For many kids in the west, the first male role models they have to look up to are Disney princes. As those little girls and boys grow up, they learn that, in the real world, teeth don’t come quite so white and shiny, hair doesn’t come so perfectly floofy and jaws that chiselled are, to put it succinctly, rare. The iconic Disney male just doesn’t seem to exist in real life. But cosplayer Jimmy Sherfy comes pretty close.
He’s got the boyish grin, the perfect teeth and hair that defies belief. Though of course top notch wigs are all part and parcel of the cosplay job.
Over the years, Jimmy’s cosplays have expanded from his staple array to princes to include anime characters and gender-bent characters in his repertoire.
We caught up with Jimmy to find out what gets his creative juices flowing.
Kirstie: PC or Mac?
K: What is your favourite curse word?
J: Does piss slit count?
K: If you could pick a world from any video game, where would you live?
J: Hmmm… I mean…. I’m not up on video games…. Can we say Kingdom Hearts?
K: What fictional character from movies, comics, TV or video games have you secretly crushed on?
J: I mean, Prince Edward from Enchanted…. It’s no secret though!
K: What got you into cosplaying?
J: I saw some of my friends doing Disney cosplay and I was like “Zomg! How do I get up on that?!?!?”
K: What was the first character you ever cosplayed?
J: Petey Piranha from Mario Bros/Super Smash Bros.
K: How did it feel going out in cosplay for the first time?
J: Scary… Literally we walk out and so many people taking our picture. I was like woahhhh! It was a lot of fun though.
K: How does it compare to how you feel showing off new cosplays now?
J: It honestly depends. I’m a guy so sometimes nobody gives a shit. Unless it’s a popular character, something big and flashy, or a big group.
K: What do you think of that first cosplay now?
J: I always joke “had to start with something easy…” I still think it’s pretty cool, but it was a lot of work just to wear it.
K: When did you realise you were first getting noticed as a cosplayer? How did it make you feel?
J: Later that year when I did Flynn Rider. It was the first cosplay I did where anyone could see my face. It felt weird at first but I was able to make so many new friends.
K: What makes a character jump out at you as something you have to cosplay?
J: I mean… A cute boy usually.
K: What got you into cosplaying Disney characters?
J: Oh oh oh I just love Disney so much. I obviously cosplay many other characters, but Disney characters are what made me want to cosplay just because I’m a huge fan.
K: Who is your favourite Disney Prince? Why?
J: Well I already mentioned Prince Edward! I mean come on, he’s so dreamy! Flynn Rider is probably second. He’s an ass and I can relate.
K: What inspired you to make gender-swapped Princess cosplays?
J: I actually got into the whole gender-bent thing late. I own most of the princess costumes for my character company (Epic Character Parties) and I was thinking “What can I use/alter into a genderbent costume easy?” That’s when I decided to do Anna.
K: Who’s your favourite Disney Princess? Why?
J: Ariel is still my favorite. I was so obsessed with her when the movie came out in theaters. I found her story so relatable to me as a child.
K: What’s your most memorable con experience?
J: I have so many! But Anime Expo 2015 was pretty great. I went to see Jennifer Cihi perform, the singing voice from Sailor Moon. She put on an amazing concert and then met with fans afterwards. We had been Facebook friends, but I didn’t think she would know who I was at all. She saw me and literally stopped what she was doing and said “Oh my god, Jimmy Sherfy!” and came over to hug me and say hello. That was pretty epic.
K: What’s your favourite character to cosplay?
J: Prince Edward again! I also love doing anything from Sailor Moon, especially Alan from the Doom Tree saga. Peter Pan is always really fun too.
K: If you actually had to live as one of the characters you’d cosplayed, which one would it be?
J: Hmm… I don’t really know, I’ve never thought about it. Anything with some cool super powers, haha!
K: You started off making Disney cosplays and moved onto anime. What inspired you to branch out in that direction?
J: I do love anime as well. It just seemed like a natural progression since I do attend many anime cons. When I did Sailor Moon cosplays for the first time, people were so excited. I feel so connected now to the Sailor Moon fandom!
K: Do you have any plans for a new direction you might take your cosplay next?
J: Nothing drastic but I am planning some other 90s anime characters!
K: You recently cosplayed as Spark, leader of Team Instinct in Pokémon Go. Are you Team Instinct? Why?
J: I am! Ok well… I didn’t play Pokémon Go until after they announced the team leaders and I chose Instinct because Spark was hot… Haha. People actually asked me to cosplay him.
K: Do you play the other Pokémon games?
J: I actually never have. I loved the anime but never really go into the games.
K: What’s your favourite Pokémon?
K: What’s the most difficult cosplay you’ve ever done?
J: Birdo from Mario Bros. It was heavy!
K: Have you ever given up on a cosplay idea because it was too difficult?
J: All the time.
K: Are you working on anything new now?
J: Nothing new for a while. I actually have Fiore’s suit from the Sailor Moon R movie, but I haven’t worn that yet. No plans yet but I really wanna do Gourry from Slayers.
K: What is the most unusual or unexpected thing you’ve used as part of a cosplay?
J: This happens a lot. Well, inside of Birdo’s big mouth there’s a basket. I did Rancis from Wreck It Ralph and lots of peeps asked how we made his hat. The main piece was just something I found at a thrift store.
K: Are there any characters you’re looking forward to cosplaying in the future?
J: Besides the ones I mentioned, I will probably do Prince Adam from Beauty and the Beast. I really want to do Haruka/Sailor Uranus’ school outfit also.
K: Who are your favourite cosplayers working right now?
J: Oh I have way too many. Literally all of my friends are amazing cosplayers.
K: What’s your favourite thing about the cosplaying community?
J: I’ve made so many friends over the past 6 years. Literally you will see someone cosplaying from a series you love and BAM…. Instant friend.
K: How do you think the cosplaying community could be improved?
J: People could be a little nicer. Stop making things a competition or get mad if someone cosplays the same character as you. I’ve had that problem.
K: Outside of cosplaying, what do you like to do with your time?
J: Lazy stuff! Anime and comics.
K: Do you think you’ll still be cosplaying in ten years’ time? Do you have any goals, in cosplaying terms or otherwise?
J: I imagine so. I’ve become friends with some cosplayers who are 10 years older than me and they’re still at it! No kind of goals or agenda for me! I’m just enjoying myself and having fun.
K: Do you have any advice for aspiring cosplayers?
J: Just go for it. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there.
To keep up with Jimmy’s work, you can follow him on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
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