Lord from Guardians of the Galaxy, and a Star Wars/Disney mashup.

Carolyn: Mantis from Guardians of the Galaxy, and a Star Wars/Disney mashup.

Kaiden: The Collector from Guardians of the Galaxy and a Star Wars/Disney mashup.

Leo Nocedo : Have you ever been in a cosplay contest?

The Schuster Family:Yes. 2019 Tampa Bay Comic Con, 2021 Central Florida Comic Con and 2021 Tampa Bay Comic Con

Leo Nocedo : Do you prefer sewing, armor making, or wig working?

Carolyn: I probably prefer sewing, but that being said, I just started working with foam and really enjoyed it.

Steve: Armor and prop making is my favorite. I am learning to sew and enjoy that as well. Okay… So I guess I enjoy it all!

Kaiden: I like helping to design it and wear it.

Leo Nocedo : Do you prefer to do photoshoots at cons or at specific locations?

Carolyn: I don’t have a preference. I’m still working on NOT feeling awkward in front of the camera. Haha.

Steve: I love the photoshoots at the Cons, but I really want to find that specific location that nails it for the character.

Kaiden: No preference

Leo Nocedo : Is there a type of character you cosplay frequently?

The Schuster Family: Marvel Characters.

Leo Nocedo : Do you have any favorite cosplayers?

Carolyn: I don’t really have a specific favorite cosplayer, BUT we have met the most amazing COSPLAYERS at the Cons. If I had to pick one, though, I’d say Yaya Han. Yes, it may sound cliché, but she is the ultimate cosplay trailblazer.

Steve: I love Kamui Cosplay. She is so talented and has some pretty cute Corgi’s.

Leo Nocedo : What’s the most detailed cosplay you’ve ever done?

Carolyn:Lady Loki

Steve: Thor Ragnarok

Kaiden: The Grandmaster (from Thor Ragnarok)

Leo Nocedo : What are your top 3 craftsmanship tips?

Carolyn: Patience, patience and Google.

Steve: Know that you will probably fail the first time, pick yourself back up and try again. Then, watch You Tube Videos!!!

Leo Nocedo : What is your favorite cosplay you’ve done?

Carolyn: Lady Loki

Steve: Thor Ragnarok

Kaiden: The Grandmaster

 

Leo Nocedo : What is your worst cosplay “horror” story?

Carolyn:I was attempting my very first zipper, on my Lady Loki dress, and it wasn’t going well. I “HULKED OUT” on it and ripped it out. The hole is still there today.

Steve: Debuting my Ironman suit I built out of EVA foam. I had built the helmet to have 2 mini servo motors to open and close the face mask. Just before walking into the con, I accidentally squeezed the helmet too hard and “POP” the mini servo motors popped off, leaving me to have to duct tape the face mask. I went from thinking I was going to have a motorized helmet to a duct tapped helmet for the con.

Kaiden: After Megacon Orlando, on the bus ride to the parking garage, my mom sat on (my) Winter Soldier’s Gun.

Leo Nocedo : What’s your funniest cosplay story?

Carolyn: So far, my funniest cosplay story is from the 2021 Cosplay Contest at Central Florida Comic Con. My feet were hurting so bad; so, after we “presented” our costumes, I immediately took my shoes off. Well, I didn’t think we’d win. We won. And I was holding my shoes.

Steve: We met our best friends at a Con. They are pretty funny

Leo Nocedo : What’s the best in-character interaction you’ve ever had?

Carolyn:None that I can think of. But I will say that I feel honored, and flattered, by the kind words that I’ve received at the cons. I admit – I’m totally blown away that someone wants to take my picture.

Steve: I agree with Carolyn. It is humbling and flattering that people even want to take my picture.

Leo Nocedo : Have you ever cosplayed with a family member?

Carolyn: I have only cosplayed with family members.

Steve: The family that Cosplay’s together… Well you know… Stresses out, Con Crunches and walks around in uncomfortable shoes together.

Leo Nocedo : What is your favorite cosplay photo of yourself?

Carolyn:I have two. My Captain America Photo, by The Project, and my Lady Loki Photo, that Steve took in our backyard, complete with smoke bombs from Walmart.

Steve: I like the Thor Ragnarok pictures taken by The Project, but I do like the Ironman picture Carolyn took of me off site.

Kaiden: The Winter Soldier taken by The Project.

Leo Nocedo : What are your go-to stores for cosplay materials/full cosplays?

Carolyn:Hobby Lobby, JoAnn’s, Amazon, Ebay, Poshmark and ProCosplay. If I don’t make the costume and I piece it together, I love to scour different places for that right “piece.”

Steve: TNT Cosplay for EVA foam. Amazon for 3D Printer Filament. Joann’s for fabric.

Leo Nocedo : Do you prefer to buy pre-styled wigs or style your own?

Carolyn:Pre-styled. Once, I had to cut a wig and let’s just say that if I had kept going, it would have looked like Annie Lennox. And that wasn’t what I was going for. 😉

Steve: Pre-Styled. But… I’ve only done one wig.

Kaiden: NO WIGS.

Leo Nocedo : Have you ever had someone mistake you for a different character?

Carolyn: No.

Steve: No.

Leo Nocedo : List all the cosplays you’ve done.

Carolyn: Narcissa Malfoy, Captain American, Lady Loki, Men in Black, The Umbrella Academy

Steve: Lucious Malfoy, Ironman, Thor Ragnarok, Men in Black, The Umbrella Academy

Kaiden: Draco Malfoy, The Winter Soldier, Hawkeye, The Grandmaster, Men In Black, The Umbrella Academy

Leo Nocedo : What’s the biggest con you’ve cosplayed at?

MegaCon Orlando

Leo Nocedo : Do you prefer cosplaying characters with props, or characters that you don’t need to carry a prop around all day?

Carolyn:I never plan on having a prop, but I always have a prop.

Steve: PROPS, PROPS, and more PROPS!!!! Print and make all the props!! 😊

Kaiden: Props!

Leo Nocedo : Have you ever lost a cosplay piece at a con?

Carolyn:If I say “no” does that jinx me?!

Steve: Yes. I had put good thought and effort into having a small “Cospital” pouch magnetized to my belt. For two Con’s it worked great. The third time wearing it, it was lost. It’s still a sore subject. Ha ha.

Leo Nocedo : Have you ever bought a cosplay piece at a con?

Carolyn:No. Our money flies out of our pockets for all the AMAZING ART.

Steve: No

Leo Nocedo : Do you prefer to cosplay solo or in a group?

Carolyn:I’m not comfortable in the spotlight, so, I love cosplaying in a group.

Steve: We always cosplay as a group with the family. I can’t wait till we are able to add onto our friends group.

Kaiden: Group.

Leo Nocedo : If you had a chance to meet your all-time favorite cosplayer, what would you say to them?

Carolyn: Yaya Han. I’d probably just stare at her blankly and giggle.

Steve: I like your Corgi’s 😊

Leo Nocedo : Have you ever done a cosplay panel?

Carolyn: No

Steve: No

Leo Nocedo : Do you prefer to buy or make cosplays?

Carolyn: It depends. I’ve done both and I think both work great.

Steve: I prefer to make mine, but there is nothing wrong with buying it either! So a mix of both!

Kaiden: Observe and oversee!

Leo Nocedo : If you could tell your past self anything about cosplay, what would you say?

Carolyn: I would say “stop stressing and it doesn’t have to be perfect,” which I’m still trying to learn.

Steve: I think Carolyn just nailed it…. It doesn’t have to be perfect!

Kaiden: It gets better.

Leo Nocedo : What is your ultimate dream cosplay?

Carolyn: Proxima Midnight from Marvel’s Infinity War/Endgame (The Children of Thanos.)

Steve: Corvus Glaive from Marvel’s Infinity War.

Kaiden: Ebony Maw from Marvel’s Infinity War.

Leo Nocedo : What’s the most difficult cosplay you’ve ever done? (Craftsmanship, wearing of, ect)

Carolyn:Ladi Loki. A lot of “blood, sweat, and tears” went into that costume.

Steve: Thor Ragnarok was the most detailed and most effort. Ironman is the most difficult to wear because you can’t do anything while in the suit.

Kaiden: The Winter Solider with the “Arm,” the gun and the wig.

Leo Nocedo : What’s the most difficult character makeup you’ve done?

Carolyn:Lady Loki. Do you see a trend here?!

Steve: Haven’t done makeup yet.

Kaiden: The Grandmaster with coloring the hair, nails, makeup.

Leo Nocedo : What, in your opinion, makes a cosplayer a “pro” cosplayer?

Carolyn: Hmmm…. I’m not sure.

Steve: What I love about Cosplay is it gives everyone a chance to be who they want to be for a moment. So, if you cosplay and it brings you joy, then I would say everyone is a pro, cause that’s what it’s about.

Kaiden: It is subjective, if you consider yourself a pro.

Leo Nocedo : What is your favorite part of cosplaying?

Carolyn:The people!! We have met so many amazing people, at the Cons, that have become a part of our lives and become family. Not to mention, this is such a friendly, accepting wonderful community to be a part of.

Steve: I have to agree with Carolyn. We have met so many friends through cosplaying.

Kaiden: Going to the Cons; having people take your picture.

Leo Nocedo : Make up your own question!

What do you say to Cosplay “Naysayers” that just don’t get it?

Steve: I say we all have an inner nerd in us. This is just my inner nerd hobby.

Carolyn: I’ve seen some “raised-eyes” or “rolled eyes,” but that is okay. Life is short; find what makes you happy. Life is to be lived; have fun. We grow old when we stop having fun!

1,083 Views

NocedoPhoto Media Group is an innovative and creative consortium that unites photographers, writers, cosplayers, event promoters, vendors, costume and prop makers, and other creatives under one roof to use their collective skills to maximize their distribution and presence on digital media platforms. Their goal is to create a well-rounded and successful network for all involved.