Saskatoon Maker, Nicole Boczula, is a passionate creative, interested in a variety of artistic fields. She grew up in Calgary, studied in Toronto, and later moved to Saskatoon where she has become a local Maker! After finishing her bachelor’s degree in science, she realized that she was always turning to creative outlets and decided to follow her passion as an artist instead.
Nicole currently works at Painfully Pretty Tattoo Studio in Saskatoon as a Tattoo Apprentice. She is happy to have the freedom with this job and to have the ability to create every day! In Nicole’s free time she explores other creative activities, taking a special interest in cosplay. Other than cosplay, Nicole keeps busy with aerial hoop classes, music, and crafting. Being a Maker has allowed Nicole to hone in on her artistic passions and talent for creating new things. She believes that “everyone has the ability to create and show the world what they can do – whether you are a makeup artist, cake decorator, or engineer”!
For those of you are new to this term, cosplay is a portmanteau of the words costume and play. Cosplay originated in Japan but has since become a globally recognized community. Not only does cosplay offer a new imaginative space but it has also created an amazing sense of belonging for those interested in this area. There are conventions and expos held around the world, whether they are small local gatherings or massive events in major cities. If cosplay attendees feel up for a friendly competition, some of the conventions and expos allow for costumes to be judged based on construction and presentation – and the opportunity to win a prize!
Nicole loves the cosplay world and creating her own costumes for events, photoshoots, and online. Local cosplayers might recognize her online name as ‘Simply Devious Cosplay’. She has been a cosplayer for approximately 8 years now and designs all of her own costumes! Nicole feels inspired by the cosplay scene because she loves to be able to transform into characters that she admires. She also loves to attend in-person events as it is a great opportunity to connect with other cosplayers and fans within the community. The events are a great way to “interact with others and gives cosplayers the opportunity to talk about their favorite characters from the same show/videogame.” Nicole states that she has made many lifelong friends that she met through conventions and expos.
Nicole currently has a few different projects on the go, focusing on props and armor, including the Cloud Buster Sword from Final Fantasy 7! When creating new things, she gathers a collection of photos for inspiration. She then cuts out the design she wants from EVA foam or insulation foam. From here, she begins sanding and priming in order to prep for finishing. The last step is where she gets creative with paints, colours, looks, and designs!
Saskatchewan has a great cosplay community, with events held every year in Saskatoon! Anyone interested in cosplay is accepted into this space where artists get to show their talents for costume design. Those in this community are very passionate about the art and design that goes into creating the costumes. Hours, days, or even weeks are spent in the process to create an amazing final costume. The events are a great way to showcase the hard-work and passion that goes into making the costume. With in-person events being put on pause, there are now many virtual events being held around the globe! If you’re interested in cosplay, take a look at some of the expos offered and get back into your creative sphere!
If you’re new to cosplay but are interested in the scene, take a look online for countless workshops available to get you started! Youtube, Instagram, and other social platforms are also a great way to connect with this community as well as showcasing your own creations! A friendly tip from Nicole is to get inspiration from pictures/videos of other cosplayers in the community. She also recommends starting small, stating “I know when I first got into cosplay, I would be super ambitious (which is great!), but I would get overwhelmed with the sizes of the projects I took on. Do not feel like you need to craft every individual piece of your costume or prop.”
In past years, the Maker Faire Saskatoon has had a ‘Cosplay Corner’ that shows off the thriving cosplay scene in Saskatchewan! With workshops ran by passionate, local cosplayers, guests are invited to try their hand at making capes, masks, armor, and more! It’s a great way for newcomers that are interested to see how they like it! Let’s cross our fingers for a booming ‘Cosplay Corner’ at future Maker Faire events in Saskatoon!
If you want to take a look at more designs from cosplayer, Nicole Boczula, take a look at her Instagram here!
If you are interested in Nicole’s tattoo designs, check out her other page here!