Alodia Gosiengfiao is more than a cosplayer. She's a super cosplayer, an über cosplayer with added umlaut, if you will. And she's proving that cosplay is more than putting on costumes.
"I see cosplay as a form of art," she tells Kotaku. "It's not just dressing up." For the 22-year-old, cosplay incorporates craft, sewing, makeup, wig and hair styling, photography, acting and more. "And most of all, cosplay crosses geographical barriers," says Gosiengfiao, who's based in the Philippines.
Part of cosplay's appeal is a well-done outfit or a beautiful photo, but what makes cosplay so interesting is how it somehow falls between fashion (and thus, fashion photography) and geek culture, in which characters and their outfits are brought to life.
A fan of video games and video game music (as this impronto performance shows), Gosiengfiao started cosplaying when she was 15 years-old. Some of the props she makes herself, whether it be sculpting sculpey or making papermache props, but she enlists the help of professional dressmakers and seamstresses for her outfits.
Gosiengfiao says her goal is to spread her love of cosplay. Gosiengfiao is doing her part to bring cosplay closer to the mainstream. She's now appearing in a major ad campaign for the country's biggest telecommunications provider. This isn't her first ad - she's done promotions for video games and arcade games in the past - but it's her first spot to air on television, between popular television shows. The spot shows a well-connected Gosiengfiao and some of the various outfits she's donned in the past.
"If cosplay is more accepted," she says, "maybe then we can have more exciting things to incorporate with it more mainstream ads, more cosplay TV shows, etc!"
Last summer, Alodia met with the producers of the upcoming World of Warcraft movie. "We met with Legendary about that movie, and they're considering for one of the characters," she told Kotaku at the time. "Since they're just starting, they haven't done the casting yet." Nothing is set in stone obviously. Gosiengfiao tells Kotaku that she really hopes she can participate in the film and would love to be a blood elf.