SEATTLE - A new social media sensation is based right here in the Puget Sound - cat cosplay!
This pet owner is getting paid to pursue his passion. Nathan Smith's costumes are fit for a king... As long as that king's being played by a cat…
"It's my little creative outlet," said Nathan Smith.
This is "cat cosplay" - felines, dressed as characters from anime, TV, and movies.
This self-described theater geek handcrafts each piece. And his exceptionally patient pets let him dress them, pose them, and post their images online, for the whole world to see.
"I've been told by so many people that they look forward to my pictures every day, that it brightens their day up,” said Nathan. “And it's why I keep doing it."
The cats have their own reasons. Nak and Fox are highly motivated by treats, and Nathan's trained them to sit and stay on sets featuring miniature, cat-size props.
The wardrobe choices are mind boggling.
"This is Gerados, a Pokemon character," Said Nathan. "And everything on those is hand sculpted and then painted for detail work… I threw it together in about seven hours?"
The results are - well, you be the judge.
There's Bat Cat, Bond Cat, Harry Potter., Marty McFly, Left Shark, Star Lord, Spock, Dipper Pines from the Gravity Falls cartoon, and Ganondorf from the Legend of Zelda.
"The wig work, takes forever to style tiny cat wigs," said Nathan.
And he knows exactly what you're thinking...
"Who in their right mind spends 40 plus hours making an intricate armor suit with a wig for a cat to wear?"
It started as a hobby - dressing up for Renaissance Faire. Then, they were hired by a troop of performers and paid to make appearances. So Nathan started making other costumes and put them out into the universe.
"The Ganondorf costume hit the front page of Reddit and had over 1 million views in a 24 hour period," said Nathan. "We're receiving fan art of our cats."
And he's secured a sponsor - a company that's paying him to cosplay with his cats.
For Nathan, it's a job he could never have imagined, but one he's glad to do each and every day.
"As long as I'm bringing at least one person a smile and brightening their day, all that effort is worth it," said Nathan.
Copyright 2016 KING