The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

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The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

The Rubicon

The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

The Rubicon

Rucker explores internet fame through cosplay

Becoming someone else might sound impossible, but for senior Bri Rucker, it’s just part of the hobby.
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Clara Ann Bagnoli
“I was the set designer, I was the sound designer, I was the lighting designer…I was everything” said Rucker.

Becoming someone else might sound impossible, but for senior Bri Rucker, it’s just part of the hobby.
As a cosplayer, they dress up as fictional characters, design costumes, props, and makeup looks, and post videos in-character for an audience of 35,000 TikTok followers.
If it sounds like a lot, it’s because it is.
However, for them, doing cosplay is worth it for its supportive community and potential for joyous self-expression.
Their journey into the hobby began during the COVID-19 lockdowns, but their interest was piqued long before that. As a self-proclaimed theater kid, they held a deep love for costumes and makeup, but they were also intrigued by prop-making, which they had never done before.
“The pandemic was definitely a catalyst,” Rucker said.
Having the time and resources to begin getting into cosplay allowed them to “start making stuff, and experimenting with makeup and characters that I enjoyed, and new pieces of media that I felt that I wanted to convey in a more true-to-myself way,” they said.
Their process, which they cataloged on TikTok, started small.
“My first video was me, in a corner, wearing a normal shirt with makeup on my face, and that was it,” they said.
Over time, they began to try a few more ambitious ideas and cultivated a small following.
Then, a video they posted went viral.
“I had about 82,000 likes on [the viral video],” Rucker said. “It’s my most seen video of all time. It got me from 200 followers to about 5,000 in a week.”
Although they acknowledge the similarities between theater and cosplay, they see a big difference, too: when they cosplay, they are their “own everything,” Rucker said. “I was the set designer, I was the sound designer, I was the lighting designer, I was the actor, I was the makeup person and also the clothing designer, and everything. I was the entire production by myself.”
Pullquote Photo

I was the set designer, I was the sound designer, I was the lighting designer…I was everything

— Bri Rucker


With the demands of junior and senior year, their online presence has taken a backseat since last fall, but they’re not stepping away from cosplay for good.
“I think I stopped posting consistently around junior year, right around this time,” Rucker said. “But I’ve got lots of ideas for projects that I want to continue doing.”
Becoming someone else is a thrill that’s hard to put down, Rucker said, especially with full creative freedom to add artistic takes and share them with a wide audience.

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About the Contributors
Eliza Farley, Opinions Editor, Iris EIC
My name is Eliza Farley (she/her). I work as the Opinions Editor for The Rubicon and as the Editor-in-Chief of Iris: Art + Lit. At school, I play tennis and softball, and I also play the oboe in the school orchestra. I love to shop for cute stationery and make paper airplanes. I can be reached at [email protected].
Clara Ann Bagnoli, Sports Editor
My name is Clara Ann Bagnoli (she/her). I work as a Sports Editor for The Rubicon. At school, I’m involved in Sparks Swim & Dive, Herspace, and C3. I love to listen to music! I can be reached at [email protected].

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