Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Cosplayer Interview: Crystal Graziano

Welcome to another Cosplayer Interview blog. This week, we will be featuring Crystal Graziano.

I was introduced to her when I saw he excellent cosplay for an upcoming game called Firefall by Red 5 Studios. Though I am not a gamer myself, a few co-workers thought it was going to be a very cool game.

This however isn't the only cosplay she has done as you will see. All of her characters are done to perfection and are stunningly beautiful to match. I was very impressed with her crossplay of Sephiroth (or Lady Sephiroth as she calls her). Though, I now think her Ivy from SoulCalibur V is my new favorite.

I think I have mumbled enough and I know you want to get to the interview. I will stop writing now so you can continue below :D

What is your name, where do you reside and what is your age?

My name is Crystal Graziano, but I also go by the online handle "precious." I'm 22 years old and live in beautiful Southern California!

What first started you on the road to cosplay?

I started going to San Diego Comic Con almost ten years ago, and that's where I first really saw cosplay. At first I thought it was really weird, but then I saw cosplayers from series that I really liked and warmed up to the idea. Eventually I got brave enough to throw together a closet cosplay for Final Fantasy 7's Aerith, and I had such a great time that I kept doing it!

Outside some of your cosplays, you seem to pick strong female characters. Is this by chance or is there a more diabolical plan in mind for your characters?

No diabolical plan, I just really like strong female characters! Since I only cosplay things that I like, and helpless characters are pretty uninteresting to me, I usually cosplay the same type of character a lot.

When creating the cosplays, everything is not equal from what I read about your Selvaria Bles cosplay. If not Selvaria Bles, which was the hardest cosplay to complete?

Selvaria was pretty difficult for me at the time, but to date I'd have to say that Ivy from Soul Calibur V was the most difficult for me. Character designers just don't think about how clothes work in real life!

What seems the hardest to make most of the time, the main costume or the accessories?

It's usually the sewing that's the most difficult. Most female characters have outfits that don't really work in real life, so it's always a challenge to try to make fabric do what it's not supposed to do. I also find that sewing is a bit more stressful for me. At the same time, sewing can be really easy if it's something that's pretty straightforward like a simple bodysuit.

I was reading that you have teamed up with Red 5 Studios in collaboration with their new game FireFall. How did this come about for you as I am sure other cosplayers would like do the same with other gaming companies?

Red 5 Studios put out a call looking for suggestions for their sponsored cosplayer for Firefall and to play their character Mourningstar. Someone from my DeviantArt page sent my cosplays to Red 5, and they emailed me asking to audition. Of course, I jumped onto the opportunity! I'm very grateful to both Red 5 and to the person who suggested me! The best advice I can offer for others looking for similar opportunities is just to do the best work you can, and hopefully someone will take notice!

Along this same train of thought, I see that you are affiliated with Big White Bazooka Photography on many of your more artistic shots. How did this sponsorship come about?

I first did a shoot with Eric of Big White Bazooka Photography in 2009 at Anime Expo, and we just happened to start shooting regularly since we worked well together. When Red 5 Studios approached me for the Firefall cosplay sponsorship, they said that they loved the photos he took of me, and that they'd like to hire him for the official sponsored photoshoots. I'm glad I was able to bring a job like this to a friend!

What conventions or shows have you cosplayed at and have you gotten any awards?

I've cosplayed at a lot of conventions, most of them local. To date, they've included San Diego Comic Con, Anime Expo, Anime Los Angeles, PMX, Anime Conji, Mikomi Con, SXSW, Fanime, Tokyo Game Show, and Dragon*Con. I don't normally compete in my costumes, but I did win a trip to Japan from Konami at their Comic Con cosplay contest with my Sweet Raiden cosplay, and I won the Konami cosplay contest at Tokyo Game Show. I've also won a craftsmanship award at Anime Conji for the Old Snake costume I created for my husband.

You have been featured in many magazines (Official Playstation Magazine UK, LEVEL, Games Aktuell, CosplayGen and Xbox World Magazine). How is it to see yourself in print on an International level and has this changed how you cosplay?

It's very strange to see yourself in magazines, especially well known gaming magazines! There's really nothing like it! It hasn't changed how I cosplay, but it makes me feel very honored to have my creations published.

When not cosplaying, what do you do?

In my down time, I play video games, watch movies and anime, and draw. I also like to cook and play with my crazy dog!

For any aspiring cosplayers a little shy, what words of wisdom do you have for them to get started?

Honestly, if you want to cosplay, just do it! It doesn't matter if your cosplay is perfect or not; ultimately, cosplay is just for fun, and it's a great way to meet other fans. Craftsmanship comes with time, and you have to start somewhere, so it's not something that should be stressed over as a beginner!

Where can we catch more of your Cosplay at?

Facebook  |  Twitter  |  deviantART  |  Website 

Here is a Shout Out to our Photographers: 

Big White Bazooka Photography  |  Aileen Luib dust-da   LJinto  Asian School Boy   Mike Rollerson  |  Rosann Yip  |  Sebastian Jespersen
Some Additional Cosplay Photographs


I want to thank Crystal Graziano for taking the time to write to me and to the Photographers for the great photos that you get to see here today.

Want to be my next interviewed COSPLAY STAR? Drop me a line a bluedrakon (at) gmail (dot) com!


  1. wow! so awesome! Its the first time I've seen a genderbend of sephiroth and its actually nice. :)

    1. She really did an exceptional job on that as well as many others.

  2. Those are really very high standards of cosplaying! I'm very impressed from the pics presented. Like those futuristic plugsuits and armor plates. The weapons of Valkyria Sylvia were outstanding.

    1. I was very impressed with her cosplays and am very happy I was able to get an interview with her.I can only imagine what lies ahead for her.


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