Cosplayer from Lithuania.
Please introduce yourself – what’s your cosplay name, where are you from, how long have you been cosplaying?
Hi! I’m Visual Aya, originally from Vilnius, now living in Kaunas, and I’m cosplaying since 2008.
How did you start cosplaying? What was your first costume?
Well, it was quite an accident, but a funny one. Back in 2008 there weren’t any Cosplay conventions in Vilnius, and back then I didn’t even knew what Cosplay is. So one day someone decided to make a “Cosplay gathering” of some sorts in Cathedral square, and my friend (who nowadays in Cosplay community is known as Akade) was super enthusiastic to go there, and she showed me what Cosplay is. So we went to a thrift store, bought some things, revamped them, and off we went. First Cosplay was “TenTen” from Naruto, and to this day I still remember how we did the Naruto run through the old town streets. 😁
How many Cosplay competitions/conventions have you been to? What was your favourite and why?
Oh my, I can’t count them anymore. I’ve been in almost all conventions in Vilnius from 2008 to 2012, probably been in all Lithuanian conventions/competitions from 2013 to 2019, add a few Latvian cons, been in “Nordic Cosplay Championship” and “Cosplay World masters”. Really, can’t count them anymore.
My favourite of all was definitely “Nordic Cosplay Championship”. It was super chill, very well organized, the convention space is very interesting and well thought of, and honestly, I forgot that I was in the international Cosplay competition until the award ceremony.
How do you choose who you are going to Cosplay?
It depends on how I’m feeling in my body. If I’m feeling okay, then it’s a female character, if not, it’s a male. Then the costume and character choice depends on its difficulty. I often like to challenge myself, so game based characters are always a priority.
Do you have your favorite costume? If yes – what is it and why?
My favorite costume… I have two of them, can’t really choose one. One is “Mikazuki Munechika” from Touken Ranbu, other is “Golden Crane Ubume” from Onmyoji. First one is my favorite because… I had to make it TWICE. I lost it once in Vilnius, never got it back, so decided to make it AGAIN. So it’s pretty clear why it’s top 2 of my favorite costumes.
Ubume is the most detailed, most challenging costume. I learned a lot of things from doing it, and even though it’s very hot in it (4 layers of fabric), but I’d wear it anytime and anywhere
Do you have any funny stories or accidents related to Cosplay?
Once my sword broke in half during the performance, it flew away and hit a person, does it count? Though there is a better story.
Back in 2018, in Sweden, in Närcon, I bought a stunning pair of sunglasses. Two days later, during Cosplay competition, I injured my eye very badly with contact lenses. Needless to say, that same pair of sunglasses saved my eye while it was healing. And I still wear them and remember the story. 😀
Do you have your favourite prop? If yes – what is it and why? Why?
My favourite prop would be “Mikazuki Munechika’s” sword (tachi). It’s made from wood and I carved it myself.
What part of this hobby/life style do you like the most? Why?
Going on stage. I’m a performer, I’ve been on stage since I was 7 (musical school got me this stage addiction), so I feel the most alive while I’m on it.
What is your dream photoshoot as a Cosplayer?
Remaking “Red Wedding” from Game of Thrones in the biggest cosband ever.
Why Cosplay is important for you?
Personally, it makes me learn things I would never want to learn if I wasn’t a cosplayer. For example, for the longest time I want to learn robotics just because I want to make a proper set of constantly moving wings, which doesn’t have the same weight as me.
What would you consider to be the biggest achievement in you Cosplay career?
As I mentioned before, I would like to learn robotics so that I can make Cosplay costumes with moving parts. Then I can retire. 😃
What would you advise or whish for people who want to start cosplaying, but for unknown reasons are afraid or just don’t know where to start?
Don’t be afraid. No one will judge you or laugh at you if you try. The Cosplay community will always help you if you have questions. Start small, don’t push yourself too hard, and more importantly, if you feel that your contact lens is feeling weird in your eye, take it out, 2 weeks of eye swelling is not worth those 2 hours of feeling cute!