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Unread 07-13-2017, 08:05 AM   #1
Feaney
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when is the right time for a cosplay name

Hi Everyone,

So I haven't been cosplaying as long as a lot of people (started at the end of 2015) so to this point I've rarely been asked for pictures and only done a small photoshoot with someone equally new to shooting cosplay, we were both really just messing about and having fun. At my last con however I got asked for more pictures than all previous ones combined and have a shoot scheduled for my next con which has led to the question of what name to put with these pictures and I really don't want to use my real name.

So all this is a round about way of asking at what point do people think its a good idea to come up with a cosplay name to tag pictures with. I'm in two minds with it on the one hand it might make it easier for me to find and seem nicer when talking to people than asking for them to left anonymous. That said I am really not very good and do mostly crossplay (mtf) so nobody really wants to see it with how bad I look. So creating a name would seem egotistical for a bad cosplayer and just become a draw for negative comments.

So simply question, at what point (if ever) did other people come up with a cosplay name?

Feaney

P.S. Sorry for the long winded question
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Unread 07-13-2017, 09:06 AM   #2
ShinobiXikyu
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It's not egotistical at all, using a cosplay pseudonym has been around since at least the 90's to keep your personal and hobby life separate (and with the internet? Well, that's not your legal name you're using here, is it? Exactly). Make up something you like and start using it when you don't want to reveal your real name. Voila. Nobody whatsoever will think you're too uppity because you have a cosplay name.
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There's a vibe here that says "We're in this together!Through thick and thin fabric! Through cold water washes and burning hot irons! Though we might super glue ourselves to our projects, cut holes/gashes/oh-god-mom's-gonna-kill-me into the dining room table, we will stand strong together. Unless there is a 75% off sale at the Fabric store. Then you're on your own. And get the hell out of my way."<3
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Unread 07-13-2017, 11:51 AM   #3
Maurishio-kun
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In fact I've been seeing more cosplayers that have replaced their cosplay names with their real names, I remember when Ángela Bermúdez used "Tenshi No Sekai" as her cosplay name, now she uses her own real name.
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Unread 07-13-2017, 12:49 PM   #4
Syon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maurishio-kun View Post
In fact I've been seeing more cosplayers that have replaced their cosplay names with their real names, I remember when Ángela Bermúdez used "Tenshi No Sekai" as her cosplay name, now she uses her own real name.
No idea who she is, but let me guess: She is doing cosplay (or something related in that direction) as her main occupation? If I'm right, I can understand why. Many people, who are starting to be more business orientated think that using their real name lets them appear more professional. This is especially true, if their former cosplay name had its "difficulties" by being either hard to pronounce/write, not unique enough or in any way not fitting.

In her case, I assume a long japanese cosplay name wasn't suiting her anymore.
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Unread 07-13-2017, 01:29 PM   #5
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I started using a cosplay name right out of the gate. I wasn't entirely comfortable with people knowing who I was outside of cosplay, so having an alias felt natural to me.

I guess you can say the same can be said for me even now. I'll be going to law school soon, and keeping my personal life private is still important to me. It's not that I don't want people to know about my hobbies, but I'd prefer to have the chance to be the one to tell them about it, rather than having my name out there.

Besides, a cosplay alias feels a lot like a secret agent name. I think it makes us all pretty damn cool.
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Unread 07-13-2017, 01:58 PM   #6
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I think you're thinking about this to hard. Your reasons are valid and make sense. You don't want to use your real name, that's a-ok and a very legit reason. Having a "cosplay name" isn't only for super star cosplayers lol it's really normal
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Unread 07-13-2017, 03:33 PM   #7
ShinobiXikyu
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Syon View Post
No idea who she is, but let me guess: She is doing cosplay (or something related in that direction) as her main occupation? If I'm right, I can understand why. Many people, who are starting to be more business orientated think that using their real name lets them appear more professional. This is especially true, if their former cosplay name had its "difficulties" by being either hard to pronounce/write, not unique enough or in any way not fitting.

In her case, I assume a long japanese cosplay name wasn't suiting her anymore.
Nowadays, I'm kind of in the same boat. I don't have any attachment to what my name here was made up from, but a lot of people still know me by it so I'd rather not just change it. And since I do artist alley, commission, compete etc. and conventions are where I get most of my business from, I use my real one where I can so people can actually know who I am, it's more professional and easier to say. But if I don't want to give out my real name, I don't. I use either this name here, or my business name.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moofingham View Post
There's a vibe here that says "We're in this together!Through thick and thin fabric! Through cold water washes and burning hot irons! Though we might super glue ourselves to our projects, cut holes/gashes/oh-god-mom's-gonna-kill-me into the dining room table, we will stand strong together. Unless there is a 75% off sale at the Fabric store. Then you're on your own. And get the hell out of my way."<3
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Unread 07-13-2017, 04:29 PM   #8
Feaney
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I always had it in my head a cosplay was only really for good cosplayers who were more recognisable but I think I'm going to think of one... which will be a challenge in itself. It would be nice to have some way to track pictures down without putting my real name to them, its fine using a real name at the convention but once it goes online anyone could see it.

Thanks everyone
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Unread 07-13-2017, 04:49 PM   #9
fabrickind
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You're thinking about this backwards. A cosplay name doesn't follow popularity, but rather, popularity follows a cosplay name. Using a specific name for cosplay comes out of necessity, that is, needing a recognizable label for yourself that isn't tied to your real name (if you don't want to use your real name/subsume your identity otherwise into your cosplay life). It also comes out of the necessity of most sites requiring you to sign up with a "handle." If you then happen to become popular or decide to market yourself using that name, that's something that comes after you've given yourself a way to be identified, and having a cosplay name in no way means that you have to then go for that.

Hell, usernames on this site are "cosplay names" and this site isn't populated by ~famous cosplayers~. You'll be fine. :]
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Unread 07-13-2017, 09:40 PM   #10
GracefulNightingale
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feaney View Post
I always had it in my head a cosplay was only really for good cosplayers who were more recognisable but I think I'm going to think of one... which will be a challenge in itself. It would be nice to have some way to track pictures down without putting my real name to them, its fine using a real name at the convention but once it goes online anyone could see it.

Thanks everyone
Not at all!

Are you kidding? If we all started out epically amazing right out of the gate none of us would have the chance to grow into our skills and our comfort levels! Having a cosplay alias can help you to protect yourself at conventions, because there will always be people who take the creep factor to the next level, and its important to protect your true identity if that is something you're concerned about.

But take pride in yourself as a cosplayer and an artist. You work hard on the things you create, and getting recognition, even on a small scale, is still important!

Have you given it some thought as to what you would like to go by? Cosplay name, that is?
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Unread 07-13-2017, 11:37 PM   #11
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I only started using mine (cathartic_creation) this past year, and really it was mostly for a super lame reason (especially for a 33 year old): everyone else was doing it.....

But as to why I chose that particular name is that I like alliteration, for me being creative really is a form of catharsis, and I wanted something that could be multi-use (use for art, sewing, and/or cosplay).

I don't think I would ever introduce myself to someone by that name though.
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Unread 07-14-2017, 04:16 AM   #12
Feaney
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GracefulNightingale View Post
Have you given it some thought as to what you would like to go by? Cosplay name, that is?
Honestly I have no idea, I'm terrible at thinking of names. Maybe something based on the kind of characters I tend to cosplay but I have a bit of time to think as I 5 weeks before my next convention to think of it.
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Unread 07-14-2017, 07:47 AM   #13
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I was lucky choosing a cosplay name when I created this account. I had been cosplaying for years before I wanted to share my pictures. For me, I always fall back on being a gypsy. Need a last minute cosplay? Raid my closet and throw things together to create a fun, interesting gypsy. I also like the alliteration of Gypsy Girl. It works well for me. Suits me. Has for years. I can't see that changing anytime soon. Good luck choosing a name.
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Unread 07-14-2017, 03:05 PM   #14
Tiffany_Park
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It's good to consider whether you want to use a pseud early in the game, because anything on the internet lasts forever. For that reason, I've been using a pseud for fannish activities for as long as I've been involved in online fannish activities. Even before the internet fans used pseuds. "Tiffany Park" is just what I've used for fanfic since the 1990's, so I just stuck with it for everything else, too. Heck, after all this time, I answer to it. It is helpful to keep fannish activities under a pseud so you can't be googled by your employer or potential employer. Lots of careers/bosses might view it as unprofessional; others think it's interesting and don't look down on it, but you can't know that in advance, unfortunately. It's not a requirement, though, and many people use their real names.
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Unread 07-15-2017, 10:03 PM   #15
Lindiranae
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I started using one for the reasons Tiffany_Park gives: I didn't want my boss googling my cosplay stuff. I wasn't particularly shy about showing my colleagues and boss some of my cosplay photos from time to time, and they mostly seemed quite fascinated by it all, but the last thing I wanted was for them to track me down online of their own accord. Far too often, I've seen examples of management using peoples' hobbies as an excuse to be crappy to them - one guy I worked with was a civil war re-enactor and had partial deafness; I once heard his line manager laughing with another colleague because he'd requested a reasonable adjustment, but after FB stalking him, they assumed he'd brought his hearing loss on himself by "playing with muskets." That was the moment that I started thinking seriously about what people could find out about me online and is the same reason I rarely accept friend requests from colleagues. (And I did wind up sending a private email to this particular manger to let her know I had been able to hear her conversation clear across the hall and to remind her about the company's responsibilities regarding disability - as far as I know, he got his reasonable adjustment in the end.)

It's also nice to know that if photographers or other cosplayers post tagged photos of me on Facebook, their followers aren't going to be led straight to my personal profile. I'm careful about the kinds of personal information I put online anyway but there's something reassuring to know that since my real name, hometown, etc. aren't on my cosplay page at all. I've kind of ended up with two pseudonyms for cosplay. "The Nights of Nym" has been my blog titles for the last fifteen years or so and "Nymeria" my most frequent username, although most of my early blogs have long-since disappeared as platforms have changed. "Warden on Wheels Cosplay" is the name of my FB page, and came about because I cosplay my Grey Warden player character from Dragon Age and use a wheelchair, so it was always how I described myself when arranging meets with online friends at cons.

Whatever you choose, remember that it may end up representing you and your creative work for years to come
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