We had the good fortune of connecting with Steven Rodriguez and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Steven, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
Since the pandemic started, I’m gonna be honest, I’ve been putting work first above all. With so many layoffs happening, along with being an essential worker, I want to make sure that status doesn’t change. It’s gotten to the point where I’ve canceled doctor’s appointments, constantly argue with my family, and even offered to work on my days off. I’m scared to be labeled useless. It’s been draining both physically, emotionally, and mentally. I know I COULD request days off to recover…but I just feel that it’s morally irresponsible, considering how many people lost their jobs during the pandemic. I tried to start streaming on Twitch as an way to destress and to learn something new, but since I’m now an Affiliate, it’s become a second job. While I love a good challenge, it’s gotten hard to juggle both my primary job and Twitch. I ended up putting Twitch on the backburner, since financially, it’s not a stable source of income. Overall, I wish my work/life balance could be better, but I’ve learned that this pandemic can change a person, sometimes for the worse. 

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’m a cosplayer and propmaker based in Miami. I tend to do a lot of Nintendo and Fallout themed cosplays. I try to stand out by doing characters or props/additions that no one else will do, such as additional armor, mixing up art mediums, and trying to add as much detail as possible. It wasn’t easy to get where I am today, there was definitely lots of trial and error.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
For food, I’d go to Cafe Versailles, because it wouldn’t be a trip to Miami without some Cuban food. For hanging out, while South Beach would come to mind, I’d recommend going to places that fit my crowd, such as Arcade Odyssey and Flynn’s Gaming, for gaming and drinking, Tate’s Comics for everything geek related, and maybe a local con or two, depending on the time of year.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are a lot of people I’d give a shoutout to, honestly. Ill try to keep it brief: My parents for being supported of my craziness and bullshit, My best friends, Roy, Stefano, Erika, and Kari. They’re practically family to me! Everyone that follows me on social media.

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/s15costuming/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/s15costuming
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/S15Costuming/
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGC27EgkxmPWUmk-O7yfrTw
Other: Twitch: https://www.twitch.tv/s15costuming Extra Life: https://www.extra-life.org/participant/S15Costuming

Image Credits
Lou Carrion Photography, Mykey2lyfe_creations, thatonephotographycosplay, and mijares_productions

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutMiami is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.