Cosplayer of the Week: ItsKristinaMaria
Today we have an incredible cosplayer for you which is a good friend of ours by the name of ItsKristinaMaria! We’ve known about her for some time now and have marveled over her beauty, grace, and her classic Disney princess look! She is wicked smart, talented, kind-hearted, and a blast to follow online.
We hope you enjoy our interview with her!
The Geek Lyfe: What is your cosplay origin story?
ItsKristinaMaria: I started out doing princessing parties! One day I wore Jasmine to a convention called GeekyCon and got in line to meet AVbyte. It was there that Elizabeth Rage (@elizabethrage on Instagram) came up to me in line and encouraged me to get into cosplaying. I’ve been cosplaying ever since, and I probably would not have gotten into it without her!
TGL: Out of all the years you have done cosplay, what has been one of your more favorite/proudest memories?
IKM: My favorite moment had to have been at MegaCon. It was my first time cosplaying to that convention, and I went as Elena of Avalor, as her show had just released not too long before. I had just been harassed and was feeling super down when I heard someone yell “Elena!” from behind me in the aisle. I turned around and it was this adorable little girl who was running towards me and I bent down to give her a hug. As I was hugging her, she started crying and when I asked if she was okay, her mother said “she’s just excited to see someone that looks like her.” It was truly the sweetest moment of my entire life! As a Latina, I grew up not seeing myself represented much in media, so Elena meant a lot to me when her show was released, and it was beautiful to share a moment like that with that adorable little girl!
TGL: Many people online will simply see one of your images, appreciate it for the moment and move on. However, I know that a lot of care and time goes into photoshoots. Could you describe your process for a cosplay photoshoot from the concept to when it hits your fans?
IKM: Finding a photographer is the main thing! I want to find a photographer who has content that fits the character I would like to shoot, but also making sure a photographer has a diverse portfolio means a lot to me as well. Photoshoots are expensive, so you always want to make sure you are investing in the right people! On shoot day comes 2+ hours of makeup alone, than travel and getting the pictures done. From there, the photographer (or I) edits the photos so they can be posted!
TGL: Out of all the cosplays you have ever done which one was your personal favorite even if it was not super well received by fans?
IKM: My current favorite is my Kida from Atlantis: The Lost Empire cosplay! I got to work with two friends, Kelly Kirstein (@KellyKirstein) for the wig and DaVid McCarthy (@DaVidForDesign) for the costume. Luckily it’s been very well received so far, and I’m super grateful for the feedback! My brother and I absolutely loved Atlantis when we were younger, so it was exciting to bring one of my favorite characters to life!
TGL: You feature a lot of awesome geeky content, what is your absolute favorite geeky medium? (Video games, anime, comics, film, etc.)
IKM: Film is probably my go-to when it comes to cosplay, but I absolutely love video games! I think Sasha from Tales from the Borderlands was my first cosplay to really blow up compared to the activity I was used to after it got reposted by Borderlands and 2k! I’m hoping to feature more game-related content in the future.
TGL: Subbed or Dubbed Anime?
IKM: People might get mad for this, but I lean more towards dubbed animes! It gives me more time to take in all of the artwork on the screen when I don’t have to read the subtitles, but subtitles definitely don’t steer me away from watching something at all!
TGL: It is apparent that you hustle to provide content for fans but when you actually have a day off, how do you spend it?
IKM: I work 6 out of 7 days a week as a live in nanny for 6 amazing kids, so when I’m not cosplaying, my job is my entire life! On days off when I don’t have cosplay plans, I’ll usually visit the theme parks or hang out with my closest friends.
TGL: You just radiate such confidence and the swagger of a champion. However, a lot of geeks often struggle with overwhelming self-doubt, anxiety, and depression. When you have those bad days and get down on yourself, what do you do to remind yourself that you are wonderful?
IKM: I suffer from diagnosed anxiety, depression, and PTSD, so those overwhelming times can be super tough. I think it’s important to allow yourself to feel your emotions as they come, and to not bottle up. Sometimes I just have to take a step back and think about how lucky I am to be where I am at this time. I’ve gone through hell to be where I am now, and I just am so grateful for my insanely amazing friends, my brother Christopher, my awesome job, and to have the opportunities I have received lately. I think about my dad, and how I know he would be proud of what I’ve done so far.
TGL: What is one piece of advice you wish you received when you first got into modeling/cosplay?
IKM: Cosplay wise I say to not let strangers on the internet dictate who you can dress up as. Cosplay absolutely who ever you want, regardless of weight, body shape, hair color, eye color, skin color, etc. When I first started cosplay, I wasn’t happy with the characters I was doing, because they weren’t characters I connected with- they were characters other people wanted to see me as. Cosplay those characters that hold a place in your heart. Cosplay designs you think are amazing. You can never make everyone happy, so cosplay what ever YOU specifically want to do!
TGL: Where can we find you online?
IKM: I only use Instagram for cosplay posts at this time, so you can find me there under the username @itskristinamaria!
Alice from “Alice: Madness Returns”, Belle from “Beauty and the Beast”, Anya from “Anastasia”: @samueljacobsphotography
Kida from “Atlantis: the Lost Empire”: @elysiagriffin
Regina George from “Mean Girls: the Musical”: @u.v._photography
Sasha from “Tales from the Borderlands”: @victorieuxphotography