I've seen cosplayers get hate for the last couple of years, mostly from outside the community. But in the last year, it seems to be more internal hatred. And this is bothering me even more.
In recent months I have been receiving a lot myself, and it's reaching a point of comical, because it's the same things that get brought up all the time, some are new, but others... if they really think that their faceless hatred is going to stop me from doing what I love (which seems to be their goal), they're failing miserably.
Kuja brought out a hater. Or, more an elitist I should say. Or whatever you want to call the person. I was on my own when I was wearing the costume (having not met up with my friend yet) when I was approached.
The person's words bothered me a little bit when they said them, but I had a response to this.
Their words were, "You're too fat and busty to cosplay Kuja. Go cover up! What are you doing? You're just embarrassing yourself wearing that!" This was legitimately said right to my face. The fact that they had the nerve to actually say this to my face was impressive, while still hurtful. Most haters, or even fat shamers, don't have the gall to say it to someone's face. But they did.
Now of course you're wondering what my response was to this. And here it is: "I'm cosplaying Kuja for me, not you. I'm out to prove a point that you don't have to be a stick to cosplay this character. And if you knew anything about Kuja, you would know from looking at art of him that he is actually curvy and has a bit of stomach." I walked away and left them speechless. Ironically, spouting that out to a hater was a really great feeling.
This is not to suggest that I think I'm some hot piece of ass Kuja or anything. Quite the contrary. I think I'm just average in the world of cosplaying him. I do think I have his figure, but that's about it. Otherwise I'm just having fun in the costume, and being careful of any of the delicate pieces (and it does have them).
Nobody has had a single problem with the costume. I've been told by the makeup haters "your wig is awesome!" and "OMG your coat! how did you get it so cool?". But when they turn to the makeup hatred, their nice statements leave a foul taste in my mouth. Like they think that their nice comments are going to lessen the sting of them calling me a racist bitch.
I am apparently being very racist for making my face tanned for the character. In my honest opinion, this is no different than a model, or average person getting a fake tan, except for the simple fact that my makeup is temporary. Apparently simulating a tan for about 12 hours is racist of me. How?
How is doing makeup for a tan racist? I could see the issue perhaps if I was making myself dark skinned like some of my friends who are African American. But I would never do that. If I were racist, I wouldn't have friends who are Asian, African American, Latino, etc. I wouldn't associate with or talk to them. Racists don't do that.
But apparently because I want to do the tan makeup, it's racist. I've talked with friends about this, and none of them see the problem. It's even been brought up by the same anti-tan people that my AntiForm makeup is racist.
I'm portraying something that isn't even human, so I really do not understand the concept of how this could be racist. I am painting myself pitch black and giving myself yellow eyelids.
Unless perhaps I'm missing something? But friends who are African American, etc. are not bothered by this makeup because I'm not doing it in a mocking fashion, and there is no skin colour on the planet that is this kind of black. And last I checked, AntiForms aren't even human, far from really,so the statement of this being racist is so much bullshit.
I don't need the ignorant asses of the internet to point it out to me all the time, honestly. Don't they think I KNOW what I look like? Of course not. They seem to think that unless you are the perfect blend of skinny and fat that you're stupid.
I will never be the skinniest girl on the planet. I don't plan to be. Yes, I know that I don't look "skinny" here. I never will in any cosplay that shows my body from an angle. Any angle really. I'm out to have fun in my costumes, not be someone's masturbation material.
If you want that, go elsewhere. I've been told I should tone up for my cosplays if I'm going to show off any skin. Uhm.... yeah. I've tried, My body loses weight and builds muscle where it chooses. Just because I can aim to work my torso to be more lean, doesn't mean that's actually the area of my body that's going to lose the body fat first.
And to be perfectly honest, I'm actually very happy with my body. I'm not an unhealthy weight for my height, nothing affects my general health... I'm busty but I have a strong back and the only time there's an issue is if I've done something stupid.
I swear, the haters have nothing better to do with their time. And every time I see them hate on me, or anyone else for that matter, I allow myself a little laugh. Not because they are being rude to someone, but at what I know they could be like deep down. Most of the haters I've encountered, are no different from elementary school bullies. Making other feels bad to make them feel better about themselves. People who do this generally have low self-esteem of their own, and feel they need to tear others down to build themselves up.
That is why I find their hatred comical.
I will point out two more things. One thing is a piece of hate that I've received, and the other is what I find funny about the haters.
I like doing cosplay groups with friends, and I really don't care if we're on the same construction level or anything, or if I even have to make their costume or prop for them. I really don't care. Why? Because the main point of cosplay is to have fun, and that's what I want to do with my friends.
If I see someone's a new cosplayer, and their first costume isn't the greatest (for example bad fit, loose threads), if they ask for it, I give them suggestions on how they can improve. Otherwise, I simply say what I like about the costume and move on.
And being a bit of a "bigger" cosplayer, I am not about to fat shame either. Why? Well, some of the best cosplayers I know are actually bigger guys and girls. And I love what they make and all the costumes they do they make to flatter them. Am I going to tell them they can't cosplay a certain character because they aren't the "right body type"? HELL NO! I'd sooner cut off my hand than do that.
This is where the comedy comes in. The people who call me elitist, claim that they aren't. But then I see them pick apart cosplayers and hate on them and say horrible things. Cosplayers that I find are far better than me! I've seen them destroy top rank cosplayers who use top-notch materials and have better methods than I. When you can tear apart someone who has better skills than yourself, then not only are you a hater, but you are contributing to the elitism that you supposedly hate.
Hatred in cosplay wasn't as big of a thing six years ago. And I really do not understand why people feel the need to be horrible to one another and cause so much hate within the community. I knew coming in there would be drama and stress, but I wasn't expecting this much hate the longer I stayed in the cosplay world. It has become a place where no matter what you do, you are going to be hated for something. Silly mistakes, bad first wigs, loose thread, bad fits, being bigger, too skinny... the list is so long for what you can be hated for.
My suggestion to the haters. Follow the advice of Thumper from Bambi. If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all.
As well, my suggestion to those who have received rude comments and hate. Ignore them. Continue to do what you love and basically tell them where to go. If someone says that you can't do something, work at it to prove them wrong. And always remember, where one person will hate what you did, there will be twenty to fifty more who love you. Never let the haters ruin the fun of you and your friends.