An Interview with Aileen Luib Nicholas Bashore January 29, 2013 Featured, Interviews Zach ~ Okay this is Zach with Gamer Assault Weekly & I’m here with Aileen Luib. She’s a photographer of Cosplay & Cosplay Events, and also a gamer! Hello Aileen. (AL) Hey Zach~ (GAW) Okay, so before we jump into the bigger questions I guess the most obvious is, what exactly do you do? (AL) Hmm well I like to take pictures, both leisurely and professionally, haha. There isn’t much more to it than that! (GAW) Now I know you photograph Cosplay but could you perhaps go a little in-depth as to what that entails in regards to the Cosplay scene? (AL) Cosplay is a hobby that a lot of people who enjoy video games, cartoons or anime participate in. It involves pretty much dressing up as your character of choice. (GAW) Very cool. So do you Cosplay at all yourself or just go to events (IE ComicCon?) and photograph other cosplayers. (AL) I tried cosplay twice, the first time I cosplayed as the original Chun Li outfit, and the 2nd time was her alternate outfit in Street Fighter 4. After my personal experience with crafting and sewing, i gave up because I had no patience for it, haha. I’ve always respected the cosplay craft so I oftentimes follow cosplay online, go to conventions, and sometimes photograph cosplayers. (GAW) Awesome! What got you started/interested in photographing Cosplay & photography as a whole? (AL) Back in middle school an artsy friend of mine persuaded me to join Deviantart.com, an online community for artists of all genres to share their work online. As I was browsing through the site, I found some really cool photographers and fell in love with it as a whole. As for photographing cosplay, Precious (Crystal Graziano) and I casually met on Deviantart and we met up and I shot her cosplay of Selvaria Bles and her husband Todd’s Radi Jaeger, both characters of one of my favorite video games, Valkyria Chronicles. After that experience with shooting cosplay I realized it’s such a different genre of photography that isn’t admired enough, and I started to shoot more of it. (GAW) That is amazing! To meet casually & then have an interested sparked to become something more is always very neat. Would you say that cosplay photography is your passion/eventual career? (AL) Probably not, as cosplay alone is a really tough field to become well-known in, let alone make substantial profit from. Cosplay photography is barely beginning to make a name for itself as well. With most of my photography I really try just to have fun with it and not stress out–if I do, it’s no longer enjoyable. I try not to think too much about a future in photography at all; if it happens, it happens. (GAW) That makes sense, something I can understand. So another question which I’m sure everyone will ask because you enjoy the Cosplay scene, do you play video games? (AL) Yes! I’m probably not as hardcore as others, but I’m definitely catching up! (GAW) Fave genres, that sort of thing? And another one even I am dying to know, PC or Console? (AL) Big fan of RPGs. I enjoyed the Final Fantasy series, and just finished playing Alice: Madness Returns. Currently starting the Uncharted series. I’m absolutely terrible at any FPS games. Ask any of my friends who’ve seen me play Borderlands or Left 4 Dead, I scream more than I shoot. And I play on my PS3! (GAW) Right on, that’s some awesome stuff there. Since getting into gaming & cosplay etc. what’s been the most enjoyable aspect of it to you/part that you look forward to most? (AL) I really enjoy the aesthetics of both. I’m really drawn to beautifully designed games and intrically crafted costumes. I really enjoyed Alice: Madness Returns because of the world designs, as well as character designs–it’s just such a pretty game. With cosplay, it’s amazing to see someone’s finished costume in real life. You can see all of the details and it really shows how much time and effort they put into everything. I guess I get really lost in the visual experiences of things. And playing/seeing it in person is just an awesome experience! (GAW) I would have to agree on that! (AL) Minor side note: I really love fighting games! Was actively involved in the Street Fighter scene around 2008-2009. (GAW) Oooh now that is definitely a fun game to be sure! High five for that one! (AL) -dap- (GAW) What do you hope to do within say, the next 2 to 5 years within the industry/community? (AL) I have no specific goals for either– it might sound like I’m aimlessly walking through life, but I don’t like to set hard goals because in the event I don’t meet them, it takes a big toll on my self-esteem as an artist. For now I really just wish to share my work with people and hopefully they like it! (GAW) I totally can understand that one too, some might call us silly but we have a method to our madness ^_^ (AL) Of course! If I take it too seriously, it’ll take the fun out of it. After all, you have hobbies because they’re fun, right? (GAW) Exactly! (AL) -thumbs up- (GAW) So what other random facts would you like to share with the readers, if any? And any tips for those looking to get into photography/cosplay photography? I’ve seen pretty much all the work you’ve done/posted on the interwebz and I must say, fantastic job. (AL) Thank you! With anything creative, whether photography or cosplay, or even cosplay photography, all I can really say is to expose yourself to as much of that genre possible, find stuff on the Internet. Also, experiment. You learn through replicating. From there you get inspired to branch off. (GAW) Very cool! Well with that I think I’m just about out of questions, anything else you would like to add in yourself? (AL) Not very much, but in lieu of discussing video games, cosplay and photography, just have fun with everything that you do, don’t make it a job or you’ll forget what sparked your love for it in the very beginning. (GAW) Right on. Well, again this is Zach from Gamer Assault Weekly with Aileen Luib, gamer & photographer extraordinaire! Thank you so much for your time! Was awesome being able to interview you. (AL) Thanks for having me. You can follow Aileen on both her Twitter & Facebook Page.