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Q & A’s, Anime Festival in Wichita, Kansas

The Hyatt Regency Hotel hosted the 2017 Anime Festival of Wichita on June 23-25. Here are a few of the conventions attendees.

Karen Galindo, Co-editor

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Ariana Gutierrez
Eleanor Cornwell cosplayed as the main character from the anime “Cardcaptor Sakura”.

AnimeFest attendee: Eleanor Cornwell

Q: What got you interested in anime?                                                                                                             A: “My sister started reading a lot of the comic books when we were younger and then eventually I started reading some of those. I had, technically, been watching anime since I was a really little kid; I didn’t know it was anything different. Through different friends and family, it was just kind of a thing we watched and then when I was in my tweens and teen years then I just discovered ‘oh my gosh this is a big thing!’”

Q: What got you interested in cosplaying?                                                                                                    A: “I’ve been coming to anime fest in Wichita for seven years now. And I’ve actually been making costumes and sewing since I was 6 and 7. I’ve actually been making costumes way before I had my realization about anime, but when I found out that I can have both of them together I just started sewing costumes and eventually I started competing in competitions.”

Q: Have you been to other conventions other than the one in Wichita?                                               A: “I’ve been to ton of cons in the US. Not lots of big ones but I’ve started to expand a bit more.”

Q: What inspired your costume?                                                                                                                     A: “I actually made every single piece of this. I pattered all of these  [pieces of] clothing by myself. I do not use any store bought patterns. I do all of the sizing from scratch and, this whole prop and everything, I built myself. This actually has a manga and an anime, its actually quite old. It’s called Cardcaptor Sakura and it’s one of the original, magical girl series. It’s kind of around the same age as Sailor Moon….Kind of like in the 90s.”

Q: What’s your favorite anime?                                                                                                                     A: “I don’t think I have a specific favorite show. As far as certain movies, genres, and series that I like, I like Studio Ghibli movies. Those were one of the first things I watched when I was a kid and they were amazing….they’re some of the best parts of my childhood. They’re such inspirational, sweet, adventurous movies. It’s always amazing.”

  • Her costume took her nine hours and three evenings to make. Most of her costumes take longer than that, but this specific costume (as shown in the photo) was one of her most simple ones. She has multiple versions of the same character, therefore reusing the same wig and prop.

Ariana Gutierrez
Veronica Dowdy shows off her simple yet unique costume.

AnimeFest attendee: Veronica Dowdy

Q: What got you interested in anime?                                                                                                             A: “My husband first got me into anime when we were dating and then I just kind of found cosplay through conventions [then] I was like ‘this is really cool and I want to do this.’ And then I found friends that were also into [cosplaying] and so it just kind of snowballed into a huge thing in my life.”

Q: Have you been to other conventions other than the one in Wichita?                                                A: “Naka-kon is my favorite con….I’ve also been to Dragon-con and A-kon and a lot of local cons [like] Air Capital comic con.”

Q: What’s your favorite anime?                                                                                                                        A: “I like Slice of Life anime which are more sweet, simple, and more about love stories. [Shows like] Mahoraba and My Life Story.”

AnimeFest attendee: Brandon

Q: Is there a show in particular that got you to come to AnimeFest?                                              A: “This has been my seventh year coming [to AnimeFest] so a single show I wouldn’t say so. I just come, mainly, to see all my friends that I, honestly, have through cosplay and whatnot. I just come to hang out and everything. I haven’t been doing any cosplay here in the last couple of years just because I’ve been working on other stuff. I used to be pretty big into it.”

Q: Have you been to other conventions other than the one in Wichita?                               A: “Naka-kon, Nep-con up in Nebraska which I’ve also been to quite often. Those two are probably the biggest ones that I’ve been to so far. We stay close to the midwest so we don’t have to travel too far.”

Q: What got you interested in anime?                                                                                                   A: “Art’s a big one but you’ve got a lot of unique story lines to anime that you don’t really get out of other shows.”

Q: What’s your favorite anime?                                                                                                            A: Pretty cliche but Naruto.

 

Ariana Gutierrez
Ashley created her own character to cosplay as named, Ari.

AnimeFest attendee: Ashley

Q: What inspired your costume?                                                                                                                        A: “I cosplay all the time. This is actually an original character that I kinda do editions of. Her name is Ari, she’s a cat/fox, all the fur all the time. The art style of anime kind of inspired her [Ari], also I’m a little bit of a furry fan.”

Q: Have you been to other conventions other than the one in Wichita?                                                 A: “The other big con that I’ve been to is actually more of a comic book festival, it’s PlanetCon up in Kansas City. I really liked that one a lot.” 

Q: What got you interested in anime?                                                                                                             A: “The art. I’m all about aesthetics and it was just so beautiful and so different from anything I’ve ever seen before. I really like it.”

Q: What’s your favorite anime?                                                                                                                 A: “It’s in stages. My favorite anime when I was younger would probably be Gundam Wing AC. It was one of my first serious anime. Right now [my favorite anime] would probably be No Game No Life, it’s a very surreal anime. It’s about games and getting into people’s heads and it’s really interesting.”

Ariana Gutierrez
Drew (left) and Marty (right) cosplayed as the main characters from the webcomic “Starfighter”.       

Costumes based off of the webcomic Starfighter.

AnimeFest attendees: Drew and Marty

Q: What is Starfighter about?                                                                                                                              A: “These two polar opposites get paired up and have to learn how to cooperate together and pilot a ship that battles aliens,” Drew said.

Q: What got you interested in anime/webcomics?                                                                                         A: “I really gravitated towards [comics] in middle school and it kinda stuck with me,” Drew said. 

Q: Why did you decide to attend Anime Fest?                                                                                                 A: “It was nearby and we threw this together because we both like the comics,” Drew said. Turns out it was a really last minute decision because Marty “literally [bought this] two days ago.”

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The Student Voice of Wichita Northwest High School
Q & A’s, Anime Festival in Wichita, Kansas