Ho Chi Minh City-based cosplayer and model Kat Grey has loved anime and Japanese pop culture from a young age. Which is why she was so fascinated when she first discovered the world of cosplay.
"As a kid growing up in Vietnam, anime and games felt like a part of my childhood. When I was in middle school, I attended a convention for the first time and it blew my mind! I never expected to see so many gathering and sharing their love for anime and cosplay! When I saw others cosplaying a character I liked, the feeling was indescribable, I remember thinking to myself: 'Wow, they've really brought that character to life'. It was also in that moment that I decided to try cosplay and hopefully bring that type of happiness to other people," Kat told Digital Life Asia.
Cosplay and gaming
Kat, who is half-Vietnamese and half-Russian, is gender-fluid and uses the pronouns she/them. As confirmed with Kat, we are using "she said" in the attribution of quotes.
@_katgrey4 Thank you for coming to see me today 💕 I loved seeing you guys and had so much fun thanks to you #shxto #cosplay #fyp ♬ オリジナル楽曲 - ドララ(本家)
Asked to name their favorite character among the ones they have cosplayed, Kat replied: "I think my favorite must be Yor from 'SPY×FAMILY'! Her character left a big impression on me and her character design is stunning. I really enjoyed cosplaying her."
What is Kat's most memorable cosplay experience so far?
"My most memorable cosplay memory must definitely be the cosplay events and conventions where I get to interact with so many amazing people. When I have the chance to see other cosplayers who are just starting in our community, it reminds me of how I felt when I first started as well," she said.
While Kat loves video games, she says she hasn't been able to play as much as she would want.
"Since I was a bit more into anime and manga, I didn't have the chance to really indulge in gaming as much. I think my first game was Overwatch? It was when I went over to my friend's house, too, and they had to teach me to properly play. I wasn't exactly that good at it either ahahah. They were very patient with me. I'm thankful."
These days, Kat is also busy training to become a singer and performer.
"Aside from cosplaying, I've also recently started as a trainee for a Korean entertainment company. I enjoyed singing and performing for as long as I can remember and I consider myself very lucky to have the opportunity to grow in those aspects as well.
"But more than anything, I’m grateful to have a community that supports me. I really wouldn't be able to stand here if it weren't for those people," she said.
@_katgrey4 And love 🥰 #fyp ♬ Ive nightcore - 🍒
What message would Kat like to share with aspiring cosplayers?
"I think cosplay on its own is a really fun and exciting hobby to participate in! But we can't deny that it is a little more financially demanding, whether you buy your cosplays or make them. I always advise people to only actively participate in the community once they're an adult and/or independent financially. Cosplaying is one of those activities that you never stop improving in. There's so many aspects to look at and so many skills to polish!
"If you're just starting out as a cosplayer, I hope that you can have fun while you're cosplaying and enjoy the whole process. As cosplay is becoming more and more popular, there's more people coming in and our community is growing a lot bigger. Even so I'd hope that you never feel too pressured for your cosplay to be perfect, and just genuinely have a good time and enjoy your stay in the community! Cosplay is for everyone!"
@_katgrey4 more more and moreeee #fypシ ♬ cupid twin version - ⟡ TRACYTRACKS ⟡
Asked if she would like to promote any projects, Kat replied: "Hopefully within this year, I'll be able to provide more content as a cosplayer and as a singer and performer. I'm very, very excited for things to come and I hope that you're looking forward to it just as much as I do!"
Trust us, Kat, we're all really looking forward to it!