Forty-two episodes! Does that mean my guest for this episode is the Answer to the Question of Life, The Universe and Everything?
Even if not, it’s great to chat with someone who’s found some pretty good answers to the Question of Getting Paid to Play – and I mean answers, plural! Ash Chain is not only monetising her hobby of cosplay through print sales at conventions, she’s also been able to get into a day job that is all about artistic expression and her personal interests: Tattooing.
Ash has already made her name in both the Brisbane ink and cosplay scenes, and just recently she made the move from the Big Smoke to Cairns, where she will be running a stall at our first ever pop culture convention, Tropicon!
In her handful of years in the hobby, Vicky-Vic has risen to the forefront of the Australian cosplay scene, a feat doubly impressive when she not only lives a little off the beaten track in Queensland, but also works as a registered nurse, a job that would take the spare energy out of anyone.
Nonetheless, Vicky-Vic’s enthusiasm and fantastic results have made her star rise so much that organisers of pop culture conventions across the region have begun inviting her as a guest and also a judge of their cosplay competitions. And she’s not even monetised her play (yet)!
It was a pleasure to chat with Vicky-Vic, who will be one of the three guest judges of Tropicon’s cosplay competition, about her love of the hobby, the fun folks in the scene and some of the unique difficulties of being not just an Australian cosplayer, but a slightly remote Australian cosplayer!
I also make a couple of exciting announcements on the Patreon front at the beginning of the episode!
Beethy is a photographer based in Australia who has chosen to focus his craft on portraits of cosplayers; people who not just make costumes based on fictional characters, but also go out in public and bring life to those characters. That focus has garnered him not just a living wage but also a fantastic reputation amongst the international cosplay community.
Cosplayers around the world know that the name Beethy means eminently sale-worthy portrait prints of their craft and art, but they also know it means a fun being who brings joy to the process of making great photos. I got to sample his warm personality in this chat, during which he tells his stories of the community and how he became so well known within it.
Beethy also gives a good chunk of practical photography of business advice, including a crash course in taking good cosplay photos and the rules that Beethy built his business around. You may find his experiment into who produces the best photo prints to be a real eye ear-opener!
Oh, and there’s some random geeking out about video games and consoles at the beginning too! I love asking folks what they’re digging right now!