Once upon a time I was sent a link that I was afraid to click on. Someone told me that I need to “check this girl out” since she is a “cosplayer” and is pretty hot. Please let me establish right now that I have been duped into clicking these links in the past only to want to gouge my eyes out and spend the rest of my life in a box. I don’t need to identify some of these links as thousands upon thousands of my fellow homo-sapiens have seen the same junk. Begrudgingly I decided to click (hell…I always click) and WOAH! STOP! BACK THE TRUCK UP! Someone finally sent me something that I could digest. Her name is Yaya Han and she is a very beautiful cosplayer and she makes her own costumes.
One day, as we sat around in a small weekly meeting, John L. mentioned that he was bringing Yaya down to Houston to be in the commercial for Import Reactor 2012. I am pretty sure I asked if I could get an interview, although, I am not sure I asked in a language anyone understands (lol).
Yaya began going to anime conventions over 12 years ago just as a fan and an artist. She painted large watercolor paintings of many anime characters and would enter them into art shows and auctions. She spent 2 years in this part of the business and managed to support herself very well. Her first actual experience with cosplay was at the Anime Expo in 1999. This began her costume design business and she began building quite an extensive fan base. Yaya was a part of a business that made accessories like fairy wings with her friend Meg while making her own costumes on the side. Her experience here taught her the ropes of running an artistic business. She would eventually get invited to conventions as a guest and as a panelist all while keeping up with her own artist tables. This eventually led to her quitting her day job completely in 2005 to go into business for herself.
Juggling a million tasks everyday is Yaya’s biggest challenge. She has been a one woman show for quite a while now. Her annual convention count is usually around 20 – 25 per year with 2 – 5 of those conventions landing on the same weekend. Not only does she have a booth to sell her items but she is also contracted to model in her cosplay outfits at each one. After watching her work for an hour doing just one thing I can attest to her madness (lol). She does offer internships to cosplayers and students in Atlanta now which has been a tremendous help to her daily schedule. 5 years from now Yaya would like to see her business get into the manufacturing side of things while still maintaining her high levels of quality.
Spare time is a very scarce item to come by in Yaya’s world. She is always working. One of the things she does to help ease the stress is she always tries to set a few days aside in some of the cool days she visits. After the convention is over she can spend a day or two doing some sightseeing and checking out the local fare. The next stops on her list are Dublin and St. Petersburg (I’m jelly). Her daily driver (this is an automotive website right?) is a Land Rover but she does have a Porsche 928 S4 chilling in the garage. Although, her dream car would be an Aston Martin DB9 Coupe. A fantastic choice as far as I am concerned (lol).
I would like to thank Yaya for taking a few minutes out of her ridiculous schedule to shoot a few photos for AutoModia. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting and hanging out with her and look forward to working with her again in the future. Yaya’s professional nature shined through in everything we did over the course of a few days and I appreciate that above all else. Please visit her website at http://www.yayahan.com and try not to drool all over your keyboard.