TaLynn Kel slays the cosplay game in Atlanta as a full-figured model

Thanos Lovin: Photo by KYSS Photography

As a full-figured woman, how do you approach cosplay with a smaller comic character like Storm?
Clothing is always an issue when you’re a larger size than what companies cater to, so cosplay for me has always been about finding pieces that would work to create the look. When I first started doing this, and for many years after, unless I was willing to spend hundreds to have something custom made, I had to find pieces that worked. It’s been a great lesson for me because I now have a lot of mix and match items in my closet that I can pull together for a costume whenever I feel like it. And for Storm, she’s on the easier side to pull off as a Black woman. All I need is white hair and no matter what clothing I’m wearing, people think I’m Storm.

And to answer your question, I don’t really worry about my size. Every character has some iconic feature that helps people recognize who you’re dressed as. With Storm, it’s white hair and an “X” logo somewhere, although I’ve forgotten my X-man belt and people still recognized who I was dressed as.

Are you Marvel or DC? Why?
Hardcore Marvel 100%. I like how messy the characters are. Nobody is all the way good. It keeps things interesting. And the cinematic universe has been amazing. These last three films have raised the bar for me both in the way they addressed complicated topics and the risks they took. Nothing they’ve done has been easy or even formulaic in the last three films and I’ve loved it.

What is the next big hero movie you are looking forward to viewing?
Infinity War: Endgame. I can hardly wait. I will probably see Ant-Man and Wasp and Captain Marvel, cuz I’m jonesing but they are just filler for me. I need to see what’s next. Deadpool cuz it’ll probably be funny. But I am at the edge of my seat for the next Avengers. Not X-Men though. I want Fox to stop making those.

How can people follow you in social media?
I’m in a lot of different places, so it’s all about how you like your poison.

Website: www.talynnkel.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/talynnkel

Twitter: www.twitter.com/talynnkel

Instagram: www.instagram.com/talynnkel

Medium: https://medium.com/@TaLynnKel

Tumblr: https://www.tumblr.com/blog/talynn

Paypal:  PayPal.Me/TaLynnKel

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/talynnkel

TaLynn Phoenix. Photo by Geek Behind the Lens Photography

What is your blog site about?
I write about anti-Blackness, racism, and living as a Black woman in a culture that pretends to be better than it is. I write about how the constant lying and racism impacts Black people, specifically Black women like myself. I write about the things that move me, and since I’m a geek, a lot of it is geek-related.

What advice would you give a first-time cosplayer?
Don’t let perfect be the enemy of the good. Perfection is overrated and the only people who really notice are nitpicky assholes. None of us knows what we’re doing at first. We are literally taking drawings and trying to make them real.

We all come in with different skill sets and different capabilities. Try not to get too caught up in the competitive aspect of it, unless that’s really what you want. Ultimately, know why you’re doing this. If you want instant community, remember that small groups mimic larger society, so the same rules apply. If you want fame, same thing. But if you know why you’re out here, you can figure out how to get what you need from it without too much mess. There’s always mess, cuz we’re human and humans are naturally messy, but you can pick the mess you’re willing to deal with.

What would you like to say in closing to our readers?
You are awesome — unless you are a white supremacist, anti-LGBTQIA+, ableist, misogynistic, [or] xenophobe. If you’re any of those things, you’re trash that’s descended from trash and like Asgard, I hope you burn.

Mo Barnes
Mo Barnes

Maurice "Mo" Barnes is a graduate of Morehouse College and Political Scientist based in Atlanta. Mo is also a Blues musician. He has been writing for Rolling Out since 2014. Whether it means walking through a bloody police shooting to help a family find justice or showing the multifaceted talent of the Black Diaspora I write the news.



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