The Space Marine Cosplayer community is incredibly close knit, and full of artists of amazing caliber. This month we are featuring some of the amazing Cosplayers behind Brand’s Great Company. We will go behind the scenes to get to the heart of this great initiative, starting with Dyfrig of Iron Warrior Cosplay, the Space Marine who started it all.
Last week we took time to pay tribute to Brand, an amazing young Space Wolf who recently took refuge in Valhalla to sit at the Allfather’s Table. One of his closest friends has taken time to talk with us about Cosplay, the Creative Community, and the Inspiration and Advice he has to share with us all. Enjoy the work and mind of Iron Warrior Cosplay!
How did you get your start in cosplay? How long have you been creating your projects? What inspires you to work in the cosplay realm?
I started Cosplaying back in 2010 thanks to an amazing friend of mine called Marcus Beldon-Smith who introduced me to Steampunk! I went to my first convention with him in a group of Steampunk friends wearing just regular things like a plain white shirt, waistcoat, pocket watch, brown shoes and a bowler hat.
It was nothing amazing at the time but once we got into the convention I was blown away by it all. The colours the costumes the people the atmosphere, I knew then I would catch the cosplay bug.
I started creating my own stuff quite late into my cosplay life, about 2015 when I took to building my first ever BIG BUILD and that was a 40K SPACE MARINE!! I MC at events like LFCC London Film and Comic-con where I got the honour of being MC with Matt Andrews; there I met up with my friends David Roth and Dave Dayman, both amazing cosplayers and both huge Space Marines. I had spoken to David some time before about making my own, but I was saving up at the time. We spoke to an organizer for Play Expo and we pitched a crazy idea of “Why don’t we BUILD the Space Marine at the event for people to see?”
Cut to Play Expo Manchester, and there I am with David Roth and Marcus Springle cutting EVA and building my Space Marine LIVE in front of people in what I called THE BIG BUILD SHOW. It went so well that we did it in a weekend, we got 90% of the main body and other bits complete. It was an amazing weekend and one I will never forget.
What inspires me to work in cosplay is mainly my friends, they are mostly cosplayers and they do some amazing work. It gives me that push I need to go at it and do what I want to do no matter what people say. It also helps that I have an amazing girlfriend who also cosplays. She supports me so much with my insane ideas along with being my main support and also my spotter when I’m stomping about in my Space Marine.
Steampunk images by Banbury Photography
What is your favorite type of cosplay work to do?
My favourite type of cosplay work to do is foam work, I love how much fun it is and how I can make just ANYTHING I want with it.
I love adding to my marine all the time. Using foam gives me that freedom I need to just be creative, It’s hard to get and idea out of my head sometimes but with foam I feel I can just put it all together and there it is.
What are your favorite completed projects, or your most popular?
I would say my most popular right now is my Space Marine, but it can also be my most hated for me personally as it does take a huge effort to put into my tiny car, also I do pre planning on how to get into a building. i.e find a ramp or lift or something as I can’t do stairs.
It is hard to pick though as I love my Ghostbuster cosplay, it brings joy to children and there is nothing more heart warming than a little boy or girl asking you if you really bust ghosts. <3 It’s different when an adult walks up and legitimately asks you, do you really catch Ghosts…… I just stand there and look at them with a blank face….. really??
What material is your favorite to work with?
EVA FOAM!! ALL DAY ALL NIGHT I LOVE EVA FOAM!! <3 EVA FOAM 4 LYF!!
What conventions do you attend? Have you guested/spoken on panels/competed in contests?
I attend MANY conventions and work/cosplay guest at a fair few now compared to when I first started. I have been the MC for several events and guested at many over the years but I also enjoy doing panels. I have yet to take my Space Marine on stage to do a Cosplay Comp as I wasn’t 100% ready to do so. 2018 is my year though as this year I pledged to take my marine to as many conventions as I could and even try get it into as many Cosplay Competitions as I can to see if I can WIN.
What projects are you working on in the future?
I will be making a very large cosplay in the form of TOTORO. This will not be a dated cosplay as I don’t intend on rushing the build. I will have TOTORO done when he’s done. He’s going to be a lot of work and not only for myself but for my amazing girlfriend Yve who is going to be my main seamstress for the build, she will be doing all the fabric work while I work on the frame and workings.
What is your favorite convention?
My favourite convention is SFW – Sci-Fi Weekender that takes place in Hafan Y Mor holiday park in north Wales. It’s my favourite place to go as I always get a warm welcome and love each and everyone who attends. It’s probably the one event I look forward to the most each year. <3
Who are your cosplay inspirations? Whose work do you admire or aspire to?
Adam Savage. He is probably my cosplay hero, he builds things and tells people that they too can build anything if they put their mind to it. I love watching his one day builds and listening to him talk about his love for cosplay. Please watch this video of a TED talk by Adam savage titled “My Love Letter To Cosplay” this talk he does gets to me every time I’m down and out, every time I want to quit or stop cosplaying. I watch this video and it gives me that spark again. He truly is my cosplay hero. <3
What are your favorite movies/shows to watch or music to listen to while you craft?
I love to listen to Audio books or Blues Jazz. 40K audio books or Joe Bonamassa are probably my go to for when I’m building. But during the day like if I have a Saturday to myself to just build something then it’s 100% always RAMMSTEIN! \m/ my favorite band in the world, I even have their band logo tattooed on my wrist.
What message do you have for people wanting to break into cosplay? What have you learned in your time working in Cosplay?
Pick a project and research the hell out of it. Once you have everything you need in regards to information then talk to people online or in cosplay groups and ask them how would they do this or that if you’re stuck. Once you have all the information you need you can then go buy the materials to start making. I love tutorials on youtube they are always helpful also go on the RPF (replica prop forum) they are always happy to help. Also if you find someone who has the same cosplay and you love what they did but don’t know how they did it? contact them, message their cosplay page and ask. It’s the only way to pass on amazing and hand tips and info on how to make things.
I’ve learnt quite a bit from working in Cosplay, but most importantly I’ve learnt that people can be amazing and supporting, loving and caring! People can be really really (!&$#£&), and thanks to some of those people I’ve gained a thick skin and learnt not to take everything to heart. Just remember you are YOU and there is nothing anyone can do to change that. I wear my heart on my sleeve and show people my work, just be ready for those who want to tear you down, there are people who will give you some criticism, don’t think of it as a bad thing, use it to your advantage and gain from that experience.
I can tell you all though that the main thing I’ve learnt from cosplay is that things take time, it won’t happen over night. It takes time, effort and yes money to make a cosplay. Just stick to it and never give up <3
Oh yeah also, ALWAYS GO PEE BEFORE GETTING INTO A SPACE MARINE! Trust me, it’s annoying as hell to get in the suit and realise you need to pee…..
What are your social media/website links? Where can we find you?
My Cosplay Page: https://www.facebook.com/ironwarriorscosplay/
My (personal) Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dyfrig.griffiths/
Twitter: Dyfrig Griffiths @Dyfrig456
Have a Cosplay question you would like Mayhem’s Muse to answer? Send an email here!