Photo by Kennedy Vu
It was so exciting getting the chance to interview cosplayer Alfred Hightower. I actually got to see his Roadhog cosplay in person last year at LA Comic Con, and have been following him online ever since! Today he talks about his love for Overwatch, his Pyramid Head cosplay that he made his FIRST YEAR cosplaying (which is incredible), and who some of his cosplay heroes are. Enjoy:
Ok, my favorite question to ask all cosplayers: What has been your favorite cosplay so far?
My favorite cosplay is actually my Pyramid Head cosplay! I made him during my first year cosplaying and it was so hard to believe that I was able to pull it off, with the help of my friend Kelton (keltonfx). I was tall and scary; I couldn't have asked for anything else!
You've cosplayed Genji, Roadhog, and Sombra, all from Overwatch (and all amazing, btw). What is it about Overwatch that inspires you to cosplay so many of their characters, and are there plans to cosplay anything else from that IP?
First and foremost, thank you! It really does mean a lot to me. Overwatch is a game of diversity, both in strategies and the people who play! But the great thing about Overwatch is the diversity that the heroes have. They all come from different corners of the earth (and space too!) and their culture and voice represent that diversity the game has. I admire that so much, especially in this time of great change and acceptance. I'm glad to see the entertainment history taking steps towards a better future. As for future Overwatch cosplays, I'm planning on doing a Genderbend Talon Widowmaker and Lifeguard McCree in the coming future!
Photo by tonytakedown
Sort of going off that last question, if time and money weren't an issue, what is your dream cosplay?
If money weren't an issue, my ultimate dream cosplay would be Nemesis from Resident Evil! His tall, overbearing, and frightening appearance is what drew me to him. It's gonna take a lot of prosthetics and leatherwork, but I know it'd be worth it in the end!
Who are some cosplayers you look up to?
A couple of cosplayers that I look up to are Jessica Nigri, Raekaybro, Arisukira, AmenoKitarou, and Yipnotiq!
Jessica inspires me to be weird, be true, and be me. As long as you do that, like minded people will start to surround you, the best kind of support.
Raekaybro not only makes great costumes, but is a great inspiration to push froward in not only cosplay, but in working out as well! He's a great guy with a great personality, truly a bro!
Arisukira is the sweetest and selfless soul. She always looks out for others before herself and that's what I really admire about her.
AmenoKitarou inspires me to build big and build clean! His large builds, such as his Odin (Final Fantasy XIII) and his FFX Bahamut are jaw dropping and huge! Not only are they large, but their detail is out of this world. That's what really pulls everything together.
Yipnotiq is an amazing woman who puts everything in her costumes and working out as well. She's the main reason why went back to the gym and worked to get my body back in shape. Her costumes are also super detailed and she does pay attention to that!
What are some of your favorite cosplay resources?
Kamui has amazing tutorials on worbla and foam crafting. She's actually the first resource I discovered in my early cosplay days. Evil Ted also has great foam crafting tutorials and many of them go into depth, which is very helpful when you're a perfectionist.
What have been some of your favorite conventions, and are there any you haven't been to that you'd like to experience?
My favorite convention is actually Anime Expo! It maybe very cliche, but I absolutely love seeing so many people just gathered together to celebrate their fandoms and their passions. It's truly an inspiration. A couple of cons I'd love to go to are Colossal Con, Dragon Con, and Kawaii Con! Ever since going to Fanime, I love going to out of county / state cons. Exploring is in my blood!
Are you more comfortable with armor making or sewing?
I'm much more comfortable with armor making! Fabric cosplays are another frontier for me.
Photo by MVM Photography
Why do you cosplay?
I cosplay to express my appreciation and adoration for my passions. It also allows me to be a fictional character in a real and tangible world. Something about that is very surreal and it's a feeling that words can't fully describe. It's also helped me be more me, if that makes sense. I was very awkward when I was younger, but cosplay taught me how to channel that awkwardness into something more positive. I'm still a bit awkward, but I have learned to take myself a little less seriously and to just enjoy the experience.
Is there anything about cosplay that you find challenging?
The challenging part about cosplay sometimes is getting the correct references for costumes. Without those, making the costume with full details becomes hard, as I have to go off of my imagination instead. Also, posing can be tough sometimes since some characters have some complicated and complex poses that are hard to replicate!
Where can we follow you online, and are there any other projects or platforms you'd like to promote in this interview?
I am mainly on Instagram, @alfredhightower, where I post cosplay and modeling shots. You'll also get the occasional peek into my life through the stories I post! I am, however, working on a youtube channel, but that's still in the works for the time being!