Is it #mancrushmonday yet? Today we're interviewing the handsome and rich Oliver Queen - err, I mean, the talented cosplayer SLC Green Arrow! His comic book renditions of the character are charming to say the least. Read his full interview below!
Hey, folks, I'm SLC Green Arrow, and I still consider myself pretty new to this whole cosplay thing. I'm from San Diego California, but recently relocated to Utah with my wife to peruse our small business goals.
How and when did you get into cosplay?
Cosplay is something I always wanted to do. While I was finishing my college degree at SDSU, I worked at a local comic shop, and when we'd go to SDCC I'd always dress as Quailman from Doug. I remember there being cosplayers, and I always wanted to be a superhero, but I was a larger fellow, and never felt comfortable doing it at that size. My brother, Will started getting into the cosplay scene as Superman, and was a huge motivator for me to get to a place where I would feel comfortable doing this.
It took almost 13 years, but after a lot of ups and downs, hard work and lifestyle changes, I finally found myself in a spot where I would feel comfortable enough to throw on tights. Considering how Green Arrow has always been a favorite hero of mine, I wanted to make that my first and main cosplay. I've only been doing this since September 2016, and can't wait to see where this crazy road is gonna take me next!
How did you come up with your cosplay name?
I didn't start cosplaying as Green Arrow until I had moved up to Salt Lake City, and so I figured the easiest thing to do was slap SLC in front of the character name I'd cosplay as most often.
What do you do when you're not in cosplay or geeking out?
I'm an amateur voice over artist, and while I've put that on the sidelines to focus on our makeup and special effects business, it's something I love doing. I help with a couple of local charity groups up here, combining my love for cosplay and serving those around me in need. My wife and I are huge hockey fans as well, and I play in a local rec league. I also enjoy going to the gym, I like to call it being a superhero in training.
What is your proudest cosplay accomplishment?
I just got back from WonderCon 2017 where I got to meet several people from the comic industry. I had several artists comment about how much they loved my classic Ollie. The biggest compliment I got came from Neal Adams. I was picking up a commission of Green Arrow sketched in a hardcover, and decided I would give him an 8x12 print of Wills and I as Hal and Ollie. I told him he didn't have to keep it, and I didn't know what he'd actually do with it, but I wanted him to have it as a thank you. He got genuinely excited about it, and began to show it to his table staff telling them how cool it was.
That same weekend, DC posted us on their Instagram, and while there was a lot of positive responses, there was some hate and negativity. I wasn't happy and defended my friends that were attacked, but had to simply laugh off the comments directed towards me. DC artists, and Neal Adams himself said he loved my cosplay, how can you touch that?!
What cosplay(s) are you working on right now?
I have several versions of Green Arrow I'm working on, including Longbow Hunters, JLU, DC Rebirth and Injustice 2. I'm also currently working on a Ted Grant classic JSA Wildcat and in the infancy stages of designing a Dr. Mid-Night. I think it's a lot fun to broaden a roster for a photo shoot or convention 💚 Not to mention it would be fun to carry around a little owl as Dr. Mid-Night!
Who is your cosplay idol/inspiration?
I don't know if I have any idols, but I think seeing people going out and simply enjoying their various fandoms is an amazing inspiration. I also have to thank all my supporters and followers for their constant inspiration to keep bettering my craft and health. They help in more ways than I think they really understand, they are awesome, and mean a whole heap to me!
What is your dream cosplay?
I'm pretty much doing it. Green Arrow is my favorite hero, and I love getting to portray him in public. As far as one I haven't done, I think I'd really love to do a Tomar Tu or an Arkkis! Maybe even a Ch'p, haha.
What is your favorite convention to attend?
So far, I've only attended a handful, and each had their own perks and benefits. I simply loving getting to cosplay, so as long as I can do that, I'm happy, haha. I'm not that picky!
What is your dream convention to attend?
I'd really like to attend an East Coast convention and ECCC, think I could get some fantastic Green Arrow shots in the Emerald City 💚
Do you have any cosplay or convention pet peeves?
I love my classic Ollie, and while I do get some Robin Hood (technically not 100% incorrect) or even Peter Pan, I don't like it when someone attacks your cosplay because they don't know it or think another version is superior. I get a lot of flack from Arrow fans because I don't do Amell's version. A lot of those who have said something have never read the comics, and I'll ask and they'll admit it. If one version of a hero is your favorite, you can enjoy it all you want, but don't bully someone because they don't share your preference.
I actually had someone say they didn't like my cosplay because, "Green Arrow has a hood, he's never worn that stupid hat." Again, I asked them, and they admitted they've never read a comic, so I shared with them Ollie's love for Robin Hood as a kid. I usually get a chuckle when I tell them I'm cosplaying as my favorite hero who is cosplaying as his favorite hero, "Cosception!"
Do you have any horror stories or mistakes you've made that others can learn from?
Pockets, if you can in any way shape or form, make sure you have pockets! My first version of Green Arrow didn't have any, so when I got my next quiver and belt setup, I made sure I have pouches for money and cards, haha.
Do you have any tips or words of encouragement for other cosplayers?
I think doing a cosplay you're passionate about can make some of the struggles or obstacles you're bound to face in the design and production phase a whole hell of a lot easier.
While you're cosplaying, have fun! Enjoy every aspect of it, and be sure to share your joy and excitement with the others around you. Also, be kinda and supportive to those in the cosplay community. Sometimes you see nastiness being sent from one cosplayer to another, and this shouldn't be happening in our community. Like William S. Preston Esq. and Theodore Logan once said, "Be excellent to each other!"
Where can we find you on all things social?
Instagram - @SLCGreenArrow
Twitter - @SLCGA
Photos for this interview provided by interviewee's Facebook page.
What a great interview!! Go follow him on social media.