May 2018 Costume Writeup: Diana

What they're from Zero Time Dilemma (Video Game)
Variation Default
Created July 2016
Debuted Sunday of Otakon 2016
Also worn Matsuricon 2016, MAGFest 2017, Anime Mini 2017, Ohayocon 2017
Groups Trimeriad Cosplay with Niho as Sigma & Tomoyo as Old Man
Light of Hope Cosplay as Phi
Mecchan as Diana
Benjamin Wright-Heuman as Zero.
Wig Arda Wig: Dani in Pumpkin (CL-069).
Arda Long Wefts in Pumpkin, applied toward the base of the hairline at the bottom.
Arda Short Wefts in Pumpkin, braided and applied to the sides of the wig.
Special Makeup Because I have prominent cheekbones and Diana has a rounded face, I contour my cheekbones out of the way, a little. I also heavily cover my natural eyebrows with at least five layers of Elmer's glue-powder-concealer, then draw over them to create her upward-slanted eyebrows. As far as I know, I'm the only cosplayer who goes to this absurd length to emulate the 3d model, haha. This is the only cosplay where I wear brown false eyelashes and brown mascara, as well. Freckles, I'm still experimenting. I've used hand-stippling with eyeliner, but I'd like to use a rough sponge and contour shade next time.
Patterns McCall's pattern M6608 for the skirt, with modifications.

What went wrong:
I think the only thing I don't love is that the shoes aren't super comfortable to wear all day. That's probably a more "my own foot shape" thing than the cosplay.

What went right:
I'm really proud of the shape of the skirt (I use a petticoat underneath), and the way the lace dyed.

What I'd do differently:

I still would like to alter the color of the skirt, honestly. I thought it would be darker and browner, but I didn't have time or desire to dye that heavy stuff before I put it all together. I'm thinking of some cross-hatching fabric paint in a watered-down brown for the next time I fix her up.

Would I wear it again?

YOU SAY THE WORD AND SHE'S ON. Her wig may or may not be sitting in my bathroom waiting to be restyled, but I'm always ready and excited to cosplay her.

Why I chose this character

I went into Zero Time Dilemma knowing I would cosplay Mira regardless of what role she played in the narrative, but ended up, despite my resistance, truly loving Diana as a character for whom I felt tremendous empathy. Fans went into this game with the knowledge that Diana would face some difficult choices and (SPOILERS) end up "killing 6 billion people" from VLR's recording of her voice. Try as I might, as interested as I was in Q Team, my heart belonged to D Team. I wasn't convinced until I played the infamous D-END 2 route around midnight on the day ZTD was released. (MORE SPOILERS) Finding out that Diana was a survivor of abuse and further trauma during the Decision Game itself was the final factor. At the time, I was so unsure I could pull off pale redhead Diana, who looks so opposite from the way I do in real life. It took many makeup trials for me to finally become confident that I could do her justice. But I knew I had to do it for myself. It was the first cosplay in a long, long time that I felt I was doing just for my soul's satisfaction (other than Velvet), as if I could comfort the character by bringing her to life. I wanted to tell her story with the respect it deserved.

Any other anecdotes?:

True fact: it's because of this cosplay that I met the love of my life, Ali. I had been wondering whether I should abandon the Zero Escape fandom, but I still wanted more content for Diana, and I was desperate for someone else to love her as much as I did. I stumbled across Ali's fanfiction around the time that I debuted this cosplay and really loved her portrayal of Diana in particular—and the rest is history.

I also want to express my gratitude for Niho, Tomoyo, and Anne. For months, they listened to me ramble about how much I loved ZTD and how sad I was not to have a larger cosplay group with its characters. Despite knowing nothing about them, my friends agreed to wear the outfits for D Team and another special character as long as I helped with their costumes, so I jumped at the chance. (In the days before Arda's Kyle style, I even painstakingly recreated Sigma's 3d style hair with extra wefts and styling.) I helped them with props and wigs, and Niho helped with makeup so that we could have our spectacular shoot at MAG with Houkakyou. It's one of my favorite cosplay shoots of all time, especially because I was surrounded by the love of my chosen family.

Photos by me.

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