Name: Lawrence “Larry” Ball
My name is Larry (which everyone calls me) and I’m a Brazilian that used to live in Florida but now lives in Illinois. I have been an anime fan since childhood when I was introduced to Macross in Brazil. When I arrived to the states, the anime community didn’t develop until the late 1990’s, in which I was exposed to the anime convention world. I immediately grew a fascination in cosplay but since I saw so many elaborate designs (which costs quite a bit to make), I was a little scared at first. Then I discovered another cosplayer nicknamed “featherweight” and saw that you can do so much with cardboard. I decided to attempt doing the same things that he does and then my imagination with props built from there. I recently took a small hiatus during the 2011 year but plan to come back strong in the 2012 year in my new home state.
Larry‘s Bleach Cosplay Performance
Character: Renji Abarai
Renji Abarai is my favorite character in the Bleach series. I grew even more interested once I saw him release his Bankai much later when the series began so I decided to build one (including his Shikai release). Everything in this cosplay was handmade, with the exception of the Shinigami black cloak/garb. In the following photos I will mention v1 and v2 for v1 was a test run of the prop and v2 was the final revised version that I added some wood, foam and electrical elements. V1 of the cosplay was debuted in Florida Supercon in 2009 and v2 was debuted in Metrocon in 2009.
Description: This was my v1 of Renji’s Zabimaru Shikai release entirely made of cardboard.
Description: This was my v1 of Renji’s Zabimaru Bankai release entirely made of cardboard with weak cotton cloth between segments.
Description: This was my v2 of Renji’s Zabimaru Shikai. This time made out of Balsa wood and flexible foam tape for the handle.
Description: This was my v2 of Renji’s Zabimaru Bankai release. Added plaster of paris, insulation foam, paper mache, carpet fabric for the segments in between, and led lights for the eyes (which lit-up at night time)
Description: Same v2 of Renji’s Zabimaru Bankai release but frontal view. Prop weighted 60 pounds.
Here’s a simple interview:
Q: How did you know our contest? And how much have you known about Miccostumes.com?
A: knew about miccostumes but wasn’t aware of the contest. One of my cosplay friends advised me about it.
Q: Is Bleach cosplay your favorite theme? Which character from Bleach do you most like? Is the costume for this character covered here or in our store?
A: Bleach is one of my many favorite cosplay themes. My other favorite involves Gundam and also video game related cosplays. Renji is not only my favorite character but his costume is available in your cosplay online store, which has the same black cloak as the other characters in the series.
Q: What’s your first cosplay? How do you think about it? Is there any photo shared with us?
A: My first cosplay was Allen Walker from “D.Gray-Man”. It was my first attempt in a cosplay build. I didn’t have too much direction in it so I used craft foam as my foundation. I only have the photos from that cosplay in select websites but not through miccostumes. I believe that this cosplay was my first test drive in joining the cosplay community, in which I was warmly embraced.
Q: Is there any cosplay plan recently? Or which cosplay convention are you interested in taking part in?
A: I have a few video game and sci-fi cosplay plans but might debut them in the Chicago region during the summer. It’ll be a new area for me so I’m looking forward to it.
Q: How long will you continue to do cosplay? Or do you think you will do it all the time? What does cosplay mean to you? Is there any element rather attractive for you?
A: Unsure of the length that I’ll be cosplaying but plan to continue as much as I can. I am heavily attracted to the props aspects of cosplay but now I am immersing myself in the sewing areas so I can grow and extend myself in learning new techniques in costume building. As for what cosplay means to me, I believe that it’s a hobby that indulges your artistic side in ways other hobbies does not allow you to do. I have many different hobbies but only cosplay allows me to express my love for dressing up as some of the cool characters that I see in the anime/sci-fi/video game communities.
Q: We will be interested to know the most memorable moment you got during cosplay.
A: Was when I debuted My Renji cosplay at Metrocon (Tampa, FL) in 2009. My first experience in being in a crowd of more than 3000 people at the same time. My cosplay got so much attention that every 10 steps, I stopped to take a photo with 20+ fans. It was exciting to see so many people that loves the series at the same time. Also managed to get many other photos with other fellow cosplayers that wanted to do a large Bleach cosplay photo shoot.
Q: It’s believed our cosplay fans will be grateful if you can share us with your experience in this performance art. What’s the most important aspect for a cosplay beginner?
A: Never get discouraged on the budget or the length of time it takes to build a cosplay. My cosplays never exceeds more than $80 since I use lots of cardboard but it will take time to build a good prop that can last more than 2-3 conventions. It will be hard at first but I always believe that everyone can succeed if time and effort is put forth in it.
Q: Do your family members support you? Do you often talk about your cosplay works with them? Do they also love what you’ve done?
A: My family likes what I do but has mixed feelings. I am a married man and my wife does not fully support it but she respects me and support my hobbies. The only way you can get proper support is by balancing your time between family, work and hobbies (like myself), and then everyone will not question your motives.
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See the Prizes. Bleach cosplay is the theme for sponsor contest in January. So, the Bleach costumes below are picked out as prizes for winners. Click each of them to go to the product page, where detailed information about the costume can be seen. Each winner can choose any ONE from these costumes. Besides, each participant will get 10% of coupon code which can be used when you purchase in our store.
See All Participants in this Contest Here!