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The Elegant Side of Cosplay: September Bombshell, Kelldar

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Kelldar Bombshell September 2021

Every month our staff combs the cosplay community for up-and-coming cosplayers who deserve to have a broader audience for their work, taking into account not only costuming skills and photogenic presence, but also how they use that ability in service to others. Through this, we've not only met some talented cosplayers, but also some fine human beings.

Our September cosplay model takes her skills as an artist and illustrator and turns them toward fashion design, crafting some of the most elegant cosplay pieces we've seen. Pulling on characters from both fandom and from history, her unique addition to the world of cosplay is a welcome one. So we are very pleased now to introduce you, our readers, to our...

 

Critical Blast Bombshell, September 2021

Kelldar


Padme Amidala (Star Wars)

Photo: Kelldar

What is your interest in cosplay?

I feel like cosplay started out as an extension of art and illustration; I majored in illustration in college and cosplay became a way to make my drawings and fanart into a "real" thing. Eventually costuming and sewing became my main creative outlet. I love it because it's never the same; every project presents new challenges. (Sure does take up a lot more space than a stack of sketchbooks, though!)

How did you get into cosplay, and what was your first cosplay experience?

My parents were very big on Halloween when I was little, they made their own costumes every year, and mine too. That grew into atending the local sci-fi con for several years and my first true "cosplay" experience was wearing a Star Trek TNG uniform my mom made for me. I was probably 9. I can't say I loved it; I was actually pretty embarrassed! We eventually stopped going to the convention but a decade later, after I'd gotten into anime, I rediscovered cons and the obsession began.

How has your cosplay evolved since you began?

On the surface, I've gone through a lot of fandom phases over the years as my interests have changed, starting out in the anime/gaming cosplay community, then onto Star Wars, then comic book characters, and so on. On the technical side I feel like I'm still constantly learning and getting better, I look back at costumes from just 5 years ago and feel like I've come a long way, much less costumes from 20 years ago!


Wonder Woman (DC Comics)

Photo: Kelldar

What is your "secret identity" outside of cosplaying?

I work a very boring desk job that isn't interesting but pays the bills. I do a much more fun side gig of making costumes for local theater, mostly working with middle schoolers. They are so much fun to work with, I always have a great time making fun outfits for them!

What kind of social or charity activities do you get involved in with your cosplay?

I'm a member of the 501st and Rebel Legion so we are regularly busy doing lots of events around town! (although we haven't gotten to do much the last year and half due to obvious reasons...) We do several events a year with a local Autism group which is near and dear to my heart.


Anne Boleyn (Historical)

Photo: Kelldar

Do you make as much of your own costume as possible or rely on purchased materials -- and is that important overall to cosplaying? 

My favourite thing about cosplay is making it... maybe even more so than wearing it, LOL. I love researching, constructing and learning new techniques. And being proud of what I've made - there's always that moment where you get a project to the point where you can finally "see" the finished product shaping up, that's the best.
But I don't think making everything - or anything - is overall important to cosplay in general. Some people don't have the time, resources, money or interest in making something from scratch, and I think it's totally cool for them to buy a costume so they can have a good time too.

What's your favorite cosplay, your "go to" look that you just love to put on and act out?

Princess Leia is probably my main go-to. It's so recognizable, easy to put on and comfy to wear. I've been doing Leia with the Rebel Legion since 2004 so I've worn it a LOT.
But if I want to show off then it's something like my Anne Boleyn costume, or Kingdom Come Wonder Woman, or my Padme lake gown.

Where can people go to find you online?

I'm @kelldar pretty much everywhere! I'm most active on instagram and tiktok!