Originally Posted by kuroi_shi
I've got a question about the ranking system..
I have never entered a masquerade in the 10+ years i've been cosplaying.. But, I went to fashion school, and I work at a place that makes mascots. I've heard from a friend that because I work in a costume related business, I have to enter the master division, regardless of the fact that I've never even participated in a masquerade..
Is this true? .. I'd be super nervous to compete at the master level if I've never done it before..
Every competition has it's own rules regarding this. If you are concerned, contact the Cosplay Director/Coordinator to clarify.
Personally, if you were competing in a competition I ran, I would ask you about your job, what exactly it entails, how many costumes you've constructed due to your job, etc. to get a better idea as to what type of skills you have. The reason why many competitions go off of how many costumes you made or how many awards you have won is because it is VERY difficult to come up with another way to determine skill level. If you've gone to fashion school and you work on costumes daily as part of your job, you have acquired certain skills that far surpass your average Novice. If after my discussion with you I determined you'd be at a higher level because of your skills, then I would ASK you to CONSIDER competition in a higher level. I do not FORCE people to compete higher if they meet our posted guidelines with exceptions in some competitions for Professionals (e.g. commission businesses) for which there is typically a subrule that states they must compete Master, but not all competitions do this.
Anyhow, when ever in doubt, talk to the Cosplay Director/Coordinator. They will be able to give you the answer you need for THEIR competition.
Best of luck!