Comic Book Divas may not have had a table at the Dallas Sci-Fi Expo 2013 but we had a great time meeting not only some of the great artists and guests but also many of the great and talented cosplayers that were walking around the convention and taking photos with fans from around Texas. One of the cosplayer we met was Lizzie Leigh, Lizzie may be new to cosplay but we are sure you will see a lot more of her!
We sat down with Lizzie and talked to her about cosplay, costume design and her career as a make-up artist.
Q: Just so our readers can get to know you a little bit; tell us something about yourself; who is this woman Lizzie Lynch?
LL: I am a local Houston Cosplayer and a Special Effects Makeup Artist. I actually grew up in a small town outside of Boston, MA which is why I lack the typical Bostonian accent. I have also been moving around a bit since 2010 from Boston to Toronto to Houston. i am a huge Stargate fan, I have the “home” symbol tattooed on my wrist. Tv/Movies are a passion for me, my list of favorites is endless, It’s a bit of a problem. I love painting, drawing, DIY craft projects and reading.
Q: You are pretty new to the comic book and cosplay community; what made you want to get involved with all us geeks?
LL: I have always been drawn to the more nerdy side of life and watched tons of sci-fi and fantasy. My first con was Anime Boston, I went twice, and then the first Comic Con was fan expo in Toronto. I didn’t dress up since I had only been living there for two weeks and went on a whim. I loved every second of it!
Q: How long have you been cosplaying; and do you create your own costumes?
LL: I have only been cosplaying “for real” almost year now, I did one Harley Quinn cosplay for Anime Boston in 2008. It was store-bought, the black fabric dyed my skin black but I still had an absolute blast acting like her! I create what I can, sewing them was all thanks to my friend who taught me a lot along the way. I now have my own sewing machine I hope to be creating tons more! I also make the props, casting prosthetics has very similar techniques that can carry over to multiple mediums. I made a black widow belt and Dani Moonstars belt this past year, as well as an arrow which I still need to perfect.
Q: We saw you cosplaying “Dark Supergirl” did you create that costume and how long did it take for you to design it?
LL: Actually not all of it. I commissioned that piece from Heroes and Tights two years ago for Dragon*Con 2011 right when I moved to Houston from Toronto. Long before I ever even considered making my own. It came out beautifully, the cape was so perfect! The only thing I did to it was modify the cape and top for a more stable attachment to each other and for Expo I created a new skirt.
That character is a personal favorite of mine.
Q: What is the most difficult costume you have designed to date and what makes designing a costume the most challenging for you?
LL: The X suits for my Dani Moonstar New Mutant cosplay, my friend and I were going out of our minds on how to attach the yellow parts to the suit while making it functional.
Q: Looking at some of your photos on Facebook; you have attended some anime conventions; have you cosplayed any anime characters yet?
LL: Not yet, I don’t watch much anime anymore mostly due to lack of time. My favorite animes are Wolf’s Rain and Yu Yu Hakusho, so I would love to do a character from them.
Q: When you are looking to cosplay a character do you select the character because of the costume or because you are following that character?
LL: Both. I like variants from the classic designs but sometimes I will see a gorgeous drawing which attracts my eye and makes me want to bring the character to life. Wether I know who they are or not. I do my best though to either research the crap out of the character, which usually ends with my loving them anyway or I choose one I know and am already a fan of.
Q: You said you haven’t yet gotten into deep with comics; but are you reading any comics right now since we spoke if so what are you reading, w hat are you enjoying about the series?
LL: The only one I have followed closey is the New 52 Supergirl storyline and I am really liking it. I loved the issue 0 release they did for some of them as well. I thought it was a very cool concept.
Q: You are a make-up artist. How did you get started into that field?
LL: Drama Club in Highschool actually, I became the head of the crew when I was a sophomore and really became passionate about it. I was lucky that the Drama Teachers, the both that I had, were extremely supportive of it all which allowed me to really know this was what I wanted. I then took a year off after Highschool and got to work on an Independent horror film, I loved it. The next year I went to college in Toronto to Complections International Academy of Makeup Artistry and graduated in the top three of my class.
Q: What projects do you primarily work on, do you work on photo shoots or movies?
LL: Whatever I can get. I would love to work on set consistently but L.A. is certainly not my scene. As long as the creative outlet is there and I have some hand in the final production I am happy. I try to avoid heavy photoshop or CGI that changes what I created. There is a difference between adding to the scene around the model to totally changing how she looks therefore changing my work.
Q: How do you incorporate your make-up skills into cosplay or how would you like to mix both skills?
LL: I try to apply it every look. How can I make my face close to the character? Would she wear this color blush or a bronzer? Should the lip shape be fuller or lessened?
I want to try to bring it up to a higher level than just wearing the outfit. I want to do that with prosthetics too but it’s very hard to apply those to myself on a large scale. My goal is to have a site that is a center-point for cosplay makeup tips and tutorials.
Q: Who would you like to cosplay as where you could use both your make-up and cosplay design skills and why?
LL: Oh man so many! My number one choice is Princess Nuala from Hellboy: The Golden Army. I absolutely love her look but to the costume extremely accurately is hard which is why it hasn’t happened yet. The next one is Jack from Brom’s book “The Plucker” he is a toy from a jack in the box but his look is rugged and handmade. He has ginger hair and freckles with a much sharper Jaw. I haven’t cosplayed as a male yet but he is a goal of mine. So those are my top two :)
Q: What gives you the most joy in cosplaying?
LL: The excitement I recieve from other people who share in the genre and the creative outlet it gives me. Everything I do can be applied into my portfolio for makeup as well. But in all seriousness every time I go to a con, in costume or not, I feel so happy and always walk out the door on Sunday with a new stash of friends and memories.
Q: You were at the Dallas Sci-Fi Expo 2013 where we saw you dressed as Dark Supergirl”; was this your first time attending the convention?
LL: Yes it was and I enjoyed it quite a bit!!! I had been at the Irving Center for Fan Days last year though.
Q: What did you enjoy about the convention as a cosplayer and a fan, did you get to meet other cosplayers and hangout with them?
LL: I hadn’t been to such a small sci-i con before it was refreshing to actually be able to have conversations with people. I met some other super sweet cosplayers and got to see some again too that I didn’t expect.
Q: From your POV; what were your thoughts about the convention and what you enjoyed about it?
LL: I liked the intimate atmosphere it had and that it was easy to navigate. I found a few action figures from my favorite book, The Plucker by Brom, and that was so aweosme!
Q: You are doing All-Con in March, what cosplay can fans expect to see you in?
LL: I’ll be doing two makeup panels that weekend so a lot of my time went into that. So on Friday I will be wearing my Muscle and Bone Catsuit from Black Milk with some FX makeup to go along. Saturday will be a Star Trek Uniform and Sunday is Dark Supergirl hopefully with new boots if I can find them :).
Q: Where can fans follow you and see what is coming up for you?
Special thanks to Samaze for the use of the photos.