Cosplayer of the Week: Reilena Cosplay

This week’s Cosplayer of the Week is the beautiful and talented Reilena Cosplay from the US. This fantastic cosplayer first caught our eye when Food and Cosplay admins Anna and Neroli got drunk and started stalking Blizzard cosplayers. Reilena Cosplay makes her costumes herself, has a collection of photos that any cosplayer would be jealous of as well as being employed by Blizzard! So naturally we decided to make her Cosplayer of the Week this week.

Age: 29

Location/Nationality: Southern California

What is your favourite meal?

I’m a sucker for a really good mushroom risotto.

What inspires you to cosplay?

Movies, TV Shows and Video Games mostly. I’m inspired by unique designs or really well crafted clothes and costumes I see on screen. I like to cosplay them because I like the creative challenge of figuring out how everything was made.

Photo by MNL Photography
Photo by MNL Photography

What has been your best experience in cosplay?

Its probably more ‘costuming’ than ‘cosplay’ but I did a photo shoot as a mermaid at a public beach a few months ago and this couple came over with their little girl (had to be about 3 years old) and she asked “Are you a real mermaid?” … I had to tell her yes. It was the most adorable thing I’ve ever witnessed.

What has been your favourite cosplay so far and why?

My Widowmaker is so near and dear to my heart for so many reasons. It has been the most technically challenging for me, sewing a full bodysuit and learning to work with LEDs. Also being a part of announcing a new IP and working on the game itself in my day job just made the costume that much more rewarding. I’m so incredibly proud of the Overwatch team and I was glad to be allowed to show my enthusiasm through cosplay.

Photo by Anna Cosplay Photography
Photo by Anna Cosplay Photography

What has been the most interesting/difficult technique you have used so far?

I still have spandex-nightmares hah! Making a body suit from scratch has been the most difficult experience of my cosplay-life. I learned many hard lessons in fitting and form. Especially with a deep V neck line and an open back its presented so many challenges. I think I overcame them in the end. The one thing I learned is that the solution to all your spandex problems is… more spandex. Never mix spandex with any other cloth.

You do a lot of location shoots, what has been the best/funniest story from these shoots?

I love shooting on location! It really brings out the characters a little more to set them in real environments. I think the best time I’ve had on location so far was shooting with MNL Photography in Newport in my Athena costume. We kept trying to get in to these really difficult locations on the rocks out in the water. And me in my heels, decided I was just going to climb them anyways. It was quite dangerous but I think we got what we wanted out of it, so it was all worth it.

Photo by MNL Photography
Photo by MNL Photography

If there is one shop you could recommend for cosplay supplies, what would it be?

The LA Fabric District. I get all my cloth from there and you get some amazing deals and interesting finds. Anything you need textile-wise exists there.

What advice would you give to other cosplayers?

Enjoy yourselves! If its frustrating, take a step back. This is a hobby and an expression of creativity and fandom and it should always be fun.

Photo by FiveRings Photography
Photo by FiveRings Photography
Photo by Saffels Photography
Photo by Saffels Photography

 

Photo by MNL photography
Photo by MNL photography
Photo by Saffels Photography and JEssica Dru
Photo by Saffels Photography and Jessica Dru

 

 

 

 

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About Anna

The resident comic nerd and mistress of Spandex (or so the others say). I have been cosplaying since 2010 while trying to squeeze in numerous adventures where I can. I have a published works such as a fantasy novel and a superhero comic.

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